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This Is Really Catching On: Illinois Students Commit To Trade Schools On ‘Signing Day’

Published Friday, May 24, 2019
by Mark Rivera/
This Is Really Catching On: Illinois Students Commit To Trade Schools On ‘Signing Day’

(ADDISON, ILLINOIS) -- It's Signing Day

Signing Day is usually associated with college athletics or maybe even college academic commitments, but across the country, more than 2,500 students are signing on the dotted line to make a commitment in writing to a career in the Skilled Construction Trades.

Fourteen DuPage-area High School Seniors recently signed their commitment to work as Tradesmen, part of a program from SkillsUSA to help students pursue a career in the Trades.

"I'm ‘proud’ of him.  ‘Yeah, I'm proud of him,’" said Jammie Slack, Sr., looking on at his son as he signed his name. 

Slack, Sr. comes from a long line of Tradesmen.  "My dad was a contractor, I'm a contractor and my other seven brothers are contractors," he said. 

And his son, Jammie Jr., wants to dive right in.  "Waste no type of time," he said. 

He's going to join his family, maybe even branch out.  "The goal is to definitely have my own company, but in ‘due time.’  ‘In due time,’" Jammie Jr. said. 

"Not many young people are in (the Construction Trades)," Slack, Sr., said. "I have to call ‘old-timers like in my dad's age to get things done.’  It's ‘hard to find young people, so I'm very excited for young people that do decide to take the Trades up.’" 

With this new crop of contractors studying HVAC, Electrical Installation, Carpentry and more, the sky's the limit

Local companies are "calling weekly to get Apprenticeships and students in-house to get the manpower because the Trade ‘is so in demand right now,’" Technology Center of DuPage College and Career Advisor Lauren Arambruru said. 

So why a signing day for the Trades? 

"It's just ‘great’ work, it ‘pays well’ and it ‘comes with a lot of benefits,’" said Carpentry Student Collin Lawson.

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