Updated: September 29, 2021 07:15 PM
Created: September 29, 2021 07:00 PM
A successful first time event called Women in the Workforce took over the auditorium at the Hibbing High School on Wednesday.
The group of speakers lining the stage included steelworkers, a fire marshal, police investigator, attorney, engineer, and tradeswomen.
Rachel Sheik, investigator with Hibbing police, told the crowd she got into law enforcement because an officer saved her life when she was a child.
Tawnya Gustafson, the first vice president of a local union in the mining sector, said, "I think personally, getting through the fear is hard. Was I scared to go into the military? Heck yeah, I was really scared. But I met some amazing people, and got to travel. Was I scared to go into mining, where I was one woman to 25 men? Yeah, I was really scared. I absolutely love my job. They're like my big brothers now. If you have a passion, follow it. If you're scared, that's OK. It's normal."
The goal was to make some connections for these young women, as they start to navigate their futures.
Angela Heikkila, another coordinator and licensed electrician, added, "I hear a lot at the college that women didn't know about all the opportunities out there."
It sounded like messages about taking a stand and going for what you want to do, made an impact.
Sophomore Breanna Mejia told us, "They kept repeating, don't let anyone tell you no. And that's important to know."
Another sophomore, Cecelia Hyatt, added, "I thought it was cool. To see all the women up there, all empowered."
Women in the Workforce was a group effort by USW Women of Steel and Hibbing Community College.
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