Richie Robillard – Athabasca Summer Student Takes on Full-Time Role
With Rise Air as Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Apprentice
By Ryea Daniels
In August, Richie Robillard signed a contract to become a permanent employee of Rise Air after working for three months as a summer student with the Athabasca Basin Summer Student Program.
The summer student program aligned perfectly with Robillard’s career goals. “This three-month summer position with Rise Air had led to me getting a permanent position with the company,” said Robillard. “They offered me the [Aircraft Maintenance Engineer Apprentice] position and I started August 22.”
Robillard is from Black Lake First Nation which is located on Treaty 8 territory, homelands of the Athabasca Denesuline. He currently resides in Saskatoon.
Robillard graduated from his 2-year program in Aircraft Maintenance Engineering with SIIT in May 2022. His educational background includes 3rd and 4th class of power engineering.
“That was the best timing to get employment with Rise Air,” said Robillard, as the summer student program began in May 2022. “Rise Air fits in with my career goals.”
Working in a community that makes you happy is important and according to Robillard, Rise Air is that
community. “Great environment, great people, and they’re very informative – so far, I’m loving my job. This is the perfect job for me.” Robillard said.
Robillard finds that every year he has accomplished something unique and different. Eventually, Robillard wants to get into the aerospace engineering program in Toronto. “Finishing this course is a big accomplishment for me. I was very close to dropping out due to financial issues. But I only had four months left, so I sold everything to get this course.”
Robillard prides himself on paying close attention to detail and being a hard worker. His goal with Rise Air is to keep his northern relatives safe. “Aircraft is the safest transportation… I wanted to be a part of the team to keep the communities in safe hands.”