CHENANGO BRIDGE, NY (WIVT/WBGH) – Over 500 students from twenty-four different districts got spend the day operating heavy duty machinery and connect with professionals in their trade.

Broome-Tioga BOCES held the Southern Tier Construction Technology Career Day at Broome County’s Highway Department in Chenango Bridge.

Students were supervised while getting hands on experience with bulldozers, backhoes, dump trucks and more.

There was also a career fair, where students could meet with local companies and talk about what it takes to get into their line of work.

The Assistant Principal of the Career and Development Center at BOCES, Steve Moschak says that employers in the trades are hurting for workers right now, and the event is a great way for students to get their foot in the door.

The Assistant Principal of the Career Development Center at BT-BOCES, Steve Moschak says, “The opportunity to get to see the different types of equipment that you can drive, gear that you can use, it’s important. An event like today, we’re really trying to get them to see some of those jobs that they might not even had known are available to them.”

Moschak says that this year’s event was a new record of students in attendance. Some buses traveled as far as Sidney.

The program is available to students in grades 9 through 12, but Moschak says a majority of the students at this year’s event year sophomores.