Mentoring scheme launched to support female leaders and managers in the construction sector
A key milestone has been celebrated at the new Northern Gateway Enterprise Centre in Chesterfield. The building’s floor slabs and roof have been carefully poured into place using approximately 925 tonnes of concrete.
The significant step was marked during UK Construction Week, by leaders from the construction company, Robert Woodhead Limited, Chesterfield Borough Council and project architects Whittam Cox. Chesterfield Borough Council will be supporting the scheme which will see female leaders and managers from across the construction industry support young women from Chesterfield.
The partners will come together and deliver an innovative mentoring programme to build on the success of the recently launched online gateway “My Future.” It will provide real life support to help local young women into the construction industry. By linking with the D2N2 North Derbyshire Careers Hub and Chesterfield’s Property and Construction Forum, the programme will offer school and college students the opportunity to work with female leaders from across a broad range of disciplines in the construction sector.
The programme is a result of Woodhead’s employment and skills commitments to deliver a lasting legacy and social value whilst on site.
Councilor Tricia Gilby, Leader of Chesterfield Borough Council, said: “Improving the skills and work readiness of people in Chesterfield is our top priority because it will help ensure our ambition to create a thriving borough. We require all new developments to commit to supporting the local economy through both skills development and opportunities for local businesses.
“This programme is a great example of how by working with our partners we can strengthen the links between education and business, which will help ensure that more school leavers are developing the skills they need to enter the workplace. We want to raise aspirations in Chesterfield and show that it is a great place plan your future and build a successful career. Working with young women in sectors where they are underrepresented is key to ensuring our success. Women currently make up around 14% of professional roles within the construction industry, this number can only be set to rise with more and more women choosing construction jobs. Misconceptions about gender specific roles are diminishing with the growing number of women choosing a career in construction.
The council has a strong track record on supporting female leadership, of the nine positions in our senior leadership and corporate management teams four are held by women, we also have an all-female leadership of the council and this further demonstrates the important role women have in the future of Chesterfield.”
The new Northern Gateway Enterprise Centre is a highly sustainable building that will provide 32 high-quality offices for the town. As the mentoring programme gathers momentum, it is hoped that the young women will also be able to participate in site visits to see the building take shape.
Robert Woodhead ltd, Chesterfield Borough Council and Wittham Cox Architects supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.