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Lakeland Building Trades Open House June 2

It’s almost done. Some trim here and there. A little carpeting. A few items off the punch list yet to go and the 2013 Lakeland Building Trades Project House will be ready for the Stump family to move into.

First, though, the class will hold an open house from 1-5 p.m. on Sunday, June 2, to show the public what they have built over the past school year. The house, being built for Kurt and Wendy Stump and family, is on CR 650N east of CR 775W, approximately ¼ mile east of SR 5 and ½ mile north of SR 120.

“It’s a country lot with a huge view out the back,” noted instructor Steve Sherck. The two-story house has a full finished basement, full deck, hardwood laminate floors, and a vaulted, open greatroom. Sherck said the class is on schedule to finish the house this week.

“I’ve got great students working on this. They really enjoy what they’re doing,” Sherck said. He added that the class has changed over the years as students come into it with less and less hands-on experience with tools and construction. Now, he pointed out, they are learning those skills in class where they would have once had many of the basics taught at home by working with family members.

“Lakeland should be commended for believing in this,” Sherck said.

For students like Devin Giles, the class is a great way to finish out high school. Giles could have graduated early, but stayed on to finish the house. Giles plans to go into HVAC work and study at Ivy Tech. Through the building trades class, he already has 12 credits to apply toward his studies at Ivy Tech.

Giles has been enjoying the electrical work the most, partly because it fits in with his future plans. “I know I’ll be using that,” he said. The trim work, though, isn’t as much fun, he admitted. “I’d recommend it (the class). It’s really hands-on. Out of the classroom. And you’ll use it no matter what field you go in,” he said.

Giles is already getting employment thanks to the knowledge he’s picked up, working for Lippert Components near Howe.

First year student Joel Miller has enjoyed his time on the project, even though he only started in the third trimester. He plans to take the class for his entire senior year. “I want to see it from start to finish,” he said.

“It’s good experience to have,” he added. Although Miller hasn’t made any post-high school plans yet, he can see it being possible to go into construction, thanks to his experience with the building trades house.

“Overall, this has been one of the best years,” Sherck said. “It’s been a group of really nice kids. We have a great homeowner. Things are here, ready to go. They’ve really been on top of things.”

The public is invited to attend Sunday’s open house to see just what a high school class is capable of building, and a glimpse of what they can do in their future.