More than 600 women are expected to fill the conference room of Galveston’s Moody Gardens Hotel, Spa and Convention Center Thursday, Feb. 22, to learn about expanding opportunities for women in the petrochemical and industrial trades industries.
This marks the conference’s third year, hosted by the Community College Petrochemical Industry (CCPI), a consortium of nine area community colleges.
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 drew more than 350 interested women.
”The conference is geared for all women—the unemployed or underemployed, high school or college students, veterans—who desire a stable, well-paying career,” said Dr. Sarah Janes, who helps plan the conference.
“Because of an aging workforce, plant expansions, and new construction starts in a growing economy, there are plenty of challenging, well-paying career positions available in the Gulf Coast region—and refineries and contractors are looking for trained women to hire,” Dr. Janes said.
Last year’s attendees included women who were already working in the field and were looking to advance in their career paths.
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.
Corporate sponsors for the event include ExxonMobil, Dow, Chevron Phillips, INEOS, LyondellBasell, NolTex, Jacobs, Educate Texas, BASF, Zachry and Freeport LNG Development.
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, or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit the CCPI website at EnergizeHouston.org to register.
CCPI-member colleges include Alvin Community College, Brazosport College, College of the Mainland, Galveston College, Houston Community College, Lee College, Lone Star College, San Jacinto College and Wharton County Junior College.
The trip to Washington, D.C. for the 2017 Advanced Technological Education (ATE) Principal Investigators Conference Oct 23 – 25, 2017 was a wonderful experience for me! Since I newly became a principal investigator for the electronics technology instrumentation program for the NSF grant (#1601442) shortly after I joined Galveston College as the Electrical and Electronics Technology Director in May of 2017, I had some experience under my belt, but there is nothing like hearing from and meeting with fellow peers, evaluators, panelist speakers and mentors who have shaped my mind well during this conference for the upcoming year and years to come.
The conference was held at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C. On Monday, October 23, 2017 I attended a workshop called Getting Started and this was phenomenal! This workshop was attended by all new principal investigators so together, we truly learned more about our role as a principal investigator and got a chance to meet some ATE Program Directors who taught us about all the valuable people we would work with throughout the year from the National Science Foundation (NSF) to our evaluators, ATE central – a digital portal where our results of our grants would be archived to opening up our minds about what others were doing with their NSF grants.
Throughout the rest of Monday – Wednesday, I attended several workshops and met many people. Thus, I learned valuable information about connecting with mentors, and learned about how a college in Oregon developed partnerships with industry leaders in their community. This college was able to leverage the help of industry partners to steer their Programmable Logic Controllers electronics curriculum so that students could be trained at a much faster speed due to changing the way they offered their classes! It was refreshing to witness this win-win example of all parties working together for the betterment of the students! Also, I was able to sit with and gain valuable insight from a panelist speaker from Morgan State University who opened my eyes to a new perspective of some of the students I serve. In addition, I discussed the future of electronics technology programs and learned about virtual reality as a way to improve the delivery of curricula.
On Tuesday and Wednesday, I worked with my co-principal investigator, Dr. Laimutis Bytautas, Assistant Professor of Chemistry, to work our booth and to put our best foot forward to show the progress we have made in implementing our instrumentation program so far. I wanted to thank Sandi Smith for helping us put together a booth we were proud of!
I have already begun implementing some of what I learned at this conference and look forward to working with Dr. Bytautas for a highly productive rest of this year on this NSF grant!
Tyree C. Bearden, MS
Program Director, Electrical and Electronics Technology