Students Help to Build Seventh DKBEP Home

The Door Kewaunee Business & Education Partnership (DKBEP) held a groundbreaking ceremony to celebrate the start of the seventh annual DKBEP High School Home Construction Project in Luxemburg on Aug. 16.

The program is an effort to grow the local construction industry’s skilled workforce while providing real-world learning experiences for area youth.

High school students representing Kewaunee, Luxemburg Casco and Sturgeon Bay school districts will join forces with the Door County Home Builders Association (DCHBA), Northeast Wisconsin Technical College (NWTC), and the DKBEP to build a 2,300-square-foot home during the 2013/14 school year for homeowners Brian and Cindy Peot. Participating students will be involved in all aspects of residential construction under the direct guidance of NWTC instructor Jeff Schlag and Van’s Lumber project adviser Chris VandenHouten.

The student builders will work at the jobsite from 7:30 – 10:30 am daily for the entire school year. Upon successful completion of the program, each student will earn 16 transcript credits for advanced placement in the Wood Tech Technical Diploma one-year program at NWTC.

DKBEP Program Manager Tara LeClair says, “For the past six years the program has experienced great success. More than 70 students have had the unique opportunity to build five homes and a mancave, respectively.”

She adds, “Of the students, there is an 80 percent success rate with them moving on to local employment in the trades and/or are continuing their education after graduation. This is the real achievement of the program and exactly what we wanted to see happen for our local economy.”

“It has been exciting working with the DKBEP preparing the project for the students,” said homeowner Brian Peot. “We have supported and believed in the program in the past years and wanted to see it continue educating students. Cindy and I believe that by giving the students the opportunity to work and learn with a real world project, it will provide them an advantage leading into their future. We are excited to watch them learn and build at the same time,” he adds.

Expected project completion is May 2014.

2013/14 student builders include: Zachary Baldwin, Jacob Massart & Mike Dier (Luxemburg Casco); Calen Dellemann, Tyler Bertrand & Alex Mehn (Kewaunee); Ben Weber, John Hartwig & Kolt Knutson (Sturgeon Bay).