Actis regional sales director Jemma Harris and sales manager Melanie Porter have been flying the flag for the construction industry as a career path for young people at an educational event in Yorkshire.
The pair were among seventy organisations taking part in an annual initiative aimed at educating, developing and upskilling the next generation in the region and addressing the skills shortage.
Foundations Live 2022, organised by construction firm Hobson and Porter, and supported by Jewson, the Construction Industry Training Board and agricultural college Bishop Burton College, was aimed at inspiring people from as young as four up to adults looking at retraining to explore opportunities within the sector.
Jemma, also a Women in Construction ambassador, and Melanie are among a number of Actis colleagues passionate about inspiring young people and women in particular to pursue a career in a currently male-dominated profession.
Jemma has given inspirational talks in schools, while specification manager Amaret Chahal has co-written the latest Actis CPD material.
In her talks Jemma, who is responsible for sales growth in the UK Northern region, has shared her own career path working in two very traditionally ‘macho’ environments – the Royal Navy, where she worked as a weapons engineer, and construction.
Amaret explains: “I enjoy the fact that as a young woman of colour I have the opportunity to share my knowledge and technical understanding on all types of specifications, both simple and complex. The Actis team in the north is all-female and I love that we are women working in a demanding industry which is traditionally male dominated.”
The Foundations Live event is captured on video, with Jemma talking about the joys of working in construction around six minutes in.
In it she explains: “In the construction industry it’s definitely not boring. You get to meet various different people on a daily basis. No day is the same. One day you could be on a building site, the next day you could be stood in front of an architect doing a CPD presentation.”
Building, Design & Construction Magazine | The Choice of Industry Professionals