I dropped out of school to become a female mechanic – men are so iffy with me but I earn six figures, so who cares? | The Sun

FINLAY Burnett was inspired to drop out of school and become a mechanic when one of her male friends did so. 

But being a 17-year-old girl entering a predominantly male industry and working with men as old as 65, she was slapped with a “culture shock”.

Now 21-years-old and “earning six figures”, Finlay hasn’t forgotten the men who were unable to adjust to her being in the workshop.

“They were pretty iffy at the start,” she says. “There are a few people who never got on board with me being there.

“But it didn’t phase me whatsoever.

“I just continued to do my work.”

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Finlay, from Australia, undertook two work experience placements at one workshop as a heavy diesel mechanic before getting an apprenticeship there.

Fast-forward four years, she is now working on much bigger engines as a plant mechanic, fixing up construction and mining equipment. 

She earns “six figures” and doesn’t face any discrimination at work now, except on TikTok where posts about her greasy career.

“I get sexism heaps online, and it’s mainly from people who aren’t in the mechanical industry,” she tells 7Life.

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“A lot of the time, these people know that I’m in the mechanical industry, but they just see a woman.”

One man even told her “as a woman you should be doing the cleaning”.

The trolling is water off a duck's back for Finlay who continues to share her experience working as a “female tradie”.

She urged other women wanting to get into the mechanics industry to not be put off by sexism.

“There’s going to be workshops out there that are just too toxic for women,” Finlay says.

“But there are so many more workshops out there that are safe for women, respectful and free of discrimination.

“They’re not hard to find.

“And once you find one you’ll never want to leave.”

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