As part of winning the 2010 Women In Spatial scholarship I was invited by the Construction and Property Services Industry Skills Council (CPSISC) – who are joint sponsors of the award - to attend their annual conference, entitled “The Future Workforce” in Melbourne on 29th and 30th August. The conference focused on the Construction and Property Services industry but many of the trends and challenges equally apply to the spatial industry. Strong themes were aging workforce, training to meet industry requirements, and under representation of women in training courses.
I took part in a panel discussion on the topic of “Working with equity groups”. We discussed issues such as ways of getting women better represented in senior and management positions, how to manage children and a career, what had been key factors in our success. An overriding message that came across was that women were not necessarily disadvantaged but sometimes created a glass ceiling for themselves.
After the conference I attended a Women In Spatial breakfast in Canberra hosted by the ACT WIS committee. I was one of four presenters on the topic of “The Challenge of Change”. This was another great opportunity to meet people, share some knowledge and make some new contacts. Thank you to the organising committee for a great event.
Applications for the 2011 WIS scholarship have just closed and I wish all applicants luck. The scholarship has opened a lot of doors for me and created opportunities that would not otherwise have been possible. The benefits are far broader than just the actual training or development you undertake.
- Veronika Frank