Morehouse College Student Jordy Andrade Used a Networking Opportunity to Jumpstart a Construction Career
For high school and college students interested in construction careers, CEFGA’s annual CareerExpo is an invaluable resource that offers face-to-face access to industry professionals across a wide array of disciplines.
Jordy Andrade capitalized on that opportunity at the 2018 CareerExpo, landing a summer job with JE Dunn Construction and building relationships that just might translate into a full-time career one day.
“Every year we went to the CEFGA CareerExpo,” says Jordy, who studied construction at the Fulton County College and Career Academy (a CEFGA K12 Pipeline Program) while attending Langston Hughes High School. “I was walking around, looking at different companies and schools, and JE Dunn kind of caught my eye. I went up to talk to a superintendent, Nathan Tucker, and that’s how we got connected.”
Jordy went to work for JE Dunn immediately after graduating from Langston Hughes. He spent the summer on a job site in the Atlanta suburb of Austell, where he began as a general laborer, gained some valuable experience in carpentry, and also shadowed workers in surveying and engineering.
He left JE Dunn to attend Morehouse College, where he’s majoring in business administration and is the starting punter on the Maroon Tigers’ football team, but he plans to return for more summer work. His ultimate goal is to be a superintendent or project manager.
“The experience was amazing,” Jordy says of his time with JE Dunn. “From the foreman and the superintendents to my co-workers, they all taught me a lot. I’m trying to learn every aspect of the business that I can. I really enjoyed myself and I’m looking forward to going back and hopefully continuing my career with them.”
JE Dunn’s Nathan Tucker praises Jordy’s positive attitude and work ethic, noting those traits can be hard to find in young, inexperienced workers.
Jordy had the benefit of a good role model as a young boy – his father has enjoyed a successful career in construction, mostly in grading and piping construction.
“I’ve seen that since I was a little kid,” Jordy says. “Eventually I thought, ‘I’m kind of interested in that,’ and that’s when I decided to start the career academy program [while in high school].”
Ever the learner, Jordy says he enjoys watching videos on construction topics in his free time, and he frequently picks his father’s brain for insight. He’s already earned the OSHA 10 credential, and he knows how to drive Bobcats and other heavy equipment.
“One thing that attracts me to the construction business is when I think about one day having kids, I can say, ‘Hey look, I was part of the team that built this building,’” Jordy says. “There’s something that clicks – I just feel at home doing this hands-on work. I like to be interactive. I don’t like to be sitting down or staying in one spot and watching other people work.”
VIDEO: Hear Jordy Andrade talk about how the CEFGA CareerExpo helped him connect to a summer job with JE Dunn Construction.