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"I really respond to the creativity in engineering."

Carly Heikkila had a head for science so she took a lot of science classes in high school with the idea of getting a degree in biology. Unfortunately, when she got to university she struggled to find focus and eventually dropped out before finishing her degree. She worked a number of retail jobs for a few years before getting interested in going back to school. "I heard about the BEST (Building Employment Success for Tomorrow) program from a co-worker and thought it would be a good way to discover what was available outside of the typical bachelor's program," says Carly.

Carly became interested in engineering after hearing one of the professors speak on how to build a robot. "He was happy to give me a tour of the facility and talk about the classes," says Carly. She decided to re-do her Math 10 and 11 because it had been a long time since she'd taken any math. She started with a self-paced, evening course while she was working full time but after she got laid off her schooling accelerated. She finished the first math course in less than four months and then signed up for the next level.  After some long days with lots of homework and with some great support from her instructors she completed both classes with A's.

In the fall of that year Carly entered the Mechanical Engineering Technology program. "It's hard and there's a lot of homework, but the subjects are interesting," says Carly.  "I'd never used the machinery in the shop before nor used the software we are learning. Everything is very new to me, but the teachers have been great at helping me, and repeating things so that I can understand. The only thing I would change is the early mornings. I'm not a morning person."

Carly is still in the early stages of figuring out what she wants to do in the future but she's looking forward to having that choice. "I really respond to the creativity in engineering," Carly says. "I've never really had the chance to make things with my hands like this and I'm really enjoying it, while being a little scared. And it's great to be around like-minded people who are all so smart. It's neat to see all the different ways people see the world."

Want to get started in Engineering?

Camosun offers a number of Engineering programs, including Civil Engineering Technology, Computer Systems Technology, Electronics & Computer Engineering Technology - Renewable Energy, and Mechanical Engineering Technology.

These two-year, hands-on programs give you the option of entering the work force in high-paying positions, right away or giving you the a strong basis for continuing on to University on your way to an Engineering Degree.

To help you get started on these demanding programs, Camosun also offers Academic Upgrading. These programs will help you master your studies or provide you with the requirements you may be missing.

If you're unsure of where to start, the  Building Employment Success for Tomorrow (BEST) program is a great first step to figuring out what to do with your career and education.

Change Everything

Last updated: September 23, 2015 5:05 pm

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