I was born/grew up in: Chatham, ON
I now live in: Toronto, ON
I completed my training/education at:
Humber College – Industrial Maintenance Mechanic
Various Steel Mills across North America – Millwright Apprenticeship
George Brown College – Millwright
Toronto Transit Commission – Elevating Devices Mechanic Apprenticeship
Durham College – Elevating Devices Mechanic
George Brown College – Teaching and Training Adults
Seneca College - eLearning Developer
What I do at work
I am a Careen and Education advisor with the Toronto Transit Commission. In this role, I help others achieve their career goals. I focus on career goals related to skilled trades. I draw from my experiences as a licensed Elevating Devices Mechanic and licensed Millwright to help clients see the opportunities of a career in Skilled Trades.
In my past role, I helped guide all apprentices through the Elevating Devices Mechanic apprenticeship program. I made sure all apprentices reach each stage of their apprenticeship. I designed and administered training sessions based on the needs of the Elevating Devices Section. I created and updated all written procedures for tasks involved in the maintenance of Escalators, Freight Elevators, and Dumb Waiters.
As a licensed Elevating Device Mechanic and a licensed Millwright, I rely on all aspects of STEM. This could include discussing the properties of materials used (science). Other times it could involve researching new techniques and tools used in maintenance (technology). Sometimes I use STEM in designing training and testing equipment (engineering), or calculating the RPM of a gear set (math). Bottom line, I’m always using STEM!
My career path is
I grew up in an abusive household where I experienced physical and sexual abuse on a regular basis. At a very young age, I was getting involved in gangs and being arrested. I dropped out of school. At age 16, I was living on my own. I started working in factories. Over time, I was becoming more and more involved in the maintenance of the machinery. I saw many of the people who I was hanging around with getting out of prison only to go back into prison soon after. I knew that without making major changes in my life I was going to follow the same path.
I went back and graduated high school when I was in my early 20’s. I needed a fresh start, so I sold everything I owned, quite my job and moved to Toronto. I enrolled in Humber College in the Industrial Maintenance Mechanic program. I focused all my energy into school and graduated with Honours. Almost immediately after graduating from Humber, I was offered a Millwright apprenticeship. This involved installing and maintaining machinery at Steel Mills across North America.
During my Millwright apprenticeship, I attended George Brown College where I graduated from the Millwright program. While at George Brown College, I my teachers asked me to attend the Ontario Skills Competition. I competed in the Millwright competition and came in 2nd place. After becoming a Red Seal Licensed Millwright, I accepted an Elevating Devices Mechanic (EDM) apprenticeship. During my EDM apprenticeship, I attended Durham College where I graduated from the EDM program. After I became a Licensed EDM, I accepted the Trainer position for the Elevating Devices Section.
I am motivated by
I have always taken great pride in being a skilled tradesperson. I very much enjoy being given the opportunity to mentor, train and pass skills on to others.
How I affect peoples’ lives
Being able to provide a service where I help others to achieve their career goals
Outside of work I
I enjoy scary movies, comic books, and making chainmail (kinda like knitting with steel). I also like building computers and taking machines apart to see how they operate. I work with groups for men who have experienced childhood sexual abuse.
My advice to others
Never accept when someone tells you that you cannot achieve your goals. With hard work and dedication, you will get there.
I am Indigenous
- Industrial Arts
- Enjoyed working with my hands
- Never wanted to be in the classroom
- Didn’t really care about grades
- Wasn’t sure what I wanted to do
- Learned best “by doing”
- Liked to take things apart to see how they worked
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.