Helping women enter trades and technology careers on PEI

by Gloria Welton, Employment Journey

Friday, May 1, 2015

Trade HERizons in Charlottetown has just completed work with a group of 19 women, helping them chose and build a successful career in trades or technology. Since 2010, almost 100 women have participated in the project.

Trade HERizons 2015 participants with Program Facilitators Cathy Ronahan, far right and Jamie Griffin, far left. Photo by Angela Dowie of Fine Lines Photography.

This 12-week project, sponsored by Women's Network PEI, is designed to increase the number of women entering these non-traditional occupations. "We encourage women to explore, prepare for, obtain, and maintain employment in the trades and industrial technology fields," says Sara Roach-Lewis, Executive Director.

"Trade HERizons can change your life if you let it and work really hard," says Sara. During the closing celebration for the current program, she addressed the audience of family members and community and government representatives. She expressed how hard this group of women worked to evaluate what they wanted to do with their lives.

"This winter, even with storm delays and cancellations, the group participated in activities in the classroom and in the community geared to build confidence and awareness of career options."

"I have high hopes for you all," says Cathy Ronahan, Program Facilitator. She said that 14 of the 19 women are going on to a post-secondary program at Holland College this fall. "Most of you now have a career goal and are making plans to reach ambitions that you and your family can be proud of. Past participants have made their dreams come true, and you can too."

"It was an honour to watch each of you grow and realize what is possible for your life," says Jamie Griffin, Program Facilitator. "It has been so rewarding to hear about how this group experience has helped solve everyday life difficulties."

Why the project is important

Pamela LeClair spoke on behalf of the participants. "Thanks to this program, we have taken in an incredible amount of information crucial in pursuing a career. Along the way we learned so much about ourselves."She said she admires each participant, especially the mothers. "They faced such challenges to be here every day, and they are a true inspiration. They had to juggle it all and they did.

"We started as strong, diverse, compassionate women. The staff have helped us rediscover our power and apply enthusiasm to our future plans. On behalf of the group I must say there are not enough positive words to describe what this has meant to us all."

Employment Journey, May 2015 (PDF)

More about Trade HERizons