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Women in Construction Spotlights

In celebration of Women in Construction Week 2024, we did a quick Q&A with several women to learn about their careers at Manson.

JACQUELINE PARENTEAU


Q.  What is your name, and what is your role at Manson?


Jacqueline Parenteau, Administrative Assistant—Survey Engineering Department.


A. With construction being such a male-dominated industry, what brought you to it?


I did not intend to end up working in the construction industry, but I guess it was destiny.  In 2006, I was living in Phoenix in between jobs and I applied at a temporary labor company. The first job I got assigned to was to help an Arizona based Civil Contractor move offices.  During this time the dispatcher left the company, and the owner asked me if I wanted to fill the position permanently. I had no experience, but quickly caught on. I was responsible for scheduling the deliveries of concrete, asphalt, aggregate deliveries, barricades, etc. I started out with zero construction knowledge, but over the 10 years I worked for them, I learned everything I could and took on more responsibilities, including Human Resources, OSHA Safety compliance, utility locating, and eventually achieved the role of office manager.  


Then when I moved to Florida in 2016, it was destiny again. I was looking for a job and Manson's Survey Engineering Department was looking for an Administrative Assistant. Coming from a Civil Construction background, I knew nothing about hydrographic surveying, but the guys on my team are passionate about surveying and they were willing to teach me everything they could and answered all my questions (without making me feel like I was stupid for asking).


You definitely have to have thick skin if you have a career in the construction industry, but for the most part I have found the men I have worked with to be respectful of their female co-workers. Maybe I was just lucky that I found good companies to work for.


Q.  Can you talk about some of your core responsibilities as an Administrative Assistant?


A. I provide administrative support for four departments at Manson. My primary role is to assist the Survey Engineering Department, but I am also an Authorized User for the Contracts & Insurance Department, I assist the Production Department in tracking the Pipe Wear Account Cost/Revenue; and I am also part of the SharePoint design team.


Q. The women's workforce in the construction industry continues to grow every year; what can we do to engage and inspire women to join the construction industry?


A. I don’t have any great insight on this, but “if you pay them, they will come.” If you offer women, the same pay as you offer their male counterparts that will be incentive for them to work in the industry. 

Also, it would benefit to offer courses in high school that can teach women construction trades; but the persons that do the hiring, must give them the opportunities to use the skills that they have learned.


Q. What do you like about working at Manson? What are the rewards?


A. Manson’s core values help create a positive work environment where I feel that I am respected as an employee.


·        I enjoy coming to work every day because I work with supportive colleagues who make me smile.

·        I work in an area that interests me and inspires me to learn.

·        I believe my work has an impact on the company as a whole.

·        My managers appreciate my efforts and encourage my development.



LIDIYA LEVCHUK


Q. What is your name, and what is your role at Manson?


A. My name is Lidiya Levchuk, and I am an Accounting Supervisor.


Q. With construction being such a male-dominated industry, what brought you to it?


A. I knew I would put 100% effort into whatever position I was in, so I never let the fear of being in a male-dominated industry stop me from achieving my goals.


Q. Can you talk about some of your core responsibilities as an accounting supervisor?


A. Overseeing and assisting AP staff members in everyday tasks. Ensuring accuracy and compliance with accounting standards and regulations. Identifying and resolving financial issues, supervising, training, mentoring AP staff, and assisting the Controller in preparing financial statements.


Q. The women's workforce in the construction industry continues to grow every year; what can we do to engage and inspire women to join the construction industry?


A. I believe highlighting women excelling in the industry will help crush the stigma around the construction workforce being only for men. Women everywhere deserve to know that they can achieve greatness no matter what roles they put themselves in.


Q. What do you like about working at Manson? What are the rewards?


A. It is a unique industry that not many companies can compete in or do the same. I am so honored that I am a part of this team. Working with a lot of talented people and knowing I am valued and can contribute to the company’s success brings me joy.

 

Q. This year’s WIC Week Theme is “Keys to the Future,” celebrating the strength and knowledge of women in construction. What advice or encouraging words do you have for women who are interested in joining Manson or the construction Industry?

         

A. It is a great field to work in with many opportunities and pathways to go in. Keep your head high and know that you are someone’s role model in an exciting field that is growing and changing the world.

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