Cristo Rey Boston High School

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Gilbane Building Corporation: A Legacy of Building Opportunity

GilbaneGilbane Building Corporation has long been a leader in its field as a global, forward-thinking integrated construction and facility management services firm. Maybe not as widely known, Gilbane has built a quiet but incredible legacy of mentoring students from Cristo Rey Boston High School via its involvement as a Corporate Work Study Partner.


This legacy of opportunity building – helping students from under-resourced families close the opportunity gap, is why Cristo Rey Boston is proud to honor Thomas Gilbane Jr. and the Gilbane Building Company at Academic Signing Day on May 17, 2022.


Thomas Gilbane Jr. and Gilbane Building Company have been steadfast supporters of the Cristo Rey Boston Corporate Work Study Program since they joined as a partner in 2010. Under his leadership, the company has demonstrated a deep commitment to creating an inclusive culture and promoting the creation of diverse teams that bring a wealth of thought leadership to the company.


As Mary Anne Farrell, office supervisor for Cristo Rey students at Gilbane noted in a 2019 video production for Academic Signing Day about Cristo Rey students “They [students] do have big dreams and we are a part of that. It is important that we help mentor them and get them to the next level because they are our future.”


Stencia Bastien, CRB Class of 2019 and now a junior at Boston College was one of those students. In addition to the valuable work skills she developed at Gilbane, she vividly remembers senior year, when hopes for a full scholarship to study architecture did not appear. Gilbane co-workers reassured her that accepting a full scholarship to Boston College’s Carroll School of Management would open opportunities, including architecture. The collective wisdom of the Gilbane team was instrumental in broadening her outlook regarding her time in college.


About the benefit of a Corporate Work Study placement at Gilbane, Stencia recalled “Working at Gilbane built an incredible level of confidence, it challenged me to learn and to communicate with others. I left high school with a much better sense of my capabilities, which has served me well at Boston College.”


Current senior Veronah Najjuuko has a similar reaction when discussing her work-study placement at Gilbane. She noted, “My time at Gilbane has been extremely helpful in shaping the person I have become over the past four years. Having the formational experience in high school of juggling multiple responsibilities of work and schoolwork, has really taught me the value of organization. At every moment during my time with Gilbane, I felt simultaneously challenged yet supported in becoming my best self. My dream is to become a doctor, but the skills I developed at Gilbane will serve me well my entire life.”


The Cristo Rey experience is a life-changing opportunity for students from under-resourced communities. The opportunity to widen exposure to career opportunities and gain valuable skills during high school opens doors that were previously invisible to students is invaluable. Gilbane Building Corporation is a model for joining corporate Diversity and Inclusion goals with a program that builds tomorrow’s diverse pipeline of talent.


We look forward to honoring Thomas Gilbane Jr., and Gilbane Building Company on May 17, 2022.