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Industry Based Leadership Development

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2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition


San Antonio, Texas

Publication Date

June 10, 2012

Start Date

June 10, 2012

End Date

June 13, 2012



Conference Session

Current Issues in Construction Education

Tagged Division


Page Count


Page Numbers

25.773.1 - 25.773.10



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Paper Authors


Robert Wayne Ford Western Carolina University

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Robert Wayne Ford spent his first 37 years working in numerous trades, but always managed to move into leadership positions after a short period of time. After his father's death in 1997, Ford ended his career on the road and accepted a supervisory position with a local manufacturer in Arkansas. In 1999, Ford was given an opportunity through the NAFTA agreement to get a degree from the local two-year college. During his endeavors at NPCC, he was inducted into Phi Theta Kappa and received the George O. Bierkoe Distinguished Member Award for his contributions to the Garland County Foster Parent Association. In May of 2002, Ford received his A.A. degree from National Park Community College and he was offered a scholarship to complete his undergraduate studies at Texas A&M University in Commerce, Texas. Ford participated in the honors program on the TAMU-C campus and was the first from his department in 12 years to be pinned on stage at graduation. Because of his dedication to the college the president offered him one-year in state tuition towards a graduate degree and he completed all 36 hours of graduate studies in 12 months with a 4.0 GPA.

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Industry Engaged Leadership DevelopmentParticipating in industrial arts programs since the fifth grade played a major rolein the author’s decision to work in the construction industry. Working in variousfields of construction, the author learned various techniques and proceduresinvolving team building and leadership skills from competent mentors that had ahistory of proven success at getting projects completed on time and within budget.Recently, the author’s approach to leadership development was partially revealedin an article published in Techniques Magazine, entitled, “Industry EngagedLeadership Development for Career and Technical Education Programs”. Thismagazine is affiliated with the Association of Career and Technical Education(ACTE) and has generated new interest in the approach to construction relatededucation programs. In this article the author described a grant programdeveloped specifically for adolescent learners currently enrolled in career andtechnical education (CTE) programs in high schools that relied on competentpersonnel with actual field experience to present a portion of the lesson plansassociated with the program’s developed curriculum.The program’s curriculum and related lesson plans were developed to fit thechapter outlines of the National Center for Construction Education and Research(NCCER) Contren Learning module – Introductory Skills for the Crew Leader,written by Dr. Roger Liska, Clemson University. Although this module wasoriginally developed for adult learners, the content was appropriate and fit theneeds for the related research and study that the author wanted to test. The mainpurpose of this study was to determine if competent construction field experienceand job titles benefited the leadership and critical thinking skills for this particulartarget group of building trades students ranging in age from 15 – 18. This studywanted to examine the learning outcomes associated with a competent approachto learning instead of the usual qualified approach.Utilizing a proven textbook with related chapter questions and combining it withthe field knowledge of the facilitator and guest speakers, the program was acomplete success. All 20 participants passed the Occupational Safety and HealthAdministration 10 Hour Safety Course and received the related certification card.In addition, 18 students also passed the comprehensive NCCER module examqualifying them for NCCER certification of which 12 took advantage of andreceived the formal certification. Student evaluations were positive and veryhelpful in determining the proposed levels of training that will be offered in thefuture.This paper will discuss the processes involved in developing the necessary lessonplans and industry engaged activities that created the learning environment of thisstudy. By describing the details involved in choosing specific speakers to presentspecific instruction, and then explaining to the learners how the day’s activitiesrelated to the written text at the end of each day; any competent educator shouldbe able to get the same results from their particular target group.

Ford, R. W. (2012, June), Industry Based Leadership Development Paper presented at 2012 ASEE Annual Conference & Exposition, San Antonio, Texas. 10.18260/1-2--21530

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