Black & Veatch forms alliance with OSHA and the Center for Construction Excellence at UMKC

March 6, 2003
Black & Veatch has formed an alliance with the Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Center for Construction Excellence (CCE) at the University of Missouri.

Overland Park, Kan., March 6, 2003 -- Black & Veatch has formed an alliance with the U.S. Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) and the Center for Construction Excellence (CCE) at the University of Missouri-Kansas City.

This alliance will promote achievement in math, science, English and technology while enhancing Kansas and Missouri middle and high school students' understanding of the construction crafts and professions that tie into these academic fields.

"U.S. government studies have confirmed that the nation's construction workforce is dwindling and fewer high school and college students are interested or have the necessary skills to pursue this often lucrative career choice," said Craig Wright, Black & Veatch vice president of construction. "Through this alliance, we will strive to improve educational opportunities for youth in Kansas and Missouri middle and high schools related to the construction industry, and enhance their awareness of construction industry careers early in their academic experience."

Black & Veatch and OSHA will contribute their expertise with business and education to develop a construction safety component to the existing CCE curriculum, which provides instruction on how to draw blueprints, estimate costs and build models. Teachers across Kansas and Missouri use the curriculum to stimulate interest in pursuing careers in the construction industry.

Since 1998, the CCE has sponsored the Middle School Design-Build Competition, which gives participating students an opportunity to showcase their skills. This was the fifth year for the competition, and more than 2,500 students from a three-state area learned about the many aspects of the construction industry, including conceptualization, financing, legal concerns and engineering. The students worked in teams of two or three to design buildings, draw scaled plans, estimate costs and construct three-dimensional foam core models. In addition, they kept an activities log and wrote a report about the various construction careers they learned about while working on the project.

"Through the alliance, we will be able to design safety components into the curriculum being taught to participating Missouri and Kansas schools," said Wright. "It is our goal to make safety such an integrated part of the curriculum that it is second nature, something people do without consciously thinking about."

The Black & Veatch/OSHA/CCE alliance will be in effect for two years.

About Black & Veatch

Black & Veatch Corp. is a global engineering, construction and consulting company specializing in infrastructure development in the fields of energy, water and information. Founded in 1915, Black & Veatch serves its clients with conceptual and preliminary engineering services, engineering design, procurement, construction, financial management, asset management, information technology, environmental, security design and consulting, and management consulting services. Headquartered in Overland Park, Kan., the employee-owned company has more than 90 offices worldwide. The company's web site address is

About OSHA

OSHA is dedicated to saving lives, preventing injuries and illnesses and protecting America's workers. Safety and health add value to business, the workplace and life. For more information, visit

About the Center for Construction Excellence

The CCE is a consortium of partners from academia, school districts and the different component groups that make up the construction industry, and exists to raise awareness of the construction industry. It emphasizes the importance of math, science, English and technology education and how those areas apply to the construction field.

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