Canadian Electrical Industry News Week

June 15, 2020

Shannon TymoskoBy Blake Marchand

Shannon Tymosko is a first-year apprentice with IBEW (International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers) Local 105, something she undertook after 10 years working her way up the ranks of a payday loan company.

“One of the things I love, working in the trades, is you can see your progress and you can see at the end of the day the work that you have done.

“I go home every day feeling a sense of pride and accomplishment.”

Shannon initially took on a pre-apprenticeship machinist program at YWCA Hamilton. However, at the end of her co-op she wasn’t hired full time by her employer due to costs and tariffs imposed at the time by the US on steel, and had trouble finding a job.

“I’m assuming it was because of my gender; I know that’s quite the assumption,” she said. “At the time I left Dofasco (the company that she did her co-op with) there was another girl named Danny. Danny is a boy’s name, right, and so we both obviously had a very similar resume, we both had a co-op at Dofasco, and we’re both on Indeed and those kinds of places… In the two weeks that followed our co-op, Danny had three interviews and I had not received one phone call.”

Shannon understands that some small machine shops may not be prepared to take on women because there are so few in the trade. The changes they would have to make to accommodate a woman could be costly, she said, particularly for small shops.

After several months without making any progress towards finding a job, she went back to the YWCA to take on the electrical pre-apprenticeship program, “which has opened up so many more avenues,” she said.

“I finished my pre-apprenticeship program which the IBEW had participated in facilitating some of our training — working at heights training and lockout, tagout training. I reached out to them for a job and was very lucky they opened their doors and took me on. Since then the IBEW has been nothing but amazing and encouraging, including sponsoring and attending the YWCA Women of Distinction dinner with me as support. It is awesome to know I have so much support from my hall and brothers and sisters in the trades.”

Shannon was subsequently laid off, due to the pandemic. Before restrictions were put in place on construction projects, she was working on a hotel in Burlington, her first project as an electrical apprentice. Now she is back on the job.

Shannon said she feels fortunate to be with a good crew at her current job, one that is supportive and is making an effort to include her in more than just the labour aspect of the job. But that also comes down to her personality. She is eager to learn and isn’t afraid to ask questions and to get involved in things she hasn’t done before on the job, such as bending and installing conduit, pulling and running wire, and the complete rough in of the suites. Her team ensures she is involved in every step of the process, including the completion of the mock-up suite for the hotel owners to review. Seeing how it was done from top to bottom was a great learning experience.

“I’ve been very fortunate to have a very good site, a very good team that’s allowed me to have good learning environment.”

“There are some struggles being the only girl, there are some physical aspects I struggle to do, which is where I have to focus on working smarter, not harder because I can still do it, I just might have to think of another way to get around it. But I like the challenge of looking at something I’ve never done,” she said. Looking at a particular task or aspect of the job and working through the best way to tackle it and ultimately turning out a finished product is rewarding.

Although it can be intimidating walking onto a jobsite as the only woman, particularly in the first few days, once you get into the work and a routine gender isn’t as big of a factor. She has been able to build solid relationships with her journeyman and has obtained some great experience.

Shannon is still uncertain where she wants to go with her career as an electrician. Being new to the trade she is still learning about what opportunities there are throughout the various sectors of the industry. However, she is an ambitious person who is passionate about her work and her potential.

“I am excited about learning and seeing what’s out there. I’m sure there will be some avenue I really find quite exciting, but right now because I’m so new everything is quite exciting. I want to build a foundation and build my skills and see where that takes me.”

Shannon is also an active participant in the broader industry as an advocate with KickAss Careers, an educational group and advocate for MITC (mechanical, industrial, technology, construction) careers and workplace equality founded by Jamie McMillan, a journeyman ironworker, and Pat Williams, a retired stationary operating engineer.
Shannon became aware of the organization after Jamie gave a presentation to her pre-apprenticeship program.

“I was inspired by this woman and motivated; it gave me that drive. It’s nice knowing — you don’t always work with other women, but there are a lot of women in the trades just kind of dispersed. So, to have that support even though you don’t see it at work every day is really nice.”

On the night before her first day with IBEW she found out someone close to her had passed away, and although she didn’t have a personal relationship with Jamie at that time, she reached out for advice.

“That really solidified our bond, I think, and from there it’s developed even more. I have since become an ambassador for KickAss Careers, had the honour to attend the YWCA Women of Distinction as an IBEW representative, taken part in a trade career fair with OYAP (Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program) and visited a high school discussing my journey and passion as a tradesperson.” Part of the reason she wanted to get involved is that while in high school, although she was the only girl in her year to take shop, a career in the trades wasn’t presented as an option for her. And with her current opportunity as an apprentice, she sees the prospects of a promising career in a job that she enjoys. One where she can earn decent living and retire with a pension and feel satisfied with her day’s work.

Blake Marchand is Assistant Editor Kerrwil Electrical Group


      Salex Welcomes New Partner: Senso by Lumini                    

LDS Salex Spotlight 400Salex is pleased to announce a new partnership with Senso by Luminii – a Canadian manufacturer of locally made LED fixtures. As of August 6, Salex will represent their lighting products in the Southwestern Ontario region.

With every product, Senso Lighting pursues a vision of providing flexible and environmentally conscious lighting solutions to upgrade the typical fluorescent office. For over ten years, the Canadian manufacturer has specialized in LED technology and embarks on a mission to illuminate commercial spaces with custom solutions that are beautiful, economical and sustainable.


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#IDEALTruckinIDEAL has a long history of offering collectible toy trucks, which have always been a popular item with electricians and contractors, So they are very excited to announce our 2020 promotion, Keep on Truckin’ with IDEAL.

This fall, participating distributors will receive two 1:24 scale, diecast Dodge RAM® 1500 pickup trucks, complete with IDEAL branding, to raffle to their customers. The toy trucks will also be available as a premium to end-users who make a qualifying purchase of a barrel of Can-Twist™ Wire Connectors during the promo period.

 

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Connected Drum Internet of Things Nexans Canada has launched a service providing cable reel tracking via connected devices. The “Connected Drum” Internet of Things (IoT) service allows customers to benefit from real-time location, theft and loss detection and management of residual cable lengths on reels. 

By tracking and monitoring a fleet of cable reels that are off-site or at subcontractor locations, significant savings can be realized. The service includes an online and mobile software platform for efficient and convenient management. This innovation provides customers with the real-time location of each reel as well as an alert system for monitoring on-site events including deliveries and pick-ups.

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ManitobaThe Manitoba government has expanded its Back to Work in Manitoba Wage Subsidy Program as part of its continued commitment to safely restarting the provincial economy.

“The Back to Work wage subsidy is benefiting hundreds of Manitoba businesses that are bringing back employees who were laid off during the COVID-19 pandemic, and hiring more staff to boost their operations and provide valued services to Manitobans,” said Manitoba Premier Brian Pallister. “Manitoba has designed some of Canada’s strongest support programs to help relieve small businesses of unexpected financial burdens...

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We are quickly approaching January 2021 and publication of the 5th edition of the CSA Z462 Workplace electrical safety Standard. This is good news for Canada as we continue to evolve in our identification and management of the electrical hazards of arc flash and shock.

But as I have quoted in the past, we need to ensure we are getting it right, and there is still a lot of work to be done. Most of the focus has been on arc flash and I am concerned that the electric shock hazard has been neglected.

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Keith SonesBy Keith Sones

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But I’m getting ahead of myself, as I sometimes do. Sorry about that. Let me roll back time a bit for you. It’ll make the story easier to understand.

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Mersen IsoMAXXMersen is pleased to introduce its high performance IsoMAXX Vacuum Brazed Cold Plates. This patented design is the optimum cooling solution for latest generation PrimePACK IGBTs. IsoMAXX represents a super compact cooling solution providing unsurpassed cooling performance with a high degree of thermal homogeneity on chip-to-chip and module-to-module configurations.

As market needs for more efficient electrical power conversion designs grow, so do the technological advancements from power electronic module manufacturers. The new generation of PrimePACK IGBT modules now boast an increased power dissipation compared to previous generations. 

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Betacalo Soft SQThe optimally engineered diffuser throws the light downwards exactly where it is required, while creating a subtle indirect glow on the ceiling. Ideally suited for atriums, lobbies, boardrooms and reception areas.

Body: Aluminum and steel.

Diffuser: Opal acrylic.

Drivers: HPF electronic for 120-277V (EU-240V)

Remote mounting of drivers: Wire Size (max distance from canopy to drivers) 18 AWG - 9.5' (2.9m), 16 AWG - 19.5' (5.9m), 14 AWG - 29.5' (9m). Drivers must be accessible after installation.  

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Dee DurantDee Durant is an industrial electrician apprentice attending Conestoga College and an Ambassador for Kick Ass Careers. As an ambassador for KickAss Careers she spent time shadowing mentor and KickAss founder Jamie McMillan attending events for the organization.

The advancement of women in male dominated industries is an important endeavor for Durant, inspired by her mother, who was the first woman on the Brantford Police department. In EIN's interview with Durant, she discussed the future of electrical work, and how the ongoing pandemic is affecting our country’s students.

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EE LightingBy Blake Marchand

Energy Efficient Lighting is a LED lighting manufacturer with nearly 30 years of industry experience. One that was founded on principles of environmental sustainability and responsibility to future generations. Based out of Markham, Ontario, they offer complete lighting solutions for commercial and industrial applications.

Their product lines include conventional lighting fixtures, LED retrofit kits, complete LED luminaires, LED systems, drivers and electronic ballasts. 

 

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