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A three-part webinar series called “Moving Up, the Sky’s the Limit as a Union Carpenter!” was developed and hosted by the North Atlantic States Regional Council of Carpenters to provide our female members with a platform to further enhance their knowledge about the various career avenues available as a union carpenter while also giving them an opportunity to learn about the different leadership roles accessible with our signatory contractors. This educational workshop was held via Zoom on Tuesday nights in late November and early December from 5 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Part one of the series featured a panel of NASRCC sisters who are currently in leadership roles with signatory contractors across our region including Local 327 member Samantha Webster, Foreperson for H.J. Gleason, Inc; Local 339 member, Gelmira Alba, Foreperson, M & A Architectural Preservation; and Local 336 member Julie Boucher, Assistant Superintendent, Shawmut Design & Construction. They spoke about their paths to success, and how they “moved up” while also providing practical advice for advancement and growth.
The second week involved a panel of management-level employer representatives who shared honest and useful information on what they look for in carpenters when choosing leaders in their companies.
Jeff Nielsen, Local 327 member and Vice President of Operations at New England Finish Systems said he looks for someone that demonstrates the “five A’s” when selecting a candidate for a leadership role; attitude, aptitude, ambition, attendance, and appearance.
John Walsh, Local 327 member and Operations Manager at Turner Construction SPO and John Abucewicz, Local 328 member and Operations Manager with Starlite Building Services, both agreed and added that being able to adapt and collaborate well with others is also an essential attribute. Another vital piece of advice that was voiced during this class was, if you want to move into a leadership role, tell someone – it might be your current foreperson, it might be the person above them – but find out, and let them know that you’re interested in moving up.
The third and final part in the series focused on the educational opportunities that are available to all NASRCC members. The participants were joined by three representatives from our educational partners including Kathleen Casey Ebert, Associate Vice President of Academic Services at Alfred State College of Technology; Darrell LeMar, Executive Director of the Center for Professional and Continuing Education at Wentworth Institute of Technology; and Ziven Drake, Technical Coordinator for North Atlantic States Carpenters Training Fund. They spoke about the strength and history of these partnerships, degree options and course offerings, and acknowledged the fact that when you earn a degree or complete a certain aspect of training, that is something that can never be taken away from you.