Julie wanted to be a carpenter since she was little playing with legos and Lincoln Logs. She grew up in Easthampton and went to Smith Vocational for Carpentry. After high school, she struggled finding steady work in the male-dominated industry and ended up briefly in the military and then working odd jobs while attending community college. A career exploration program at the college recommended that she become a carpenter — as she knew all along — but she was uncertain how to proceed until a professor handed her a brochure for the Carpenters Union. She quickly signed up and was accepted as an apprentice. She became active in the union, helped start the union’s Sisters in the Brotherhood chapter, and heads up the Local’s apprenticeship mentoring program. While an apprentice, Julie went to school at night in a program the union has established with the Wentworth Institute of Technology. Last year, she received her BA in Project Management.
Joining the union has opened my eyes to more opportunities than I initially imagined I’d have the opportunity to achieve. I’m simply grateful for the chance to do what I love.
Journey-level Carpenter, member since 2012, union delegate