BY EMMA-GRACE CALLAN-BENNINK
Priscilla (left) and Nicole (right) at MDHS
On Tuesday, May 1st, MDHS invited two special guests to come to the school to give a presentation about being a woman and working in the trades. Priscilla Ladouceur, an architect who is currently working on the new high school coming to Milton, talked about what it’s like to be an architect as well as how she got into the trades. Priscilla competed in many competitions ranging from a provincial to an international scale. She often placed within the top ten and continued to pursue the trades until she eventually became an architect. When asked how it felt to be a woman working in the trades, Priscilla responded that it was empowering to be a woman on a construction site knowing it’s a work location dominated by men.
Nicole, a woman working on a construction site, began working construction at sixteen when her father took her to his work one day. At sixteen, she wasn’t the biggest fan, but when she was in her twenties and had a family to support she began working at the same construction site. Nicole eventually fell in love with her job. She discussed some of the struggles of being the only woman working on a construction site, such as issues with sexual harassment in the workplace.
The two women closed their talk by expressing that there is a deficit of people working in the trades and encouraged MDHS students of all genders to consider the trades as a pathway to take after high school. There was also information given about the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP). OYAP is a program that trains students to become apprentices if they wish to pursue the trades. Overall, their presentation was educational and did a great job at encouraging more women to join the trades.