A new initiative ‘One of the Guys’ has been launched in Sydney to encourage greater participation of women in typically male-dominated fields.

Launched by Construction Assignments Managing Director Drenka Andjelic and The University of Technology Sydney’s Women in Engineering & IT Programme, the new joint initiative ‘One of the Guys’ has been designed as a career guidance service for women currently in study programmes for engineering, construction and information technology.

The successful pilot semester saw Drenka and Jennifer Kay, Project Manager at Construction Assignments, address over 25 students. Going forward, the program expects to attract 50 to 100 students each semester.

Construction Assignments Managing Director Drenka Andjelic explains that they have moved forward on the basis of their conviction that successful careers in construction, engineering and IT are very possible without being ‘one of the guys’. Going beyond the confines of traditional mentorship arrangements, the program aims to guide, build confidence and demonstrate how to have a successful career in these industries.

She accepts that there is gender imbalance in the industry today and emphasises that while the situation will not change overnight, they can try and address the lack of access to relevant, successful and inspirational female role models working in construction, engineering and IT.

Drenka and Jennifer studied engineering 25 years apart, yet have experienced the same challenges with their chosen male-dominated course.

‘One of the Guys’ has received support from many business leaders, both female and male, in the construction and engineering industries. The guidance program is currently available every week for UTS students.