Looking at a program that organizers said was sorely needed for their company to grow, the Carpentry Apprenticeship, called Nabholz University, celebrated its 40th anniversary last week as it graduated 13 new carpenters.

Saying that the program was "vital to our growth," Charles Nabhoz told those in attendance at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Conway that starting a program that could give its students a carpentry background and training was of the utmost importance.

Others agreed, as the ceremony also served as a roundtable by earlier graduates of the university, who spoke about what the program did for them. Those who spoke included Bob Tyler, Goley Atkinson, Gary Strack, Mark Seiter, Kenny Nahlen and Karen McNutt.

The program started in 1973, and currently boasts 22 students who have completed at least one year.

Nabholz University became Arkansas’ first Department of Labor approved in-house carpentry apprenticeship program, operated by Nabholz Construction Services.

Those who were honored as 2013 graduates included:

Zach Alderson, Nathan Anthony, Chad Butler, Jeffrey Cartillar, Steven Forrest, Nick Hum, Mark Ingram, Micah Ingram, Paul Jones, Jason Kimbrell, Randy Lilly, Matt Stane and Randy Stringer.