Canadian Electrical Industry News Week

Oct 8, 2020

EIN Kenzie Gillian 400By Sarah Pickard

Mackenzie Gillan, a bright young lady from Baysville, Ontario, tells us about how she learned to love the electrical trade in high school, and how that path has carried her forward to unexpected places and new heights—literally. Gillan is set to begin a Powerline Technician Apprenticeship with Hydro One, and as she explains below, she had some interesting experiences during two college co-op placements. While her career has just begun, Gillian is already active in the broader industry as an advocate for women, working as an ambassador for KickAss Careers, Women of Powerline Technicians, and Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE).

Can you tell me a bit about yourself and your career so far? 

Growing up I played a lot of competitive sports and believed that going to university on an athletic scholarship was the only pathway for me to be successful. In my later years of high school, I started to realize that I didn’t like working inside at a desk, and the university pathway may not be the right fit for me. 

Due to moving in my senior year of high school, I had to take an extra semester to graduate. Moving from the city of Barrie to the small village of Baysville in Muskoka really opened my eyes to the career paths in the skilled trades. Also, being the new kid at school and not knowing too many people gave me the confidence to try things out of my comfort zone.  I decided to take a dual-credit electrical installation class run by my high school and local college. I was one of two girls in my class, which was a little intimidating at first, but I absolutely loved the work that I was doing and didn’t care that I stuck out like a sore thumb. 

From there, I seriously considered pursuing the trades as my career. I stumbled across a college program called “Powerline Technician” and started doing some research. I loved all the components of it and I actively started to work towards being a top candidate for acceptance into the colleges. I was accepted into my top choice, Conestoga college, starting the fall of 2018. I loved what I was learning in school and started looking forward to going to class and learning. I knew that I found the right career path for me.

Through the college, I was able to complete two co-op terms. The first was painting Transmission structures across New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The second was with Toronto Hydro. This gave me some exposure to the trade outside of the college. 

In my third semester of college, I applied to a Hydro One/ PWU hiring Hall apprenticeship posting. Knowing that it is very competitive to get an interview/ hired on, I had taken as many extra training certificates to make myself a top candidate for the job. However, I was doubtful that I would hear back. Thankfully, I received an interview and an apprenticeship offer. I am set to start my apprenticeship with Hydro One soon.

What drew you to the electrical field?

At my high school in Barrie, I had a good physics teacher that made the electricity section of the curriculum interesting and fun to learn. The experience I had in Ms. Macfie’s class made career paths in the electrical field really stand out to me. 

What do you do in your current role, what are some of the rewards/challenges?

When I start my apprenticeship, I will be building and maintaining the distribution and transmission lines of Ontario’s Grid. Basically, powerline technicians (linemen) ensure that power travels from the generation station safely to the consumer’s meter. 

When it comes to challenges, there are so many different aspects of the trade and so much to learn. Especially as a new employee in the field, every day you could be doing something completely different from the last. It’s important to always be asking questions and ensuring that you are working safely. Also, the trade can be physically demanding. Some components require you to use muscles that you may not have used before. It is important to keep physically fit and learn/ practice proper techniques for those components.

As for rewards, it’s a great feeling when you finally accomplish a new skill that was challenging. Every day is something new when you get to work in a team environment, and the views from the air are incredible. The trade can take you places that you have never even heard of before. You get paid to travel and experience new places.

What areas of the industry interest you most? Where do you hope to go with your career?

As I am just starting out my career, pretty much everything in my field really interests me. Starting out, it is crucial to learn the basics of being a good ground hand first. But as I progress, I am looking forward to live line work. Also, I know it is very competitive to get into helicopter work in the trade, but helicopter work is the top thing that interests me. 

What is the worst/best job/project/service call you have ever had, and why?

When I was on my first coop painting transmission structures, I had the opportunity to visit the Maritimes. This was something that had been on my bucket list since I was in elementary school. Not only did I get paid to travel out there and had my living expenses covered, I had some of the coolest views of New Brunswick and Nova Scotia. The first time I had really got to see the Ocean (Bay of Fundy) was at a jobsite in Saint John’s New Brunswick. One tower I worked on in Dartmouth Nova Scotia perfectly overlooked the suspension bridge to Halifax. Another tower I worked on was in Tiverton, Nova Scotia. Before I worked there, I had never heard of Brier or Long Island before. We had to take ferries every day to get to and from work. Some days it was so foggy on top of the tower that you couldn’t see the ground. Others, it was clear enough to see for miles. One day I was fortunate enough to watch dolphins swim and jump while I worked. No office view could beat any of these views.

How has the pandemic affected your work?

The pandemic has postponed my start date with Hydro One. As much as I would love to be starting my apprenticeship right away, I understand they are taking all necessary precautions to keep their staff and communities safe. I am using the delay in my start date as an opportunity to finish my college diploma at Conestoga College.

What trends in the industry are you most excited by right now?

I am very interested to see how advancing technology and consumer trends affect the grid. Electric Vehicles seem to be rising in popularity. It will be very interesting to see how EV’s play a part with the bidirectional grid.

Changing Scene

  • Prev
MP Scott Duvall has introduced an amendment to the Income Tax Act regarding travel expenses for ...
George Brown College has partnered with Hilti (Canada) Corporation to help women build rewarding ...
Signify and the National Hockey League (NHL) has announced a partnership to help the more ...
Join the Electricity Distributors Association (EDA) on March 23 for a virtual session during which ...
ABB is hosting a Smart Building thought leadership session with six webinars presented by industry ...


 

www.liteline.com

 

 

 

 


 

Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussion Group: Can You Count the Deficiencies?

EIN CECD 400Have you ever been called to fix the work of a 'handyman'?

"Was supposedly done by a"certified ' electrician....told the homeowner that he got a $266 permit....no record at TSBC. Can you count the deficiencies?"

"There is a second panel change in the triplex also.......even more deficiencies. Think the guy was a glorified handyman. Ones not obvious: 240 BB heat hooked up 120....drier on 2p20....range on 2p50....water heater fed with 2c14 Bx on 2p15."

Go HERE to join the discussion

 


 

Surgelogic RecallProduct: Surgelogic™ NQ SurgeLoc™ Surge Protection Device.

Issue: The Surgeloc Surge Protection Device can experience an arc event, which can result in a fire hazard.

What to do: Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled surge protection devices and contact Schneider Electric for instructions on receiving a free equivalent replacement surge protector.

 

 

Read More


 

Latest Articles

  • Prev
Section 32 – Fire Alarm Systems, Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Alarms, and Fire Pumps, as outlined in ...
My name is Shannon Tymosko. I am a 2nd year Electrical Apprentice with the International ...
Being a female in the trade and a new apprentice, I had no idea what to expect on this jobsite. I ...
The electric shock hazard has been neglected.  Journeyman Electricians have accepted been ...
When it comes to EFC’s membership, there is no shortage of talent and expertise. The electrical ...
Section 30 - Installation of Lighting Equipment as outlined in Rule 30-000 Scope is a supplementary ...
The Internet of Things (IoT) can help create safer workspaces, and connected lighting systems are ...
While the number of business openings (49,956) exceeded the number of business closures (35,533) ...


Terry BeckerBy Terry Becker, P.Eng., CESCP, IEEE Senior Member

The electric shock hazard has been neglected.  Journeyman Electricians have accepted been shocked as part of the job, a “right” of passage, a badge of honour. 

This has not been acceptable and Journeyman Electricians may not be aware of the long term sequela health effects of receiving multiple low voltage electrical shocks and how it may have impacted them.  With respect to treatment there is only a single formal recognized treatment centre in Canada, the St Johns Rehab Centre. Electrical Injury Program.

Read More


 

EIN Code Quiz 2Take this opportunity to test your knowledge of the Canadian Electrical Code - Part 1. Here are two questions on essential electrical systems: health care. 

You'll find the answers in EIN articles written by our code experts — mainly Bill Burr and Terry Becker — and of course in your own best practices. Answers will be posted on our website in a few days and published in our next issue. Good luck and share your results with our Facebook group: Canadian Electrical Contractor Discussions.

 

 

Read More


 

Daniela De MarcoBy Daniela De Marco

When it comes to EFC’s membership, there is no shortage of talent and expertise. The electrical community is innovative and at the forefront of powering our changing world. In 2020, EFC released a call to members for a chance to participate in the recently launched electro|POD — EFC’s Electrical Community Podcast.

Together with Gurvinder Chopra, VP Standards and Regulations, EFC, Rob McIntrye, recently retired Business Sections Manager, expert member Vladimir Gagachev, Manager Codes & Standards, Eaton Industries (Canada), and myself, Daniela De Marco,

Read More


 

Product News

  • Prev
Individually tested to 10,000 volts AC and rated to 1,000 volts AC for safety and peace of mind. ...
The VS-AVT-C08-L10 VeriSafe Absence of Voltage Tester is the first-of-its-kind voltage tester that ...
HPS Drive Isolation Transformers, are designed to meet the rugged demands of both AC and DC ...
Plug-and-Play Gimbal System for the DJI Matrice 200 Series and Matrice 300 Offers High-Definition ...
MaxLite has announced the launch of c-Max Lighting Controls, a patent pending design that makes it ...
Klein Tools, for professionals since 1857, introduces a new line of conduit benders, available in ...
Any time an electrician or technician makes a voltage measurement on a live conductor, there is a ...
Autodesk, Inc. has announced the worldwide availability of Autodesk Takeoff, a new product ...
Autodesk, Inc. has announced Autodesk Build™, a new project and field management ...
The eLumigen High CRI C1D2 LED Fixture is the ideal light source replacement for Paint Booth, ...

 

Extech Non-Contact High Voltage DetectorFLIR Systems has announced the availability of the Extech DV690 its first non-contact high voltage detector with a detection range of up to 69,000 volts (69 kV). The industrial-grade DV690 provides early warning alerts of energized electrical components for utility lineworkers, telecommunications installers, first responders, search and rescue teams, and tree removal services.

The DV690 features five flexible mounting options: handheld, around the neck, clipped to a belt, strapped to an arm, or attached to a universal spline hot stick. The three handsfree possibilities allow the most optimal operation to efficiently and carefully complete a job. Using a hot stick creates a safer distance to target, extending operator reach.

Read More


 

 

Milwaukee Radius Compact Site LightThe M18 RADIUS Compact Site Light with Flood Mode provides a two-in-one solution for area and task lighting with less to carry. The compact LED light delivers 2,200 lumens in area mode and 1,000 lumens in flood mode. The light offers up to 16 hours of run-time with the option to be plugged in using the AC inlet for extended run-time.

Its compact size allows you to take this site light on and off the jobsite effortlessly and its 4-1/4" metal hanging hook allows you to easily hang the light overhead. The durable light is equipped with a high impact polycarbonate lens to withstand harsh jobsite abuse. The LEDs never need to be replaced and are backed by a limited lifetime warranty. 

Read More


 

 

Panel PC1200With the Panel PC 1200, B&R introduces a compact and cost-effective all-in-one PC. Equipped with the latest Intel Atom processors and up to 256 GB of mass storage, the Panel PC 1200 is ideal for running HMI applications under Windows or Linux operating systems.

With 2x Gigabit Ethernet and 2x USB 3.0, the Panel PC 1200 is ready for integration into any machine network. Compact CFast cards are used for data storage.

 

 

 

Read More


 



EIN Green 100 400

By Blake Marchand

This past December Jennifer Green was honoured with Canada’s Most Powerful Women Top 100 Award for the Skilled Trades category by WXN (Women’s Executive Network).

“It is truly an honour to be recognized by WXN and to be among this group of amazing women,” said Green of earning the distinction. “Throughout my career, I’ve worked with many great mentors and team members – to them, I say thank you for always inspiring me. I am absolutely thrilled.” Green is an industrial mechanic millwright by trade and works with Skills Ontario as Director of Competitions and Young Women’s Initiatives. 

Read More


 

Jo Istanbul Four Seasons ABy Owen Hurst

Recently, Electrical Industry Canada has developed a relationship with Women in Renewable Energy (WiRE), a non-for-profit group developing resources and networking potential for women and all working or planning to work within the renewable energy sector. Aside from being the WiRE President & CEO, Joanna Osawe is the Global Business Development Manager of Major Projects for DMC Power Inc.

EIN sat down with Osawe to learn more about WiRE and the substantial benefits it provides. Joanna is very personable and open regarding her career and her ambition, as well as the opportunities she is developing for women nationally and globally. 

Read More


 

Stephanie SmithBy Blake Marchand

“It was quite surprising,” said Stephanie Smith of being named EHRC’s Leader of the Year. “Leadership in 2020 has certainly been a challenge for everybody in the world let alone the nuclear industry or the electricity industry.”

An engineer by trade, Smith spent the majority of her career with Ontario Power Generation (OPG). She was the first woman to be certified by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission at the Pickering Nuclear Generating Station where she served as Plant Manager and was recently named the first President and CEO of CANDU Owners Group. Smith is also a passionate advocate for diversity and inclusion.

Read More


 

Copper $US Dollar price per pound

Kerrwil Publications Great Place to Work. Certified December 2019 - December 2020

538 Elizabeth Street, Midland,Ontario, Canada L4R2A3 +1 705 527 7666
©2021 All rights reserved

Use of this Site constitutes acceptance of our Privacy Policy (effective 1.1.2016)
The material on this site may not be reproduced, distributed, transmitted, cached or otherwise used, except with the prior written permission of Kerrwil