Skip to main content


Chicago, Ill. –The Hispanic American Construction Industry Association (HACIA) Scholarship Foundation in conjunction with the Institute for Workforce Education at St. Augustine College announced at a Press Conference on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 the beginning of a 6-month free Contractor Training Program. The Program aims to instruct 200 small business contractors throughout the Chicagoland area and provide career advancement to minority individuals working in the construction and contracting industries.

“This training provides not only Hispanics, but other small contractors that competitive advantage to run their day to day businesses,” said Jorge Perez, Executive Director of HACIA, during the press conference.

The program offers applicants to gain critical management skills and certification that will help strengthen, grown and expand their careers and businesses. Program components include receiving an OSHA 10 or 30 certification, EPA Renovation, Repair and Painting (RRP) Certification, a preparation course to take the LEED Accredited Green Associate Exam, along with Project Management, Technology and Estimating courses.

An alumnus, whose business has grown from two employees to over 20 employees after taking the program, is Gerardo Sanchez. He is President of Sanchez & Associates, a professional design firm providing land surveying services.

“We started off with a lot of energy and knowledge of surveying, but unfortunately we didn’t have the knowledge of managing a company, it was a very painful experience,” Sanchez said.

“The training we received along with the support HACIA and St. Augustine provided us was instrumental to our success. We are able to work with agencies like the Illinois Tollway and the O’Hare Modernization Program.”

President of St. Augustine College, Dr. Andrew C. Sund, is excited to continue the program’s partnership with HACIA to provide customize training for those in the construction industry.

“Working together with an organization like HACIA to create a curriculum that truly meets the needs of the construction sector, we can help gain them the skills that are going to make their businesses more profitable and more successful. This is the kind of work we are very proud of.”

Adam Pollet, Director of the Illinois Department of Commerce & Economic Opportunity, program partner of the Contractor Training Program, said the state wants to make sure all contractors, especially in the minority community, have the opportunity to win bids in both the private and public sector.

“We want to make these business grow,” Pollet said. “Governor Pat Quinn stands strong with HACIA and St. Augustine and we are going to continue to make this investment.”

Classes for the Fall/Winter cohort will begin on Monday, November 3rd. Applications will be accepted until Monday, October 27th. Applications will be accepted on a rolling basis for future cohorts. Classes will take place twice a week at the Institute of Workforce Education campus on 2545. W Diversey. For more information on the program and how to apply, please visit You can also call the HACIA Scholarship Foundation offices at 1-888-979-3773.

Keywords: Chicago, construction, contractor training Program, Contractors, free program, HACIA, Jobs, minority business, Scholarship Foundation, training, work

Posted in Workforce and Career Development