Job crisis? Fewer young people are going into construction: report

By Amy GanzJobsFOXBusiness

Real estate facing young construction worker shortage

FBN's Cheryl Casone on a Wall Street Journal report on the decline in the number of young people going into careers in construction.

Young people are shying away from the construction industry, according to a recent report by The Wall Street Journal.

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Construction work requires intense hands-on work that comes with a high level of training but parents are urging their kids to get a college degree.

From 2005 to 2016, the percentage of construction workers aged 24 years and younger has dropped around 30% in 48 states.

The states hit the hardest by a shortage of young workers -- which were also among the states affected the worst by the housing crisis -- include Delaware, Vermont and California.

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Massachusetts, New Jersey and California have the some of the nation’s highest living costs, but also have the worst total shortage of construction workers.

In 2005, there were a total of 11.7 million construction workers, and in 2016 that number dipped to 10.2 million.

The report cites a few possible reasons why young people aren’t working in the construction industry:

  • Fewer high schools are offering vocational training programs, which would help train students before entering the workforce.
  • Many parents would rather see their kids get a college degree and work in a white-collar industry.
  • Lastly, many builders would rather have skilled workers come on to their project because training an unskilled worker requires time and money, on top of rising material costs.

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