Two events that took place during the AGC Annual Convention in September offered a reminder of the power and potential of our two charitable organizations: AGC Charities Inc. and the AGC Education & Research Foundation. Both those events also underscored how much the success of both those groups is dependent on support and donations from members across the country.
As you will read about in this issue’s column by Darrel Gibson and Pat Wadors, the Foundation is launching a new scholarship to support students studying construction at the nation’s historically Black colleges and universities, or HBCUs for short. This new scholarship is being made possible by an initial challenge gift of $250,000 from Procore. This challenge to AGC members is clear: Match or, even better, beat that amount in contributions to the new scholarship.
The new scholarship will help African American and other minority students embark on the pathway to becoming future construction industry leaders. The scholarship also builds on the broader efforts of AGC and the Foundation to create a more diverse and inclusive industry. These other efforts include AGC’s Culture of CARE program, our Construction is Essential recruiting effort and our Business Case for a More Diverse Industry report.
At almost the same time that Procore and the Foundation were announcing their new HBCU scholarship, AGC Charities was wrapping up another of its successful Operation Opening Doors construction projects. This year, dozens of convention attendees and local volunteers spent the day before the convention working to build a new safety fence and make other improvements at Give Kids the World Village.
Thanks to the incredible leadership of member firm Wharton-Smith, the volunteers had the support, tools and materials needed to replace hundreds of feet of wooden fencing. More important, they got to bond as they worked in the warm Florida sun to help a group that provides dream weeks in Orlando for families with critically ill children.
AGC Charities’ annual renovation project is a part of the group’s broader mission to support and promote the many charitable works of the construction industry, AGC members and our chapters across the country. Their other efforts include a grant program and the annual AGC in the Community Awards for best member and chapter charitable projects.
In other words, our two charitable organizations have the power to build better communities today and a better industry tomorrow. But they can only meet their full potential when members like you get involved and support them. The Foundation cannot award scholarships, fund important research and support faculty externships without contributions from members.
And AGC Charities can’t organize volunteer renovation projects without volunteers to do the work and donations to pay for the materials needed. Likewise, its grant program is only as strong as the amount of donations that fund it. That is why, as the holiday season approaches, I am asking all of you to please donate to AGC Charities Inc. (agccharities.org) and the AGC Foundation (agc.org/Learn/agc-education-and-research-foundation). Your support will ensure that both organizations continue to show their power and potential.