During Women in Construction Week, Candy Lammers visited with project managers, accountants, engineers, and other women who are working on a construction project in Franklin County. (Photo submitted)
During Women in Construction Week, Candy Lammers visited with project managers, accountants, engineers, and other women who are working on a construction project in Franklin County. (Photo submitted)

VAN WERT – According to the U.S. Economic and Statistics Administration’s most recent data, while women fill 47 percent of all U.S. jobs, they only fill around 24 percent of STEM field positions (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). One local women is sharing the benefits of being a female working in construction, a STEM field, and is celebrating Women in Construction Week, celebrated this year the week of March 5 - 11.

Candy Lammers currently works for a woman-owned construction company that sub-contracts her out to Gilbane Building Company, a company she’s now worked with for seven years. With Gilbane, Lammers’s construction efforts are focused on schools; the very first project she had a hand in was the construction of Vantage Career Center.

Currently Lammers is a construction manager and has worked on the construction of schools in many different areas including Piqua, Greenville, Urbana, Fremont, and more. She’s been in this position for around seven years.

Prior to that she worked for five years for a general contractor and three years as a laborer.

“I poured concrete and laid grain pipe for three years,” said Lammers. “My husband has been a union carpenter for 24 years. He was a Foreman for a company, and he had an opportunity to hire a minority - a female - and he said, ‘Do you want to try it?’”

Lammers said that at the time she was working in a cubical and was miserable. She craved something new and different each day, so she decided to give construction a try and loved it.

“It was out of the box; you’re not seeing women out doing this and you feel so empowered,” said Lammers. “What I like about it now is that my days are all different. I don’t ever have the same day.”

Lammers explained that construction positions don’t require college degrees and most training can be done through a career center like Vantage or through on the job training. On average she noted that a female just starting out in the construction industry as a laborer could expect to make around $40,000 a year.

“There’s so many different aspects of it,” said Lammers. “There’s carpenters, electricians, and laborers, and you don’t have to go to college for those things. You can go out and just start working in those areas, and they need people.”

The goal for Lammers is to one day run her own minority-owned construction company.

Lammers spent Women in Construction Week touring many of the schools that she is currently working on and meeting with other women who are part of the process which include female engineers, electricians, project managers, and more.

“It was cool having Women’s Construction Week with International Women’s Day,” said Lammers. “There’s nothing that a woman can not do, and I feel like girls don’t necessarily think about the construction field.”