Gisborne’s Sarah Lockwood is aiming high as she starts her new career in the Royal New Zealand Air Force (RNZAF).

She has just graduated the 14-week recruit training at RNZAF Base Woodbourne and will soon start training as a Communications and Information Systems Mechanic. 

Aircraftman Lockwood, 22, said she decided to join the Air Force as she wanted an exciting career that also contributed to a greater cause.

“I want to be able to take part in humanitarian aid and disaster relief missions and peacekeeping efforts on a global scale.

“I want to feel as though I am making a positive difference to the world around me, within New Zealand and overseas,” she said.

Aircraftman Lockwood has completed a Bachelor of Science with a major in Environmental Science, and minor in Geography, which she started at the age of 16 and began her science career with the Gisborne District Council when she was 19.

“I have always been very self-disciplined and am lucky to have major support from my parents who have backed me in every decision I have made.”

“I have always been driven by what I wanted to do, and would recommend others no to listen to those who doubt you. I’ve tried to always focus on the positives and turn setbacks into opportunities.

She has also represented New Zealand at the World Marathon Kayaking Championships.

“Discipline in sport gave me the ability to apply myself in other situations such as study and career goals,” she said. 

She said she was looking forward to beginning her new career.

“Long term, I hope to move up through the ranks and become a successful leader within the RNZAF and lead teams to succeed in whatever challenges we might face,” Aircraftman Lockwood said.

She encouraged those wanting to join the Defence Force to apply early and do as much preparation as possible.

To learn more about a career in the Air Force visit www.defencecareers.mil.nz(external link).

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