Illinois Tollway Reaches Out to South Suburban Church Community to Promote ConstructionWorks

Illinois Tollway Reaches Out to South Suburban Church Community to Promote ConstructionWorks

The Illinois Tollway and its workforce development partners reached out this week to a south suburban Chicago church community to promote career opportunities in highway construction through ConstructionWorks.

The event at Victory Apostolic Church in Matteson attracted a mix of aspiring trades workers looking to launch new careers and experienced tradespeople looking for new opportunities. 

“The investments we’re making in our transportation infrastructure are creating opportunities for historically underrepresented men and women to find great jobs in the highway construction field,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director Cassaundra Rouse. “ConstructionWorks provides a pathway to careers that allow people to support their families, put their children through college and contribute to the local economy in their own communities.” 

ConstructionWorks is an innovative program that creates a qualified pipeline of diverse men and women ready to enter careers in the heavy highway and related construction industry. The program is operated by the Chicago Cook Workforce Partnership, which provides job training, support, placement and retention services through a vast network of more than 90 locations in the region. 

Chief of Diversity and Strategic Development Terry Miller, his staff and representatives from the Partnership detailed how ConstructionWorks helps people not only find jobs, but provides a wide range of support services including transportation, child care, work apparel and tools, as well as union exam preparation, job training, resume development and interview tips. The Tollway scheduled two sessions, one in the afternoon and one in the evening, to provide flexible options for job-seekers. 

For the Tollway, promoting its workforce development programs through faith-based organizations helps fill a need for a skilled, diverse workforce necessary to deliver the billions in infrastructure improvements coming to the Chicago region in the coming decade, including mega-projects such as reconstruction of the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294) and building the new I-490 Tollway.

Late last year, the Tollway introduced ConstructionWorks to a church community on Chicago’s South Side. Based on the success of that event, the Tollway has brought ConstructionWorks to other area churches to promote career opportunities in the construction industry – good-paying, high-demand jobs such as equipment operators, electricians, iron workers and cement masons.

“The Illinois Tollway is committed to removing barriers to participation and leveling the playing field in this critical industry,” said Miller. “Because, at the end of the day, we want the men and women delivering our capital program to reflect the rich diversity of the communities we serve.” 

Interested in a career in the construction industry? Visit the ConstructionWorks page on the Illinois Tollway website.