Friday Feature: unCommon Construction
Aaron Frumin knows what it’s like to be disengaged at school. He dropped out of college in his third year because he wanted a more purposeful life. And that’s exactly what he’s created—for himself and for hundreds of students—with unCommon Construction, an innovative program where high school students build houses from the ground up.
Aaron’s path had many twists and turns. After Hurricane Katrina struck in 2005, he took advantage of his flexibility and moved to New Orleans to volunteer with the Red Cross. Before long, he was helping with construction—and found he liked it. After his service with the Red Cross, he spent time as a construction day laborer and did stints with AmeriCorps and Habitat for Humanity. He used his AmeriCorps scholarship to finish his degree and became a middle school teacher through Teach for America.
When Aaron was teaching reading and math in Colorado, he considered what he wanted to do with his life. He realized he could combine his teaching and building skills to reach high schoolers in a unique way: teach them to build houses and fund scholarships for them with the proceeds from selling the houses. He thought New Orleans would be the best place to start, so he moved back in 2014 to start putting it in motion.