The BOOM program, Building Occupational Opportunities in the Midlands, is an initiative designed to give high school students not graduating with a diploma the opportunity to job-train for careers in the construction industry. Together with Midlands Technical College, South Carolina Vocational Rehabilitation, Midlands Education and Business Alliance, members of the Builders Industry Association of Central S.C., and many other South Carolina agency partners, the program features participation from local school districts, such as Richland School Districts 1 and 2 and Lexington-Richland School District 5.
BOOM goes beyond the sphere of simply supplying students with onsite training. The program also teaches them soft skills and helps to eliminate the shortage of workers in the construction industry. This last objective is achieved through the many employment opportunities that the program presents to students. Employers from the construction industry interview students onsite at Midlands Technical College. Ultimately, the goal of the program is to get students hired.
Although BOOM was successful in its first year, it was particularly successful this year due to program adjustments, such as conducting student-employer interviews earlier on and ensuring that students engage with employers after the interviewing process has ended. Graduates leave the program with a Building Construction certificate from Midlands Technical College and a ten-hour OSHA Construction Credential.