Natalie begins by explaining her route into the industry: “I almost fell into it after graduating,” she says. “The great outdoors, drilling rigs and contracting industry were calling me. The site works, the ever-changing scenery, the challenge of programmes and deliverables, the diverse and challenging geology of the UK, and being involved with the geotechnical investigations for the development of projects of local and national importance excited me.”
Natalie recognises that she was lucky to be encouraged to do whatever interested her by her school, although not specifically into construction. She goes on to suggest that perhaps this is the way forward for encouraging more women into the industry – not by different treatment, but by allowing individuals to be who they want and pursue what they want to pursue: “I do not think there is a need to differentiate or make it easier for women to enter the industry. More can be done in the home, before school even, by creating an environment that is not gender specific and where children are encouraged to be who and what they want to be and feel most comfortable doing or being.”
With the industry’s skills gap becoming ever more topical, perhaps “the future of construction rests with women,” the article concludes.
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