Residents will have the chance to back Nyngan carpentry apprentice Jessica Drady by voting for her for as the 2021 Apprentice of the Year.
Miss Drady was announced as a finalist for Apprentice of the Year in the Training Services NSW 2021 People's Choice Awards.
Employed by Bogan Shire Council, Miss Drady completed a Certificate III in Carpentry through TAFE last year and has spent the past six years working hard in the male-dominated industry, with Australian Government statistics revealing only one per cent of the nation's carpentry workforce is female.
Although, that hasn't stopped Miss Drady from rising to every challenge with pride.
"I'm so proud of everything I've achieved over the past few years," she said.
"I've risen to every challenge, from being the only female in a male workforce, being pregnant and having to 'keep up with the boys' on building sites, and completing an apprenticeship while supporting two young children.
"I have proved to myself and others anything is possible when you put your mind to it."
Miss Drady grew up on a farm surrounded by three brothers and describes herself as a bit of a 'tom boy'.
As a teenager, she admired the highly skilled trade of carpentry but wasn't sure if it was possible for a female to have a practical, hands-on career in construction.
"As a teenager, I'd never seen a woman in a trade or on construction sites," she said.
"I think there are stereotypes about women and trade careers that can be a barrier to female participation in these industries.
"One particular stereotype is that women don't perform as well as men in traditional trades, but I'm proof that isn't the case."
Miss Drady is also an on-call firefighter for Fire and Rescue NSW and enjoys helping her partner on their farm.
She is also taking steps towards starting her own all- female carpentry business - 'The Pink Chippy'.
The Training Services NSW 2021 People's Choice Award winners will be announced on October 9.
Voting will be open until September 27 and can be done at https://www.training.nsw.gov.au/training_awards.
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