Vocational subjects no barrier
Monica Therese Langedal is one of Cargill's women in a work area that traditionally has a low proportion of females. She is the manager for maintenance at the factory in Florø, which produces EWOS fish feed in all possible varieties. With just over 100 employees, this is the largest of Cargill's workplaces in Norway.
She was inspired by her parents, where her father was a shipyard worker, while her mother was an operator at the EWOS factory.
Monica took a professional certificate as an industrial mechanic and followed up with an education as a safety engineer. During her studies, she had a summer job at the factory, and in 2002 she was hired as system manager for the company's maintenance program. In 2019, she was promoted to head of the maintenance department.
Less than 15 per cent of the high school/upper secondary level students in electrical engineering, mechanical subjects as well as technology and industrial subjects are females. The reason may be traditional social perceptions but also that many male-dominated vocational educations are at upper secondary level, but from there you can also build on with a vocational school or college/university.
"Then you have a vocational education that can be used directly in working life," says Monica. "Combining theory and practice by working with realistic tasks, develops reflective professionals, who have career opportunities", is Monica's experience.
Therefore, she wants more girls and women to apply for apprenticeships as well as ordinary positions in Cargill.
"I have had children while I have been employed. In Cargill, it is entirely possible to combine being a mother of small children with a job, and it isn’t a hindrance for make a career ", Monica concludes.