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The YBA Workforce NOW website is one of York County’s primary resources for information about careers in the construction trades. Students, parents, educators & employers can find useful posts and the latest news on our blog.

YBA Workforce NOW® Foundation Kicks Off 2022-2023 Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Program

Sep 14, 2022 | News

The YBA Workforce NOW® Foundation, an operating foundation, and a subsidiary of the York Builders Association, recently launched a Construction Pre-Apprenticeship program in partnership with the York County Alliance for Learning - YCAL. 27 high school seniors from 11 local school districts are participating in the 2022-2023 program.

Determined to rebuild the skilled trades workforce in York County, the Workforce NOW Foundation focuses on creating community partnerships and developing programs and resources designed to educate parents, students, and teachers about the many rewarding skilled trade career opportunities available locally.

“This program will offer future skilled trade professionals the opportunity to build their skill sets and gain first-hand experience before joining the workforce. The program will also benefit the participating York Builders Association member companies looking for knowledgeable entry-level candidates to join their team,” said Workforce NOW Foundation’s staff director, Melissa Longenberger.

The 2022-2023 Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Program takes place from September 2022, through April 2023, with training taking place one day each month. Students will participate in several hands-on training sessions, including plumbing, framing, electrical, drywall, and masonry, as well as introductions to AutoCAD and blueprint design and reading. Students will also complete a 10-Hour OSHA Construction Safety Course and receive an OSHA Certification Card at the completion of the course.

The Construction Pre-Apprenticeship Program is geared toward high school students enrolled at a YCAL Partner School who are interested in pursuing a career in a construction-related trade following graduation. Participating high schools and school districts include the West Shore School District, Dallastown Area School District, Dover Area High School, Red Lion Area School District, Spring Grove Area School District, Susquehannock High School, West York Area School District, William Penn Senior High School, York Catholic Middle & High School, York County School of Technology, York Suburban School District.

The lack of skilled trade professionals is a serious challenge facing the U.S., with the demand at approximately 740,000 new workers per year for the next three years, according to the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB).

Pre-Apprenticeship allows students to explore a career and develop transferable skills before graduating and entering the workforce. On a national level, Pre-Apprenticeships are found to increase the success rates of individuals entering Registered Apprenticeships, which benefits both the Apprentice and the employer.

 About YBA Workforce NOW Foundation

The YBA Workforce NOW Foundation is a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization dedicating to raising awareness and connecting future construction industry professionals with the opportunities available to them in the local building industry. To learn more, contact the Foundation at 717-767-2444 or visit www.ybaworkforcenow.com

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Building Connections

The YBA Workforce NOW Foundation is directly connected to hundreds of employers in York County that are looking for the next generation of skilled trade professionals. Many of them offer on-the-job training, apprenticeships, mentorships, and more.

About Workforce

NOW Foundation

The YBA Workforce NOW Foundation is a 501c3 non-profit organization committed to growing our future workforce and connecting future skilled trade professionals with a lifetime of opportunities.

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Workforce NOW Board MemberLaurie Lourie

Company 
York Builders Association 

Position 
Executive Vice President 

How long have you been a YBA member?  
8 years as YBA Executive Vice President 

Involvement in YBA 
As Executive Vice President, I work closely with the York Builders Association Board of Directors on the strategic direction of the association, manage our talented team of employees, develop the culture of the organization, build relationships with YBA members, the community, and other stakeholders, identify potential sources of income and oversee income generating activities. Prior to my role with YBA, I served as Executive Vice President of the Wayne County Builders Association for 22 years. 

Why did you get involved with Workforce NOW?  
With direct experience working alongside members in the construction trades for three decades, I see first-hand how the lack of skilled workers impacts the ability to meet consumer demand, ultimately affecting our communities and the economy. I also see evidence of how successful and personally rewarding a career in the skilled trades can be. I am committed to generating awareness about the benefits of working in the skilled trades and inspiring more young people to consider the construction trades as a career path. 

Workforce NOW SecretaryEd Hesson

Company
Traditions Bank 

Position
Business Services Partner.  Commercial lending, deposits, and other business products and services. 

How long have you been a YBA member?
16 years 

Involvement in YBA
Previously served on the Workforce Committee 

Why did you get involved with Workforce NOW?
To educate younger generations about the importance of the trades and the viability of a career in the skilled trades. 

Other Community Involvement
Finance Committee & Board Member (York Day Nursery), Finance Committee & Board Member (DreamWrights Youth & Family Theatre) 

Workforce NOW TreasurerMichael Lohss, Jr.

Company 
Regal, Inc. - Plumbing, HVAC & Home Automation 

Position 
General Manager - Running day-to-day operations, building/developing business strategy, and assisting other managers in developing and growing their team. 

How long have you been a YBA member? 
38 years 

Involvement in YBA
Vice President of the York Builders Association, Chair of Workforce NOW Committee 

Why did you get involved with Workforce NOW?
As a mechanical contractor that is directly affected by the labor shortage, I am very passionate about developing our youth. I see and feel the impact of what's happening to our trades locally, let alone in America. I chose to partner with the York Builders Association and the Workforce NOW Foundation due to their direct contact with the premier builder and associate members locally that are also directly affected by this. By working together, we can achieve an outcome to boost our local economy and help spread the message that college isn't for everyone and that a career in the trades can be just as valuable, if not more valuable, than earning a college degree. 

Workforce NOW Vice PresidentWilliam Rickard

Company
Eastern York High School

Position
Principal

How long have you been a YBA member?
2 years

Involvement in YBA
Workforce NOW Committee

Why did you get involved with Workforce NOW?
To help our students connect with the construction trades workforce.

Workforce NOW PresidentShonna Cardello, NTP

Company
White Rose Settlement Services Inc.

Position
President of White Rose Settlement Services and a founding partner when the company opened in July 1996.

How long have you been a YBA member?

22 years

Involvement in YBA

Board of Directors (Life Director), 2019 Board President, Women’s’ Council of the York County Builders Association, Marketing Committee, Workforce NOW Committee

Why did you get involved with Workforce NOW?
Working directly with the Builders and trades within the YBA has opened my eyes to the dire need for skilled tradesman.  We are all part of the same team and when one team member needs help, we all pitch in.  The idea to start a program came from necessity.   Our industry is aging and we need younger skilled tradesman.  It was a simple endeavor for me to support and become involved in the Workforce NOW initiative.  I look forward to continuing to promote this amazing Foundation!

Other Community Involvement
Shonna Stock Cardello is the President of White Rose Settlement Services and Inch Settlement Services LLC and a founding partner with the companies. She is a licensed title agent and has earned the designation of Certified Land Title Professional and in 2015 was awarded the National Title Professional designation by the American Land Title Association (ALTA).   She is a Life Director of the Pennsylvania Builders Association and a Past President of the York Builders Association.  Ms. Cardello was President during the Charter Year of the Women’s’ Council of the York County Builders Association.  Shonna currently is a TIPAC Board of Director for ALTA and is the Pennsylvania Trustee, and serves on the Title Action Network (TAN) and Government Affairs committees for ALTA. Shonna serves, and has served, on many committees for the Realtors Association of York and Adams Counties (RAYAC) and the Pennsylvania Land Title Association.

Staff LiaisonMelissa Longenberger

Melissa Longenberger leads the Foundation’s efforts to advance awareness about the skilled trades as a rewarding career path and build connections throughout the community with local organizations, educators, school administrators, employers, and more. She also oversees the Foundation’s efforts to develop resources and programs supporting the mission to empower more students and build our future workforce. In her role as staff liaison, Melissa works closely with the YBA Workforce NOW Board of Directors. 

Melissa Longenberger is currently the Vice President of Member Relations for the York Builders Association, where she’s served in a membership role since 2015. Melissa has been at the forefront of the Workforce NOW initiative, including spearheading its inception in 2018.