Women can too

Timisha Clarke knows her job well.
Timisha Clarke knows her job well.

She can easily fit into any crowd of young women attending a Beenie Man show at Kensington Oval, but she has chosen a field of employment usually dominated by men.

At 29 years, Timisha Clarke is currently employed as a junior electrician at the Barbados Port Inc.

In an interview with Barbados TODAY to mark International Women’s Day, she explained that even though she has achieved a level of proficiency in beauty care, she prefers the “rough and tumble environment” of a construction site or work at the Port.

But with that determination has come a decision to better educate herself. So eyes set on her prize, this highly motivated young woman pursued her education most vigorously, year after year.

She pointed out that initially she did a one-year course in electrical wiring at the Samuel Jackman Prescod Polytechnic, gaining a certificate from that institution. From there it was two years with the City and Guilds, studying for certification in electrical installation.

Gaining an electrical electronic technician diploma after pursuing the two-year advanced course, she did not stop there. Clarke is at present pursuing an 18-month course in project management at the University of the West Indies Open Campus.

Clarke, who has been employed at The Barbados Port Inc. since 2007, did the two-year apprenticeship programme at the Port before she was appointed junior electrician in 2009.

Acknowledging that she was functioning in a male dominated trade, the attractive young woman said that on some occasions fellow workers try to test her proficiency in her chosen field.

She pointed out that even though she was seen as a trailblazer, she did not believe she was discriminated against and received equal pay for equal work.

Because she describes herself as “rough and tumble” does not mean though that she doesn’t have a softer side.

Stressing her commitment to her trade, Clarke said: “At present I would not change my trade because I am comfortable and satisfied with my achievements. I can prepare nails, and do facials but I just enjoy electrical work.”

As for motherhood, it is a step she has not taken yet but which she does not have a problem taking in the future. In fact, she admitted that she is prepared for that whenever it happens.

Not one to speak out largely on women and women’s issues, Clarke though spared a moment to note that she has high praise for females who are involved in elective politics. Even though she is aware of what is going on in the country, however, she does not voice her opinions too much on the issue.

Likewise, she had a bit to say about men who try to control women. Here she said she believed men should not use the fact that they are superior physically to control women, though she admitted as well that there were women who similarly abused men, something else she was not in favour of.

Clarke suggested that there should be mutual respect between a man and a woman.

On the issue of the apparent breakdown of family life in Barbados, the junior electrician noted that some families were dysfunctional even when mothers and fathers were present in the home.

She maintained that boys should have a positive father figure in their lives even if that person was a teacher, an uncle or family friend.

Some parents, she noted did not take the time to listen and understand their children and as a result they tend to stray and find comfort elsewhere.

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