Women Build Nations Conference

Community Savings Credit Union is proud to sponsor scholarships for two BC tradeswomen to attend the Trades Women Builds Nations Conference held on October 4-6, 2019. The BC Centre For Women In the Trades is sending three women from the trades so they can participate in this empowering international conference for women.

Trades Women Build Nations Conference is now the largest gathering of Women Building Trades members in the world and the second largest gathering of union construction members in North America. In 2018 the conference hosted over 2,500 participants from around the globe. Trades Women Build Nations speaks to every tradeswoman’s needs, offering workshops and plenary sessions facilitated by tradeswomen and featuring union leaders, apprenticeship coordinators, contractors and politicians. The conference provides opportunities for networking, learning, and leadership development for all attendees.

Profiles of the tradeswomen attending the Women Build Nations Conference

Nicki Smythe

I am a second year carpentry apprentice with the United Brotherhood of Carpenters Local 1598. I started in the trade as a labourer in 2017 and immediately fell in love with building! When I was in middle school I took woodshop for an extra semester each year because I loved the smell of the shop and the sound of the tools. I had no idea that girls could be carpenters too. 

I have mostly specialized in commercial concrete work through my apprenticeship and what I love about concrete formwork is that I am always learning new and faster ways to build a building. I love building high-rises and the rush it gives me working so far above the ground.

What I am most looking forward to at this conference, is meeting like-minded women who have similar goals. I want to create more training and opportunity for women and youth to access careers in trades. I want to be a part of a team that sets others up for success.

Adrienne Nisyok

I am from New Aiyansh BC, a small community in the North Coast. I am a proud member of the Nisga'a, Haisla and Tsimshian Nations. 

I have worked in the electrical trade for 22 years, 17 of those years, as a red seal certified electrician. I currently work as an industrial maintenance electrician, at a sawmill in Terrace BC. 

I'm excited to meet other tradeswomen at the WBN conference. Sharing our experiences to learn from one another and gain valuable resources to help recruit and retain women in the trades. I am grateful for this opportunity to attend the 2019 Women Build Nations conference.


Rachel Van Zeumeren

I have been been working as an apprentice Refrigeration Mechanic for 4 months for Yeti Refrigeration in Prince George, and I am in the process of signing up for my first year of trades school!

I am most excited to meet other women in the trades, as I am very new to the industry and have not had the chance to connect with the awesome community of BC tradeswomen.  

Women Build Nations Conference

CSCU is supporting BCCWITT by sponsoring two scholarships to the Women Builds Nation Conference. Scholarships to the conference include registration, travel and accommodation costs to the conference held in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

“With less than 5% women in the trades we are often alone on the jobsite, there are not many opportunities to participate in events developed for us. The Women Build Nations conference is an incredibly inspiring and unforgettable experience. More than 2,000 amazing tradeswomen come together for this rare opportunity to learn, share stories, and network—refilling our tanks for another year. ”
Sandra Brynjolfson, Coordinator for BCCWITT and Red Seal Electrician.

“I’m not exaggerating when I say that getting more women into the trades is of critical importance to the BC economy.  The current skills gap is a real burden to our economic growth and we have the answer right in front of us.  Removing barriers for women to achieve qualifications and develop amazing careers in the trades is a proven way to drive economic growth and set families up for success. Community Savings Credit Union is very proud to stand behind BCCWITT in their inspirational work to create these opportunities for women in BC.” 
Mike Schilling, CSCU CEO & President

The BC Centre for Women in the Trades (BCCWITT) is working to eliminate the barriers faced by women in the trades by building a network committed to creating a culture of equality and equal opportunity. BCCWITT aims to increase the retention and advancement of women in the trades through targeted supports and programs.

The BC Centre for Women in the Trades