Women in Building Construction

Women in Building Construction


Nine women who work in building construction, including carpentry, architecture, sheet metal, painting, lighting design, plumbing, electrical, and heat & frost insulation. “The average woman would amaze herself,” asserts a carpenter. “We can do it!” says an architect.

DVD length: 15 minutes


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From Women in Building Construction DVD:
     Copyright © Jocelyn Riley

“I didn’t grow up thinking I wanted to be a carpenter. . . . I did what my parents wanted, go to college, try for some kind of white-collar profession. And it just didn’t work out for me. . . . I love working outdoors. I love being active, getting a lot of exercise.”

“And a lot of people are like, oh, I don’t want to do that. Like a lot of girls I know, you can’t pay them to do what I do. They’re like, ‘Oh, you make nice money,’ but they would never do it. They like the pretty behind the desk, the pretty at the bank. . . . That’s how all of my friends are. They’re like, girl, how you do it?”
Heat and Frost Insulator

“Having to install equipment and see it work and keep working is like a total fulfillment for me. When we do a new construction or a new building and that building goes up, the lights are working, the heat’s working, and it looks great. You know, you stand back and go, Wow, I did that!”

“There’s a lot more options available to me in plumbing than there was in my other job, because it was dead end job, you know. If someone was thinking about getting into the trade, I would tell them that the money’s good.”

“Well, I was lucky. I accidentally discovered a mechanical aptitude that I didn’t know I had.”

“I love this better than a desk job. I’m a hands-on type of person. Always have been. I’ve been crafty all my life. And when I did the desk work, I was really miserable.”

“Both of my children are girls and I think I set a role for them. And they’re not afraid to go out and try things that some girls are their age. My youngest one actually took some shop classes and she liked it. My oldest one fixes her own car. . . . We just need the opportunities and we need to take the challenge and try it.”