APICS NSW seeking applications for Women in Manufacturing Scholarship

Wednesday, 04 July, 2007

APICS NSW is once again co-sponsoring the Women in Manufacturing Scholarship with the NSW Department of State and Regional Development. The scholarship will enable a woman actively involved in manufacturing in NSW to attend an 18-month internationally recognised supply chain certification "“ the CPIM.

The recipient of the 2006 Scholarship, Susanna Palmer, is currently undertaking the program and plans to use her knowledge to further expand her Castle Hill-based gift basket business which she commenced in 2001. Susanna, whose business carries a lot of inventory and works with many suppliers, made application for the scholarship hoping the education would assist her with the forecasting and ordering challenges that her growing business now faces.

"This course will open more opportunities to add other arms to the business," Susanna said. "Possibilities I'd previously looked at and shelved can now become a reality." Susanna is also benefiting from the networking that the course affords, and has already negotiated a sub-contract with one of her fellow participants.

Speaking at the Women in Manufacturing Networking lunch, where the scholarship was launched, Barbara Perry (Minister for Western Sydney) pointed out that the gender imbalance in the manufacturing sector persists.

"Less than 20% of managers in manufacturing are women and only 3.4% of manufacturing chief executives are women.

"This imbalance exists despite the fact that national data confirms that the most successful Australian exporters have a higher proportion of women in charge. Austrade's DHL Survey shows that 15% of CEOs are women in our exporting heartland (the top performing export sector) and 22% are export managers," she said.

Bill Thompson, president of APICS NSW, believes that APICS is in the fortunate position to be providing the sort of practical, best practice supply chain training that will see more women entering and impacting the sector.

"Being able to share our body of knowledge with women who demonstrate such a clear desire to build a career in the sector and to improve Australia's manufacturing strength is an excellent opportunity. We look forward to working with the NSW Department of State and Regional Development on further such initiatives," he said.

In addition to the Scholarship, APICS NSW and the Logistics Association of Australia Ltd are also facilitating the Women in Manufacturing Stepping Up program. The program, which is subsidised by the Department of State and Regional Development, is a pilot project "“ offering women courses based on instruction and mentoring over an eight-month period.

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