Hamilton High School principal David Furrer announced at a recent Hamilton School Board meeting that Bielinski Homes will donate $69,000 to support the school’s carpentry program. The School Board recognized the Waukesha-based company and two of its representatives for providing meaningful learning experiences for students.
The company agreed to fund a full-time teacher and provide funding for other construction class expenses in the 2003-04 school year.
For the past two years, Bielinski representatives have served on a school advisory committee that sought ways to support student learning through real-world experiences, including providing hands-on practice at sites in the Brandon Oaks subdivision.
“Bielinski Homes provided vision, creative problem-solving and demonstrated a deep desire to help our construction program grow and students learn,” Furrer said. “They assisted us in pursuing the dream of developing a new model of educating and preparing students for the future.”
Bielinski Chief Executive Officer Bob Brownell and Chief Operations Officer Paul Bielinski helped establish a partnership with the Southeastern Wisconsin Carpentry Joint Apprenticeship and Training Center. Located 12 minutes from Hamilton High School, the center will become the first satellite school setting for students. It provides a controlled environment where a high school construction teacher will join with a carpenter-trainer to teach students about safety, quality and productivity in the carpentry trade.
“It is a brilliant concept and one that Hamilton High School is committed to realizing,” Furrer said.
Superintendent Kathleen Cooke said if not for the generosity of Bielinski Homes, Hamilton would not have a carpentry program next year because of the state budget crisis that has caused the district to make cuts. After learning that the district would be unable to support a construction program without help, Bielinski representatives agreed to fund a full-time teaching position and classroom materials and equipment. The company will also continue to provide a home-building site where students can practice carpentry skills.
Cooke noted that the gift to the high school was only one of many contributions the company has made in the community.
In accepting the appreciation award, Brownell said that he has enjoyed working with Furrer and Cooke.
“Our contribution is a way to give back to the community and provides an avenue to allow some kids to work in the trades,” Brownell said. “It is a mutually beneficial relationship between Bielinski and the schools.”