FACT: In 2016 women made up only 9.1% of the construction workforce in the U.S.

FACT: Construction jobs are expected to grow between 11% and 32% over the next five years in West Michigan.

FACT: The gender pay gap is much narrower in construction. In the U.S. women in all industries earn on average 81.1% of what men do. In construction the average is 95.7!

The construction industry is a virtually untapped source of high-demand, well-paying jobs for women.  Women in Construction Week focuses on raising awareness of the opportunities available in construction and emphasizing the growing role of women in the industry.

Is a career in construction right for you?

  • Do you enjoy making repairs (painting, fixing appliances, etc.)?
  • Does it give you satisfaction to see the result of your work?
  • Do you enjoy math and solving technical problems/puzzles?
  • Do you like to work or play outside, even in cold and hot weather?
  • Can you work at heights or in confined spaces? Can you work in places that may be extremely noisy, dirty, hot, cold, wet or smelly?
  • Are you safety conscious?
  • Can you cope with being the only, or one of just a few, women on a job site?
  • Do you have the ability to meet rigid attendance requirements (reliable childcare, transportation, etc.)?

If you can answer yes to some of these questions, a career in construction could be a good fit for you. Consider learning more about construction jobs and training programs in your area.

Where do I begin?

Thompson M-TEC in Holland offers commercial and residential skilled trades training. They have programs in Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (HAVC-R) and Property Maintenance. They also offer individual classes in a variety of subjects, including Electrical Maintenance & Repair, Plumbing Maintenance & Repair and more.

Michigan Works! has connections to local training opportunities and you may even qualify for financial assistance. Visit West Michigan Works! in Ottawa County to find out more and if you qualify. Their service center is located at 121 Clover St, Holland, MI.

See a list of high-demand construction jobs in West Michigan in the 2019 HOT JOBS list.