Construction Advancement Institute Awards $30,000 in College Grants

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Six area scholars named recipients

Construction Advancement Institute Scholarship Award Recipients and Committee Members

Our goal is to strengthen the ranks of engineers and technologists employed in the region to help keep our local economies competitive and growing.

As part of its mission to spur improvements to the building and construction industry sectors, the Westchester County-based Construction Advancement Institute (CAI) recently awarded $30,000 in grants to undergraduate students enrolled to study science, technology, engineering, math or other courses this fall.

On July 16, the CAI Scholarship Committee presented six students $5,000 grants toward the 2015-16 academic year at an awards luncheon near its headquarters in Tarrytown, N.Y.

The scholarship awards from CAI, which is the educational and advocacy component organization aligned with the Building Contractors Association (BCA), was announced by CAI Chairman Mark Fante of Darante Construction, Ltd., of Elmsford, N.Y.

“The money our industry raises and disburses for college scholarships is one of several charitable efforts performed jointly by members of organized labor and construction contracting companies for the community each year,” Fante said. “Our goal is to strengthen the ranks of engineers and technologists employed in the region to help keep our local economies competitive and growing.”

The six students were chosen from more than three dozen applicants and were judged by the CAI Scholarship Committee. The winners are:

  • Michael DiBenedetto, of White Plains, N.Y., attends the University of Delaware in Newark, Del., where he is pursuing a degree in chemical engineering. He is the son of an associate of BCA-member company Peter Gisondi & Co., Inc.
  • Joao Anjo, of Ossining, N.Y., attends The City College of New York in Manhattan, where he is pursuing a degree in mechanical engineering. He is the son of a member of Carpenters Union Local 279.
  • Matthew Carducci, of Harrison, N.Y., attends Lehigh University in Bethlehem, Pa., where he is pursuing a degree in chemical engineering. His father is a member of Operating Engineers Union Local 137.
  • Ryan Neumann, of New Fairfield, Conn., attends Manhattan College in Riverdale, N.Y., where he is pursuing a degree in civil engineering. He is the son of an associate of BCA-member company Martino Constructors, Inc.
  • Zachary Prekalaj, of Carmel, N.Y., will attend SUNY Purchase College in the fall, where he will pursue a degree in mathematics and computer sciences. He is the son of a member of Carpenters Union Local 279.
  • Joshua Wyant, of Germantown, N.Y., will attend Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y. in the fall, where he will pursue his degree in engineering. He is the son of a member of Carpenters Union Local 279.

The BCA/CAI program offers scholarships of $5,000 each to currently enrolled or college-bound students who qualify. Scholarships are available for family members of companies that are members of the BCA as well as non-BCA-member independent contractors that contribute to qualifying industry advancement funds. Applications will also be accepted from eligible students who are related to the members of the following building construction union locals: Bricklayers Local 5, Carpenters Local 279, Laborers Local 235 and Operating Engineers Local 137.

Applications will be available online next spring for 2016 scholarships on the organization’s website, http://www.caiwestchester.org.

Since its inception, the BCA/CAI College Scholarship Program has helped more than three dozen students throughout the Hudson Valley region attend undergraduate institutions across the country. Its affiliated organization, the Construction Industry Council of Westchester & Hudson Valley, Inc., also offers college grants for the children of employees of companies that are members of the CIC.

For additional information or an application please contact Laurel Brunelle at (914) 631-1033 or laurel@bcanys.org.

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Sierra Brown
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