"You have to be patient and to like working as part of a team to do this job. When we're at sea, there are 250 of us on this vessel. It gets to feel like a really small space after a while. "

The Canadian Navy recently acquired one modern diesel-electric submarine and expect to add three more in the next five years.

Kathy Paquette works as a boatswain with the Canadian Forces. It was a natural choice for her – her father was in the army. When she was a child, Kathy would walk around the house wearing her father's army boots and cap. But it's primarily her desire to travel and to see the world that motivated her to choose a career in the Canadian Forces.

Did you know? The Canadian Navy Fleet consists of 12 frigates, 4 destroyers, 12 coastal defence vessels and 2 supply ships.

Kathy loves the sea and she says she's never seasick. The basic annual income is around $24,000 with four weeks of paid leave, and ALL her medical bills are paid for.

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The Canadian Forces have allowed Kathy to satisfy her need for travel and adventure. If this interests you as well, you can start by visiting their web site for recruitment information or your nearest recruitment centre. You must be at least 17, a Canadian citizen and in good health.

Kathy is convinced that most women could do this work. And she adds that, since most women will be taller than she is, the work will also be easier.


Education: Post-secondary education is all with the Canadian Forces. The Boatswain course is about 8 months long

Hobbies: Swimming, kickboxing and weightlifting