iwd_square Local trainees not afraid to get their hands dirty

Establishing themselves in traditionally male-dominated industries, trainees Taegan Graham and Sally Parker feel supported in their bold choices by host employer Shoalhaven City Council.

20 year old Taegan from Woollamia recently commenced a three year traineeship with the Council, during which she will complete a Certificate III in Arboriculture at TAFE Illawarra Yallah campus.

As a young Indigenous woman, her love for working outdoors and passion for the environment steered her in the direction of an Arboriculture traineeship with the newly formed Council Tree Crew.

“I’m grateful to be given the opportunity to be working within the environment and community I am passionate about. I’m excited about working with a crew that can share their extensive knowledge and skills whilst being very supportive and great mentors,” said Taegan.

23 year old Sally from Sanctuary Point is completing a Certificate II in Water Operations with Shoalhaven Water whilst learning on the job and attending classes at the Shoalhaven Water Flinders Depot, delivered by TAFE Illawarra.

She is currently placed in the oldest Sewerage Treatment Plant in the Shoalhaven region. The Plant is in the early stages of a significant upgrade project during which Sally will have the chance to learn new processes and experience the differences between the old and new technology.

“I love the hands-on work and working outdoors. Being hosted by Shoalhaven Water provides me with the opportunity to do exactly that whilst learning new skills and gaining a nationally recognised qualification. Shoalhaven Water crews are very supportive of females new to the industry and treat me like an equal,” said Sally.

Both girls are employed by HVTC Shoalhaven and hosted by Shoalhaven City Council under its long-running apprentice and trainee program.

HVTC Shoalhaven Field Officer Debbie Jones says Taegan and Sally are doing extremely well and are strongly supported in their traineeships by the Council and their supervisors.

“Both trainees are enthusiastic workers who enjoy learning. They are proving to be very capable young women working in hands-on, traditionally male-dominated fields, who are leading the way for future young women in these industries,” said Debbie.

International Women’s Day is on Wednesday March 8. This year’s theme is Be Bold For Change.

 Taegan Graham 2     Sally Parker 1 

Taegan Graham and Sally Parker