Clayton Rockwell Forms Partnership to Repurpose Materials

Clayton Rockwell has partnered with Rowan-Cabarrus Community College to repurpose scrap building materials. Rowan-Cabarrus uses the materials to train current and future firefighters in the school’s training programs. It's a partnership that benefits Clayton, Rowan-Cabarrus and the community.

Repurpose Waste, Reduce Cost

Clayton Rockwell ISO® Coordinator Star Harris’ goal is to increase local partnerships while repurposing waste materials, a reflection of Clayton’s value to Do good. When Harris heard of similar partnerships at other Clayton home building facilities around the country, Harris’ idea was born.

A tour of Clayton Rockwell easily convinced Rowan-Cabarrus’ Director of Fire and Emergency Services Michael Caviness that Clayton Rockwell’s scrap material was ideal for Rowan-Cabarrus’ firefighting programs. He also realized the school’s cost savings opportunity by not having to purchase as much building material for training purposes.

Clayton Rockwell partnership pallet recycling

Caviness said, “I am very proud of our partnership with Clayton Rockwell. Sustainability is a key focus of Rowan-Cabarrus Community College, and we are committed to reduce, reuse and recycle as much as possible. When Ms. Harris approached me about a possible partnership, I never dreamed it would work out so perfectly to help train firefighters.”

Firefighter Training

Certification-seeking students as well as current firefighters from 60 area fire departments, who typically train over 200 hours per year to maintain certification, use the scrap material to learn critical firefighting skills and techniques. For example, scrap wood placed in a specially created apparatus allows firefighters to rehearse breaking down doors to gain entry to structures on fire. Donated pallets are set aflame to practice extinguishing fires. Various scrap materials are used to build structures to simulate areas in a home that firefighters may need to access to rescue people or pets trapped inside.

Clayton Rockwell recycling partnership fire training apparatus

Clayton Rockwell’s team members work together on the partnership efforts, from home builders collecting materials to forklift operators transporting them to an on-site storage facility. Faculty and staff at Rowan-Cabarrus transport the material from Clayton Rockwell to the school using a flatbed truck.

Clayton Values at Work

Since the program began in August 2023, Harris estimates that Clayton Rockwell has donated almost 37 tons of scrap material, saving over $2,600 in disposal costs. In the future, Harris hopes to significantly scale the program.

Harris said, “This partnership is a unique convergence of Clayton's values and goals. We support a community institution, repurpose scrap materials, support education programs and reduce our business costs. And since firefighters must have knowledge of home construction to fight fires effectively, partnering with our home building facility is a natural fit.”

ISO® is a registered trademark of the International Organization for Standardization.

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