Meet Sheila one of our trainers!
What’s your name, where are you from, how long have you been in Rope Access?
Sheila Sovereign. Grew up in BC and now live in Squamish. Been in Rope access since 2014.
What did you do before rope access, and what has made you stay in this industry?
I was a rock climbing guide, and then went into nursing, then went into Rope Access and have been with it ever since. I stayed because coming from a rock climbing background it was an obvious transition, had a lot of connections as well. So it was easy to take those skills and add the two ropes system to it.
The cool thing about rope access is that you get these random jobs and really cool little projects that you wouldn’t normally get to experience.
Your Rope Access experience?
Started with Pacific Ropes on the bridge, big team and lot of great people. Did a bunch of random projects and then went to work in North Alberta for 4.5 years. Have been teaching rope access for about 2 years now.
What got you interested in being an trainer and what’s your favorite part?
I think it comes from my background as a rock climbing guide, I was already leaning more towards the instructional side of that trade and I really liked it. So I always wanted to get back to teaching and now seems like the right time, and the right industry.
The people! You get to meet really nice people. Plus you learn from the students as well, even brand new level 1’s to the industry bring their own ideas. I like giving them a good experience and getting them off to a good start.
What are your challenges in this career?
It’s dynamic and there is always lots to learn. Being a level 3, you need to be able to commit to your own plan and execute it. Second guessing yourself or having someone look over your plan isn’t a bad thing but, I think feeling confident when you get to a job site and knowing that you are the right rope tech for the job is important.
How can someone be a successful student?
I think you need to come with an open mind, this system is built for people without a background, and you just need a good aptitude and take it slow and steady.
Why be a trainer with Pacific Ropes?
I’m teaching with Pacific Ropes because it is a really great company to work for, it has the family feel that’s really fun to work with. They are really committed to the teaching of rope access. It’s not about cranking out students. They really work on their curriculum. They support their students, and their instructors, which makes a difference!