South Carolina


How is ACE Organized? 

The ACE Mentor Program is made up of affiliates. Each affiliate serves high school youth within a certain region or city. A mentor team is assigned to each high school and is made of up industry volunteers and set up similar to a project team: it will typically include an architectural or design firm, engineering firms representing several specialties, a construction manager, a general contractor, and sub-contractors. The mentors are responsible for scheduling meetings and coordinating activities, as they work in conjunction with a team leader (teacher or administrator) from the high school.

What is my firm’s commitment? 

The main commitment a company makes is empowering its staff to give time to the ACE Mentor Program. The average time commitment is 1-2 hours per week for 20 weeks but it may vary based on the specific program and school involved. A company may also participate by opening their office or construction site for a student tour.

Companies can also become involved as a Sponsor through several different recognized levels of giving.

What happens during the school year? 

There are several types of activities that take place during the season.

  • Registration events
  • Mentoring sessions with the students where they are introduced to a segment of the industry and complete activities
  • Field Trips
  • Special speaker presentations
  • Project development – each team must conceptualize, design, and create a project
  • Final presentations – student from each team gather together to present their projects to each other, parents, teachers, and industry leaders
What qualities make a good mentor? 

Mentors are dedicated professionals who are passionate about what they do and want to share that with the next generation of the industry’s workforce. Ideal qualities for a mentor are enthusiasm and the ability to develop a rapport with the students. Young mentors often can relate to the students more readily, but mentors of all ages have been very successful. Also, the closer the diversity of the mentors matches that of the students, the easier it will be to form strong relationships.

What are the benefits to my company? 

Besides feeding the pipeline with the next generation of construction industry workforce, your company will benefit from its involvement with ACE.

The program:

  • Enhances your company image, within the industry and also the community
  • Provides networking opportunities, for both mentors and principals
  • Connects your firm to talented and motivated part-time help and to potential future employees
  • Enhances young professionals presentation and communication skills
  • Creates an opportunity to “give back” to your community and to your industry