ALBANY, N.Y. (NEWS10) — Capital Region BOCES hosted a luncheon on Thursday to recruit the next generation of women in trade work. Technical, construction, and automotive careers have historically been male dominated, but the luncheon offered support to female students looking to break in.

At the event, students interested in joining a trade were able to speak with graduates of the BOCES program who have found success in their field.

“The program has helped me a lot because I have worked in a shop for a while, but it’s given me the actual skills that are needed,” BOCES student Riley Trudell said.

“It helped me broaden my horizons,” DWM Project Coordinator Reagan Smith said. “I was nervous at first because I felt like I was gonna be outnumbered between men and women, and I was, like, you have to go in and own it.”

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics expects skilled trade employment to grow by 8.4 million jobs over the next year.