Since 2014 Enrollment in Thompson Rivers University Women in Trades Foundation and Apprenticeship Programs has risen from 16 to 24 percent.
Amanda Ballermann is one of those women who is currently taking the welding foundation program at the T-R-U Williams Lake Campus and was recently given a 3-thousand dollar bursary for her hard work and dedication.
“It was amazing finding out that it was a nominated bursary.” Ballerman said, “For me, that’s huge because I have definitely taken this opportunity and I have tried to give it my all, and being a woman coming into it I feel we have a bit more to prove and I wanted to prove that because I think there’s no reason that we shouldn’t be able to and to have that recognition for the hard work and to be nominated that meant so much to me.”
Ballermann said she’s been interested in this particular trade ever since she helped her dad do some welding on their ranch and explained what her goal is now.
“I definitely want to go and pursue it to a Red Seal level because the thing with the Red Seal, for anyone, not just women, is that it opens so many opportunities all over the world because it’s recognized
internationally as that level of skill and learning.” Ballermann said, “ I just want to be able to be doing something that I love, where I can work with my hands and build, and be in not only a trade but a career path that is something you can really truly enjoy.”
Ballermann will be entering a 2-month practicum at the end of January then graduating from the welding program where she can begin to look for full-time employment.