The Construction Employers' Association (CEA) was awarded the American Council for Construction Education (ACCE) Founder's Award for its positive impact on construction education through the CEA Construction Management University Grant Program. Jerry Overaa, chief executive officer of C. Overaa & Co. and chairman of the CEA Construction Managment University Grant Program Committee, received the award on behalf of CEA at the ACCE Annual Meeting on July 27 in Calgary, Canada.
CEA was recognized for its strong support of construction education. During the past 20 years, CEA has provided $2.62 million of direct financial support through annual grants to the construction management programs of seven Northern California universities. For the last three years, CEA has provided annual grants of $180,000 split between the participating universities: University of California, Berkeley; California State University, Chico; California State University, East Bay; California State University, Fresno; California State University, Sacramento; California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo; and Stanford University.
These grants have enhanced the professional development of construction management students by enabling field trips, sponsoring teams in competitions, providing case studies, creating instructional videos as well as the development of formal co-ops and internships. In addition, CEA and its member firms also serve on industry advisory boards, support competition teams, and provide essential support to help these programs excel.
In nominating CEA for this national award, Dr. Allan Hauck, Construction Managment Department head & professor at Cal Poly Sate University, San Lusi Obispo wrote, "Both as an association and through its members, CEA clearly contributes to the ability of construction students and faculty to maintain their currency in the profession. Every CM student and faculty member in Northern California has benefited from their support."
CEA is comprised of more than 100 mid to large-sized unionized commercial building contractors performing work in Northern California. Its members collectively perform over $20 billion in public and private building construction volume annually and employ over 20,000 employees in the State of California.