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The Living Heritage Trades Academy of San Antonio is a program developed by the Office of Historic Preservation to provide training of traditional crafts and skills through apprenticeships, hands-on training, and class instruction on topics related to pre-1960 traditional building construction methods and materials.
The Office of Historic Preservation is committed to outreach and education. The vision for the Living Heritage Trades Academy is a result of a culmination of over a decade of laying groundwork for a robust, integrative, and locally rooted approach to trades education. Since 2009, we have established programs to train homeowners, contractors, college students, and realtors on the importance of the cultural, economic, workforce, and environmental benefits of retaining original materials and buildings. In 2021, we expanded the academy by introducing youth workforce development programs.
San Antonio has a culture of talented and skilled trade practitioners recognized throughout the state, but those skills may be lost without the opportunity to hand these legacy skills and traditions over to the next generation. Studies have shown that half of traditional tradesmen are over the age of 45. With retirements looming, there is a shortage of skilled and experienced and subcontractors. Adding to this gap is the low percentage of tradeswomen. Estimates show that out of 100 front line employees in the construction field, only 1 is a woman.
In addition to filling the gap in a trained workforce, the program highlights the concept that the master craftsman and woman is just as important as our most significant historic buildings or sites. These artisans and the traditional knowledge they possess are worthy of exploration, celebration, and perpetuation. Through their work, this program will increase awareness of the building and construction heritage of San Antonio and the Southcentral region of Texas by instilling pride in the community, celebrating traditions, perpetuating craft and skill, while preserving cultural heritage.
Si prefiere recibir esta información en español o tiene alguna inquietud, llame al 210.207.0035 o envíe un correo electrónico a SA Preservation.
IN the news
See our program featured on a local news station. (March 2021 - News 4 SA)
Watch a story featuring one of our first students in his apprenticeship. (May 2021 - News 4 SA via YouTube)