Name: Samantha Wicks
Lives: Saint Paul
Job: Mechanic-Technician, East Metro Garage
Years of Service: 2
How did you come to work at Metro Transit and what do you do?
I was in South Korea serving in the Air Force as a mechanic. My term of service was coming to an end, so I scoured the Internet for another mechanic job. I found MetroTransit had openings and applied.
Currently, I’m a general-purpose mechanic at East Garage. On any given day I can be doing anything from shocks and bellows, troubleshooting DINEX modules, road calls, or covering bay service. Every day is different.
Where are you from originally? Tell us a little bit about your background.
I’m from Anoka, MN. I went to college for law enforcement but found that most positions required prior military experience and was a highly competitive job market for those with that experience. In the meantime, I started towing and became fascinated by how vehicles work. I wasn’t inclined to take out more loans for college, so I decided to join the Air Force as a special vehicle mechanic. During active duty, I went to college part-time and earned my Associates of Science in Vehicle Maintenance. During my service, I lived in California, Texas, North Carolina, and South Korea.
What is your favorite part about working for Metro Transit?
My fellow mechanics. I work with some real awesome guys and we have some great supervision/management. Morale is important in any working environment and we manage to get the job done and have fun while we do it.
What are your favorite activities when you’re working or “On the Clock”?
As a general-purpose mechanic, I love that every day is different. Every service job I’m called on requires me to put on a different hat to solve the issue. It requires not only skill, but ingenuity. Also, while I work, I love “punishing” the guys at my neighboring hoists with my “horrible taste” in music. It’s fun to razz each other on the job in good fun. It’s great for morale.
What are your favorite activities when you’re not working or “Off the Clock”?
As one of the few female mechanics not only at MetroTransit, but in the state, I do what I can to help empower women. As one of the few female mechanics at Metro Transit, I know what it’s like to be looked at differently. Women are just as capable as men to do hands-on technical work and I hope I can inspire other women. Outside of my job, I enjoy teaching women how to do technical jobs and to be self-reliant.
This October, I’ll be teaching a clinic for women about how to install a spare tire in West Saint Paul.