Michelle Jobin is a 35-year-old Senior Weather Specialist at Sun News Network. This grad of both York University and Seneca College shares her mornings with a notable crew: Canadians. Daily, she wakes up way before the crack of dawn to get ready for the morning newscast, and keeps her fellow Canucks informed about what to expect from our less-than-stable climate. Michelle is also a seasoned journalist, and often reports on lifestyle content. Find out more about this YP in today's feature.
Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
I’m lucky enough to give Canadians the information about weather they need to start their day and plan ahead. I love that I’m giving people information that is useful in their day-to-day lives. I aim to be informative, accurate, a bit educational, and hopefully a lot of fun for viewers. I also contribute stories that run more towards lifestyle content, such as food, fashion, the arts – all huge passions of mine. I love that I get to have a conversation with Canadians every single morning.
Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
Getting to be a part of a brand new news channel has been a tremendous opportunity; it doesn’t happen very often in this business that you get to be integral in building something from the ground up. I jumped at that chance. As Senior Weather Specialist, I worked for quite some time ahead of launch on what I wanted our weather department to be, and how we wanted to keep Canadians informed. I have covered weather on both national and local platforms over the last six years, so I wanted to take the best of my experience and bring it to our viewers.
As for why I am in TV in the first place, I’ve always been passionate about storytelling, about how we communicate with one another – and I’ve always been a total ham, to be honest. I was the kid that commandeered the mic at my dad’s work Christmas party, at my Uncle’s wedding, and so on. I just wanted to be seen and heard, and make people laugh. It was an interesting route to get here: After studying theatre and working as an actor, I found that I needed something more, so I went back to school for broadcast journalism. I’ve worked in news, entertainment, and lifestyle television – as a producer, host, weather specialist, and reporter. It’s perhaps more of a varied background than many in this industry, but I feel that the diversity of my experience has made me much better at what I do.
What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
The best part of my day really is when I feel like I connect with viewers and give them info they can really use. This is a diverse country – not only in terms of its people, but its climate as well. Weather is hugely important to Canadians, so I feel honoured to get to talk to them about what’s happening and how it will affect them. I also love that I work kind of freestyle. As a Weather Specialist, I don’t use a teleprompter. I know my facts and my forecasts, and then tell the story to Canadians, unscripted. To some people that might be a scary prospect on live TV, but I thrive off of it. It’s definitely one way having a live theatre background has served me very well. Anything can happen...and it pretty much has!
The most challenging part? The hours. To be ready to be on air for 6 am, I need to be awake around 3 or 3:30am. It’s not pretty. But I work with such a great team, and that makes the hours more than bearable.
Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
I see myself still working in television and media – still loving it – but I’d like to draw even more on my past experience in lifestyle programming, pop culture and current affairs, and possibly produce again as well. I have so many interests, it would be tough for me to narrow down to working with one kind of content for my entire career. I feel that media will continue to become hybrid-ized both in form and content as television, radio, and internet continue to merge and grow, and people tap in further to truly global information. I love that media is changing so rapidly right now. It’s an exciting time!
What does success look like to you?
Feeling good about what I have done on a day-to-day basis. If I feel that I have contributed to my community and the world in a positive or useful way, that I’ve done something to help people or improve their lives, or if I’ve just managed to make someone smile, then I feel a sense of accomplishment. If I feel that, and I am happy, then I feel successful. Success is not a title or a dollar amount. No one but you can be the measure of whether or not you are successful. If you listen to people that tell you otherwise, you will never get there...wherever there is.
What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
Hosting and producing Toronto Dining was a true labour of love for me. I was very proud of it, and am still told by viewers how much they loved the show, which is incredible. I am so passionate about food and the city of Toronto that it was a great way to express myself. Not many people get the opportunity to have their own show and truly control the content. I also worked with a great team, and met so many incredible people over the 53 episodes we put together – many of whom I am lucky enough to now call friends. Not to mention that having some of the best chefs in the city making me delicious food all the time is kind of the definition of a dream job.
Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
Stay hungry. Be tenacious. Decide for yourself what is your true measure of success. And never, ever stop learning.
Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
One charity very close to my heart is The Stop Community Food Centre in Toronto. I’m volunteering with them now, and first heard about them when I profiled them for Toronto Dining. The Stop is many things: a drop-in centre where the hungry get fed very wholesome meals; a green barn where amazing produce is grown and children learn about food; and a place for food-centric events that raise funds for the drop-in centre. It’s a wonderful place that nourishes the community in a variety of ways, and cares about and respects the people they serve. Their motto is “Good Food For All,” and I couldn’t agree more.
What to you is notable?
Courage, originality, kindness, generosity...love. Finding the beauty and humour in things.
Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
iPhone. Forever and ever. I am very, very addicted.