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Students Learn Valuable Career Skills In Carpentry Class

Erin Mairose

A class of high school carpentry students at the Career and Technical Education Academy is learning skills for future careers. 

Sitting in Bill Pulford’s classroom at the CTE Academy is a house.

From framing, to insulation and cabinetry, this class built the three bedroom home. Pulford says soon moving trucks are relocating the house to a permit location in Sioux Falls.  

“It’ll be really neat for all of last year’s students to be able to drive by that house and be able to say, 'I helped built that house.’ I’ve built a lot of houses in my career and it’s kind of fun to say yeah I built that one, and I have some in Brandon— you’re proud of what you did” says Pulford.

Pulford says his 22 students explore different career options, from working with an electrician or a plumber to learning about interior design.

Student Jack Vanwoert says finishing the house is rewarding.

“I just love building and helping to do construction...so in taking carpentry two years you get to learn more and then help everybody else.  The teachers out here are awesome and then just getting to build a house, and knowing how to build a house and what’s all in it- it just really gives you a good perspective on it,” says Vanwoert.

Credit Erin Mairose
Students Devin Rost and Jack Vanwoerk stand in front of the house they helped build

Once the house moves, a qualified family can purchase it. This is the fourth year the school is working with the group Affordable Housing Solutions so students can give back to the community.