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Female Students Try on Trades for Jobs 

Catherine Pegram

Welding, carpentry, bridge building – they not just jobs for men anymore. And some female high school students spent the day learning that.More than 100 students got a chance to check out 16 hands on careers today. It was part of the Totally Trades conference at United Technologies Center in Bangor.The students learned about work in such fields as robotics, law enforcement and welding, from women who already do those jobs. Organizers of the conference say these kinds of trades offer high skilled, high paying options for young women heading into the work force. Stephanie Mae Taylor, a student at Penobscot Job Corps, says, “It’s exhilarating to see that women can do things that men do all of the time. That we’re given the opportunity to finally do something that’s not traditional.”Kerianne Rogerson, a welding assistant for the conference, says “You can do anything you put your mind to, no matter, regardless of what it is. You can be a welder, you can be anything you want. Just because you’re a girl shouldn’t stop you.”The students came from 12 schools throughout the areaLocal construction companies and the Transportation and Education departments put on the conference each year.The students also learned about self-defense from a female Umaine police officer.