Flintco supporting a previous Thanksgiving dinner at American Indian Center
ALBUQUERQUE – One of the oldest multicultural construction firms in the United States with Native American roots is looking nationwide for some of the best and brightest Americans Indian students interested in the construction industry and putting dollars toward that search.
Flintco, LLC, is giving the American Indian Graduate Center (AIGC) $5,000 for scholarships for an undergraduate or vocational student in the construction field. This is the first time that Flintco is partnering with AIGC, a national nonprofit that awards scholarships to Native American undergraduate and graduate college students.
Vernelle Chase, director of Flintco’s Tribal Relations, said AIGC was a natural pick because of its nationwide reach. Flintco has awarded more than $25,000 in scholarships since 2007, but primarily worked with individual tribes.
“Flintco is proud to give back to Indian Country by providing educational opportunities for our young tribal members seeking a career in construction,” Chase said.
Construction management students earning a 3.25 GPA or higher will be eligible to apply for the scholarship, Chase said. Flintco included vocational students, who will be awarded $1,500, in the scholarship because of the well-rounded education they receive from two-year institutions, including field engineering, mechanical engineering systems and leadership.
Chase, who is also on the Board of Directors for the American Indian Chamber of Commerce of New Mexico (AICCNM), will present AIGC with a check on May 12 during the chamber’s 9th Annual Native American Economic Summit opening reception at the Hotel Albuquerque. The chamber will also host a silent auction during the reception, with proceeds benefiting AIGC.
"AIGC is excited that Flintco has stepped forward to establish a scholarship for construction management students,” Center Director Sam Deloria said. “AIGC funds all fields of study, so this will definitely add to the mix, and Indian Country has a growing need for this type of profession."
Russell F. Pedro, AICCNM’s Business Development Specialist, said it’s partnerships like these that support and strengthen New Mexico small business.
“It’s those examples that promote community and economic development, job retention, job creation and reinvestment in our youth that aid in tribal commerce,” he said.
Despite taking a hit when the economy took downturn, construction hiring is on the rise again. Construction firms in the nation added 45,000 jobs in April alone, according to the U.S. Labor Department. The industry now employs 6.383 million Americans.
Founded in 1908 by a Native American family, Flintco has more than 550 employees at seven offices across the U.S., including Albuquerque, N.M. The firm has a long track record of mentoring Native American subcontractors and implementing proactive programs to hire and train Native Americans. Alberici Corporation, a diversified construction company, purchased Flintco in 2013, but continues to honor its Native American roots and history by maintaining its commitment to tribes and Indian Country.
Day passes and tickets for the New Mexico Small Business Week Awards luncheon during the Native American Economic Summit are also available. To register, or for more information about the Economic Summit, go to www.nmnaec.com.