Manufacturing Girl Power November 7, 2011 RICCentre By Nancy Quaegebeur Ontario is Canada’s leading manufacturing province and Canada’s manufacturing sector accounts for two-thirds of the country’s total exports and funds. However, there are several challenges faced by the industry. There is a gap with respect to innovation and the commercialization of new products. Being stereotyped as a “man’s profession”, it can be testing for companies in this sector which are looking to attract female talent. Attracting highly innovative manufacturing talent is a task to begin with. Attracting women to a profession that is male dominant is an added layer. Skills Canada offers several programs to get young people interested in considering a career in manufacturing and skilled trades. Skills Canada offers “Skills Work! ® For Women” networking dinners – career exploration events offered to young women in grade 9-12 in which they meet and network with tradeswomen from their community. The manufacturing industry is highly technological and companies like Gosco Valves are making an effort to make manufacturing more female friendly. The Gosco team is represented by many women. Debbie Dormady, an Inside Sales Representative for Gosco Valves has been in the valve manufacturing industry for several decades. “Fast forward thirty years; the industry still remains male dominated but women are now considering it as a career option.” Nancy is the Communications Assistant for Gosco Valves. In her new role she has become immersed in the engineering and manufacturing industry. The RIC blog is designed as a showcase for entrepreneurs and innovation. Our guest bloggers provide a wealth of information based on their personal experiences. Visit RIC Centre for more information on how RIC can accelerate your ideas to market.