Community colleges to host Women in Industry conference

Community colleges to host Women in Industry conference

Thu Feb 2, 2017

Buoyed by the success of its 2016 conference, the Community College Petrochemical Initiative (CCPI) will host Women in Industry 2017 on Friday, Feb. 17, 2017, at South Shore Harbor Resort in League City.

Brazosport College is one of nine CCPI-member colleges participating in the event. Other CCPI-member colleges include Alvin Community College, College of the Mainland, Galveston College, Houston Community College, Lee College, Lone Star College, San Jacinto College, and Wharton County Junior College.

The one-day event is designed to introduce women to the careers and opportunities available in the petrochemical and industrial skills industries, career fields long dominated by males but now open to women.

Last year’s Women in Industry conference, the first hosted by CCPI, drew more than 250 interested women. More than 350 women from across the Greater Houston area are expected to attend the 2017 event.

“The focus of last year’s event was awareness of opportunities within the construction trades and petrochemical industry,” said Beth Cassidy, Brazosport College Director, Workforce Development & School Partnerships. “This year, we will focus on the many resources available to assist women entering nontraditional career paths. Speakers will address the training requirements, ways to gain experience in the field, resources to assist in financing education and the benefits of networking. 

“We will also have a panel discussion with representatives from ExxonMobil, Shell, Jacobs, Turner and Zachry presenting tips and information on seeking employment,” she added.

Last year’s attendees included high school students, women seeking challenging and better paying jobs, and women already in the field looking to advance in their career path.

Participants will hear from other women who work in the petrochemical and industrial trades industries, and will have the opportunity to talk with college representatives about enrollment, financial aid, and other training-related issues. Several major employers are also expected to be present.

”This conference is geared for all women — those unemployed or underemployed, high school or college students, veterans — who desire a well-paying career,” said Debi Jordan, who chairs CCPI.

“Petrochemical refineries need to replace as much as 40 percent of current employees over the next decade—due to plant expansions and an aging workforce,” Jordan added. “There are plenty of challenging, well-paying career positions available in the Upper Texas Gulf Coast region — and refineries and contractors are looking for trained women to hire.”

Corporate sponsors for the event include ExxonMobil, Chevron Phillips, INEOS, Noltex, and Jacobs.

To learn more about attending the Women in Industry conference, or to  become a corporate sponsor,  contact Kelly Dando, CCPI grant coordinator, at 281.425.6221, orkdando@lee.edu. Visit the CCPI website at EnergizeHouston.org.