The National Remodeling Foundation (NRF) recently announced its 2019 scholarship recipients. This year, the scholarship was given to: Lisa Breitenfield, who is attending Minnesota State-Moorhead; Kristen Van Hoosen, a student at Pittsburgh State University; and Rhett Cox, who attends Clemson University.

The NRF’s annual scholarships are awarded to distinguished individuals pursuing a career in the remodeling industry and developing their business-related skills. The scholarship can be used for educational programs such as NARI, NKBA and NAHBR certifications or for industry-related educational pursuits through academics. This year’s recipients are studying construction management at their respective universities.

The pervasive skilled labor shortage in the construction industry has led to an industry-wide push to attract and recruit a new generation of workers who have yet to start their careers. The NRF scholarship program aims to support these individuals in pursuing their passions while benefiting the industry and ultimately the economy on both a national and local level.

Another important facet of this labor shortage issue is the lack of women in the remodeling and construction industry. The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC) reports that participation in the industry is at only 9 percent.

“The NRF is proud that two out of three of this year’s scholarships were awarded to women,” says Steve Kleber, president of NRF. “We hope to continue to promote their involvement and success in the industry.”

Kristen Van Hoosen is in her fourth year at Pittsburg State University. She will be graduating with a degree in Construction Management with a Residential Construction emphasis and an Architectural Manufacturing Management & Technology minor. Van Hoosen is a volunteer for Habitat for Humanity and understands the importance of volunteering and plans to align her passion of working in the residential field while giving back to the community.

“I believe it is important for me to apply the knowledge and skills I have acquired to an important cause in helping others,” Van Hoosen explains. “The experience I gain while volunteering along with the connections I make in the residential industry play a considerable contribution to my future career.”

Lisa Breitenfield is attending Minnesota State University – Moorhead and will be recieving her degree in Construction Management. She spent four years working as an assistant at Climate Engineered Structures and also had the opportunity to compete in the Associated Schools of Construction Commercial Competition. Breitenfield is a member of the NAWIC and is passionate about urban revitalization and transforming buildings through well-planned and well-executed remodeling projects.

“I think it would be amazing to work in residential home restoration and remodeling,” Breitenfield explains. “I understand that the housing market is changing as our stock of housing is aging, and younger homebuyers are looking for unique architectural styles and smaller spaces closer to city centers than previous generations.”

Rhett Cox is a freshman at Clemson University. He will be receiving his degree in Construction Science and Management and minoring in business. Cox has made the Dean’s List and is a member of the Associated General Contractors of America. He has been very passionate about playing baseball, has coaching experience, and volunteered on Appalachia’s Mission team and All-American Athletes. Cox plans to enter the construction field and to make big impacts on the industry and own his own business.

The National Remodeling Foundation’s scholarship application deadline is February 15 each year. The award amount varies dependent on the individual’s application and their chosen education program. Those who are not granted a scholarship are encouraged to reapply the next year for consideration.

To learn more about the program, go to QR

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