MCC students show off building project

Jesse Holder said he hopes to one day own his own construction business.

Before that, the Marshalltown Community College student has to learn the business and gain experience.

Both of these were accomplished during this year’s building project by MCC students as part of the construction technology class. The students and faculty member Russ Yarrow hosted an open house Friday for the garage addition they completed this year at the home of Walt and Jan Wilkinson, just west of Marshalltown.

“It’s nice to be able to create something and know that you did it,” Holder said. “This project went really well and it’s fun to do things right.”

The owner provides the materials and a stipend to the college, but usually has a huge savings in labor for these college projects. Yarrow estimated that using his students saved the Wilkinsons more than $15,000.

In the past, the class has built entire homes, but the one slotted for this year fell through and they decided on a garage addition and kitchen and laundry room remodeling project on the Wilkinson farm.

“It was kind of fun,” Walt Wilkinson said. “It wasn’t as hairy as I thought it would be.”

This 1,500-square-foot project gave the students plenty of experience in concrete and foundation work this year.

“There was over 100 yards of concrete poured on this project,” Yarrow said. “It’s good for the students to learn, since any construction project there’s going to be some concrete.”

Jan Wilkinson admitted there was a little uneasiness utilizing college students for the project, but Yarrow’s professionalism helped quell that.

“We had confidence in the teacher that he will make sure things get done right,” she said.