35th annual Buildings Show wraps up in Toronto today

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CaDCR  staff writer

Thousands of visitors have spent the last two days networking, learning and showcasing their work at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre and the 35th annual Buildings Show wraps up today (Dec. 1).\

Thursday was a day for students to visit the career hub for information about jobs in skilled trades, and pathways into the industry.

“I’m considering carpentry or plumbing, so I’m looking into apprenticeships,” said Dylan Bester, a Grade 12 student. “It seems like a good way to go instead of university . . . at least for me.”

The career hub was a new addition to the show this year, sponsored by NextGen, Job Ready, The Career Foundation and CIOB.

From students to individuals looking for a career change, the booth was a busy place.

Kerri Marshall, made the trip from Nova Scotia, hoping to recruit construction workers looking for new and, potentially, new surroundings.

“It’s our first time here . We thought it would be a good opportunity to connect with a different group of people,” she said. “We have a lot of opportunities for both ICI and home building and renovations … all workers, really.”

Marshall works for the Nova Scotia Department of Labour, Skills and Immigration. She says there was lots of interest in the East Coast job market, and she was “pleasantly surprised” to also find several business owners considering a move or an expansion.

“We are experiencing a labour shortage, but also issues with succession planning,” she said, “combined with the challenge of building 71,000 units by 2027.”

With a majority of small companies in construction – 10 employees or less – Marshall said the province is facing worsening shortages as builders retire and shut down businesses.

To tackle the unique issue, she says the province has recently opened a “pathway for construction entrepreneurs” hoping to encourage new startups.

“I’m talking to a lot of business owners who are interested . . . and I’m talking about the quality of life in Nova Scotia and the exciting potential for growth.”The career hub featured:

The Ontario Homebuilders Association was on site, providing advice on entering the construction industry and the Career Foundation provided information on training and provision assistance to new to industry professionals.

And for employers, NextGen Professional had on-site recruitment assistance for construction companies, architectural, engineering, and design firms, and building management groups.

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