When you know, you know

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Darius Brons-Cooney’s summer job helping heavy duty mechanics at Fabrite turned out to be life-changing, solidifying his decision to become a heavy duty equipment technician. With that settled, he couldn’t wait to get started.

“I knew what career I was pursuing, and I wanted a way to have an early start on it,” Darius said. “I, like a lot of people, didn’t enjoy high school and was eager to do something to help me get ahead in life.”

Darius had the opportunity to enrol in the Youth Train in Trades (YTT) program, completing his foundation-level Heavy Duty Equipment Technician training during his Grade 12 year. YTT is an avenue for high school students to get a head start on a skilled trades apprenticeship program while simultaneously earning graduation credits.

Just a year after completing that program, Darius was chosen to take part in the College’s Mining Apprenticeship Program (MAP). This innovative program, delivered in collaboration with Teck Elk Valley Operations, provides training opportunities to apprentices in Heavy Duty Equipment Technician, as well as Industrial Electrician, trades. Through MAP, apprentices complete work-based training hours on site at one of Teck’s Elk Valley mines and the College acts as the employer sponsor.

“This program was a great way to learn all the different ways of repairs,” Darius said. “I got to learn from a lot of different people, and they all taught me something that will stick with me.”

Darius must have made an impression as a MAP participant. He has been hired by one of Teck’s Elk Valley mines.

“It feels super rewarding to get exactly where I saw myself going all those years ago,” he said, “If you see yourself getting into a trade or aren’t sure of what you want to do after high school, Youth Train in Trades is definitely for you. It can either be an early start to what you want to do or something that can help you along the way.”

Now happily employed doing the job he always knew he wanted, Darius has some words of advice for those who may follow behind him.

“Just remember that you have to earn what you receive. Don’t get caught up on little things, it’s later than you think!”