A number of female Pittsburg State University graduates are making their way into management positions in the construction industry, and more are on the way. This past fall, four PSU construction management students were selected to participate in a conference designed to inspire and encourage women who want to follow that path.
Rebekah Dallman, a junior from Pittsburg, Kan.; Ashley Roberts, a senior from Garnett, Kan.; Lori VanDyne, a senior from Independence, Kan.; and Lindsey Strenth, a senior from Pittsburg, Kan.; were selected by the Kiewit Corp. to attend the company’s Women in Construction Leadership Seminar in Omaha, Neb. They were among 55 women from universities across the U.S. who were chosen for this annual program.
“The construction industry is trying to grow the number of women in construction and Kiewit is trying to be an industry leader,” Dallman said.
At the seminar, the students attended educational presentations and roundtable discussions on a variety of topics, all led by women in construction management. Vernice Armour, the first African American female combat pilot in the United States Marine Corps, delivered the inspirational keynote speech. The students also had an opportunity to tour a hospital construction site. All expenses, including travel, were paid by Kiewit.
“This is a wonderful experience for our students,” said Jim Otter, chairman of the Department of Construction Management and Construction Engineering Technologies. “This is a chance for women in our program to learn about leadership in the industry, its challenges and opportunities.”