Back in March, a few colleagues and I were discussing how to prepare kids for college. With that subject in mind, I wanted to do something fun and meaningful for the kids in our community. So I organized some workshops in my back yard focused on engineering with kids who might be interested in exploring structural engineering — and summer was the perfect time to do it! We had a group of 12 kids, aged 7–11, who signed up and were all set to explore some engineering concepts. It was a learning experience for me, as well!
Continue reading “Engineering with Kids: Popsicle Sticks, Spaghetti and Marshmallows”
On July 6, the Simpson Strong-Tie home office in Pleasanton, California, welcomed girls from Girls, Inc. of Alameda County. This visit provided an opportunity for the girls to hear from and interact with the many women leaders of Simpson Strong-Tie.
The construction and manufacturing industries continue to be male-dominated fields. The visit provided the girls the opportunity to meet several of our women leaders and also learn about other career paths that might not be automatically associated with the manufacturing industry. Our leaders — including Jacinta Pister, senior vice president, Worldwide Manufacturing; Jennifer Lutz, vice president, Human Resources; and Shelby Short, director, Global Quality Systems — shared stories of their personal success and professional growth at Simpson Strong-Tie.
Continue reading “Girls Inc. Visits Simpson Strong-Tie Lab”
Simpson Strong-Tie is renewing its partnership with Habitat for Humanity to continue supporting the housing organization’s efforts to make homes resilient to disasters. This is the 12th consecutive year of the partnership to help more families in need of a decent and affordable place to call home. To date, the manufacturer of structural product solutions has contributed more than $2.75 million toward Habitat’s mission.
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Good news for anyone involved in construction: The industry added 23,000 specialty trade contractor jobs in November 2017, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. The bad news? Construction employers will likely struggle to fill new positions, as a labor shortage triggered by the 2007–2009 Great Recession continues to dampen more robust growth for the builder economy.
In fact, the number of builders reporting a critical shortage of labor has grown from 21% in 2012 to 46% in 2014, 52% in 2015 and 56% in 2016, says Paul Emrath, who tracks industry economic statistics as the vice president for survey and housing policy research for the National Association of Home Builders.
Continue reading “Laying Foundations: Simpson Strong-Tie Mentoring Future Construction Leaders of America”
There are a couple of turkeys that like to hang out around our home office in Pleasanton and, no, I’m not referring to any of my colleagues — we actually have a gang of wild turkeys that comes up from the creek behind the office. Almost every day, these colorful birds feel safe enough to stroll onto the office walkway pecking for food outside our office windows and doors. It’s surprising to me that these beautiful creatures could be so fearless (or is it simply naïve?), especially around Thanksgiving time. Their presence reminds me that being fearless is important, because nothing new would ever be discovered if we were too afraid to venture outside our comfort zones.
Continue reading “Turkeys and Gratitude”
At Simpson Strong-Tie, we’re not only focused on building strong structures, we’re also focused on building strong relationships with the next generation of architects, engineers, builders and trade professionals who will help shape our communities. Given the shortage of skilled laborers and of school graduates joining the trades, we believe it’s important to support career opportunities for the young professionals who represent the future of our industry.
To do that, we’ve appointed a select group of Outreach Coordinators dedicated to creating relationships with young people interested in our industry. Here are five ways that Simpson Strong-Tie and this passionate team are helping the next generation of engineering and construction professionals plan their careers.
Continue reading “5 Ways Simpson Strong-Tie Collaborates with Construction Students”