I’m Courtney, age 19, and I recently completed an accredited Carpentry course at WOMEN’STEC.  WOMEN’STEC has been a great place for me to develop my confidence and my woodworking skills! 

I love working with wood and prior to the course I had done some joinery already.  I really enjoy being creative and working with my hands. I love making things – I find this so rewarding!

The class at WOMEN’STEC was a little different, in that we recycled pallet wood to make our class project.  This was something that I really enjoyed learning to do.  We took the pallets apart, measured and cut the wood to the size needed for our project.  The class also covered safe use of tools, being able to use face and edge marks, using a cordless drill and other equipment. The pallet wood is quite rough, so quite a bit of sanding was needed!

There’s a real sense of achievement making your own piece of furniture!  I’m quite shy, and the course helped me come out of my shell in terms of meeting new people and working as part of a team.  I often feel anxious going into new environments or new places, but the staff and tutor at WOMEN’STEC were really supportive and helped me feel comfortable.

Not only did I improve my carpentry skills but I developed more confidence.  My goal now is to go on to complete a Diploma in Joinery.

Other pieces made by Courtney include:


The Promoting Opportunities Programme #notjustforboys is a new, exciting and innovative programme targeted at young women and girls who are not pursuing an academic route post GCSE, and are perhaps more directed towards gender-traditional careers such as hair, beauty and nails.  The programme aims to heighten awareness of the vast range of ‘non-traditional’ careers available and improve diversity and inclusion across industries such as construction where females are under-represented.

The Promoting Opportunities Programme #notjustforboysis supported by the Construction Industry Training Board NI, the Northern Ireland Housing Executive, The Ireland Funds, Gilbert-Ash Ltd, JP Corry, and the Urban Villages Initiative. For more information about WOMEN’STEC or courses available, please contact us on 02890 749810