OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) -​ Students from dozens of metro high schools got an up-close look at what a career in construction entails Tuesday.

Local businesses brought equipment to the fairgrounds for hands-on experience – in hopes of recruiting new members of the workforce.

The teens aren’t just getting to work with hands-on experience, they’re also learning how these careers change lives.

“I never thought I’d be working in construction at all,” said Ashley Ausby, a Dolese employee. “It’s truly a blessing. I’m grateful for my job.”

You may see Ausby driving a big Dolese truck around Oklahoma City.

 She hopes to inspire the next generation.

“I wish this was my first job because I absolutely love it,” Ausby said. 

Around 1,500 students from 40 high schools gathered at the State Fairgrounds for Build My Future OKC – put on by the Central Oklahoma Home Builders Association.

There, they get to learn what it’s like to work in a variety of career paths that don’t require a four-year degree.

“If that’s something that they don’t want to continue onto after the graduation or if they don’t have the means, we want to show them that there are plenty of well-paying, good, stable careers within our industry that they can pursue,” said Elisa Milbourn with the Central Oklahoma Home Builders Association. 

“Right now, there’s way more jobs than there are people so I would say a young person that’s willing to work, give effort can find a place for a real and meaningful career going forward,” said Kermit Frank, a Dolese spokesperson. 

Those who’ve made a life for themselves in these industries – hope to help others find the same joy.

“I’m enjoying watching these young people get their questions answered, see the light come on, when they realize that there’s a career out there for them,” Brent Bowles, a Training Specialist with OG&E, told News 4.