WRCC students set record at 'Women Can Do!' event

BRATTLEBORO — Windham Regional Career Center recently brought a record-breaking 72 high school girls to the 16th annual Women Can Do! Conference at Vermont Technical College in Randolph.

The event is sponsored yearly by Vermont Works for Women, an organization founded in 1987 to help women enter, advance, and remain in skilled trades.

The daylong event included 35 workshops highlighting careers in architecture, engineering, computer programming, green energy, natural resources, public safety and health, communications, and other typically non-traditional careers for women.

The students attending were from Brattleboro Union High School, Leland & Gray, Twin Valley, and Hinsdale N.H. Many of these students attend these schools but also spend part of their day in courses offered at the Career Center (the trip was open to students regardless of their enrollment there).

Theresa Snow, a junior from West Dover, was one of the attendees. She said that she loved the conference and that she participated in the fire-fighting and first-on-the-scene workshops. She said she was pleased that she performed so well in the timed contest to don fire fighting gear, crediting her speed with having been a volunteer with West Dover's fire department since she was 12.

She said she plans to pursue a career in firefighting and is enrolled in the Career Center's Medical Human Services and Protective Services firefighter courses.

Skyla Harvey, a Dummerston senior, attended Women Can Do! for a fourth consecutive year. She credits these experiences with helping her refine her career path.

Harvey also participated in workshops related to health occupations, including this year's first-on-the-scene workshop, and her plan now is to major in nursing or radiological technology in college.

Harvey said she loved the conference's diverse offerings and the opportunity they've afforded her to try things outside of her comfort zone, like the self-defense workshop that was offered this year.

This semester, Harvey is enrolled in a number of Career Center courses: human body systems, personal finance, principles of biomedical science, and speech and presentation.

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