As part of the #BuildingEquality 2018 Campaign, Sorcha Flanagan, EHS (Environmental, Health and Safety) Specialist with Wm. O’Brien Crane Hire, shares her story as a woman in construction.
My name is Sorcha Flanagan and I am an EHS (Environmental, Health and Safety) Specialist with Wm. O’Brien Crane Hire. I originally studied Environmental and Natural Resource Management as my undergrad. When I received my BSc degree, I was lucky enough to get the opportunity to work with a very well established environmental consultant’s based in Limerick.
That job was a combination of both fieldwork and office based work which I thoroughly enjoyed. I got to work on many diverse projects and received great exposure to a range of different industries including the construction industry. I gained a great interest in this field and knew going forward that I wanted a career that could offer the same versatility of both office and site based work.
After my contract ended, I decided to go and do something completely different, so I took to the skies for a year as cabin crew. As you can imagine, a huge amount of that role was safety orientated and it was from there that I decided I would go back and study Health and Safety.
Following that, I managed to land myself my lovely position as Environmental, Health and Safety Specialist here at Wm. O’ Brien’s Crane hire. As you can imagine, the construction industry is very much a predominantly male orientated industry. Being a 5’3 female EHS specialist and arriving on site in my hard hat and Hi-Viz is certainly not the norm. I’m definitely a minority!
This has made me very aware that there are very few females working in my industry, a demographic I’d like to see change. I am grateful my gender hasn’t prevented me from getting where I am and has never held me back in the company where I work. I thoroughly enjoy working in the construction industry. It’s a very fast paced environment and every day is different. I work with a very supportive team that are very safety orientated.
To learn more about the #BuildingEquality campaign and to share your own story, please visit our dedicated #BuildingEquality page here
Construction Industry Federation