Women In Construction

March 4, 2024

Picture of Cecilia De La Rosa

Cecilia De La Rosa

Women in Construction Week is celebrated every year in the first week of March. It's a period dedicated to spotlighting the outstanding efforts and achievements of women in the construction sector. This week also emphasizes the numerous opportunities awaiting women in construction. It reflects on women's history in this field, acknowledging their obstacles and celebrating their triumphs over these challenges. This week is a tribute to the courageous women who have stepped into the construction industry and a motivational push for others who aspire to follow in their footsteps.

History

The National Association of Women in Construction (NAWIC), initially founded in 1953 as Women in Construction of Fort Worth by 16 women, has played a pivotal role in supporting women in the construction industry. It transformed into NAWIC and offered education, support, and networking to empower women in construction. In 1960, the industry launched Women in Construction Week to honor these efforts, significantly reducing the gender stigma in the industry and narrowing the wage gap between men and women. NAWIC’s influence extends internationally, aiming to elevate the success of women in construction worldwide.

Women and Minorities in
Construction

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission recently conducted a study that shows women and people of color are significantly underrepresented in the construction industry, particularly in the higher-paying, more skilled trades. The study reveals that although there has been a notable rise in the number of women working in construction over the past decade, they still constitute merely 11% of the total workforce in the industry. This percentage encompasses office and administrative support roles, with a mere 4% of female construction professionals actively engaged in trade work.

Challenges Faced by Women in
Construction

Despite significant progress, women in construction continue to navigate a multitude of challenges like 
 

  • Gender bias
  • Wage disparities
  • Underrepresentation in leadership roles

 
These obstacles underscore the need for ongoing advocacy, policy reform, and cultural shifts within the industry to create a more equitable and supportive environment for women.