Tradeswomen Australia Foundation
What’s the first career you think of that offers a variety of roles, a good income and a solid future? If it’s not trades, maybe it should be…
We interviewed trailblazer Fiona Macdonald of Tradeswomen Australia and she told us about her mission to bring the number of women working in trades from 2% to 50%.
What work do you do?
I work for an organisation called Tradeswomen Australia and I lead a small team that provides services that create job opportunities for women working in trades. I also run career information programs and I work with schools to share information about apprenticeship pathways for women in trades. I spend my day going to construction sites, offices and workshops to talk to employers, tradeswomen and industry about our programs.
Girl need to know that females in trades can have a great career and income. They don’t necessarily have to go to university.
How did you get started in your career?
Girls are not helped by not being informed about what a great career a trade can provide. I was a prime example of this myself. I got careers advice and it steered me into interior design … I hated it!” I found my vocation as a motor mechanic after I was asked by some mechanics in the café I worked at if I knew any guys who’d like a two-week trial. I did the trial and that’s when I fell in love with diagnosing engine problems.
What are your thoughts about the future of work in your industry?
The trade industry is huge and there are many opportunities to continue learning, earn money and travel. There’s a lot of work in the pipeline and now is the perfect time to start a career in trade.
Do you have any advice for girls thinking about a career in your industry?
There are so many opportunities available to women in electrical, carpentry, plumbing, that sort of thing. Just do it, Give it a shot, I guarantee you will not regret it and make sure you register with Tradeswomen Australia for support.