Careers in construction and heavy machinery

Find a career in the construction industry where you can operate heavy machines.

As we travel to and from places, we may see construction taking place on roads and highways, and we may see the building of houses, schools, office buildings and other businesses. Construction defined by Merriam-Webster is the act or process of building something, such as a house or a road. The process of construction for building consists of a team effort. For example, people are needed for planning, designing and financing the construction project as well as building and putting it together. Are you someone who is interested in heavy machinery like tractors, bulldozers, payloaders and cranes that is used in the process of building roads, houses, buildings or other structures? If so, operating heavy machinery for construction may be a career for you.

A college degree is not required to operate heavy machinery in construction as a career. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), someone can work in the construction industry with a high school diploma. Some useful classes to take are English, math, shop and auto mechanics. In an article by Shala Munroe, Demand Media, in the Houston Chronicle, an apprenticeship can help someone get started for certification. Also, trade schools and specialized construction schools offer the courses needed to help pass certification exams to operate heavy equipment.

If you’re a student in high school with an interest in this industry, Michigan State University Extension recommends the following action steps to possibly take:

  • Meet with your high school counselor to let them know about your possible interest in operating heavy equipment as a career.
  • Enroll in a construction trades program if the program is offered at your local high school, career school or technical school in your area.
  • Explore the possibilities with your high school for a job shadowing opportunity.
  • Research apprenticeship programs to help you get started preparing for certification.
  • Research the different trade schools and specialized trade schools you can attend to help you gain some type of certification to pass the exams to operate heavy equipment.

If you have the interest, position yourself to work in this career field. People who drive and travel short or long distances are dependent on roads to help lead them to their different destinations. People need houses for living and buildings to work in for their careers and employment. It can be a rewarding experience to see your contribution to meet certain needs in society through the different projects in construction.

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