What is your role at Cobham, and what does it entail?
I work in Heavy Maintenance as an Aircraft Mechanical Engineer. Mainly my work is focused on scheduled maintenance on various aircraft for the Heavy Maintenance department in Adelaide.
I began contracting at Cobham approximately seven years ago, and became an employee about three or four years later within the Heavy Maintenance area.
Why did you choose this career path?
Actually, when I was younger, I wanted to be a military pilot, so this is not actually what I initially aspired to be, but it is close. I’ve always been interested in aviation and being a mechanically minded person from a young age lead me down this path.
Looking back, what are the highlights of your career so far?
Working with the Australian Maritime Safety Authority team on the highly-modified Challenger jets has been a definite highlight for me. It’s quite a unique opportunity to work on this project, which is very different form the usual scheduled maintenance that comes in and out of the hangar. To be able to work on something that helps to save lives is quite humbling as well.
What are the major challenges of your job today?
I’ve always found that people are really supportive. But because everyone is always so supportive and they want you to succeed because you are a female (a minority in my field), it can be a challenge as you have this high expectation to live up to what is set out for you. Maybe this is something men might not face as much.
What’s next for your career?
I’d like to stay with Cobham, and I find I’m particularly interested in the safety side of things. If possible, perhaps 10 years from now, I’d love to find myself in an office based role within the Safety department.
If you had any advice to young women wanting to work in engineering what would it be?
If you want something and if there’s an opportunity you need to just grab it. Whilst people can be very supportive, nobody will just hand it to you, you have to work hard. And, once you have been given an opportunity, don’t be afraid to make mistakes. If you fear something or if you are not sure about something you need to do something it, take a chance, and not just sit around and wait.
Why should people (particularly women) consider a career with Cobham within Engineering?
I think Cobham gives a lot of opportunity for everyone whether you are male, female or from various backgrounds. I really enjoy it here. Cobham took a chance on me and they’ve given me the opportunity to progress over the years.