Then and Now

25 juin 2020 11:26 Published by 2 commentaires

Hello blog connoisseur, welcome to what is my green dream blog. In my first ever blog post, I want to highlight where I’ve been and where I am now, and how the forestry industry helped me become who I am today.

First things first, my name is Ty Edwards. I am an engineering student born and raised in Meadow Lake, a small town of about 5000 in north-western Saskatchewan. Having completed my first year at the University of Alberta, I am back at Tolko Industries for the summer.

I want to start by giving a brief summary of my past, as it is important to me and will give you all a better understanding of me as a person.

I will start with high school. There wasn’t much to it in high school, I was your typical kid that didn’t need to put 100% effort into his studies. I graduated with good grades and high motivation to do well in university.

That was when Tolko recruited me. Fresh out of high school, they took me on as an engineering summer student. The things I have learned from the insurmountable source of knowledge here has helped me excel as a person. Not only have I learned skills crucial to my career, but also skills that I can be proud of and enjoy learning and experiencing. I believe having fun doing what you love is a key part of life, and through the help of Tolko, I am happily on my way!

After the summer of 2019, it was time to depart for school. I always thought of Meadow Lake as my home and had no intentions of changing my mind; but that changed drastically when I moved to Edmonton.

kids basketball team

Figure 1: My friends and I participating in dodgeball, UAlberta’s favourite sport (which happens to be the largest dodgeball league in North America)

Uptight, stressed, overworked. University was nothing less than a challenge. The transition from high school to an institution such as the U of A was tough, but not surprising. The skills I learned to better myself academically, physically, emotionally, and mentally will stick with me for a long time, and I couldn’t be prouder.

The real reason I wanted to talk about my past is because of the people I met. I believed I already knew what a real friend was before I moved. I believed I was leaving behind everything I had. I believed I would never find what I was looking for in the city. I was wrong.

My friends became my foundation. I used to live for a mix of school, video games, and volleyball, never thinking about anything else and simply cruising through life. I now live to see my friends smile and grow, no matter how far apart we are. We all come from different backgrounds, but the differences we have and push upon each other paired with our similarities connect us. I love my friends and no amount of words I put in a blog can express the pure joy I feel being around them. No matter how long or little I’ve known them, nothing but kindness has ever come from them. I miss all of them dearly and can’t wait to see them in the fall. This coming Saturday I am departing to Calgary to visit some of them. I hope to blog some of it to show all of you!

young men in lab

Figure 2: Two of my best friends and I performing a lab about acid-base buffers and their capacity

That about covers the gist of it. I hope this helps you connect with me on a more personal level. It’s about time I talk about where I am today.

As mentioned before, I’m one of the few engineering students here at Tolko OSB Meadow Lake Division. I have a hope of entering Mechanical Engineering while currently working under the maintenance team that specializes in the electrical side of things.

The forestry industry has been incredibly good to me. During this internship, I have been provided projects that help me grow, yet be proud of at the same time. Maybe I will show off what I get to do, considering I doubt there are many other interns in my position. The learning opportunities provided are versatile; there is an opportunity for almost anyone. Not to mention how well we are treated.

The workplace feels safe, yet productive.  You can just tell how much appreciation the company has for its employees. By mere coincidence, today is our ‘Employee Appreciation Lunch,’ which is Tolko’s way of thanking everyone for their hard work and dedication. Being an engineering student, I never would have guessed the forestry industry would produce any kind of job opportunity. Again, I was wrong. I may not work directly with trees but being able to proudly say that I work with an environmentally conscious, sustainable company is fulfilling. I can’t wait to see what else is in store for me here!

lunch boxes stacked

Figure 3: Food given to employees at the Employee Appreciation Lunch

This is only my first post, and I’m excited to share more with everyone interested in my experiences and journey. Thank you! Until next time.


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