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BOCES students build, auction off house as final project before graduation

The auction closes Wednesday, June 7. Previous student-built homes have sold for more than $50,000.

WEST SENECA, N.Y. — They haven't even officially graduated yet, but a group of students at the BOCES Potters Road Career and Technical Center already have pretty impressive resumes. How many teens can actually say they've built an entire house? 

The students are finishing up a two-year program. The first year they spend in the classroom learning different skills and techniques, and this year, they used what they learned for the biggest hands-on project they've been a part of — a 1,400 sq. ft. ranch home with three bedrooms and two bathrooms.

"I've been doing everything from the start, from the laying the blocks to prepping, doing the foundation for it and the walls, floor, ceiling," said student Andrew Scherer. 

BOCES students have done all of the work on the home — framing, installing windows, roofing... even the rough plumbing and electrical work. It all has to be perfect and up to code before a West Seneca building inspector checks it all out.

"It's a huge accomplishment for all of us. We're all just seniors in high school and not many people thought that we could build a house, but we did it," said student Clint Miller.

They've built a house, but they're also laying a foundation for their personal futures as the next generation of skilled builders.

"There's a lot of need in the Western New York area. I have 17 seniors, most of them already have full-time jobs lined up doing everything from residential to commercial construction and everything in between," said instructor David Grieco.

The student-built home is up for auction. The online bidding ended Wednesday, June 7 at 7 p.m. In the end, it sold for $74,700.

"The starting bid was at a dollar believe it or not. We're at $12,100 or $12,200 right now. People wait until the end. It's similar to a live auction," said Eric Monahan of Cash Auctions.

Previous student-built homes have sold for between $50,000 and $75,000. The money goes back into the program. Once it's sold, they'll lower the roof, and a transportation company will come in with two trailers to move the two halves. It will be put together at its final site.


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