DETROIT (FOX 2) - Detroit Carpentry Apprentice School is looking for its next group of men and women who want to build a solid foundation for themselves.
"If you're a hard worker, and dedicated to the work, you show up on time, they will pay you very well," Markese Greer said.
Greer, 25, is all smiles. He is a year away from graduating from Detroit Carpentry Apprentice School in Ferndale. The money is good, and so is the pride he feels everyday.
"I have built the 75 bridge with a crew of good guys. I'm actually working down in Brush Park right now building up all the condos and apartment buildings and it's a good feeling and a lot of guys I know built the stadium, Little Caesars Arena," he said.
That good feeling has grown here at the apprentice school. In just two years, enrollment of Detroiters has doubled -- 700 students are currently learning how to build with their hands.
If you think the Detroit business boom is leveling off, think again. Students from this school are going to have their hands full. The Hudson's project downtown, and Ford's Central station hub in Corktown -- just two of many projects where this talent will be needed. That's just in the city.
"We have the bridge to Canada yet that's coming and you have all the work around it. And if you reach out towards Ann Arbor, there's a half billion dollar medical tower that they're talking about building there and we have a brand new power plant in Port Huron," said Mike Jackson with the Michigan Regional Council of Carpenters & Millwrights.
Traditional four year degrees aren't for everyone. What makes this different is that you work while you are in the apprentice school, so not only are you getting paid to learn, you have no debt walking out.
"There are people that are meant to go to college and have a great career path there and there are those of us, because I came from the field, who prefer to work with our hands," Jackson said.
A career fair this week will open these doors to a career path that promises money and pride and for many, possibly a dramatic shift in trajectory, constructing a future Markese is proud to share with his nephews.
"You don't have to be on the streets, you can come out the carpentry school and watch me grow as a man and teach them things on the side so I am taking care of my family," Greer said.
The Detroit carpentry apprentice school career fair is Thursday from 8-10 a.m.. It's located at 1401 Farrow St, Ferndale.