This past July, the WB Foundation was proud to award five $1000 scholarships to students pursuing education in the trades. The Foundation—and the WBA at large—feel that the industry must address the skilled labor shortage head-on, providing the necessary resources and encouragement to support future builders in the state.

The scholarship recipients were Shannon Davis (Madison College, from Madison), Alex Doering (UW-Whitewater, from Menomonee Falls), CJ Fermanich (UW-Madison, from Verona), Erik Peotter (UW-Platteville, from Stevens Point), and Demetrius Simpson (Madison College, from Verona). The 2017 WB Foundation scholarships were generously funded in part by Tim O’Brien Homes.

Commenting on what influenced her to first enter the trades, scholarship recipient Shannon Davis wrote, “The major influence that got me started was feeling unsatisfied with my office job and wanting something more creative…and with more opportunity to increase my wages over time. After I got going in MATC’s program, I realized there were a lot of options: for me to own and run my own business someday, to work on many different kinds of projects, to learn about other associated trades like solar installation, and to climb the ladder as an employee from the basics to project management. …I feel satisfied at the end of a work day, and I look forward to always having something new to learn about.”

The Foundation looks forward to continuing to provide opportunities for students to embrace the traders career of their dreams. As always, you can chip in to support these efforts at