To celebrate International Women’s Day on March 8, our People of Pearson series will spend all of March honouring some of the exceptional women of aviation at Toronto Pearson. Keep reading for more!
👩✈️ My name is Ginnie and I am a First Officer on WestJet’s Boeing 737. As First Officer, I work in a team with the Captain. We take turns flying while the other handles communications and programming the aircraft’s systems. We work together as a team to enhance safety, because four eyes see more than two.
There are so many favourite parts of my job! I work for a fantastic company. I chose WestJet to have that friendly family away from my own family. When I’m on the flight deck, and feel the initial rotation of lift off, that still gets me smiling. The scenery is always changing. Whether it’s the amount of snow cover on the Rockies that day, or how the sun hits the tree canopy in northern Ontario, I love all of it.
When I decided I wanted to be a pilot, I got involved in the Air Cadets first. I wasn’t successful in my attempts at a flying scholarship. Through high school I pursued military enrollment, but was unsuccessful again. I don’t give up, though. I attended Sault College of Aviation Technology and instructed after graduating. I flew in Northern Ontario for another four years before becoming a WestJetter.
For me, there was never any thought of doing something different. If you’re good at something, do it. It doesn’t matter who you are, there shouldn’t be a label or a category. Less and less I get the shock of “but you’re a woman, why are you flying planes?” I have a daughter and a son and whenever we find those teaching moments, we sit down to talk to them. We tell them that what matters is your character, what’s in your heart and how you treat people. If it’s something you want to do, then do it, one flight at a time.
- Ginnie, First Officer, Boeing 737, @WestJet
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