New BuildStrong Academy Offers Complimentary Carpentry and Electrical Training

The Home Builders Institute (HBI), in partnership with the Fioretti Family Charitable Fund, has announced the grand opening of the BuildStrong Academy of Charlotte. This new training facility aims to address the severe labor shortage in the residential construction industry within the Charlotte region.

The construction labor shortage in Charlotte has reached critical levels, causing significant challenges for the local economy and infrastructure development. As the demand for construction projects grows, the lack of skilled workers has led to delays, increased costs, and stunted growth opportunities. The establishment of this free training facility will provide accessible opportunities for individuals interested in construction careers, equipping them with the necessary skills and certifications. The program offers a nine-week, no-cost training period that prepares participants for entry-level roles.

Graduates will earn an industry-recognized certificate in carpentry and electrical work. The first four weeks of training cover basic construction skills, such as reading a tape measure, using hand and power tools, and following safe work practices, including obtaining an OSHA 10-hour certificate. The remaining five weeks focus on trade-specific training. Upon completion, each student will have an OSHA-10 safety certification and be ready for job placement.

Ed Brady, HBI President and CEO, emphasized the importance of training new skilled workers: “Older workers are retiring and not being replaced because the U.S. has not produced an adequate supply of construction labor for several generations. HBI is committed to training the next generation of skilled workers and ensuring the supply of construction labor.”

The BuildStrong Academy was made possible by the generosity of its co-sponsor and lead funder, The Fioretti Family Charitable Fund. Peter Fioretti expressed his excitement: “After several years of dedicated effort, the opening of the Charlotte academy is finally here. Our family is excited for this opportunity to serve the working community and construction industry in Charlotte. We believe this will be integral progress to do more for underprivileged young adults seeking education alternatives and living-wage jobs. This program is designed to be scalable and sustainable to serve many families in Charlotte.”

Additional contributors to the program include The Home Depot Foundation, Truist Foundation, and DEWALT.

Erin Izen, Executive Director of The Home Depot Foundation, stated, “The Home Depot Foundation has been proud to partner with HBI to make trades training and pathways to lucrative careers in the trades a reality for more people. With more than 400,000 construction jobs open – and growing – the new Academy in Charlotte will further our joint mission to shrink the skilled labor gap and ensure a strong pipeline of qualified construction professionals for years to come.”

Jeff Doehne, Stanley Black & Decker’s President & General Manager of The Home Depot, highlighted DEWALT’s commitment: “DEWALT has been ‘for the trades’ since 1924 and is deeply committed to the needs of our pro users. Through conversations with customers and our own internal research, we know the lack of skilled labor is a significant barrier to the success of the industry. We are proud to support HBI’s newest BuildStrong Academy and several others across the country to cultivate a resilient next-generation workforce.”

Erica Acie, head of retail originations at Truist, shared, “Aligned with our purpose to inspire and build better lives and communities, Truist is proud to support HBI’s BuildStrong Academy of Charlotte. Since its inception, Truist has empowered workforce development through a variety of initiatives and partnerships that provide education-to-career pathways to diverse communities across the bank’s footprint. HBI’s BuildStrong Academy demonstrates Truist’s commitment to building a more inclusive and sustainable workforce by upskilling future generations and connecting organizations with highly qualified candidates.”

For more information about HBI’s BuildStrong Academies, visit

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