Harris HMC and Lysander launch scholarship for women in construction

01 May 2023 Consultancy.com.au 2 min. read

Construction group Harris HMC and Lysander have teamed up to launch a new scholarship program aimed at fixing the underrepresentation of women in the Australian construction industry.

The new ‘Women in Construction Scholarship’ program was concepted by Lysander, a Melbourne-based leadership and culture consultancy, with the aim to empower women and provide them with the skills and resources necessary to excel.

The firm developed the program in response to research highlighting a stark gender imbalance in the construction sector. Recent data from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency found that women account for only 12% of the sector’s workforce, making construction one of the most male-dominated industries around.

Harris HMC and Lysander launch scholarship for women in construction

“Diversity is not only a moral imperative; it's also a business advantage. In various sectors we’ve worked with, diverse teams consistently outperform their peers. We believe the construction industry can unlock similar potential by embracing and empowering women in the workforce,” said Kerrie Adaway, CEO of Lysander.

Andrew Headberry, Managing Director of Harris HMC, said that the company shares a similar vision, and was therefore attracted to partnering with Lysander. “At Harris HMC, we’re committed to providing opportunities that not only empower women but also strengthen the construction sector as a whole, and that’s why we jumped at the chance to be the partner for the Lysander’s Women in Construction Scholarship program.”

The six-month program offers participants a multifaceted learning experience, combining self-paced digital modules with interactive workshops that provide opportunities to share knowledge, practice, and consolidate learning. “Participants will be able to interact with their peers across various mediums, gaining insights and building powerful new connections,” said Ellie Brown, a Consultant at Lysander.

Upon completion, graduates will be better equipped to “navigate the challenges of working in a male-dominated environment, develop leadership skills, and advocate for a psychologically safe workplace”, she added.

Developed over the course of several years, Lysander runs similar programs in sectors including automotive, mining, and national transport.