- US moves up to 20th place in Global Gender Gap Report, while UK plummets to 26th
- American crude oil and liquid fuel production up 35.7% since 2012 (EIA)
- North Dakota workforce accommodation investment from $89,950 (NDD Group)
American politician Spencer Bachus has been quoted as saying,“For generations, America has served as a beacon of hope and freedom for those outside her borders, and as a land of limitless opportunity for those risking everything to seek a better life.”
This ethos runs through the very heart of the US, ever since the Founding Fathers set sail in 1620 in pursuit of their American dream. To this day, America is seen as a land of opportunity and nowhere is this showcased better at present than in the state of North Dakota.
In much the same way as early settlers pursued their Manifest Destiny ever further westward, those seeking their fortunes now are heading north, to the oil-rich lands of the Bakken Formation, where the modern-day black gold rush is serving to break down gender barriers and enable those starting with nothing to work their way to the top.
US crude oil and liquid fuels production has increased by 35.7% since the start of 2012, according to the Energy Information Administration. The increase, which is largely the result of new fracking technology, has propelled America to the top spot of global oil producers. In North Dakota, the town of Williston has been at the centre of the oil boom. Caitlyn Beley, Communications Director for Williston Economic Development, observes,“Williston is an exciting place to live, and it’s really like being a part of history. There are endless opportunities for anyone who is looking to start their own business, or even advance their career. Now is the time to be a part of the progress.”
While Britain has been dropping down the Global Gender Gap Report rankings (it has now fallen to 26th place), the US is sitting comfortably in 20th place, having moved up three spots since the 2013 report. In North Dakota, workers like Anneli Anderson are the reason why. Anneli is one of many women working for B&G Oilfield Services as a line locator. The company’s line locators are 40% female. Women are also employed by B&G as heavy equipment operators and hydrovac service providers.
Meanwhile at female-owned RT Enterprises, Robin Tierney and Cassandra Feiring are making a name for themselves through their equipment and support services business, which services the Bakken’s oilfield companies. Tierney comments,“The people that come here are here to make a living.”
It’s a simple concept and one that holds true to the American ideal of the self-made man, or in this case the self-made woman.
As Thanksgiving approaches, Americans turn their thoughts once more to the past. In Williston that past consisted of a sleepy town that was gradually losing its younger generations to the lure of big cities in other states due to their better employment prospects. Now, Williston is racing to keep up with the influx of workers, which has created a desperate shortage of accommodation within the town. Robert Gavin, Group CEO of specialist accommodation developer NDD Group, which is behind two leading developments in the area, comments,“No matter how fast we build, workers are still pouring in to North Dakota. Men, women, rich and poor, it doesn’t make the slightest difference. All that you need to succeed here is a willingness to work and to pursue the opportunity at hand.”
It’s an approach that has seen Gavin’s company propelled to success. With four workforce accommodation projects already under its belt, NDD Group is currently presenting the Transhudson Hotel – Parshall (available for investment from $89,950) and theTranshudson Apartments – Williston Heights (investment from $150,945), to the global investment community. Gavin himself is another North Dakota success story, having come a long way since growing up in a small mining community in the north of England.
“North Dakota has reawakened something,” Gavin continues. “It’s the new frontier. Life here is very dynamic and exciting and packed with opportunity. It’s the American Dream.”