Four standout students from the ACE Mentor Program of Oregon honed their college-and-career aspirations this summer at the University of Colorado, where they joined peers from other Western states at a regional ACE Summer Camp.

The experience earned raves from all four students, who sweated deadlines and brainstormed designs in an inspiring college setting.

“I loved my time at the camp,” says Colin Klein, an incoming senior at Grant High School in Portland. “We were constantly doing something and learning new things. I had never done a design-and-build project on this scale, so everything was new to me.”

Students worked in small teams on designing and building outdoor work stations for a city park in downtown Denver, near the fabrication lab in the college’s Architecture building.  The city will study the workstations with the goal of making them permanent amenities.

“They are a great group of students,” says Andrew Frankel, regional director for ACE. “Everybody has been very impressed with their level of interest, attentiveness and great question-asking.”

The nonprofit Portland Workforce Alliance provides staffing for the volunteer-driven ACE program. Over the past decade, leading firms in Oregon’s design-and-build community have embraced ACE as a way to strengthen and diversity their future workforce (while supporting high school students).

More than 150 students participated in ACE’s 2017 program. In May, ACE awarded $75,000 in college scholarships to 16 Portland-area seniors interested in pursuing careers in architecture, construction management and engineering.


What students said about their time at ACE Summer Camp

“The camp gave me a little feel for what some things in college might be like so I won’t be as shocked.” – Ashley, Tualatin High School

“My favorite part was the team discussions about the design of our project. … The end product was a balance between practicality and aesthetic beauty.” – Hunter, Colton High School

“I learned much more than I ever expected. We had a lot go wrong during the week and yet, in the end, we all managed to pull through and complete our project for the client.” – Audrey, Grant High School

“I have grown a lot from the experience and will take it with me to wherever I go in life.”

– Colin, Grant High School



ACE Mentor Program sends four students to Denver for regional camp
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