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A millwright, or industrial mechanic, is a tradesperson who installs, maintains and repairs stationary industrial machinery and mechanical equipment. They interpret drawings, follow layouts and assemble parts until they are in perfect working order. Millwrights and industrial mechanics work in a variety of industries, and can pursue complementary training and develop extra skills in steel fabrication, welding, machining, electronics, hydraulics or pneumatics.
Construction millwrights are mostly engaged in the initial installation of industrial plant machinery and equipment. Industrial mechanics are more concerned with the post-installation maintenance and repair of machinery and equipment.
Industrial mechanics and millwrights may be cross-trained in a second trade such as pipefitting, welding, machining or electrical maintenance. A day in the life of a millwright might involve installing a giant turbine for an industrial mechanic to maintain and keep humming.
You should finish high school before pursuing a career as a millwright or industrial mechanic. Then you will need to complete a three- to five-year apprenticeship program or a combination of work experience in the trade and some high school, college or industry courses over five years.
Certification is required by all provinces. An interprovincial Red Seal endorsement is also available to allow your skills to be officially recognized across Canada.
Apprentices can receive up to $4,000 in grants to pay tuition, travel, tools, or other expenses.
If you are considering an apprenticeship, visit the Red Seal program for information on how to get started.
As the job title suggests, working as a power steam engineer is all about keeping power running in big industrial and commercial facilities. Efficiency and safety are your two biggest responsibilities. Your duties include supervising, operating and maintaining machinery and boilers that provide steam, power, heat, refrigeration and other utility services. Many mills are automated to improve efficiency and safety. These automated systems are often the responsibility of power steam engineers.
In some mills, senior power steam engineers work in control rooms. They need to be able to analyze problems and take action to keep a mill running smoothly and safely. More junior power steam engineers may find themselves spending most of their time on the mill floor monitoring and adjusting equipment.