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Women In Trades: Social Media Campaign


Making a Change

There are many important issues in the world, but how do we make people really listen and lead to change?

Join Emma in this 4 week intensive Take Over to learn how to use social media as a tool to make issues heard. Learn about the important research made by another young team of interns in our Women in Trades Take Over and discover how to share this with different audiences using social media.

Emma is a passionate young person who heads up the communications and media at the VIcLLEN. Her skills and knowledge in media, communications and social media will help guide your team to create your own strategy for the Women in Trades research and create powerful and effective content to share on social media platforms.

The Take Over will consist of 2 four hour intensive sessions where you will gain the knowledge and skills needs and meet key industry mentors. 3 two hour sessions will follow where you will workshop your strategy and work together as a team to create content.

​As a result, a young woman for whom a trade might be their best job, arrives at the point of making the choice about a trade with significant doubt and a lack of confidence about doing so. Many of the tradies we interviewed took a female-dominated pathway first, before having the confidence to try their trade. This means young women start out towards the higher incomes 7 or 10 years behind their male counterparts.

The universal message given by the tradeswomen we interviewed was that they would highly recommend their trade to other women, and they just wanted young women to “have some confidence” and “just give it go”. To be able to make the choice however, they argued young women need more contact with female tradies earlier in school (“you can’t be what you can’t see”), and more opportunities to try out and explore options to find out what suits them and develop their confidence (“get on the tools”).
These are things we can fix.

This report outlines our research in three sections:

» 4 messages schools (and young women) need to hear

» 4 barriers young women need to overcome

» 4 things we should do next to help (recommendations to government and schools):

  1. Challenge gender stereotypes in primary school

  2. Upskill secondary school leadership, career advisors, and teachers so they can advise on vocational opportunities

  3. Fund a secondary career education model that gets trades on young women’s radars

  4. Develop experiences to get young women “on the tools” so they can feel more confident in their decisions

By supporting young women to get to their best job, and addressing our skills shortages and the gender pay gap along the way, will ensure we have an innovative and thriving regional economy into the future.

Tool Belt


Australia has a gender pay gap. It exists partly because men work in different, higher paid, occupations than women, including in the high paying (and in demand) trades of electrotechnology, telecommunications, construction, commerce, and engineering. Few women take up these trades, and that has changed little over the past 20 years.When we sent eight young interns out to interview tradeswomen, we found out why.

Working Cafe

Presented at Summit

How Work Works Interns Brea Dorsett and Brizayah Clifford spoke about how less than 2% of people in high paying trades are women, due to an “editing out” process which begins as early as primary school.

Construction Workers


Our tradeswomen confirmed what other research has established, that girls go through a process of ‘editing out’ options about what they think they can be from an early age. It starts before school with messages about “girls don’t do …”, and continues with negative messages about “university being the best pathway”, “trades are wasting your potential” and “women are not strong enough”. Teachers and career advisors in schools can be part of this process by actively discouraging young women to consider trades and not providing advice, support, role models, or opportunities to try them out.

The Research That Started

the Campaign

"The Youth Take Over was an incredible experience to engage in areas of community that interested me. I learnt so much from the facilitators and the guest speakers as well as how to and take notes for interviews. It was amazing to see how it all formed into the final paper Would recommend for anyone wanting to further their knowledge."

- AJ, Women In Trades: Social Media Campaign Intern

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Check out the Finished Product

Thank you to our sponsor for supporting this project 

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