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ONE BRICK AT A TIME: Bryan ISD masonry workshop helping student's future for the industry

Posted at 4:25 PM, Jan 12, 2024
and last updated 2024-01-12 17:25:12-05

BRYAN, Texas — 14-year-old Josh Kelbly is hard at work, learning how to lay down brick, one at a time.

“I was never really good at that until today,” Kelby said.

Like Kelby, dozens of other Bryan ISD construction students are adding another skillset to their education.

With the help of the Texas Masonry Council, local contractors are showing students the basics of laying down brick structure.

“It’s important for these students to get hands-on experience with these contractors and everyone helping out today, because it gives them more information on what the industry could be like,” said Ashton White, Texas Masonry Council.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, Texas is the number two state when it comes to employing brick and block masons, with most of this work being used in the “Foundation, Structure, and Building Exterior Industry.”

TV Personality Kayleen McCabe from the home improvement show ‘Trading Spaces’ stopped by Friday and told 15 ABC’s Chris Talley that it’s CTE programs like this helping students get prepared for the real world.

“Any education in the trade or CTE programs are very critical for the development of a good society, here we are teaching masonry but also teaching how to critically think," McCabe said.

"Some of their walls will not be perfect the first time and this is skills we need in good humans and maybe get a career in masonry.”

No matter what career path he takes after high school, Kelby says this is another one that can be very useful for his future.

“It opens up a lot of opportunities instead of getting out of high school and having to learn all that," Kelby said.

"If you learn it young a lot more jobs could be available to you.”