- By Kristina Webb Palm Beach Post Staff Writer
Seminole Ridge High School’s Weitz Construction Academy has started building its seventh home for Habitat for Humanity, and the program is getting some help from a new partner.
Minto Foundation Inc. – a charitable arm of Minto Communities, the developer behind the new city of Westlake – recently donated $75,000 to the academy and Habitat for Humanity of Palm Beach County.
Students in the academy learn real-world vocational skills, and many go on to receive competitive offers from local construction firms before or soon after their graduation from Seminole Ridge, program director Rick Terkovich told The Palm Beach Post in November. And while some head straight into the workforce, others go on to further study engineering, construction management or other related fields.
That was when the most recent house built by Seminole Ridge students was rolled out in pieces from their workshop and moved to a lot to be assembled and built out by Habitat for Humanity. Crews are working on installing the flooring at that house, and it should be completed by the end of March, a Habitat for Humanity spokeswoman said.
“Minto is happy to support a program that aims to develop quality talent for our industry and one that many of our future residents in nearby Westlake may be able to take advantage of,” Minto Communities vice president John Carter said in the news release.
According to a news release, Minto’s donation will be distributed over two years and cover the costs of drywall, wood and screws.
Each home is designed to be modular, so it can be moved in pieces from Seminole Ridge to its final location: a lot owned by Habitat for Humanity, where the house and roof segments are assembled by a team of Weitz Construction professionals.
When Westlake incorporated in 2016, it included the land on which Seminole Ridge High School sits. The city stretches to either side of Seminole Pratt Whitney Road from Sycamore Drive in the south to 60th Street in the north.
"We are honored to have Minto as our newest partner with the Seminole Ridge Community High School Construction Academy,” Habitat for Humanity of Palm Beach County CEO Bernie Godek said in the news release. “Their support ensures that this very worthwhile program will continue to give kids good career opportunities upon graduating, while contributing to the affordable housing effort in Palm Beach County.”