‘Girls in Trades’ enjoy hands-on day

Central Southland Hannah Thorburn tries her hand at driving a digger as part of the Girls in Trade event held in Invercargill last week.

ABOUT 30 Southland girls swapped the classroom for a hands-on experience last week.

Southland Youth Futures and Great South promoted the first Tradesyoung women with career pathways in the trades sector, last Wednesday.

Pupils from Aparima, Central Southland, James Hargest and Blue Mountain colleges took part in an “action-packed day” which included talks by guest speakers, virtual reality welding, and a visit to the inner-city development.

Central Southland year 12 pupil Hannah Thorburn had the opportunity to operate a digger and a forklift for the first time.

“The day was very fun. I want to work with something to do with trades so it was very helpful to see how things really work.

“I feel more prepared to enter the industry.”

Great South spokeswoman Emma Carle said this was something school pupils were hungry for.

“They didn’t even need to advertise it and places were full.”

She believed the day would help to get more women in trades and also help address skill shortages in Southland.