As part of the #BuildingEquality 2019 Campaign, Alice Duffy, SHEQ Administrator with Ardmac, shares her story as a woman in construction.
What attracted me to construction was the continuous growth and innovative nature of the industry. Be it on the job with a project evolving from the ground up or personally progressing from a career perspective, the opportunities are endless. I always knew I wanted to have a challenging job that helps people and that each day would be different. I trained as a medic to join the ambulance service initially and before fully immersing myself into the ambulance service, I moved to Holland and got a job on a large data centre project as a Project Administrator. I was so amazed at the fast-paced industry and working with different departments.
Health and Safety on site interested me even then, especially preventing injuries and ill health from current working conditions within construction industry. Since joining Ardmac, I have been working in the SHEQ (Safety, Health, Environmental and Quality) Department, were I am involved in many tasks such audit statistics and performance reports, further development or organisational policies and Control, Maintain and update Management System Documentation to ISO standards. I am currently undertaking NEBOSH Construction Health and Safety exams. (National Examination Board in Occupational Safety and Health)
People that go above and beyond in the interest of others have always inspired me. I find Mary Robinson’s approach to supporting good causes and making an impact inspirational. Anyone working in the ambulance service and defense forces is to be admired over reality stars for example, they are the real role models to me.
Attracting more women and girls into the industry I think construction is a brilliant industry for women but sadly underestimated as an industry for females. At my school construction wasn’t promoted to girls nor was it highlighted as a career option unfortunately – I hope those times are changing. The construction industry is very transferable in relation to skills. The skills I have learnt as a medic have stood to me in my Health and Safety career and with the right guidance and support Ardmac have helped me progress my career. I would advise anyone woman interested in a career change to not overlook the construction industry.
To learn more about the #BuildingEquality campaign and to share your own story, please visit our dedicated #BuildingEquality page here