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Contractors State License Board Begins Awarding Construction Management Grants

SACRAMENTO — For the first time since its creation in 1991, the Contractors State License Board has begun presenting grant awards to help educate tomorrow's construction industry leaders. The $228,000 in grants to be awarded this year can't come too soon as California universities rush to meet the increasing demand for new managers. Construction Management graduates are skilled in everything from bid preparation to overseeing subcontractors, cost-control and knowing federal labor laws. They can be responsible for guiding a building project from conception to completion.

Many Construction Management graduates receive at least two job offers before they graduate, with starting salaries estimated at between $45,000 and $70,000 per year.

The grants come from the Construction Management Education Sponsorship Act of 1991 (CMESA). The goal of the CMESA is to maintain and increase the caliber and availability of educational programs for the construction industry. All money in the education fund comes directly from contractors renewing their license (91%) or from newly licensed contractors (9%).

"We applaud the people in the industry who recognize the importance of investing in their future," said Steve Sands, CSLB Registrar. "With the construction industry booming, there's a real need for new managers." The Bureau of Labor Statistics expects the demand to be there at least through 2012.

When the fund first started in 1991 contributions were limited to $25. In 2003, the State Legislature removed that limit. Now, Contractors or anyone else can contribute any amount they choose.

To date, two award checks have been presented. The first, for $67,000, was given to the Department of Construction Management at California State University, Chico. The second, for $22,000, was presented to the Construction Management Program at California State University, Sacramento. The university's number of Construction Management graduates determines the award amount.

This summer, other award checks should be presented in the following amounts:

California Polytechnic University San Luis Obispo $48,000
California State University Fresno $40,000
California State University Long Beach $31,000
California Polytechnic University Pomona $20,000

Now that the first grants have been given, the CSLB is focusing attention on making sure the money doesn't run out. "We've only got enough money to give education grants this year and next," said Mike Brown, CSLB's Education Grant Program Coordinator. "To keep going after that, we need the industry to increase its commitment to making donations." Making donations has never been easier. Just go to the CSLB Web site and click on the CMESA logo. You can fill out a form online, print it out, and mail it along with your donation check.

The CSLB is also encouraging industry associations and groups to onate to the fund. "We hope that more people will contribute to this fund as a way of insuring that tomorrow's construction managers are well prepared and of the highest quality," said CSLB Chair Larry Booth.


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