By Amie Sites
---- — Students taking a building trades class at Century Career Center have been helping to build the foundation for a nearly 7,200-square foot multi-use barn on the Logansport High School campus. Students in Building Trades I and Building Trades II have been assisting Shepler Construction to build the structure near the baseball field.
Allen Catterlin, building trades teacher, said his students have removed the forms from the concrete foundation as well as spent time tying rebar for rebar mats and cages.
Catterlin said the building is 70 feet by 100 feet with a 20-foot ceiling.
Working on projects helps give the students experience and a break from what they have been doing on a different job site, Catterlin said.
"It reinforces what they're taught in class," Catterlin said. "I try to teach them what they're expected to know on an actual job site."
This particular project has given students a unique opportunity to see how the foundation is done, Catterlin said.
Cory Sutton, a student in the afternoon building trades class, said he prefers getting experience over sitting in a classroom.
"It's more exciting to get hands-on experience," Cory said. "We also have the freedom to do different things."
Another student, Derick Westbrook, said through taking a class like building trades, students are able to see if the career is a "yea or nay" for them.
"You get to see if maybe you want to build a career out of it," Derick said. "It's a yea for me."
The class also provides college credit, said Catarina Beebout, a building trades student. Students can earn six college credits through Ivy Tech or Vincennes University.
"You have the freedom to do things others might not get the chance to do," Beebout said.
Greg Korreckt, business manager/controller at Logansport Community School Corporation, said the building will allow a spillover area for practicing.
"We operate various programs at the school and the building could be a practice facility for some groups," Korreckt said.
It hasn't been determined yet what will be in the building, Korreckt said.
Providing hands-on experience is important for students in career center classes. James Little, director of the Century Career Center, held up the project's building contractor — Dave Shepler, of Shepler Construction — as an example, saying he previously studied building trades and is a graduate of the program.
"It's important students get to experience all aspects of construction," Little said, and projects allow that opportunity.
Korreckt agreed. "It is a great opportunity for career students to be involved with something on campus," he said.
Grants and sponsorship funds acquired over previous years will be used to fund the building.
In addition to the building on the Logansport campus, students are helping remodel the Penman building for the Logansport Parks Department.
Amie Sites is a staff reporter at the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at 574-732-5117 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow her: @PharosAES.