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Old 02-08-2019, 08:02 PM
11567403 11567403 is offline
 
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Default Another Career thread

Looking for some insite on career options, Iíve read through a lot of threads on here (including all 12 power engineering ones!) and seen some good information. The more I research the harder of a time Iím having picking a direction and Iím hoping for some first hand experience from people that have faced a similar choice.

Would also appreciate some first hand opinions from people in the military, I keep finding information about how underfunded they are and am having a hard time figuring out what day to day life is really like. It seems like a great option if your 18 but is it still worthwhile when your older? 12 years is a huge commitment.

I am in my mid 20s and have 2 years experience as a red seal millwright plus the five years of apprenticeship. (Worked M and R jobs in a couple different industries and have had some exposure to turbines)
Before that I worked as a labourer on farms and construction jobs.

I enjoy the trade and do not regret doing it at all but I feel like now is a perfect time to build on my education and try something different, I can always come back to it in the future. Itís only going to get harder to try something different in the future though.

Iím willing to take a significant pay cut and start from the bottom again in exchange for a new skill set.

Iíve taken aptitude tests and they seem to support the career options Iím considering.

I enjoy constantly learning and being challenged, isolation, being outdoors, the sciences, making things and working in small groups.

willing to relocate or put myself through further schooling.

Iím torn between pursuing a 2nd trade, or going an entirely different direction
All together.
the trades Iím leaning towards are:

Power linesman
Pros: good pay and in demand, working outdoors and at heights is something I enjoy, physically demanding, technical.
Cons: doesnít really build on a millwright ticket from what I can tell, lots of on call work.

Instrumentation
Pros: builds well on a millwright ticket, good pay, challenging with lots of room for continued learning.

machinist pros: something I really enjoy, and also builds nicely on a Millwright ticket, could also potentially lead to work as a gunsmith in a different political climate.
Cons: seems like a dying industry in Canada, not outdoors, potentially very repetitive.

A 2nd trade seems to me like a safe bet, probably the best decision financially, itís something I enjoy, but the trades come with there own drawbacks and Iím worried I would regret choosing a 2nd trade over one of the other options in the future. I also donít mind physical work but Iíve met a lot of older journeymen that have destroyed their bodies in the trades.

The other options Iím curious about are
Wild land firefighting (not sure if itís really a viable career to pursue being seasonal)
Guiding
Teaching (think Iíd enjoy it and the holidays and regular schedule would be nice but the political side of things looks like it could be a nightmare)
Environmental science
Helicopter pilot (would go the military route which seems like a 11-12 year process if you get in)
A 2nd trade in the military
Mechanical engineer
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Old 02-08-2019, 08:18 PM
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bloopbloob bloopbloob is offline
 
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Ever looked into the Blue Seal program? Business degree basically based of your Red Seal experience. Only 2 years I think. Been a while since I looked at the program. Still have it in the background of my mind as another step I may take. Get off the tools! Get paid for your brain, not your back if you can! May not be too bad being in your mid 20's, but it can catch up quick. I'm 36 now, and I can't imagine if I had stayed working the field/shop floor. My body hates me already. Big props to the guys who bust their arses their entire career. My dad was one of those guys. If you can better yourself, do it! Maybe look at certificates that don't usually take much schooling, but can add a ton of value to a resume and company. For example, I am a certified over head crane trainer (not just operator ticket). Only a 5 day course, and I can run my own classes to train people, and issue a MHSA certification ticket. I have a bunch of other things like that under my belt, just keep increasing your value.... Personal tickets don't mean too much, but when it qualifies you to qualify others, much more valuable to a company.

Last edited by bloopbloob; 02-08-2019 at 08:34 PM.
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Old 02-08-2019, 09:07 PM
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I'll also add this, search the job marketing sites for some of your ideas.... see how many options are actually out there up for grabs

I spent 5yrs, and went $48,000 in student loan debt pursuing a BSc Chemistry, turned into a BSc Ecology. I am now a welder..... there were no jobs to be had, and they paid less than our new minimum wage is at now. Ended up turning my summer job as a welders helper into my career.

Mech Eng. - I work with a mid 20's guy who got this degree 3yrs ago, super smart and top of his class. He couldn't get a job with his degree, and joined our company as a welder. Said after grad, only 2 out of 60 grads had jobs lined up.

Just something to think about.
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Old 02-08-2019, 09:44 PM
fishtank fishtank is online now
 
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Another option to consider is being your own boss ( economy sucks right now, but There might be opportunities lurking .)
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Old 02-09-2019, 05:19 AM
Supergrit Supergrit is offline
 
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Some helicopter companies would pay for some if the pilot license if you signed agreement with them. Maybe well operating and maintence from helicopter might be possibility(4th class power engineer might help). The military would be real tough to get in but itís worth a shot if makes you happy
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Old 02-09-2019, 05:30 AM
MooseRiverTrapper MooseRiverTrapper is online now
 
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Guide and work out of the hall doing whatever you can in the winter.
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Old 02-09-2019, 05:43 AM
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JohninAB JohninAB is offline
 
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If wildland firefighting intrigues you, get your Forest Tech diploma or Forestry degree and then pursue employment as a full time wildfire ranger/forest officer.
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ďEthical behavior is doing the right thing when no one else is watching- even when doing the wrong thing is legal.Ē

ďWe abuse land because we see it as a commodity belonging to us. When we see land as a community to which we belong, we may begin to use it with love and respect.Ē

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Old 02-09-2019, 06:51 AM
MrPants MrPants is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bloopbloob View Post
Ever looked into the Blue Seal program? Business degree basically based of your Red Seal experience. Only 2 years I think. Been a while since I looked at the program. Still have it in the background of my mind as another step I may take. Get off the tools! Get paid for your brain, not your back if you can! May not be too bad being in your mid 20's, but it can catch up quick. I'm 36 now, and I can't imagine if I had stayed working the field/shop floor. My body hates me already. Big props to the guys who bust their arses their entire career. My dad was one of those guys. If you can better yourself, do it! Maybe look at certificates that don't usually take much schooling, but can add a ton of value to a resume and company. For example, I am a certified over head crane trainer (not just operator ticket). Only a 5 day course, and I can run my own classes to train people, and issue a MHSA certification ticket. I have a bunch of other things like that under my belt, just keep increasing your value.... Personal tickets don't mean too much, but when it qualifies you to qualify others, much more valuable to a company.
The Blue Seal is just a certificate. I did mine a while back at NAIT took me 3 months of night classes and weekends.
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Old 02-09-2019, 07:44 AM
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sns2 sns2 is offline
 
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Will always be jobs for science teachers. Pay is capped after 10 years, but no complaints from me on that count. Incredible holidays, and though they don't have millwright classes, your background as a millwright would easily see you able to slide into a construction class if that would be up your alley.

Despite the rantings of some on AO, there is nothing political about teaching in the classroom. Curriculum, is a guide, 97% of it was made up by Conservative gov'ts, and you choose what you say. I refuse to say lots of the stuff that is in the health curriculum because of my old school worldview. So what. No one is standing in my classroom, and so no one knows if I just don't mention it. Problem solved.

Ultimately, go with something you enjoy.
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Old 02-09-2019, 07:46 AM
Vacation Vacation is offline
 
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As for the Envi Sci thing.....that is what I did, diploma and degree- P. Biologist and Tech Agrologist. Was a good path until a few years ago. Now still trying to get back on track. If I could do it again, I would stay away. Wish I would have taken the firefighter position I was offered right when I got accepted to college...doh!
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Old 02-09-2019, 07:53 AM
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There is always work in Water/wastewater treatment you can take the water treatment Tech course at Nait. People will never stop using water and never stop pooping.
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Old 02-09-2019, 07:57 AM
Big Grey Wolf Big Grey Wolf is offline
 
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"Young man I have only one word of advice for you, Diesel" The entire economy of western Canada runs on diesel engines that need to be repaired and cost big money when not operating. Jobs everywhere! after economy recovers. Related to your millwright training.
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Old 02-10-2019, 08:25 AM
AndrewM AndrewM is online now
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sns2 View Post
Will always be jobs for science teachers. Pay is capped after 10 years, but no complaints from me on that count. Incredible holidays, and though they don't have millwright classes, your background as a millwright would easily see you able to slide into a construction class if that would be up your alley.

Despite the rantings of some on AO, there is nothing political about teaching in the classroom. Curriculum, is a guide, 97% of it was made up by Conservative gov'ts, and you choose what you say. I refuse to say lots of the stuff that is in the health curriculum because of my old school worldview. So what. No one is standing in my classroom, and so no one knows if I just don't mention it. Problem solved.

Ultimately, go with something you enjoy.
How much extra time does being a science teacher involve? I know some classes are brutal for prep, marking and extra help. Curious how bad a science teacher is? Stuck working extra time often or able to use prep time effectively enough to keep ahead?
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Old 02-11-2019, 03:41 AM
11567403 11567403 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bloopbloob View Post
I'll also add this, search the job marketing sites for some of your ideas.... see how many options are actually out there up for grabs

I spent 5yrs, and went $48,000 in student loan debt pursuing a BSc Chemistry, turned into a BSc Ecology. I am now a welder..... there were no jobs to be had, and they paid less than our new minimum wage is at now. Ended up turning my summer job as a welders helper into my career.

Mech Eng. - I work with a mid 20's guy who got this degree 3yrs ago, super smart and top of his class. He couldn't get a job with his degree, and joined our company as a welder. Said after grad, only 2 out of 60 grads had jobs lined up.

Just something to think about.
Some good advice!
Iíve considered the blue seal but based on employers Iíve talked too and what Iíve seen in industry it seems like it wonít necesarrily get you off the tools any faster than just being good at what you do. I could be wrong on this also but it doesnít seem like itís really respected as a business degree equivalent outside of industry either. itís worth looking into again though I really havenít given much thought since the start of my apprenticeship.

The getting trained to be a trainer advice is something Iíve never considered
But thinking about guys Iíve worked with that had various tickets to train are definitely a bigger asset to the company and more employable.

Haha searching indeed for jobs right now is rather depressing.
Didnít realize how few helicopter jobs existed in Alberta.
Not much for power linesmen either.

And university scares me, I donít even know how many similar stories Iíve run into about people going into all kinds of debt and graduating to mowing lawns for years after. Seems like itís shoved down your throat so much in high school that a lot of people just assume itís the next logical step.
Seems like it takes 8 years of schooling to matter in a lot of careers with a few exceptions. A BSc in any of the sciences could be useful later on down the road though and might making moving into management as a welder easier in the future.

I appreciate your post, do you regret going to university in hindsight?
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:00 AM
11567403 11567403 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Supergrit View Post
Some helicopter companies would pay for some if the pilot license if you signed agreement with them. Maybe well operating and maintence from helicopter might be possibility(4th class power engineer might help). The military would be real tough to get in but itís worth a shot if makes you happy
Iíd imagine they would only pay for some if you already had quite a few hours banked? Thatís the first Iíve heard of that.
It seems like going to civilian route to helicopter pilot is very costly and you still canít compete with x military pilots when it comes to finding a job. Although you could probably do it a lot faster than 12 years. Iíll look into well operating a bit.
Any particular reason the military would be tough to get into?
Just a lot of competition for those spots when they come up? I know being bilingual isnít required when you apply but would it hurt your chances a lot not knowing French?
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:08 AM
11567403 11567403 is offline
 
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ďGuide and work out of the hall doing whatever you can in the winter.Ē

A simple solution to my predicament, also didnít consider that.
Thanks!
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:23 AM
11567403 11567403 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sns2 View Post
Will always be jobs for science teachers. Pay is capped after 10 years, but no complaints from me on that count. Incredible holidays, and though they don't have millwright classes, your background as a millwright would easily see you able to slide into a construction class if that would be up your alley.

Despite the rantings of some on AO, there is nothing political about teaching in the classroom. Curriculum, is a guide, 97% of it was made up by Conservative gov'ts, and you choose what you say. I refuse to say lots of the stuff that is in the health curriculum because of my old school worldview. So what. No one is standing in my classroom, and so no one knows if I just don't mention it. Problem solved.

Ultimately, go with something you enjoy.
Thanks for the reply, Iíve always assumed what you neglected teaching in the classroom would show up on the standardized tests and come back to bite you.
I know in high school the teachers pretty much just taught to pass the tests.
Some of the politics I was referring too was also parents from hell and never having privacy in the community. Every job comes with negatives though.

Iíd imagine teaching would be quite rewarding though.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:14 AM
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bloopbloob bloopbloob is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 11567403 View Post
Some good advice!
Iíve considered the blue seal but based on employers Iíve talked too and what Iíve seen in industry it seems like it wonít necesarrily get you off the tools any faster than just being good at what you do. I could be wrong on this also but it doesnít seem like itís really respected as a business degree equivalent outside of industry either. itís worth looking into again though I really havenít given much thought since the start of my apprenticeship.

The getting trained to be a trainer advice is something Iíve never considered
But thinking about guys Iíve worked with that had various tickets to train are definitely a bigger asset to the company and more employable.

Haha searching indeed for jobs right now is rather depressing.
Didnít realize how few helicopter jobs existed in Alberta.
Not much for power linesmen either.

And university scares me, I donít even know how many similar stories Iíve run into about people going into all kinds of debt and graduating to mowing lawns for years after. Seems like itís shoved down your throat so much in high school that a lot of people just assume itís the next logical step.
Seems like it takes 8 years of schooling to matter in a lot of careers with a few exceptions. A BSc in any of the sciences could be useful later on down the road though and might making moving into management as a welder easier in the future.

I appreciate your post, do you regret going to university in hindsight?
Do I regret it? Yes and no. It's a ton of money and time that I invested, only to not end up where I had hoped. But education is something that can never be taken away. What I learned in University has helped me tremendously in my new career path. Not many welders know calculus applied quantum physics, or statistical analysis, etc. etc.

It gave me a huge advantage getting to where I'm at now. Office job, doing QC/QA. I look over drawings, have pre-fab meetings, document things, track things, create graphs and trends, design jigs, look at stuff, teach. Redseal, B-pressure, CWB W47.1/W59 supervisor, MHSA crane trainer, ULC Gatekeeper, are the bigger credentials, plus lots of other little ones. I only do maybe 20hrs of actual welding a year now, on the really critical things and for training. I'm 36 now, and managed to get off the tools about 4 years ago. You sound ambitious, just start looking into things, and it will fall into place. Good luck! You have a 5year ticket already, it would be a shame to waste that.... I would look at building upon it... Just my 2 nickles
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:14 AM
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sns2 sns2 is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 11567403 View Post
Thanks for the reply, Iíve always assumed what you neglected teaching in the classroom would show up on the standardized tests and come back to bite you.
I know in high school the teachers pretty much just taught to pass the tests.
Some of the politics I was referring too was also parents from hell and never having privacy in the community. Every job comes with negatives though.

Iíd imagine teaching would be quite rewarding though.
Oh, I thought you were referring to what many AO users feel is an socialist brainwashing drive through curriculum. I was talking about transgendered and social justice yada yada.

Parents are parents. At high school level you rarely deal with them. Minor part of the job really.

It can be a rewarding job, but like anything, most days it can be a grind. Mature teachers usually get hired before the 22 yr old grads too.
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Old 02-11-2019, 06:16 AM
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sns2 sns2 is offline
 
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How much extra time does being a science teacher involve? I know some classes are brutal for prep, marking and extra help. Curious how bad a science teacher is? Stuck working extra time often or able to use prep time effectively enough to keep ahead?
English is by far the worst for marking. Social is 2nd. Science and Math not bad at all.

In terms of prep, once you have your lessons you have them, and you tweak to improve as you go. The first couple years in any subject can be tough though.

In today's world, I would not recommend making any of the core subjects listed above your major. I would suggest going into what we call CTS (career and technology studies) i.e. the trades.
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Old 02-11-2019, 07:48 AM
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Flatlandliver Flatlandliver is offline
 
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My 2 cents
I was a journeyman machinist in my 20ís (30 years ago) similar to you. I was quite successful too, good pay etc. But then... The economy wasnít doing so good and job security was becoming a concern for a guy with 2 kids and a mortgage. I was volunteering at my town fire department at the time so I had some idea of what that job/lifestyle was all about and applied to the big City. Got on the job and havenít looked back. Best career choice ever for me. Itís definitely not for everyone, donít for a minute think it is. You wonít get rich but you will wake up everyday happy to go to work. Been doing it 28 years now, 4 to go.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:19 PM
wildalberta wildalberta is offline
 
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im a journeyman instrument guy. I dont suggest it to be very lucrative right now. It would probably be very hard to break into as a green first year and go very far with it unless you had a good in with somebody. Its done well for me, i wish i was a journeyman sooner but oh well. Up until 2014 there was really good money to be had and endless employment opportunities. Now it is pretty dead and contractor rates are in the toilet.
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Old 02-11-2019, 12:24 PM
madshawn madshawn is offline
 
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If you're into marine engineering. The Canadian Coast guard has a 4 year program that gives e you a job after. It's a fantastic school and you get a weekly allowance. You don't have to pay to go to school there. No debt and a great job. After a few years in the coast guard you can take your tickets anywhere around the world. They also have a officer program. I did marine communications and traffic services, that's a 6 month certificate and have been working for the coast guard for the last 10 years.
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Old 02-11-2019, 04:14 PM
Supergrit Supergrit is offline
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 11567403 View Post
Iíd imagine they would only pay for some if you already had quite a few hours banked? Thatís the first Iíve heard of that.
It seems like going to civilian route to helicopter pilot is very costly and you still canít compete with x military pilots when it comes to finding a job. Although you could probably do it a lot faster than 12 years. Iíll look into well operating a bit.
Any particular reason the military would be tough to get into?
Just a lot of competition for those spots when they come up? I know being bilingual isnít required when you apply but would it hurt your chances a lot not knowing French?
The military I believe now could be way off I did look into once in my life to cause I love aviation. If you were to try for military itís not like you apply for just the helicopters pilot I think you would have to have a university degree or go to royal military college. Then branch off to aviation and there is some very bad smart people to compete with. Donít take my word for this look into it some more. One time aerial recon if you signed up with them for a certain amount of years they would pay for helicopter license this was a number of years ago and today market might be tough to finds this worth calling and asking.
The blue seal thing I got that it might help my resume but itís not like it got me anything at least weíre im at now. I fact pretty much got everything I could think off in my two trades guess just have to study and learn them deeper. Wish you luck if you could find something that doesnít feel like work that would be amazing. I donít have that wish i did.
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Old 02-11-2019, 05:03 PM
Saskfly16 Saskfly16 is offline
 
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Military aircraft technician but have worked on the civilian side as well. All I can recommend is pick a trade that they cannot fly or ship your work overseas.

They are and will continue to be screaming for pilots for the foreseeable future.

I recommended plumber to all my acquaintances that ask. Unless you want to join the military which, like the coast guard will teach you a trade and pay you well doing it.


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