Georgina with her intern, Hanin Abdul Ghani, on construction site.
Implementing the following suggestions will help improve the current situation in architecture and construction and empower young women architects, encouraging them to become leaders in their careers.
First, we must provide scholarships to interested women to help introduce them to the field. There is a high need for architecture firms to provide mentorship programs and internships that introduce women to the day-to-day field experiences and expose them to the challenges that they will face in the practical work. Such exposure to work challenges from a young age and early in their careers will help young female architects develop their leadership skills and learn how to deal with the job obstacles they may face.
Second, we must provide intense training and sufficient resources for young female architects both during and after their studies, as this will help them develop the necessary skills and knowledge to work on construction sites. Such training must include safety regulations, construction techniques, and, most importantly, successful communication skills with the many male figures involved on site, including laborers, contractors, engineers, and consultants.
Third, as women leaders in the field, we must promote a safe and healthy work environment for all females on construction sites. This includes treating every person with complete respect, through words, body language, and facial expressions. We must also ensure that everyone on site is given equal opportunities when it comes to presenting and sharing ideas and giving feedback. No one should feel less important or less valuable than others simply because of their age or gender. These important values will help ensure that female figures on construction sites feel welcomed, appreciated, and respected.
Women in construction.
Fourth, while we as women leaders on site must strive to provide a safe environment for all colleagues, including women, we also need to strongly encourage all female architects to be assertive and speak up for themselves, not just when asked, and to communicate their ideas effectively during the job.
Finally, one of our main goals is to keep advocating for policies and fair regulations that promote gender equality on construction sites and in the architecture industry as a whole. We must persevere until we see a real change. This can be accomplished easily by introducing policies that require gender diversity in hiring and by assigning more female entrepreneurs to the work environment, not to mention providing the men in the field with training on gender equality.
By working to accomplish these five goals, we can create more equitable conditions that help empower female architects and equip them to become phenomenal, strong, and powerful young leaders in the future.