A Canadian Forces Snowbirds technician is encouraging others to go for their goals and get out of their comfort zones.
Jasmine Francoeur grew up on Vancouver Island and says aviation was always a part of her life through friends and others. Starting off with a different career, she felt there was something more to do.
“I was actually a hairdresser for like four years before I joined the military,” said Francoeur. “I kinda wanted more out of my job and my career. I wanted something that I could be really proud of and I wanted something that provided me with a good lifestyle.”
She began to look at different jobs in the military, taking a stab at a job she wasn’t sure she would like. She says, fortunately, she enjoyed it and has now done two years with the Snowbirds.
“My favourite part is probably the opportunities that it has presented me,” she said. “I joined the military in 2017. Last year was my first year on the road. This is my second year and I’ve seen so many cool places, I’ve gone to the states, I’ve travelled all over and seeing the world from a tiny little jet is pretty amazing.”
It’s not all bells and whistles, however. Francoeur says the jets can get a bit frustrating to work on.
She says a lot of maintenance is required depending on what the jets need, from refuelling and replenishing oxygen to things that are broken and require long hours to replace.
“Like with every job there are things that you’ll think ‘oh yeah I definitely know how to fix this’ and then you fix it and it doesn’t fix it,” she explained. “It’s worth it in the end. It’s really exciting to get something fixed and you feel good about yourself.”
Francoeur adds more women are getting into the field since she was hired and the military was actively looking for women in technician positions.
“I’ve been in the squadron since 2018 and since I got posted there, there’s been six other women getting posted there.”
She recommends anyone wanting to be in her position, or other areas, to push themselves out of their comfort zones and work through any insecurities.
“I’d say ‘go for it’ because I’m the type of person that I can hold myself back,” she said. “I need a bit of a push and I had to be my own push. Worst case scenario, if it doesn’t work out and you don’t like it, that’s fine too.”
“But for me, I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and I’m really happy that I did.”