New Initiative to Address Construction Workforce Labor Shortages

April 26th, 2018 by Erin Fabian

CFCC Construction Inst.

(Left to right: Tim Milam, Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage; Teddy Hardeen; Dave Spetrino, 2018 WCFHBA president; Josh Davis, CFCC director of customized training and workforce development; CFCC President Jim Morton)

WILMINGTON, NC — Cape Fear Community College and the Wilmington-Cape Fear Home Builders Association (WCFHBA) today announced the launch of a partnership and initiative that aims to mitigate labor shortages within the construction industry in New Hanover and Pender counties.

This summer CFCC will offer Construction Institutes, intensive two-week training programs aimed at helping satisfy local construction workforce needs. With input from the construction community, builders, and subcontractors, CFCC and WCFHBA developed four courses designed to teach basic skills in the fields of masonry, plumbing, carpentry, and heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC). Upon completion of the training, participants are guaranteed an interview with a local employer.

Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage President, Mr. Tim Milam, also announced today that they will be committing $5,000 toward the support and training of the area’s construction workforce. Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage has partnered with WCFHBA to set up a memorial scholarship fund in honor of Mr. Ted Hardeen who was an integral part of the Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage new home construction division.

“This new CFCC initiative strikes a chord within our firm as we work hand-in-hand with so many local builders,” said Milam. “The partnership between the WCFHBA and CFCC will also help raise awareness among youth in our community about the many career opportunities within the construction industry.” The scholarship will be housed under the WCFHBA Paul Gregory Foundation, and the funds will be designated to CFCC programs like the Construction Institutes as well as program funding and scholarship support to students actively enrolled in CFCC construction programs.

“While the demand for new homes has steadily increased, the growth in our construction labor force has not,” said WCFHBA President David Spetrino. “This initiative by CFCC will provide a concise, focused, and comprehensive foundation for students to learn a skill that will forever be in demand. And our region as a whole will benefit.”

According to a survey conducted by the Associated General Contractors of America, 75 percent of construction firms plan to expand their workforce in 2018. Moreover, 78 percent of the surveyed construction firms in North Carolina expressed having a difficult time filling positions.

“It is both our mission and our privilege to meet the needs of our local employers,” said CFCC President Jim Morton. “As the need for skilled workers continues to grow, so will our efforts to equip students with the skills they need to succeed.”

The Construction Institutes will run concurrently June 18 through June 29 from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. The cost for each course is $185. Participants may choose only one course of study. For more information, visit