Vancouver Community College student recruitment specialist Leigh Wall says Women Leading the Way™ program helped her find her passion

With her intricate collection of arm tattoos she isn’t shy about revealing, upon first glance, one might be surprised how many dozens of people count on Leigh Wall, Vancouver Community College student recruitment specialist and Minerva BC’s Women Leading the Way™ program grad, for life-vocation advice.

A former commercial truck and transport apprentice who only found her life’s passion after admitting to drifting through high school and trying out many other jobs, Wall, who was the recipient of Minerva BC’s Ann Naymie Women in Trades Award in 2017, says she struggled with career direction in the early years. Ann Naymie Women in Trades Award winners must hold accreditation within a trade or are close to becoming accredited and be looking to move into a management or leadership role within the organization they work.

“I tried many different jobs before finding what I was passionate about,” says Wall. “When I began promoting women in trades, I knew I had found my calling.”

In a class of 15 students admitted into the VCC heavy-duty mechanics program, Wall recalls being the only female in her class and appreciating that aspect.“It made me proud to contribute to diversity in transportation trades,” says Wall.

Nowadays known in many circles as a champion of change, Wall, a dog lover, community volunteer, sought-after public speaker and 11-year resident of East Vancouver, credits Minerva BC with how successful she has become in her current role with VCC.

“Before I started the program, I never really thought of myself as a leader,” admits Wall. “But it taught me leadership isn’t really about being the CEO. Anyone can be a leader.” She adds, “It also showed me that I could be a successful leader as long as I understood how to demonstrate my authenticity.”

Women Leading the Way™ is an interactive, part-time training program geared toward established and emerging leaders. Program participants are taught the principles of values-based leadership and what it takes to be a successful leader.

In the area of trades, Minerva BC recently developed occupational support for employers who are serious about attracting and retaining skilled tradeswomen. In partnership with the BC Construction Association, Minerva BC announced the launch of a Builders Code Scorecard that is aimed at helping provincial construction employers measure their policies and practices against recognized best practices for creating a respectful and inclusive workplace. The Scorecard is also supposed to measure progress towards the goal of achieving at least 10 per cent of female representation in BC’s construction workforce over the next 10 years.

The next Women Leading the Way™ program starts in September and is currently accepting registrations. To learn more about the program, tuition options and what the program offers, click here. 

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