Jonelle Goldsbury dreamed of a job where she could earn while she learned, travel overseas, get administration and management skills, gain qualifications and move up the ranks for more pay and responsibility.
Impossible? She ticked off every one by joining the Royal New Zealand Air Force at 22.
Jonelle works as a Logistics Specialist managing cargo loading and unloading in the air movement section of the RNZAF at Whenuapai in Auckland.
Sometimes known as Ramp Operations, her role is responsible for calculating and processing loads of freight and passengers on Airforce aircraft. This includes compiling detailed lists, dangerous goods registers and other important paper work.
On the tarmac, she carefully loads and unloads freight to and from the aircraft, and gets a regular workout several times a day!
“It’s a fifty, fifty split between inside and outside and that’s just the right balance for me,” says Jonelle. “The loading work can be tough but I really enjoy it.”
To get to where she is today, Jonelle completed the RNZAF’s 13-week recruitment course, then went on to train in her chosen trade of airport logistics. Next, she was posted to Whenuapai where she honed her new skills and knowledge in a real working hangar, and started senior training.
On her way up, she’s gained the essential qualifications needed for her role which include ServiceIQ’s New Zealand Certificate in Aviation (Ramp Operations) (Level 3).
Jonelle has even been to the tropics with several work trips to South Pacific Islands.
So all her dreams have come true so far, but there is more. Thanks to the importance placed on teamwork and physical fitness by RNZAF, Jonelle is able to play basketball, netball and cricket matches against the other forces as part of her working week.
“It has been a great career move,” says Jonelle. “There are endless opportunities. You can travel, play sport, move around the country, and progress your career. I’m also saving and have no student loan to hold me back. There’s just so much to recommend it.”
Her next move? RNZAF Christchurch base logistics for Antarctic missions which she’s really looking forward to.
Her ultimate goal? RNZAF Logistics Officer. Game on!