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Bevin Helps Break Ground at Enzweiler Institute's Expansion Project

Ground was broken last week on the expansion of the Building Industry Association of Northern Kentucky's Enzweiler Building Institute.

Governor Matt Bevin attended the event.

The institute, located in Erlanger, provides apprenticeship training in skilled construction trades.

The groundbreaking followed BIANKY's annual meeting, which featured Bevin as the keynote speaker.

The expansion will include a new carpentry lab, welding lab, diesel mechanics lab, and masonry lab to expand and complement the other trades already taught at the institute including electrical, plumbing, facility management, and HVAC repair. 

The expansion is made possible through a $2.69 million dollar grant given to the BIANKY to cover part of the construction of the new laboratories

Bevin stated that there are about 60 broad sub-disciplines beneath those that represent more than 100 thousand open jobs across the commonwealth. 

Approximately $1.25 million will be matched by BIANKY to complete the project. 

"I understand the need, not just the value but the absolute need for skilled trades," Bevin said in his address. "It's been said, and it's true, that necessity is the mother of invention and it's necessity that drove this $100 million idea." 

Bevin said that the $100 million is meant to address the wants and needs of Kentucky's workforce. Moreover, he stated that he didn't want to cover 100-percent of any projects because he wanted the communities to have 'skin in the game.' 

"We put up this $100 million, we said 'let the local high school, the local post-secondary school, and the local business community all talk with each other, put their heads together, and come up with what each of them would do in order to compete for some of that $100 million,'" Bevin continued. "And I said if we end up disseminating none of it, I'm fine with that if there are no good ideas; but if we do all of it, I'm fine with that too." 

"We got $540 million worth of applications," Bevin stated. "[This project] was one of the biggest ones that actually was allocated."

Bevin also touted his Work Ready Scholarships initiative that will cover the price difference to learn a skill trade in one of the 60 sub-disciplines his administration has identified, after financial aid is acquired so that Kentuckians wouldn't be hindered by cost. 

"My vision is a fairly simple one for this state," Bevin concluded. "I want us to be the center of engineering and manufacturing excellence - bar none."

The Enweiler Institutes's expansion is expected to be completed by June 1, 2020. 

Written by Connor Wall, associate editor