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Career Profiles

Mark Derikx

Environmental Health Safety Quality Manager
Evonik Canada Inc.
Mark Derikx devant une usine de fabrication de produits chimiques.

Mark Derikx standing outside a chemical manufacturing plant.

Mark Derikx devant une usine de fabrication de produits chimiques.

Mark Derikx standing outside a chemical manufacturing plant.

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I help make sure our chemical plant is following legal operating requirements for employee and community safety.

About me

I was born/grew up in: Windsor, Ontario

I now live in: Morrisburg, Ontario

I completed my training/education at: Degree in Applied Chemistry from the University of Guelph and post-graduate Diploma in Regulatory Affairs Sciences from Algonquin College.

What I do at work

I help make sure our chemical plant site is following the operating guidelines. These guidelines support employee and community safety. To do this, I have to understand the expectations. This requires reading and analyzing. I help set our site’s strategies to make sure that they follow the guidelines. I also help develop documents and training systems for our employees to follow. I also review the systems to make sure they are being followed. This job requires that I be systematic and methodical. At times, it requires a lot of concentration. These are all skills I learned from STEM.

My career path is

I wanted to be an ecologist in the Canadian north. But my high school chemistry teacher brainwashed me into thinking chemistry was everything. I'm glad he did! After I graduated, I worked for a computer software company. I was selling laboratory automation products to businesses. In this job, I travelled all over the United States. I left that job for a career that had less travel. I wanted to spend more time with my family. I ended up at a chemical plant and the rest is history.

I am motivated by

I love working in the lab on site. I enjoy improving or troubleshooting our procedures. I also enjoy networking with other sites like ours. I work to understand their processes. I use what I learn to see if they can be used at our site. This helps us to improve our practice and remain efficient. Remember, if your site is not improving as time goes by, your competitors are.

How I affect peoples’ lives

I help keep people who are working in our chemical plant safe. I also help keep the surrounding environment safe from pollution. This helps provide great jobs for our community.

Outside of work I

Snowboarding. Riding my bike (mountain biking and road biking). I like listening to books on tape on the way to work in the car.

My advice to others

Stay excited, always. You should come to work every day excited. The day you lose energy for your job, it's time to change.

When I was a student, I enjoyed:
  • Art
  • Drama
  • Science
When I was a student, I would have described myself as someone who:
  • Liked helping people
  • Played on a sports team
  • Was motivated by success
  • Engaged in volunteer activities
  • Liked reading
  • Felt great satisfaction in getting good grades
  • Liked to take things apart to see how they worked
  • Liked to design or build things

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