The three scholarships, worth approximately $1,500, are available to female brick and blocklaying apprentices throughout 2018.
“The intention behind these scholarships is to welcome women into our industry and hopefully encourage other women to join them in learning our trade” advises Melanie McIver, CEO BBFNZ.
The first scholarship opened on 8 March 2018 to coincide with International Woman’s Day and is available for female apprentices of any year while the remaining two are intended for women beginning their apprentices in 2018.
The scholarships are named as a tribute to Jan Buckland of Buckland Brick and Block Limited, Canterbury. Jan has a long history of leadership in the Brick and Blocklaying industry both in the practical sense, having run Buckland Brick and Block limited for around four decades but also having Chaired the Brick and Blocklayers Federation from 2005 to 2008. She is the first Executive Office of the recently formed New Zealand Masonry Trades Association (NZMTA) and has recently been appointed to the BBFNZ Board.
“Jan is everything you could hope to ask for as a role model for women in our trade” states Melanie, “her technical knowledge of the trade is one of the highest in the country but she also has one of the kindest hearts you’ll ever meet, she undoubtedly is the mum of our industry and a real symbol that girls can do anything”.
While the Brick and Blocklaying trade can be perceived as a physically demanding trade, Melanie points out that while it helps to be physically fit, you don’t have to be a bodybuilder to become successful in the masonry trades and urges women to consider the trade as a career.
How do women start a career in the Brick and Blocklaying trade?
Making an approach to a brick and blocklaying company is a good start, alternatively, you could register your interest by emailing BBFNZ who can assist with identifying placements or opportunities for women to trial the trade, or you could register your interest as 'looking for work' with BCITO.