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Student Construction Job Training Program Wins Third State Award



Besides creating exciting job opportunities for high school students with disabilities, the innovative and trailblazing BOOM program is racking up quite a few awards. BOOM (Building Occupational Opportunities in the Midlands), a highly successful construction job training program for special needs students in Richland One and other school districts, recently won its third state award of excellence.

The South Carolina State Technical College System named Midlands Technical College’s BOOM Program the best collaborative and innovative program at any of South Carolina’s technical colleges.


BOOM trains high school students with disabilities in Richland One, Richland Two and Lexington-Richland Five. Working with local school districts and member companies of the Builders Industry Association of Central SC, Midlands Tech developed this innovative pathway for disabled students to learn skills while still in high school and find employment with local homebuilders.


Dr. Sherry Rivers, principal of Heyward Career and Technology Center, describes the program as “an awesome opportunity for our students.” She also believes BOOM’s success and recognition are paving the way for even more career choices for other students.


“We look forward to expanding our focus to other career fields as we prepare for another group of students in 2019,” Rivers said. “The BOOM program is truly preparing tomorrow’s professionals in a very innovative way!”


In the program, high-functioning high school students with disabilities receive hands-on, real-world experience in the construction field and earn a 10-hour OSHA Construction Credential and a Certificate in Building Construction from Midlands Tech.


In the fall, BOOM won the Program of the Year Award from the SC Division on Career Development and Transition. It also was named the 2018 Outstanding Continuing Education Cooperative Program by the SC Association for Higher Continuing Education.


BOOM is a collaboration between Richland One, Richland Two, Lexington-Richland Five, MEBA (Midlands Education and Business Alliance), Midlands Technical College, South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation, Building Industry Association of Center South Carolina and Midlands Workforce Development Board. This regional partnership was designed to increase career readiness and employment in the field of construction for young adults with disabilities.

Media inquiries should be directed to the Richland One Office of Communications at 231-7504 or 231-7510.