Initiative aims to recruit more women

Contact Energy’s Jennifer McLean, an electrical generation technician at the Clyde Dam, is...
Contact Energy’s Jennifer McLean, an electrical generation technician at the Clyde Dam, is hosting a ‘‘Girls with Hi-Vis’’ day at the dam on Thursday. Photo: Yvonne O'Hara
Young women who are interested in entering a trade will be able to get some hands-on experience working in  Contact Energy’s dam operations in Clyde on  Thursday, as part of the Connexis "Girls with Hi-Vis" initiative.

Electricity network Aurora Energy and infrastructure specialist Delta have also joined forces to promote the career opportunities for women in the infrastructure sector as part of the same initiative, and will be hosting the work experience events in Dunedin and Cromwell on June 26.

Contact Energy’s Jennifer McLean, who is an electrical generation technician, is hosting the day at the Clyde Dam.

She said those attending would receive hands-on experience in various scenarios involving the dam’s operations.

"It encourages young women to consider trades as a career path," she said.

About 40 girls attended the event  last year.

She said as a result of the initiative she knew of half a dozen women who had decided to follow a trade career pathway and were working through training or apprenticeships.

"It is onwards and upwards," she said.

As more Girls with Hi-Vis events were held, they would gain momentum and there would be more diversity within the trades.

Aurora Energy human resources project specialist Millie Black said traditionally the energy sector had been male-dominated, but that was changing.

"We value diversity and recognise how important inclusion is for the sector’s long-term success in securing the skilled people we need.

"Hosting Girls with Hi-Vis is an opportunity for Aurora Energy and Delta to showcase what we do and highlight the range of interesting and challenging career opportunities that are available from project management to line worker, electrician, utility arborist or civil construction."

Delta and Aurora Energy’s events would be based at locations depending on the career/trade  attendees were interested in.

• Contact millie.black@auroraenergy.co.nz to register.

Ms McLean said  those wishing to attend the Contact Energy day  needed to register  before June 13. To do so, contact  jennifer.mclean@contactenergy.co.nz.

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