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Garney empowers high school girls with its first-ever construction camp in KC Metro

June 2024


Kansas City, MO Garney hosted its inaugural Construction Camp to inspire and educate high school girls about diverse career opportunities within the construction industry. This two-week immersive program ran from June 3 to June 14 and provided hands-on experiences, mentorship, and invaluable insights into various facets of construction careers. 

“We believe it’s crucial to empower young women and introduce them to vast opportunities available within our field,” said Yvonne Waterman, Director of Human Resources. “This camp serves as a platform to foster interest, provide exposure, and ignite passion among high school girls toward construction careers, whether in the field or behind the scenes.” 

The students learned hands-on from several local industry leaders and female industry leaders like Brandy McCombs, President at IBC and Chairwoman of The Builders, a local chapter of the AGC. Camp Garney is not just about wielding tools; it’s a comprehensive exploration of the industry, covering everything from office work like marketing and graphic design to hands-on field activities. 

Participants engaged in a variety of enriching experiences, including: 

  • CPR and First Aid Training: Essential life-saving skills crucial for any workplace. 
  • Community Service: Building benches that transform into picnic tables for local elementary schools. 
  • Hands-on Building Projects: From marshmallow rocket launchers to cement pavers, learning construction fundamentals.
  • Financial Literacy: Budgeting exercises, ensuring they have the financial acumen for their future careers. 
  • Equipment Operation: Insight into operating heavy machinery. 
  • Virtual Reality Training: Participants immersed themselves in virtual environments, exploring water plants and gaining exposure to cutting-edge technology. 
  • Graphic Design: Garney’s graphic design team taught about the importance of visual communication. 
  • Marketing Education: Garney’s maketing team led training and development sessions, covering essential skills for promoting and managing construction projects. 
  • HR, Training & Development, Accounts Payable: Insights from Garney’s HR and accounts payable teams offered a comprehensive understanding of construction projects’ administrative and financial aspects. 

 “Our camp isn’t just about learning; it’s about empowerment,” added Waterman. “We’re grateful for the support of all our partners who share our vision of promoting diversity and inclusivity in the construction industry.” 

The camp received overwhelming support from the community, with around 30 volunteers joining to educate and mentor. The accredited program offered high school credit through Raytown School District’s Enrichment Program.

Want to learn more? View more coverage on the camp on KCTV5

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