New scholarship supports Kootenay women entering trades

The launch of the Bev LaPointe Memorial Scholarship provides a new opportunity for women targeting a career in the trades.

Bev LaPointe served Kootenay Career Development Society from May 2004 until December 2012.

Bev LaPointe served Kootenay Career Development Society from May 2004 until December 2012.

The launch of the Bev LaPointe Memorial Scholarship for Women in Trades provides a new opportunity for women targeting a career in the trades.

Kootenay Career Development Society has announced the new scholarship in memory of its founding board chair. The scholarship offers $2,000 for a full-time or part-time female student in the trades and is available to women residing in the society service area.

“This scholarship is a fitting legacy, not only of Bev’s extraordinary service to the society, her commitment to worker’s rights, and her unstinting defence of women’s rights, but also of her kindness, her compassion, and her humour” explained board chair Sue Adam.

LaPointe served Kootenay Career Development Society from May 2004 until December 2012 and was passionate about the work being done through the society. She was a strong supporter of the society’s job seekers and employees and always championed workers’ rights and social justice. She was fierce in her defense of women’s rights both in the workplace and community.

LaPointe, who died in 2014, was employed by the City of Nelson for 32 years. She was the first woman to drive a snow plow for the city and locals often saw her travelling down the street in her snow plow, bus or street sweeper, joking “you bet I drive like a woman!”

The scholarship supports women entering a career path that is under-represented by women. In 2011 women accounted for only two per cent of carpentry apprentices, 1.9 per cent of plumbing apprentices, and 1.5 per cent of heavy equipment apprentices.

Applications for the scholarship are available at any Kootenay Career Development Society location or at kcds.ca. Applicants must be accepted to an accredited college, university, vocational school, or apprenticeship program validated by the ITA for trades. The application deadline is May 31. For more information contact executive director Jocelyn Carver at 250-352-6200, ext. 301.