Rachel Meyer, left, and Misty Sedotal, both pre-apprentices with Oregon Tradeswomen, Inc., deconstruct a former strip club in the Cully neighborhood of Northeast Portland. (Sam Tenney/DJC)
“We know what was going on behind these walls,” Neel said. “So yeah, this feels good. There’s something poetic about it – I mean, this building was used to disempower women for years. There was prostitution, all kinds of stuff. Now to have a project that will benefit the community and give women an opportunity to learn a trade and be able to earn a good living – there’s nothing more empowering than that.”
Students said they enjoy working around and being taught by other women. They expect the experience to help them make the jump to a field long dominated by men.
Oregon Tradeswomen pre-apprentice Yolanda Sandoval removes a ceiling grid at a Northeast Portland building that is being redeveloped by a coalition of community groups into the Living Cully Plaza. (Sam Tenney/DJC)