Skip to main content

Ian Cook

Journeyman Sheet Metal Worker
Whisper Heating and Cooling
Ian Cook
Ian Cook
Location Born
Location Now
Education Pathway
School Subject

Ian Cook is a Journeyman Sheet Metal Worker for Whisper Heating and Cooling.

About me

I was born/grew up in: I have lived in Coalhurst, Alberta my entire life.

I now live in: I still live Coalhurst, Alberta.

I completed my training/education at: I completed the 4 year 40 week Sheet Metal worker program at SAIT polytechnic.

What I do at work

At work, I am responsible for installing ductwork according to plan that was set. This involves laying out and measuring fittings, doing material takeoffs and ordering material. I also service and repair ventilation fans, furnaces, rooftop ventilation heating and cooling units and fireplaces.

With the job I do, there is defiantly a wide range of tasks. One day I could be doing a small residential job and the next installing 30,000-pound units onto a roof. No matter the job, they always come with a challenge or a learning experience.  Sometimes it could be a small problem such as trying to find a good location to put ductwork in a house so as not to mess with the plans of other tradespeople.  At other times, it could be a bigger problem such as having to dig out the side of a slope in order to fit a crane in a tight space. STEM skills provide me with a knowledge and understanding of basic principles of most challenges that might arise on a job. These skills also help with critical thinking and problem solving.

Math is a very important skill in my trade. Every day we are laying out, measuring and planning. All this requires a good grasp of the fundamentals of math. It is also important to be able to work well with others because it is easier to solve problems with a group of skilled people rather than on you own. On a team, everyone brings different skills and ideas.

My career path is

I never exactly knew what I wanted to do for work when I was in high school. I started working in a Sheet Metal shop cleaning vans and organizing the shop. I started my apprenticeship working there and completed the registered apprentice program while I was in school. Immediately after high school, I went to SAIT to complete my technical training in Sheet Metal. 10 years later, I am still working in Sheet Metal and love it! Now, as a Journeyperson, I help train new Sheet Metal apprentices. It definitely wasn’t easy as there were obstacles that had to be overcome. There are always opportunities to learn from obstacles or mistakes that we encounter.

I am motivated by

For me, the most exciting moments at work are when I complete an install and everything looks good, works well, and makes the customer happy. I really enjoy my career because of the ever-changing problems and learning that I have daily. This career is perfect for me because it keeps me thinking and moving. I am never bored with what I do! Then at the end of a job or end of a day, I get to look back and take pride in what I did.

How I affect peoples’ lives

Sheet Metal workers are responsible for the indoor comfort and climate in buildings. We install heating and cooling systems in buildings such as schools and offices on a larger scale or homes on a much smaller scale. Heating in these buildings is important in below zero temperatures not only for the health of the occupants but also for the safety of building operations. We also work with ventilation systems to provide fresh air to buildings. This is especially important in areas where hazardous gasses are produced (e.g., welding and mechanic shops).

Outside of work I

If I’m not working I enjoy being out on the boat fishing, shooting, hunting or even hiking. I also do copper work making flowers, ornaments and other trinkets as a hobby.

My advice to others

When you start potentially looking for a career in trades remember most jobs aren’t just what you see at first. Do your research to see what branches into different more specialized industries you have. In the case of Sheet Metal, a person could potentially specialize service work, install work, custom metalwork, or supervision work. Also, make as many contacts as you can.  You might know a lot and could have been through many different problems but one day you’ll probably run into something you’ve never seen. The best way to solve problems you don’t understand, or have never see before, is to use your connections and find someone that might know a solution.

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Math
  • Physical Education / Health
  • Science
  • I really enjoyed the construction, cabinetmaking, welding, and mechanics programs that were offered when I was in school.
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Enjoyed doing things on my own
  • Always wanted to be outside
  • Liked helping people
  • Enjoyed working with my hands
  • Wanted to be in charge
  • Liked being given free range to explore my ideas
  • Was really creative
  • Never wanted to be in the classroom
  • Wasn't sure what I wanted to do
  • Liked to take things apart to see how they worked
  • Liked to design or build things
  • Engaged in activities such as fishing
  • Learned best "by doing"

Related Topics

Partners

Skills/Compétences Canada

Let's Talk Science would like to thank Skills/Compétences Canada (SCC) for connecting us with the individual profiled above.

Skills/Compétences Canada was founded in 1989 as a national, not-for-profit organization with partner Skills Canada organizations in each of the provinces/territories that work with employers, educators, labour groups and governments to promote skilled trade and technology careers among Canadian youth. Its unique position among private and public-sector partners enables it to work toward securing Canada’s future skilled labour needs while helping young people discover rewarding careers. Skills Canada offers experiential learning opportunities including skilled trade and technology competitions for hundreds of thousands of young Canadians through regional, provincial/territorial, national and international events, as well as skilled trade awareness programs. For more information, visit www.skillscanada.com.

Skills Canada

Explore Career Profiles

  • Curtiss Luong headshot

    Curtiss Luong (he/him)

    Security Consultant

    I help companies keep their information safe from cyber criminals.
  • Close up Businessman using calculator and cell phone for do math finance on wooden desk in office and business working background

    Petter Wiberg (he/him)

    Managing Director

    I use my math and computer science background in the financial industry.
  • Sergio Eduardo de Ilzarbe headshot

    Sergio Eduardo de Ilzarbe

    Chartered Financial Analyst

    I help small companies grow their business and succeed in the marketplace.
  • Courtney Harnum headshot

    Courtney Harnum

    Capital Budget Lead

    I am responsible for the planning, coordination, and delivery of Newfoundland Power's annual capital budget application.
  • Rhiannon Cooper headshot taken outside with trees and plans in the background

    Rhiannon Cooper

    Epidemiologist

    I monitor the patterns and trends of infectious diseases across the province.
  • Chris Murray headshot

    Chris Murray

    Associate Professor (Physics)

    I teach undergraduate physics and conduct research in biopolymers and environmental technology.
  • Natasha Holmes headshot

    Natasha Holmes

    Assistant Professor (Physics)

    I study how people learn physics and how to structure physics courses to improve student learning.
  • Jyoti Rani at work at Seaspan Shipyards

    Jyoti Rani

    Electrical Production Engineer

    I troubleshoot problems with electrical equipment and cable routes on the ships we build.
  • Darren Casimir headshot

    Darren Casimir (he/him)

    Senior Account Manager

    I sell used rental cars to car dealerships and purchase new vehicles for our rental fleet.
  • Evaline Warmels with lunar rover in background.

    Evaline Warmels (Video)

    Mechatronical Engineer

    As an electrical engineer at Canadensys, I help build robots (lunar landers) that will explore the surface of the moon.
  • Evaline Warmels headshot taken outside in winter.

    Evaline Warmels

    Mechatronic Engineer

    I design, build, and test devices that use electricity to do something that a human couldn't do on their own.
  • ulie Hlavacek-Larrond headshot

    Julie Hlavacek-Larrondo (she/her)

    Astrophysicist and Associate professor

    I study black holes, which I think are the most fascinating objects in the Universe!
  • Bianka Labelle-Robert

    Bianka Labelle-Robert

    Junior Outfit Engineer

    I am responsible for the interior completion of ship compartments.
  • Portrait de Isha Berry

    Isha Berry

    Epidemiologist

    I look for patterns in disease outbreaks and health outcomes in populations across the world.
  • Lynn Henderson avec un chien berger allemand

    Lynn Henderson (she/her)

    Veterinarian, Clinician, and College Professor

    I am a small animal veterinarian serving animal health in a variety of capacities.
  • Peter Visscher devant un tableau blanc

    Peter Visscher

    Robotic Vehicle Development, General Manager

    I work with my team to develop extreme robotic vehicles designed to operate off-road and off-planet.
  • Ray Hyde

    Ray Hyde

    IT Manager, Customer Experience

    I oversee the day-to-day operation of our IT infrastructure in support of the offshore oil platforms and our local office.
  • Dawn Pratt avec ses filles au Centre spatial de Houston

    Dawn Pratt

    STEM Consultant

    I develop programs and STEM content and advise on the development of STEM programs.
  • Diya Isac

    Diya Isac (she/her)

    Software Lead - Vehicle Motion Embedded Controls Team

    I give technical guidance to develop software for features that make the car move and stop.
  • Xiaoyi Bao

    Xiaoyi Bao

    Professor and Canada Research Chair

    Dr. Xiaoyi Bao is Canada Research Chair in Fibre Optics and Photonics.