Putting a ship together takes a lot of hands, minds and effort. Today, an innovative, collaborative, Nova Scotian-grown partnership between Irving Shipbuilding, Women Unlimited and the Nova Scotia Community College is building a stronger, more diverse workforce.
“It’s an exciting time for Irving Shipbuilding, as we welcome new team members and build success together”
In July, 19 women including Denise Watters, began their shipbuilding journey. She and her classmates completed a 14-week career exploration program in metal trades at NSCC. Today, Denise is in the middle of NSCC’s welding and fabrication course. And all of this was made possible by the Irving Shipbuilding Centre of Excellence. The Centre, an initiative established by ISI and NSCC, builds opportunities and supports training for careers in shipbuilding for Nova Scotians, with particular focus on diverse communities currently under-represented in Irving Shipbuilding’s workforce and the sector itself. It’s designed to be a pathway for people to connect to the training that leads to careers in shipbuilding, and Denise is one of its first participants.
“This program is setting us up for success. I'm overjoyed to be a part of it and to imagine what it will mean for my future", said Denise Watters. Once Denise graduates, she’ll be eligible to work with Irving, as positions become available in 2017 and beyond.
“We are thrilled to recognize and celebrate this program,” says Doreen Parsons, Manager of the Women Unlimited Association. “It draws together Irving Shipbuilding Inc., the Nova Scotia Community College, government, unions, and Women Unlimited to focus on creating pathways for diverse women to enter the shipbuilding industry.”