The construction management technology program at San Jacinto College offers students the chance to work in the booming commercial and industrial construction industry. For alumnus Paul Bain, the program offered a second chance at finding his dream career.
"I spent 10 years as a public relations professional, working for companies and on my own," Bain said. "I wasn't happy, and I knew I had a knack for project management. San Jac was the perfect choice for me to change my career trajectory in a fiscally responsible and expedient way."
Before applying to San Jacinto College, Bain visited Jon Greene, professor of construction management at the North Campus, to talk about his options.
"I knew there were a few fields where project management is utilized the most: tech, oil and gas, and construction," Bain said. "I didn't think construction management was an option without a four-year degree. Jon was truly interested in advising me and guiding me through the process."
Greene, a retired civil engineer with 40 years of experience in construction and project management, strives to teach students all aspects of the construction industry and the projected job outcomes. In addition to project manager, graduates can work as an estimator, scheduler, or any other junior level member of management.
"At San Jacinto College, we provide students a bigger picture of what the construction industry is, including trades that do the labor like welding and electrical to the trades that manage the labor like construction management," Greene said. "It's my job to teach the construction managers the hard and soft skills they need to be successful from day one in the management team."
During his time as a student, Bain also worked as an intern for Tellepsen during their work on the Lehr Library and the North Campus.
"I was walking to class one day, and I saw a Tellepsen sign go up on some new construction," Bain said. "I asked Jon if they might need an intern, and he encouraged me to find out. I walked across the street right into the construction trailer and asked for an internship. They gave me the job, and I spent the rest of my semester learning construction hands-on."
Bain, who has now worked for Tellepsen for five years as an estimator, has established a formal internship program with the company. Many of his interns are still working on San Jacinto College construction projects today.
"Our interns are on their site nine out of 10 days," Bain said. "On that 10th day, we take them to see different construction sites. We want to expose our students to as much construction as possible."
The program offered at the North Campus allows students to participate in the conceptual development and organization of a construction project, pricing and procurement, cost scheduling, and the overseeing of its organization, estimating, scheduling, and the implementation of the project. Students will enter the construction industry and work in either industrial, commercial, residential, or heavy civil construction.
"What I love about the program at San Jacinto College is that the philosophy of what it means to be a leader is emphasized throughout," Bain said. "Beyond the textbook, the program specifically spends time on making sure students understand the essence of what is being accomplished. Not just, 'This is the code — learn it.' But also, 'Why is this code in place, and how do you explain it to others?'"
To learn more about the construction management technology program at San Jacinto College, visit sanjac.edu/construction-management-technology.