Women in Aerospace & Manufacturing: Rosalee York

Rosalee York

Rosalee York had no previous experience in machining before she began working at a machine shop in the summer of 2011. However, after taking some time off from working as a MRI Tech Assistant, she was eager to learn and ready to start a new career in aerospace and advanced manufacturing.

While York was searching for a new job, her roommate told her about a job opening at the machine shop that she was working at in Seattle. She attended a few information sessions at that company and decided machining was something she would really enjoy as a job and applied for a position. York started working as a Tech One in the Solids Department and two months later began working on Computer Numerical Control (CNC) machines. It was while York was working on the CNC machines that she heard about the Aerospace Joint Apprenticeship Committee (AJAC) apprenticeship program. “My supervisor asked me if I would be interested [in signing up for the apprenticeship]….I said definitely yes and thought that it was a really good opportunity for me to learn more and become better at my job,” York said.

“There are new and different jobs you work on every day and you really have to use your brain…. it is all hands-on and fun for me.”

York participated in the AJAC apprenticeship program in 2012 and said during her time as an apprentice, she learned many new skills that she could apply at her shop. “[During the apprenticeship] I learned more detail about blue print reading and job planning…. [As well as] learning about different machines my company did not have,” York said. One of the many skills York was taught was how to make a sea clamp which included drawing the layout and learning the steps it takes to complete the job.

During York’s time as an AJAC apprentice, she moved up from a Tech One position to a CNC operator and received a pay raise. York said one of her favorite things about being a machinist is “that there are new and different jobs you work on every day and you really have to use your brain…. it is all hands on and fun for me.” York’s goals are to gain skills in programming and to become a full fledged machinist. She looks forward to making a good livable wage and becoming a much more valuable employee. York says for anyone interested in becoming a machinist to just go for it because the job is in demand, interesting, and fun.

To find out how you can become an apprentice and launch your career in aerospace or manufacturing, visit AJAC’s Get Started Section.