Construction student Koy Ramsey

“Central Tech definitely prepared me and put me ahead of schedule with college credit hours,” Koy Ramsey said.

While attending Central Tech, Ramsey, at that time a Cushing High School student, took advantage of the Cooperative Alliance Program, which allows students to receive college credit while attending a technology center, and began earning a workforce degree before graduating high school. This not only saves students and their parent’s time and money but avoids course duplication.

“I had around 20 OSU-IT credit hours that I got through my class at Central Tech. When my classmates had to take 15 hours in college, I only had to enroll in nine.” With more time on his hands, Ramsey was able to look for related employment that might later lead to a good job after graduation. And it did.

While many students hope to find good jobs after graduation, Ramsey with an Associate in Applied Science in Construction Management from OSU-IT will trade in his mortarboard for a hardhat.

Ramsey acquired his construction skills through Central Tech before entering college. He was excited for the possibility of an internship that would allow him to improve his skills and work while attending college. As with his interest in construction, Ramsey knew his education must also begin with a firm foundation and a process for completion.

David Baugus, Ramsey’s former Central Tech Construction Trades Instructor, introduced Ramsey to another former student, now employed with Crossland Construction Company in Tulsa. The employee assisted Ramsey in getting an application and interview.

Ramsey was awarded two, two-month internships before becoming a part-time employee for Crossland Construction. After Ramsey graduates this Friday, he will begin full-time employment.

“(Central Tech) opens doors to employment,” Ramsey said. “Having Central Tech on my resume shows people I am interested in learning.”

During his two years at Central Tech, Ramsey was a member the National Technical Honor Society and SkillsUSA. Using the skills he learned in class, Ramsey placed second at the Oklahoma SkillsUSA cabinet making contest his first year. He came back to win first place in the same competition the following year, advancing to the national competition. “Koy worked hard to learn everything he could,” Baugus said. By his second year in class, people were seeking him out and offering him small construction jobs.

The construction sector is a viable industry to the Oklahoma economy and is expected to grow more than 20% from 2008 to 2018. With an increase in new jobs, the construction industry expects to employ more than 91,000 new workers in the next few years. (Oklahoma Employment Security Commission, 2008, p. 2)

Companies are not only looking for construction workers, but for the next group of foremen and employees ready for more responsibility.

Students who learn the “ins and outs” of construction by combining education with on-the-job experience and application obtain more opportunity to lead and advance in the company, said Aaron Burns, Crossland Construction Company Superintendent. “Koy is an exceptional worker, and is ideal in what we are looking for in long-term leadership for the company,” Burns said.

Central Tech’s Construction Trades class on the Drumright campus is open to adult and high school students. Individuals interested in a career as a framer, roofer, exterior finisher, trim carpenter, cabinetmaker or other construction profession should consider Construction Trades. Many graduates of the program further their education in construction technology or construction management and complete the class ready to work for large construction companies.