Meet James Rocheleau. This successful Mobilizer hails from historical Amherstburg, a small town in southwestern Ontario. He studied architecture and welding in school, and until a year ago, worked as a welder-fitter in a shop that specialized in the fabrication of custom parts for the oil and mining industries. It was a steady job, but James wanted more.
“There are many reasons that Mobilize appealed to me, but I’d say the most prominent was the adventure it promised,” he says. “I wanted to experience things that weren’t possible in my small farming community, and get away from my everyday routine. Mobilize promised a chance to force myself out of my comfort zone.”
Learning on the job
James has had two work placements already and is on his third placement, gaining valuable experience in the hotel and restaurant industry. His first job was at The Keg Steakhouse in Banff, Alberta.
“I really hadn’t expected to move across the country to work in a chain restaurant,” he says. “But it turned out to be one of the most enriching work experiences I’ve ever had. I started there as a busser and was gradually cross-trained as a kitchen helper and host.”
His second placement was at the Mount Robson Inn in Jasper, Alberta, where he got even more customer service experience as a front desk agent. Right now, he’s working at the hotel as a night auditor, and he has sole responsibility for office operations for two weeks every month. He has gained skills including teamwork, time management and restaurant etiquette, and right now, he’s learning to make lifestyle changes to accommodate his first night job.
Life is never boring
There’s a lot more to Mobilize than just work – it’s also about exploring new parts of Canada and connecting with great people. James has seen the beauty of the Rockies, gone to free concerts at the Calgary Stampede, and made close friends. But one experience stands out in his mind.
“Of all the memories I’ve made over the last ten months, the best was hiking up Cascade Mountain in Banff,” he says. “It’s one of the most difficult things I’ve ever done. I’ll never forget how rewarding it was when we finally got to the peak and looked out over the park after seven hours of hiking uphill.”
James says that one of the best parts of the program is the great group of people he has met.
“I’ve never learned so much about other places as I have living in Alberta,” he says. “An Australian taught me what the southern lights are called (aurora australis), I’ve learned bits of Irish from my roommates, and have even been taught to sign my name in sign language. These are truly some of the best people I’ve ever encountered.”
When we asked James whether he would recommend Mobilize to his friends back home, his answer was a resounding “yes.”
“Before joining Mobilize, I didn’t feel like I was getting too far on my own. Now, six months later, I’ve learned an entirely new field. I’ve gained new skills, got three excellent work references, and can now see myself pursuing a career I’d never considered. Plus, I’ve met great people along the way and made memories I’ll always cherish. With Mobilize, waking up every morning feels less like a routine than the start of my next adventure.”
Build skills. Gain experience. Travel across Canada. Make money – and get FREE housing! With Mobilize, you get seasonal placements where you’ll learn on the job. And you’ll work in incredible locations with lots to do and experience! Get in touch today to find out about our next deployment.