Building Union Diversity (BUD) program announces 2020 sessions


Program boasts an 86 percent job placement rate


SIXTEEN GRADUATES – six women and 10 men – celebrate their completion of the 15th class of the Building Union Diversity (BUD) program designed to help women and minorities enter, succeed and build a career in the building trades. – St. Louis Building & Construction Trades Council photo

The St. Louis Building & Construction Trades Council’s Building Union Diversity (BUD) program, designed to help women and minorities enter and succeed in the building trades, has released its schedule of sessions for 2020.

The program, which began in 2014 in an effort to get more women and people of color into the building trades, offers pre-apprentices the opportunity to visit local building trade unions to give them basic training and a feel for each of the trades. Each five-week session offers credentialed training, transportation if needed, safety equipment and a small weekly stipend.

“We are proud of our results in introducing, training and placing the unemployed and under-employed into well-paying jobs and careers in construction,” said Russ Signorino, BUD program coordinator. “Not only does BUD have an excellent track record of providing certified construction skill training and a placement record of 86 percent, the jobs we are filling are good living-wage jobs with strong career potential.”

The program is a partnership between the Building & Construction Trades Council, the Eastern Missouri Laborers District Council and the St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council, along with the St. Louis Agency on Training and Employment (SLATE), Missouri Division of Workforce Development, United Way, Missouri Department of Transportation, Metropolitan Sewer District, AGC of Missouri and the St. Louis County Human Services Workforce Development, University City Adult Education Program, Fathers & Families Support Center, Employment Connections to Success, Epworth Center, Center for Women in Transition, Missouri Women in Trades, Coalition of Black Trade Unionists St. Louis Chapter, Metro St. Louis, A. Phillip Randolph Institute and St. Louis Community Credit Union.

Participating unions include: Bricklayers Local 1, Cement Masons Local 527, Eastern Missouri Laborers District Council, Heat & Frost Insulators Local 1, IBEW Local 1, Iron Workers Local 396, Operating Engineers Local 513, Plumbers & Pipefitters Local 562, Sheet Metal Workers Local 36 and St. Louis-Kansas City Carpenters Regional Council.

“With the low unemployment rate in the industry and major construction projects already scheduled over the next few years, we can see increasing opportunities for graduates,” Signorino said. “While the program is open to all qualified candidates, we are especially focused on recruiting women, younger workers and people of color.”

The 2020 BUD schedule is as follows:
• Session 1 – Feb. 10 – March 13 (Interviews on Feb. 5).
• Session 2 – April 13 – May 15 (Interviews on April 8).
• Session 3 – June 15 – July 17 (Interviews on June 10).
• Session 4 – Aug. 17 – Sept. 18 (Interviews on Aug.12).

For more information, contact Signorino at or at 314-303-6082.



  1. Hello again wondering about what steps are needed to take the test. I know A lot of things are going on, so please text back


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here