Tell us a little bit about yourself...
My name is Mikala Eade. Im a 23 year old welder & fabricator from West Sussex. I work full time for a company called Built With Bailey where I make facias and cladding for buildings (basically the outsides of buildings). But I also make metal art in my spare time.
What made you choose this career?
After school I didn’t have a clue what I wanted to do, so I went to lots of college open evenings to see my choices as I had to stay in education till I was 18. At Crawley college open evening I stumbled across the engineering department and thought it looked interesting so I went for it and haven’t looked back since! I just knew after school I didn’t want to sit at a desk anymore I wanted something physical.
Did you go through formal education? If so, what did you study and where? If not please explain your journey.
I went through formal education, I did GCSES then went onto Crawley College and did general engineering then carried on to specialise in welding & fabrication then ending up getting an apprenticeship in a workshop!
An apprenticeship was the best thing I ever did, you get to learn and earn, I did 4 days a week at work and then 1 day at college to get my qualifications! And now I am fully qualified.
Did this have a positive or negative impact on your chosen career?
College was a positive experience for me as it lead to finding my dream job.
It allowed me to see what options were out there for a career instead of doing A levels or following the standard route.
Who inspires you?
My family and friends!
They have inspired and encouraged my through out my welding journey and have always supported everything I have done.
What’s the scariest thing about your job and how have you overcome it?
The scariest thing with my job is that it is a male dominated industry. In my college class I was the only woman and even now at my workplace I am the only woman. It can be daunting but it is worth it!
What do you want to change about your industry?
I would love to change the gender gap in the engineering industry. Too many people think it is a mans job but it definitely isn’t.
What advice would you give someone who is starting out in your field?
Give it a go and you might like it! Don’t listen to anyone who says you can’t do it!