Forestry Technician graduate Eric Butson is looking forward to representing Frost Campus when he travels across Ontario this fall. Eric is a Grad Recruiter for Student Recruitment and will be sharing information about Fleming College with prospective students.
‚ÄúWhat I‚Äôm looking forward to most as a Grad Recruiter is the opportunity to help secondary school students realize their potential and share with them the opportunities to grasp that potential at Fleming,‚ÄĚ said Eric, who graduated from the School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences this year.
Eric said he learned to embrace his weaknesses and face his fears head-on while at Fleming, which he said is the best way to grow personally and professionally.
To clear his mind, Eric said he loves visiting the Loggersports practice site, which is his favourite spot on campus. ‚ÄúIt is a place where I spent many nights working hard to perfect my events, clearing my head and escaping the grind of academics for a little while,‚ÄĚ he explained.
In addition to Loggersports and his studies in the Forestry Technician program, Eric also worked as a Student Ambassador for Student Recruitment, giving campus tours to prospective students, welcoming guests at Fleming‚Äôs Open House, and more.
‚ÄúGetting to show individuals that are interested in your college what makes it so special to you hardly seemed like work,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúAs a Grad Recruiter, I get to hold a similar position and connect with so many more prospective students on a different platform.‚ÄĚ
So what makes Fleming so special for Eric? The campus culture.
‚ÄúMy faculty and peers truly wanted everyone to succeed and it was a refreshing experience,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúWhen speaking with prospective students, the reason I believe they should come to Fleming is because it is a unique college that blends excellence in academics with a student life experience for all individuals.‚ÄĚ
The Ontario Envirothon, held each spring, provides a unique opportunity for high school students to engage with the natural world, to learn how resources are managed, and to learn about the various careers and education pathways within the field.
‚ÄúRegardless of the career path students choose after Envirothon, they will have a deeper understanding and appreciation for natural systems, and will be better able to make informed decisions about the environment,‚ÄĚ says Allison Hands, Education Manager at Forests Ontario.
Forests Ontario has coordinated Ontario‚Äôs Envirothon program for close to 25 years, and the organization works with regional partners and sponsors ‚Äď including Fleming College ‚Äď to host local Envirothon workshops and competitions.
‚ÄúThe workshop and competition days inspired me to keep learning as much as I could about environmental issues. More importantly, I felt inspired and empowered enough to know that I could make a difference in environmental issues,‚ÄĚ he says.
Rob‚Äôs participation in the event has come full circle. In April, he helped organize the regional Peterborough-Kawarthas-Northumberland Envirothon, which was hosted at Fleming‚Äôs Sutherland Campus. He also attended the Ontario Envirothon as a judge in May.
The Peterborough-Kawarthas-Northumberland Envirothon was a new regional competition initiated in 2017 for high schools in the area ‚Äď there was no competition prior to this. A number of local organizations have worked together to launch and support this regional competition. These include Sustainable Peterborough, the County of Peterborough, Otonabee Region Conservation Authority, local school boards, and Fleming College.
The 2018 regional competitions had 140 teams competing in total, with more than 1,000 students, teachers and volunteers participating across Envirothon events in Ontario. Winning teams from each region go on to compete at the Ontario Envirothon, which was held in Waterloo and featured 21 teams made up of 126 students and teachers.
Fleming College has hosted the Ontario Envirothon event several times at Frost Campus, and was also the co-host of the North American Envirothon championships with Trent University in 2016.
‚ÄúThis is an event we support because Fleming College believes in creating the next generation of environmental leaders. And, more importantly, assisting those leaders today to grow through experiential education opportunities,‚ÄĚ says Rob.
‚ÄúWe have faculty, staff and students supporting this event from a variety of program areas,‚ÄĚ adds Trish O‚ÄôConnor, Director of Fleming‚Äôs Office of Sustainability. ‚ÄúIt is also a great opportunity to showcase the wonderful natural environments at Fleming College to high school students, teachers, and the community.‚ÄĚ
Rob explains that students take away a variety of skills by participating in the event. During the workshops and competition, students use different types of field equipment such as tree calipers, soil triangles, and dichotomous keys. Five major topics are covered ‚Äď forestry, soils, aquatics, wildlife, and a fifth topic that changes every year. (This year it was climate change.)
‚ÄúTeams also have to synthesize information into a coherent, timed presentation. Through this portion of the program, students develop their critical thinking, teamwork, problem solving and public speaking skills,‚ÄĚ says Allison.
For Forests Ontario, Envirothon is a natural fit. The organization‚Äôs three pillars are tree planting, community engagement and awareness, and forest education.
‚ÄúWe champion Envirothon because it‚Äôs Ontario‚Äôs largest environmental competition, it promotes forest education, and it‚Äôs a really enriching experience for the students who take part,‚ÄĚ says Allison. ‚ÄúWe believe this competition helps to create future ‚ÄėGreen Leaders.‚Äô‚ÄĚ
Forests Ontario works with a number of partners and sponsors to deliver Envirothon. Regionally, it works with conservation authorities, post-secondary institutions, professional/industry organizations, government, and charities/non-profits. The organization also offers additional education programs, including the 50 Million Tree Program, Forestry in the Classroom, and TD Tree Bee.¬†For more information, visit: forestsontario.ca
For more information about Fleming College‚Äôs School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences, visit: flemingcollege.ca/SENRS
When David Hale enrolled in the Ecosystem Management Technician program, he entered Fleming College‚Äôs Frost Campus with the mindset of earning good grades and graduating as quickly as possible. But after making connections with people and learning more about the natural world, his point of view changed on what he wanted from his college experience.
‚ÄúThe Frost Campus community was awesome, from the front desk workers to the cafeteria staff, the teachers and the students. I found it incredibly unique and I think this is mostly because we all have a common interest: to work in the outdoors and preserve the natural environment,‚ÄĚ David explained. ‚ÄúThe community is very tight knit and you get to know students from a number of different disciplines as well as your own.‚ÄĚ
David decided to take Fleming‚Äôs Ecosystem Management program after realizing he could turn his passion for the environment into a career.
‚ÄúWhen I exited high school I thought my passion for the outdoors was only a hobby, but after taking an unrelated program in university I decided to try and turn it into a career,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúI wanted to learn more about what I was passionate about.‚ÄĚ
Over the past two years, David learned plant identification, ecosystem classification, soil and water sampling techniques, and how to design research studies. He also developed personal skills, such as leadership and teamwork.
‚ÄúMy most memorable experience from my time at Fleming was, without a doubt, being able to spend my final semester abroad at Pidwa Wilderness Reserve in South Africa,‚ÄĚ said David. ‚ÄúIt was a once-in-a-lifetime experience that I‚Äôll remember for the rest of my life. We saw the most incredible things on a daily basis and we got to meet the most amazing people. While there, we also got to further develop all of the practical skills we learned in Lindsay.‚ÄĚ
David graduated from Fleming College this month and served as Valedictorian for the School of Environmental and Natural Resource Sciences on Friday, June 1 at convocation.
‚ÄúI hope that people feel a sense of pride after my valedictorian speech,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúFleming College is very well recognized and being a graduate is a great accomplishment.‚ÄĚ
The Class of 2018 graduate said he would recommend the Ecosystem Management program to anyone wanting to gain practical knowledge and skills in the environmental field. He credits the program with placing a huge emphasis on preparing students for their job search, including resume building and interview techniques, as well as covering academic topics and research skills.
‚ÄúPersonally, I found that the best part of the program was the faculty; as long as you work hard, the teachers will do anything to make sure you get everything you wanted out of the program and then some,‚ÄĚ said David. ‚ÄúThe fact that you can compete to spend a semester in South Africa is just one more thing that makes Fleming‚Äôs Ecosystem Management program unlike any other!‚ÄĚ
Next year, David plans to attend Trent University for Conservation Biology. His ultimate career goal is to work abroad in conservation.
‚ÄúFrost Campus is a special place and I know I‚Äôll be carrying it with me as I move on in the future,‚ÄĚ he added.
‚ÄúAquaculture caught my eye,‚ÄĚ she says, adding that the amount of field work in the program initially drew her in. The compressed, one-year program is the only Aquaculture program offered as a post-graduate certificate in Ontario. As part of the program, students have the opportunity to learn and work in the on-campus salmonid fish hatchery as well as complete a paid co-op placement in the third semester.
‚ÄúGetting the hands-on work in the hatchery gives you not only the ability to learn more but also the experience before getting into the industry, rather than learning just by ‚Äėthe textbook‚Äô in a classroom setting. You can actually work with fish and learn more about them at different stages of life.‚ÄĚ
Now Lenora‚Äôs personal interests in the field span a number of areas: the different types of aquatic species that can be farmed; how aquaculture can be used for conservation and restorative purposes; how aquaculture aids in sustainability and helps food safety and security; the limited awareness of the aquaculture industry and its benefits; and her own interest in studying and working with aquatic species. She is also working in the hatchery on weekends to further her learning.
Lenora, who was born and raised in Dubai, UAE, is a graduate of Canadian University Dubai with a Bachelor of Science in Environmental Health Management. She has a passion for nature and wildlife conservation/protection and enjoys a number of hobbies outside of the classroom such as hiking, soccer and basketball, sketching and painting, and playing acoustic drums.
Heading into the program‚Äôs final semester, Lenora will complete her co-op placement as an Aquaculture and Aquaponics Assistant with the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs.
‚ÄúI am looking forward to moving again and getting more hands-on work in a different setting,‚ÄĚ Lenora says.
And she is leaving the door open on a career path when she graduates‚Äď whether it‚Äôs continuing her studies in Aquaculture or moving to the west coast to work on a fish farm.
Did you know that every 10 seconds at Fleming College‚Äôs four campus locations, we use almost one litre of water for washing our hands? Advanced Water System Operations and Management (AWSOM) student Sainil Shaikh has been researching water use at the college and brainstorming solutions.
‚ÄúWater is not just a form of H2O, it is the element that gives life on this planet,‚ÄĚ said Sainil for World Water Day (March 22), which focuses on the importance of water. ‚ÄúOur future is lying in this, so we should do something about it.‚ÄĚ
This year‚Äôs theme for World Water Day is Nature for Water, which explores nature-based solutions to water challenges. Sainil, who is doing his program co-op with Fleming‚Äôs Office of Sustainability, credits Fleming with already implementing solutions. The current five year sustainability plan targeted a 10% reduction in water consumption across the College by 2018; this target was achieved in 2016. Further reduction targets will now be identified.
‚ÄúWe don‚Äôt sell water bottles on campus and we have a Sustainability Action Plan. In the KTTC, we have a rain water harvesting system where rain water is collected and used to flush toilets and urinals. The normal flushing capacity of urinals is 3.8 litres per flush, but in the KTTC the urinals use 0.5 litres per flush,‚ÄĚ said Sainil. ‚ÄúAt Frost Campus, we have a constructed wetland, which treats water for a particular zone of the campus. We also have the Centre for Advancement of Water and Wastewater Technologies located at Frost.‚ÄĚ
But there is still work to be done, explains Sainil. Through his research for the Office of Sustainability, Sainil discovered that water usage tends to be higher at the beginning of each semester and that washrooms are the main source of high water usage. One of Sainil‚Äôs suggestions is to add automatic faucets to all washrooms (they are currently in some washrooms, including facilities in the KTTC), which would reduce the litres per minute used from 5-6 to 0.18.
Sainil also plans to create an awareness campaign around the use of water on campus. ‚ÄúNo one knows that we are wasting this much water every day,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúMy friends got surprised when I told them these numbers.‚ÄĚ
Sainil came to Fleming College from India after discovering the AWSOM program and Frost Campus‚Äô strong reputation in the environmental field.
‚ÄúIt has been amazing!‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs a good campus, it has more of an environmentally friendly surrounding. There‚Äôs nature and a trail, the Centre for Advancement of Water and Wastewater Technologies is on campus, there‚Äôs a living wall‚Ä¶ it feels good. I enjoy studying in such a good institution.‚ÄĚ
He has also been enjoying his co-op at the Office of Sustainability, which is located in the Sutherland Campus.
‚ÄúEveryone is so supportive. If I come up with ideas, they always support me,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs been a good, free environment where no one pushes me, they just support me.‚ÄĚ
He is proud of the work he has done through his co-op and the knowledge he has gained through his program. ‚ÄúI am in the AWSOM program doing awesome things at Fleming,‚ÄĚ he said.
Madison Penton and her 31 Ecosystem Management Technology classmates boarded a bus to Washington, D.C., on January 22 for the Science, Business, and Education of Sustainable Infrastructure: Building Resilience in a Changing World conference.
The conference, which was presented by the National Council for Science and the Environment (NCSE), is a component of the Urban Ecosystems and Ecosystem Health courses. The event gives students the opportunity to see how a conference is organized and brainstorm ideas for their own conference, which they will host on March 24 at Fleming‚Äôs Frost Campus.
Madison and her Urban Ecosystems course team also presented a scientific poster at the conference, which is one of the project options in the Fleming College course. Her team presented on How to play with fire and not get burned: an evidence-based approach to wildfire risk reduction in California.
‚ÄúI think one of the biggest things I gained from this experience was confidence,‚ÄĚ said Madison. ‚ÄúDuring the conference, we really had to put ourselves out there, push past our comfort zones and take chances. Presenting a scientific poster on an international stage was nerve-racking but rewarding. Although it was scary when scientists and professionals approached us, we felt confident enough to answer their questions. Also, because the conference topics were so relevant to our learning, I felt confident to talk to anyone!‚ÄĚ
While the conference gives students the opportunity to listen to scientists and environmental professionals discuss topics they are learning about in the classroom, the Fleming College group also had the opportunity to explore the history and culture of Washington.
‚ÄúI had a great experience in Washington. Not only was the conference an incredible opportunity for networking and professional gain, but having the opportunity to explore an amazing new city was equally worthwhile,‚ÄĚ she said.
Madison chose to take Ecosystem Management Technology at Fleming College after completing the Ecosystem Management Technician program, as she said the extra year will benefit her educational pathway to Trent University.
‚ÄúMy experience in the Ecosystem Management program has been nothing but rewarding. I have gained so much knowledge and passion for the environment I live in,‚ÄĚ said Madison. ‚ÄúThe opportunities I have had through field trips and out-of-classroom experiences, like the Washington trip, have been incredible for my personal gain. These experiences also provide opportunities for team building and have provided me with an opportunity to build friendships that I will treasure forever.‚ÄĚ
With a business plan and a diploma in hand, Dan Carrocci was only 21 years old when he walked into a bank to request a loan. The Fleming College graduate needed the money to purchase a geotechnical drilling rig to start his own drilling business, Determination Drilling.
With the goal of one day being a full-service drilling contractor, Dan purchased the rig and hired one employee. 14 years later, Determination Drilling is now a full-service drilling company that specializes in environmental, geotechnical, water well, geothermal, hydro power, solar, wind, and mining/exploration drilling with 22 employees and growing.
And that first rig Dan purchased at 21 years old is still in use, along with 10 geotechnical drill rigs, seven solar rigs, one water well drill, and many other small portable rigs for limited access projects.
‚ÄúWe‚Äôve had sustainable growth,‚ÄĚ said Dan on Determination Drilling‚Äôs success. ‚ÄúAnd by being so diverse we haven‚Äôt been at the mercy of economic downturns. When one industry goes down, another goes up; when mining is down, the geotechnical side is up as a result of government infrastructure spending, for example.‚ÄĚ
Determination Drilling has travelled across Canada for thousands of drilling projects, including exploration drilling of kimberlite pipes in James Bay, diamond core drilling of iron ore in Newfoundland and Labrador, mining and infrastructure projects in Nunavut, geotechnical drilling on the 400 series highways in Ontario, and more.
‚ÄúWhat I love is that it‚Äôs challenging. Nothing is easy, you have to wear many hats. You have to be a mechanic, a geologist, a weatherman, and a little bit of everything to make it work. There are long hours and long days, there‚Äôs cold and heat‚Ä¶,‚ÄĚ said Dan. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs a huge accomplishment when you defy all odds and make the impossible happen.¬† We have a team of dedicated, smart and determined operators that are the key to Determination Drilling’s success– teamwork makes the dream work!”
One of Dan‚Äôs favourite work experiences is drilling in Bathurst Inlet, Nunavut, where he takes a two-hour helicopter ride over the Arctic Circle in – 60 degree weather to get to the job site. “It was like the ultimate camping trip…with wolverines,” said Dan.
He also enjoys taking breaks to bond with staff, which includes bringing them hot chocolate and barbequing on the site. ‚ÄúI want my employees happy,‚ÄĚ he said. ‚ÄúIt‚Äôs a tough job and I‚Äôm proud of the way they represent our company. We’re all best friends and look out for each other like a big family.‚ÄĚ
75% of Determination Drilling staff are Fleming College graduates, mainly from the Resources Drilling Technician and Heavy Equipment Operator programs. He credits the college as being a very valuable hiring resource.
“These teachers should be working at NASA and they stay on top of the industry” – Dan Carrocci on Fleming College faculty
‚ÄúThey graduate with the fundamentals, tooling identification, very strong safety knowledge; and usually have their DZ license, which saves me as an employer from having to pay for it,‚ÄĚ said Dan. ‚ÄúTheir instructors are excellent. I see Brian Gerry (Earth Resources Technician Co-op program coordinator) and Steve Wilkinson (Resources Drilling Technician program coordinator) at¬†the PDAC every year working on their own dime to keep up-to-date with current technologies and industry trends. These teachers should be working at NASA and they stay on top of the industry. They deserve a lot more credit; without their passion for the industry, where would we be? I certainly would not have the same quality of drillers, and I might not have even become a driller at all without their leadership.‚ÄĚ
As a safety advocate, Dan truly appreciates Fleming‚Äôs emphasis on safe working practices. Every employee at Determination Drilling is educated in drilling safety practices, and has First Aid/CPR training and common core training. Dan also delivers safety presentations in North America, Australia and England, and in 2009 he hosted a safety conference at Frost Campus and invited drilling managers from around the world.
‚ÄúFor the International Drilling Safety Conference, Fleming provided a venue for that,‚ÄĚ said Dan, who is thankful for the strong network he has at Fleming. ‚ÄúI can always call my college professors for help when I‚Äôm in need of advice or direction.‚ÄĚ
One day, Dan said, perhaps he‚Äôll be the one at the front of the classroom‚Ä¶ but only as a guest speaker to share his experiences with the next generation of drillers. Dan still enjoys being out in the field learning every day and loves the adventure, plus ‚Äď he added – it’s tough to get dirty in a classroom.
Kelly McLean credits Fleming College‚Äôs strong pathway agreement¬†with Trent University for helping her achieve her education goals.
‚ÄúThe transfer agreement with Trent was key to me achieving my¬†schooling goals because I was able to complete a four year degree in two years. If I had to complete all four years I likely would not have gone to university,‚ÄĚ said Kelly, who is now completing her Master of Science and Forestry at the University of New Brunswick.
‚ÄúWhen I started at Fleming I wasn‚Äôt sure what I wanted to do, but the professors were very inspiring and we were exposed to so many different topics that I was able to explore my interests and begin to build a career that I am very passionate about,‚ÄĚ she said.
‚ÄúFleming students were well-known at Trent for our field skills, so we were often called upon by our lab coordinators to lead lab work.‚ÄĚ
‚ÄúIt was great to have the support of peers going through the same process,‚ÄĚ she said. ‚ÄúFleming students were well-known at Trent for our field skills, so we were often called upon by our lab coordinators to lead lab work.‚ÄĚ
Kelly said the administrative process of moving from Fleming to Trent was ‚Äúvery smooth and seamless‚ÄĚ and felt very prepared for university courses thanks to her college education.
‚ÄúIn fact, my thesis supervisor recently commented that I have above average writing, a skill that I attribute to the projects and reports that I completed at Fleming,‚ÄĚ Kelly added.
After earning her Honours Bachelor of Science Degree in Biology (2016) from Trent, Kelly spent four months working as a Student Migratory Game Bird Technician for the Aquatic Assessment Unit of Environment Canada‚Äôs Canadian Wildlife Service, and spent another eight months working as a Wildlife Biologist.
‚ÄúHaving a combined field skill set from college and university has provided me with¬†very employable skills.”
She is now working on a research-based master‚Äôs degree at the University of New Brunswick, studying wetland buffer width and the persistence of black ducks in New Brunswick under the supervision of Dr. Joe Nocera. She anticipates completing her Master of Science and Forestry in 2019.
Kelly‚Äôs end goal is to work in government science and influence policy around harvested wildlife species. ‚ÄúHaving a combined field skill set from college and university has provided me with¬†very employable skills,‚ÄĚ she said.
Annie Brough needed an edge in the competitive job market, so she decided to add a Fleming College post-graduate program to her resume.
‚ÄúI wasn‚Äôt having any luck finding a job in geography with just my BA,‚ÄĚ said Annie, who graduated from Wilfrid Laurier University in 2015 with an Honours Bachelor of Arts in Geography with minors in Global Studies and French. She then worked various jobs, including work as a hostess, farm and market worker, server, and teaching piano lessons.
‚ÄúWhen I was job searching, I noticed there were a decent number of GIS job postings. As a creative, artistic person, I decided that my best chances for success would be to pursue further schooling in GIS,‚ÄĚ she said.
Annie exclusively applied to Fleming College‚Äôs post-graduate Geographic Information Systems ‚Äď Cartographic Specialist program because it was highly renowned and had positive reviews online, the program was only three semesters long, and Annie felt her artistic skills and geography knowledge would help her succeed in the Cartographic stream.
‚ÄúIt wasn‚Äôt until I attended the GIS Open House that I really understood what I was getting myself into. Seeing all of the amazing work the students accomplished made me super excited to get started, but it also terrified me. I wasn‚Äôt sure that I would be able to succeed in the program,‚ÄĚ said Annie. ‚ÄúThankfully, I met a friend from Laurier at the Open House who was just finishing the program, and he gave me some idea of what to expect in the upcoming months and words of encouragement.‚ÄĚ
Her experience at Frost Campus was enjoyable and she describes the teachers as fantastic and helpful. She loves that the school is quiet and peaceful, features big windows to let in lots of sunlight, and is full of plants.
Fleming College also made Annie feel more confident about her job prospects, which was why she attended in the first place. Annie said her teachers emailed students job opportunities, related class material to real-life situations, introduced new job prospects and ideas, and welcomed guest speakers from the industry to class. And it worked out, as Annie was hired on contract by Central Lake Ontario Conservation Authority (CLOCA) as a GIS Assistant after graduating this year.
‚ÄúMy Fleming education definitely helped me get this job. During my interview, I was asked technical questions about various GIS applications, terms and systems. Without my Fleming education, I wouldn‚Äôt have been able to answer the majority of the interview questions,‚ÄĚ said Annie. ‚ÄúThe Career Centre at the school was also key to my success. They helped to mentally prepare me for the interview, and provided a general idea of what to expect and how best to conduct myself professionally.‚ÄĚ
As GIS Assistant, Annie develops and modifies the creation and implementation of geomatics databases; supports projects, including reports, databases, analysis and mapping requests; creates and prepares maps, graphs and other documents for presentations, training and publications; and provides staff with technical support on GIS software, and more.
‚ÄúThe best thing about my job at CLOCA is the people and the opportunities. The people at CLOCA are so friendly and supportive, I felt at home the moment I walked through the door on my first day,‚ÄĚ said Annie. ‚ÄúI feel like my Fleming education never ended! I have learned so much at CLOCA, it‚Äôs almost hard to comprehend– and I can‚Äôt wait to keep on learning!‚ÄĚ
Annie said she ‚Äú100%‚ÄĚ recommends the GIS ‚Äď Cartographic Specialist program at Fleming College. ‚ÄúIf you want a job in GIS, apply to this program, it will get you there. Quite a few organizations exclusively hire Fleming GIS graduates,‚ÄĚ she said. ‚ÄúThe school prepares you for the real world and the teachers are professionals in their fields, with a lot of first-hand experience in many different areas, provinces and countries.‚ÄĚ
Crystal Smith was stuck between a rock and a hard place when considering her post-secondary options for geology. As a kinesthetic learner, the applied approach of college appealed to Crystal; but industry professionals recommended a university degree. Luckily for Crystal, Fleming College‚Äôs Earth Resources Technician Co-op program offers the best of both worlds through Education Pathways.
‚ÄúI still haven‚Äôt stopped talking about my experiences at Frost Campus, so I would say it was great! The programs at Frost Campus offered so many opportunities to learn outdoors and gave me the confidence I needed going into outdoor and industrial workplace environments,‚ÄĚ she said.
Crystal recommends Frost Campus to those wanting to gain skills for resource and environmental industries, and to those who prefer an outdoor learning and working environment. ¬†‚ÄúAlso with the new GeoCentre being developed, it‚Äôs a great time to take the opportunity of using new labs and modern equipment,‚ÄĚ she added.
After graduating from Fleming College in 2016, Crystal used Fleming College‚Äôs Education Pathway to Acadia University in Nova Scotia and entered into the third-year of the Bachelor of Science in Geology program.
‚ÄúNova Scotia has an amazing geological history and the variety of rock types in such a small province makes for a great place to study,‚ÄĚ she said.
Crystal said she shares the knowledge and skills she gained at Fleming College with her peers at Acadia, and that Fleming prepared her for university in terms of time-management and hard work.
‚ÄúI would recommend the Education Pathway to any Fleming grad that thrives to learn more about geology and would like to travel and experience the East Coast,‚ÄĚ said Crystal. ‚ÄúSince I have been at Acadia, I have developed a greater understanding of petrology and continue to learn in detail about igneous, metamorphic and sedimentary rocks, along with their economic importance.‚ÄĚ
This summer Crystal put her knowledge and skills to work as a Field Assistant (Summer Student) for the Department of Natural Resources, Geological Division, where she stayed with three geologists and two other students.
As a Field Assistant, Crystal conducted soil sampling, surficial mapping, operated vehicles (including off-roading vehicles), and navigated using GPS, compass and maps. Once samples were collected and dry, they were processed in the lab; Crystal‚Äôs lab duties include splitting samples, sieving, operating a portable XRF for geochemical analysis and performing clast lithologies.
‚ÄúExploring by helicopter was hands-down the most exciting thing I did all summer. My field supervisor allowed me to navigate to a site using a GPS and a LIDAR map while in the helicopter and the best part of it all was flying around with the door open,‚ÄĚ said Crystal.
Crystal credits Fleming College for preparing her for this job. Through Fleming‚Äôs Earth Resources Technician Co-op program, Crystal learned how to navigate using GPS, compass and maps. And through the program‚Äôs Digital Image Interpretation course, Crystal learned how to use LIDAR images and remote sensing images, which helped her navigate and interpret results.
‚ÄúOne of the biggest skills that I continually used in the field and lab was safety awareness, mainly on trenching sites,‚ÄĚ she said. ‚ÄúSafety awareness was constantly stressed to students at Fleming College and after being in the field I am grateful that I know what to watch out for.‚ÄĚ
Crystal‚Äôs advice for current students is to know when you need motivation and to seek it. ‚ÄúI‚Äôve always felt inspired to learn more after listening to professional geologists tell their stories and share their great adventures in the field,‚ÄĚ said Crystal. ‚ÄúMy favorite was a lecture told by a Fleming graduate who also transferred to Acadia, who came and gave a speech to undergraduate students. I could relate to the academic route and at the same time the worldly adventures that person had throughout their career gave me enough inspiration that moment to gladly study more.‚ÄĚ