Contractor and TV Personality Sherry Holmes (Holmes Makes It Right, Holmes: Next Generation) joins forces with The Foundation for Education, Avon Maitland District School Board (AMDSB), Huron Perth Catholic District School Board (HPCDSB) and the Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP) to inspire young women (grades 9 to 12) in Huron and Perth counties to consider a career in the skilled trades.
Now in its 5th year, The Real Deal on Skilled Trades event (formerly Young Women In Skilled Trades) will take place in Stratford on May 24, 2018 at the Army Navy and Air Force Veterans Hall.
Students will hear from a panel of young tradeswomen and their parents and have the opportunity to ask about each woman’s career journey and experiences, find out what they need to begin doing now to pursue their future career goals and be motivated to blaze their own trail as a female in a non-traditional skilled trade.
They will also have the opportunity to be inspired by keynote speaker Sherry Holmes.
Sherry grew up watching and working with her dad, Celebrity TV Host & Professional Contractor, Mike Holmes. As early as 16-years-old, she began working behind-the-scenes of Mike’s breakout series, Holmes on Homes®. In 2008, after a crew member fell ill, Sherry decided to strap on her own tool belt and travelled to New Orleans to help build a hurricane- and flood-resistant home for a victim of Hurricane Katrina, in Holmes in New Orleans.
Since then she has been a permanent member of Mike’s Crew, first on Holmes Inspection and then on Holmes Makes It Right, and more recently Holmes: Next Generation, airing on DIY in 2018, where she teams up with her brother, Mike Jr.
On and off the jobsite, Sherry continues to change the face of Canada’s skilled trades workforce, demonstrating that women can bring an entirely new dimension to the construction industry that makes it fundamentally stronger from the ground up. Like her proud father, everything she teaches and believes in is based on quality, integrity and trust.
“I’m honoured to be this year’s keynote speaker,” said Sherry Holmes. “I look forward to sharing my experiences with young women considering a career in construction, and hope to inspire them to join me in breaking down barriers for women in the trades.”
“We are very excited to have Sherry Holmes join us this year,“ states Mark Roth, AMDSB Pathways Coordinator. “Together with our panel, ironworker Jamie McMillan, Skills Ontario, colleges, career agencies and local partners – a valuable experience is being provided to the young women of Huron and Perth counties.”
And, this year, the ‘valuable experience’ will carry an even greater sense of value.
“This month marks the 100th anniversary of Canadian women having the right to vote”, states Tim Martens, HPCDSB OYAP Project Leader. “We are very pleased to announce that many of the students in attendance will also be joining a special rally in Stratford that celebrates Canadian women who worked hard to gain the rights that young women now enjoy.”
Led by Dr. Jean Hewitt, the rally will be held from 2-3pm in the Stratford Market Square.
To register for The Real Deal on Skilled Trades event, students must contact their high school Guidance/Cooperative Education Departments. Seats are limited.
The Real Deal on Skilled Trades is hosted by the Foundation for Education, Avon Maitland District School Board and the Huron Perth Catholic District School Board with support from the Four County Labour Market Planning Board, Stratford & Area Builders’ Association, Huron Manufacturing Association, Skills Ontario and the Technical Training Group.
See event poster.