West Midlands Scheme Launched To Encourage More Women Into Construction

A new scheme which aims to recruit more women into the construction industry will launch this autumn in the Midlands – running from the 17 September to 5 October.

The scheme, the ‘Women into Civil Engineering Programme’, will see CECA joining forces with CITB and Women into Construction (WiC) to launch a three-week training programme.

Left: participants of ‘Women into Civil Engineering’

The number of women working in the construction sector remains low at 14%. This course aims to break down perceived barriers and stereotypes. Major Midlands civil engineering and construction employers including Balfour Beatty have given their support for the scheme.

The programme will include face-to-face teaching at South and City College, where individuals will learn key skills required to work in the industry. Those taking part will also receive training to obtain a CSCS card and a two week work placement. The work placement will provide on the job experience at a local West Midlands construction project. The course is facilitated by Rikem Training & Consultancy Ltd who has worked with the construction industry for over 7 years and has extensive experience of delivering women into construction programmes.

Commenting, Director of CECA Midlands Dawn Karakatsanis said: “CECA are delighted to be able to work with Women into Construction, the CITB, as well as large industry employers and SMEs, to increase female representation in the UK’s infrastructure and construction sectors.

“Our industry must be able to recruit from all sections of society if it is to deliver the substantial pipeline of work that is planned in coming years. We need to spread the message that construction is an attractive career path for women as well as men, and providing women with on-the-job experience will provide real skills that employers value.”

Lorraine Gregory, Partnership Manager for the CITB in the West Midlands said, “There is still a perception that construction is an industry only suitable for men. This scheme aims to dispel this myth. With infrastructure accounting for 9.3% of growth across the West Midlands over the next 5 years, we need to insure we have a diverse pool of talent to help deliver the pipeline of projects planned.”