So on the 6th of October 2014 I joined the Select first Lifting Technician apprenticeship.
This was a huge step for me I had spent my previous working life working in sales, starting in mobile phones, to advertising eventually ending up in recruitment. Sales was something I started doing while I was at university and it was something I couldn’t shake off, I was pigeon holed nobody would offer me a job doing something else because I was just viewed as a sales person with no transferable skills! I tried for years to reinvent myself to no avail.
I never dreamed of being a crane operator or ever imagined I could do something like that. My apprenticeship provided me with so much support and training I felt like the luckiest person in the world, actually able to reboot her life into a better place. I learned so many skills things I never dreamed I could do, I finally made my parents proud and I was earning a decent income.
I’m going to throw back a post dedicated to each year of my 5 years these photos are from 6th October 2014 to 6th October 2015.
This year I went from college, to training in our yards to my first site at Tottenham Court Road Crossrail where I operated a lovely Liebherr LTR1060.
A short while ago I attended a fab event at Brookland’s race course with WES and was giving out small ‘Girl’s can’t what?’ stickers with a picture of a engineer, I posted on Instagram and everyone loved it.
I however felt they were missing a site feel and wondered if I could do my own version featuring a crane, I thought it would be great to promote the small amount of women who work in plant and hopefully encourage a few more to give it a try.
Recently I attended the Strategic Transport Apprenticeship Taskforce Annual report – Three years of progress event.
This was my third year on the board, I joined the board as a Crossrail apprentice when I worked at Tottenham Court Road and I have been a board member since. Our main objective is to get more apprentices into transport.
The event was hosted by the brilliant Mike Brown who sits also as the chair of STAT.
I was fortunate enough to chair a panel of 4 brilliant apprentices
Who spoke about their experience of apprenticeships and what changes we can make for all, it was very thought provoking for all in the room.
We were followed by the brilliant Sir Kenneth Olisa OBE who as well as many other things is the Lord – Lieutenant if Greater London, he shared some brilliant thoughts on apprenticeships and social justice.
A great event to celebrate the panels third year of progress towards more apprenticeships in transport.
”The lack of diversity in the industry is putting young people off from wanting to join the sector, increasing concerns about the problem of labour and skills shortages in the future, the firm said.”
Shocker! I have said it a million times if young people google our industry or go to interviews and never see anyone like them why on hell would they want to work here? If you can’t see someone like you excelling through the industry you can’t envision your own future.
When I went to my first interview it was all men, all the other interviewees were men, all the interviewers were men – if I was younger or this was one of my first interviews I would never have chosen this industry.
And we haven’t even started on the expected hours, modern day sectors are flexible and accommodating for workers – unfortunately the construction industry is yet to catch up, why would someone choose construction? what are our USP’s to the next generation?
We can’t even hold on to the ones that do make it through the wire – the only 0.7% of women working in trades or in plant this number hasn’t changed in 30 years, we are hemorrhaging talent throughout the process for various reasons.