MONTREAL, APRIL 16, 2009- Fay Prince, a single mother of four, was the lone English Montreal School Board (EMSB) student to come away a winner at the Chapeau les filles regional gala April 7, recognizing women who have excelled in non-traditional roles in vocational training programs.
Ms. Prince, who is part of the Rosemount Technology Centre (RTC) cabinet making program,was presented with a $500 prize from the Fédération des travailleurs et travailleuses du Québec (FTQ). Melissa Duchene, who is part of the RTC machining technique program, was nominated as well.
Fay has not had an easy life. She was a divorced mother of three in Labrador when she met her soul mate Jocelyn Paris, a bush pilot who was stationed at Wabush. A new baby boy, Stéphane, was born in 2003. “I was 41 already, a mother of three and divorced,” says Fay. “He was 12 years my junior and a brand new papa! We made a great team and for the first time in a long time I was truly happy!”
Two years ago tragedy struck when Jocelyn was killed in a plane crash. Only when the shock wore off was Fay able to find a way of reinventing herself. That process began with her decision to move to Montreal. “Stéphane is bilingual today because his father chose to speak only in French with him,” she said. “When I moved here with my children I started a full-time French immersion course of 30 hours per week for 10 months. Now I can get by with my French.”
It was at this school that Fay came across a pamplet for the Rosemount Technology Centre. Not only did she enrol in the cabinetmaking program, but so did her second eldest son, 22 year old Mark Klench. Fay says that immersing herself in this program has greatly assisted in the healing process. “I love this school and the program and I know this is the right place for me,” she said. “I know being a woman in a man’s world is not always going to be easy, but I'm up for the challenge! I feel I am a stronger person because of my life experiences. Jocelyn always told me that I could do anything and that I was strong now. I believe him!”
After Fay completes this program at RTC she will take a furniture finishing course and seek out some internship opportunities.