The excellent Technological Education programs at Stratford Northwestern have provided Eden with amazing opportunities and have guided her to the apprenticeship career pathway. Eden was introduced to careers in the manufacturing sector by her grade nine teacher, Mr. Scheerer. By grade 10 she knew that she wanted to work in this field. Each year, she has enjoyed the Manufacturing courses that she has taken and she has appreciated Mr. Colling's knowledge and his ability to challenge her to become a better worker.
As a result of a job shadowing placement during his class, she was hired as a summer employee at a local industrial company as a Millwright. As a student in the OYAP - Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program, she has started her welding apprenticeship this school year with training in the evenings with the Technical Training Group and she will experience more hands-on learning with a co-op placement next semester. This unique program will allow her to put her skills to work in a real world setting and at the same time start earning hours towards becoming a welder. Always interested in learning, Eden plans to complete an apprenticeship as a Millwright after she becomes a licensed welder.
Eden is a well-rounded student. She excels academically and still has time to fit in numerous school activities. Hockey is one of her passions. She plays for both the city and as well as her school hockey team. She has been a valuable member of our school's swim team throughout her years, as well as a member of the track and field team. As a member of the Global Studies club, she experienced a trip of a lifetime to Switzerland and Italy. As she looks to forward to her future beyond high school, she states that she will look back fondly as her time as a Huskie, especially the many friends she has made and the amazing teachers she has encountered. Eden will be a welcomed addition to the workers in the skilled trades.
Nicholas Binet moved to Stratford in October of his grade 9 year. As a new student to the city and school, he was nervous but quickly realized that the students and teachers at Stratford Central were friendly and inclusive. His transfer to Central was seamless; he made friends and found classes that he enjoyed. In Grade 10, Nicholas took his first food and nutrition course (HFN2O). He didn't know what to expect but was pleasantly surprised by the course content and passion for cooking that he didn't even know he had. Nicholas will always remember his teacher, Mr. Wilson, as one of his favorite teachers and definitely his most influential. Mr. Wilson quickly noticed Nicholas' passion and was even able to give him his first knife kit.
Since then, Nicholas has included cooking into his timetable as much as possible. In order to do this, he selected our Grade 11 Food & Culture course (HFC3E) and Grade 12 Food & Nutrition class (HFA4C). In addition, he took advantage of some of Stratford Central's alternative programming including Cooperative Education where he worked as a prep cook at a local restaurant. He also participated in the Dual Credit Program offered by Conestoga College. Here, he was enrolled in Kitchen: Part 1 where he earned two credits. He followed up by taking Kitchen: Part 2 - Advanced. He really enjoyed this experience and learned some valuable skills that he will be able to use in the future.
Next semester, Nicholas is looking forward to his concurrent education experience at Northwestern SS. He will remain a student at Stratford Central in the morning and will take a bus to SNSS at lunch time in order to take advantage of some of the specialized programming offered there. When Nicholas graduates from Stratford Central in June, he looks forward to beginning his apprenticeship.
"It's ok to change your mind" says Jared Van Camp. Pathway planning has been an interesting journey for Jared. "I started out thinking I was going to be a programmer, coding computer games,but after taking a few tech courses I discovered the process did not interest me. I was actually more interested in the end product - I liked playing the games a lot more than coding. I then thought I wanted to be Drama teacher because I really enjoyed Drama but then found that I was not at all interested in teaching".
Jared thought he would try the Culinary Arts dual credit course because, even if he did not go in that direction, he would gain some valuable cooking skills. The dual credit experience has had a major impact on Jared. "It was a bit of a leap for me because it was a new situation with new people and I tend to be a bit of a shy person". "Once I got into it, however, it was a great experience and I was made to feel part of a team, we were always successful together". Jared recalls a situation where the class had to cook for people from several different school boards. "I felt it was a taste of the real chef experience, being part of a real restaurant team. "The experience was a real confidence boost for Jared and assured him that this was the direction he wanted to go. Jared is now looking at several college programs in the culinary arts some of which allow him to begin the apprenticeship process required for his certificate of qualification.
The culinary arts offer a lot of creativity and freedom; two important themes for Jared. "I like courses that allow a lot of freedom. I don't like being told "this is what you are doing'. I prefer "here is the broad idea, what is your take on it?'". Jared feels this could be why math has always been a struggle - it just doesn't allow for much creativity or freedom. "I'm a student who needs to be interested. If I lose interest then I tend to fall short on my work ethic for that subject. If I'm not interested it is hard to get my brain to absorb what is taught - I will try to find ways to connect it to my interests".
In closing Jared had this to say about highschool:"No matter how sure you are on something, highschool is a time in life where you will change your mind and then you will change your mind again and then you will be lost. That's ok to be lost. It's not something to be entirely worried about. Going into highschool I never imagined I would not go into programming or that I would want to become a teacher or that I would randomly take a chef course and then wind up wanting to be a chef. "
Cody Roden is a grade 12 student who attends Central Huron Secondary School and lives in the town of Seaforth with his mother. He has lived in Seaforth all of his life and was a former student of Seaforth Public School. His mother is a Registered Massage Therapist and his dad is a certified water technician.
Cody has always been actively involved in sports and has been a member of community hockey and baseball teams. Even though he is in his final year of high school and has not played basketball competitively since grade 9, he has been encouraged by some of his friends to join the senior boys basketball team this year. Cody is grateful for his entire high school experience. He feels that he has been given many opportunities to help him in making a decision as to what he will do after he has graduated. He has always been interested in the trades and took auto mechanics, manufacturing and construction. After working in all three areas, his preference was construction. He particularly enjoyed challenging projects they were given such as building a garden shed.
In second semester Cody is taking a cooperative work experience with a flooring company where he will learn to lay wooden and tile floors. His goal is to learn as many skills needed in building a house as possible. Eventually he would like to apprentice as a carpenter. He hopes to apply to the carpentry technician course at Fanshawe College.
Cody gives credit to his father for instilling in him agood work ethic. He taught Cody that if he is to continue going to school or trying to find employment , that he needs to be reliable and responsible and do the job to the best of his ability. HIs love of woodworking was further encouraged by his father who started a small woodworking business on the side where Cody is employed.
Blake is a grade 11 student at LDSS. He recently signed up with OYAP and is hoping to pursue an apprenticeship in mechanics when he finishes High School. Blake has enjoyed the shops in school. He likes the welding shop the best!
Blake is currently in co-op and has found it very valuable. He has found his pathway!
High school has been a great experience for Allison. MDHS has helped her focus on a future career. She has been able to be her own self without worrying about what others think and being comfortable with being one of the few girls taking shop classes.
Allison has many good memories of her school experiences - the women in Trades experiences at Conestoga College particularly stand out. Construction is her favourite class. Allison learned a lot and feels the course has really prepared her to work in a real life shop with the emphasis Mr. Schmalz has placed on being hard working and organized. He is her favourite teacher- she appreciates how he treats her as an equal, not just as a girl in a shop class. She finds him encouraging and positive to pursuing a trade. He helps everyone in class and makes sure they are having a great time while learning. Allison has also enjoyed math and art as subjects. She is a independent student who is curious and asks lots of questions. She is helpful and tries to help anyone she can. Allison intends to pursue an apprenticeship as a cabinet maker. Allison's most important influences for success has been her friend Sara - she has encouraged Allison to do her best and is always there for her. Allison knows that her future will include a happy life as a successful craftsperson with her own cabinet maker's business.
Nathan grew up on a farm just outside of Exeter with his two younger sisters and parents. He attended Usborne Central Public School until it joined with South Huron District Elementary School in grade 7. He was a part of the first group ever to graduate grade 8 from South Huron's elementary wing. While attending South Huron, Nathan has been the top male academic student each year. He has also held down part time jobs at Dykstra Trucking, Emmanuel Baptist Church summer camps, and Hi-Tech Industrial Machine. Nathan has been a member of the SHDHS curling team since grade nine and hopes to finish strong this year. Nathan has become very involved in the tech programs at South Huron, developing skills to accompany his hobby of designing and building. Nathan was able to build a CNC gantry mill during manufacturing class and the odd lunch break. He has used it to create a hobby business of creating custom clocks and engravings.
In his senior year, Nathan is taking courses focused on his passion for technologies and tool and die including a two credit co-op at Hi-Tech Industrial Machine through Ontario Youth Apprenticeship Program (OYAP). Nathan will graduate with his red seal diploma as a Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) in Transportation Technology. Recently, Nathan has been touring locations to begin an apprenticeship in Tool and Die. He is very interested in the world of prototyping and seeing ideas come to life. He thinks that down the road he will get training in computer assisted drawing for programs such as Solidworks. This way he can pursue his passion of designing what the customer wants and then going out and building it. Nathan has already started thinking about starting his own shop after he has completed his apprenticeship. He is very appreciative of the experiences he has had at SHDHS so that he can continue to develop his abilities and pursue his passion.