Sewing for a Seachange

Trish Parish is a mature age student in textile fabrication at Ultimo TAFE and has embraced the growing trend of women entering trades.

"It was a shock at first, as I am 41-year-old woman and all the other people in the course are young males," she says. "But it's been a real eye-opener and it's great."

After being made redundant from her job in the public health service Trish commenced a traineeship at her sister and brother-in-law's truck tarpaulin company.

Trish has completed many other courses throughout her life, including a university degree, but is now enjoying working with her hands instead of her head.

In this video, she offers advice to people considering a career change and being a female in a traditionally male-dominated industry.

Trish's teacher, Lawrence De Paoli, explains how TAFE is supports mature age students and how TAFE encourages and supports females in male-dominated courses.

"TAFE has a great mechanism in place to recognise the skills mature age students have already gained, be it through previous learning, work experience or life in general," he explains.

"Plus, a lot of women are approaching trades with a different outlook now. It's not this daunting task that it used to be."

"TAFE is encouraging more women to come in, there are greater opportunites now, and I think even employers are realising a woman can do the same job as a man."


VJ Emma Sampson