Olympic medallist seeks new team through JIBC firefighting program

Britt Benn won a bronze medal in women’s rugby at the 2016 Olympic Games. Now she’s enrolled in JIBC’s Fire Fighting Technologies Certificate program as she pursues her career goal of finding another team to join, this time as a firefighter.


It took years of work and dedication for Brittany “Britt” Benn to earn an Olympic bronze medal as part of Canada’s women’s rugby sevens team at the 2016 Rio Games. Now that her dream of competing in the Olympic Games is complete, she’s looking for another team to join.

Britt, 28, has always seen a future career as a firefighter or other first responder as a good fit due to her desire to connect with the community.

“That’s all I’ve done my whole life and it’s all I know how to do is be a team member and that’s exactly what I’m seeking in this career, to become part of a new team, a new family, work together to achieve one common goal. Honestly, firefighting to me, I know it’s a perfect fit and I’m going to continue pursuing it.”

The native of Napanee, ON is taking strides towards her new career goal by enrolling in the Fire Fighting Technologies Certificate (FFTC) program at the Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC). Britt is currently on leave from Canada’s women’s rugby sevens team, which trains out of Victoria, to attend the seven-week hands-on portion of the program at JIBC’s Maple Ridge campus, one of the most comprehensive firefighter training facilities in Western Canada.

She chose JIBC’s program based on word-of-mouth recommendations and a desire to meet the high standards of a competitive field.

“I’m here to learn the skills to the best of my abilities and to apply them in the real world. There’s no better school to do that than JIBC in my humble opinion. I would love to be one of the best and they say if you want to be one of the best you have to come to the school that’s the best, so here I am.”



Just a week into the program, she was settling into the routine and learning something new every day. She appreciated the dedication and positive attitude of the instructors, who push the students to get out of their comfort zones.

Once Britt completes the FFTC program she’ll return to focus on rugby for the immediate future.  But it will be hard to top winning the bronze at the Rio Olympics.

“We poured our hearts out in that bronze medal game [against Great Britain],” she said, recalling she was on the field during the last play of the game. “The final whistle blew and for the first time, I knew all the sacrifices along this journey were worth it.”

Meanwhile, Britt believes her athletic background can only help her in her pursuit of a new career as a firefighter, from being physically fit to intangible attributes such as dedication, loyalty, commitment and being part of a team.

“The FFTC program is very team-oriented. Twenty five recruits, training together to further our skills in the firefighting world. It’s been a challenge adapting to a completely new team but I couldn’t ask for a better group to train with.”


For more information on JIBC’s Fire Fighting Technologies Certificate program visit jibc.ca/fftc.

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