After looking for a better work-life balance, Jamie is loving the pace as a Wind Turbine Technician following Global Wind Organisation (GWO) training at AIS Survivex.
37-year-old Jamie Foster from Washington, England, has a unique mechanical background. As well as being involved with automotives since he learned to drive, he has also been working in the window tinting industry since school.
In 2008, he put his expertise to good use and started his own venture, Total Tinting, getting stuck in with all aspects of running the company, from marketing to installing the window films. Despite his success, the pressures of owning a business started to take their toll on Jamie, who decided to change lanes into the wind industry.
“Owning and running a business is 24/7 – it’s 100 miles an hour, even on holiday. I was looking for a career that fit my existing skillset but had more of a separation between work and my free time.”
With a few of his connections already working in the renewables sector, Jamie reached out for advice before deciding AIS Survivex was the training provider for him. In December last year, he completed GWO Basic Safety Training (BST) courses at our Newcastle training centre, returning this March to add Blade Repair training to his skillset.
“I had an amazing experience training. With my background, I found the courses quite straightforward, but everything was explained clearly and made simple. Even someone coming in completely fresh would be able to understand and follow the content.
“The option for twilight classes was particularly beneficial for me as I was still involved in the day-to-day running of my business. The food was also very good!”.
Shortly after completing his GWO Blade Repair training, Jamie began subcontracting as a Wind Turbine Technician for Kinetic Energy Services (KES), a national turbine specialist based in North East England.
“I felt confident on my first job and walked in knowing straight away what to do without instruction, which is a true testament to my training.
“I’m really blown away by the whole thing; the wind industry is the perfect pace for me. There is no rush, you focus on carrying out tasks safely, correctly and in a timely manner.
“Everyone I work with is very helpful – and the views are fantastic!”
Scott Robinson, Director of KES, commented:
“Jamie is a highly valued member of our specialist team, working on projects the length and breadth of the UK.
“Covering all WTG brands and models, he is making great progress and gaining valuable experience.
“His industry leading training from AIS Survivex and positive attitude contributes to KES’s continuous growth on a national scale.”
Jamie hopes to build up his experience in the future and take more courses, including IRATA Rope Access training to boost his skills even more.
When asked for his advice for new starters in the wind industry, Jamie said:
“In the early days, don’t be put off by rejections – you’ll find that those with previous experience are hired first, but doors slowly start to open for newer Wind Technicians as more work becomes available.
“Keep firing out your CV, even if you’re currently working, to keep your name at the top of the list for upcoming opportunities.”
And his final piece of advice?
“Don’t be afraid of heights!
“Training at AIS Survivex was so realistic, it really reassured me that I would be comfortable working up on a wind turbine before ever getting onto a jobsite.”
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