During World War II, Rosie the Riveter told women that "You can do it!" as they were encouraged to take over men's jobs in factories and on construction sites. Ever since then women have been a major part of the workforce. Although sometimes small in numbers, women still persevere in areas that are traditionally devoted to men. In the age of the Internet, womenare finding resources through the Web to educate themselves and networkwith each other.
The following list provides a number of national organizations that are geared toward helping women working in the construction industry. Most of these organizations also list their regional locations and Web addresses on their site. Finding local seminars and meetings is a fantastic way to interactface to face with other women with the same interests and positions.
The mission of the Sisters in the Building Trades is to expand a network of active women to affirm women as a positive and growing part of the construction workforce. Their aim is to increase the number of tradeswomen through cooperative recruitment efforts and mentoring support for enhanced retention. They hold regular meetings allowing women to network and share their experiences; matchmentors to new tradeswomen; enter into partnerships with disadvantaged women to provide encouragement; and reinforce appropriate workplace conduct.
National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), www.nawic.org
NAWIC's objectives are to unite for the mutual benefit of the women who areactively engaged in the various phases of the construction industry; promote cooperation, fellowship, and a better understanding among members of the association; promote education and contribute to the betterment of the construction industry; encourage women to pursue and establish careers in the construction industry; and provide members an awareness of the legislative process and legislation as it relates to the construction industry.
Professional Women in Construction (PWC), www.pwcusa.org
PWC is a nonprofit organization committed to advancing professional, entrepreneurial, and managerial opportunities for women and other "nontraditional" populations in construction and related industries.
National Association of Women in Masonry (NAWM), www.nawmonline.net
NAWM strives to create an environment through education, training, and networking that enhances the leadership skills of women in the building industry. NAWM was founded to help build a community of women devoted to leadership and to offer opportunities for ongoing education and training.
Women Construction Owners & Executives USA (WCOE), www.wcoeusa.org
The single need to further the goals of women owners and executives in construction was the basis for WCOE's beginnings. Its purpose is to assist women in executive management positions within the industry, provide resources to enhance the professional development of every member, and encourage professional standards and member responsibility.
Charm and Hammer, www.charmandhammer.com
As a safety products distributor, Charm and Hammer provides women and their employers with instant access to quality, appropriately fitting safety gear and accessories for a diverse workforce; not just small sizes, all sizes.