At the age of 40, and after a decade of working in the logging industry, Jesse Isaac was looking for a new career path.
“I have always had a keen interest in and understanding of mechanics,” he said. “I enjoy operating heavy equipment and that has given me a good understanding of how mechanical systems work.”
Jesse was eager to enrol in the College’s Heavy Duty Equipment Technician program but was concerned about how he would continue to pay his bills. Some of those fears were alleviated when he applied for, and received, a $2,000 Teck Scholarship.
“The process of applying was very easy and took about 30 minutes of my time,” he said. “It was wonderful to receive the scholarship. It helped me to pay my bills and keep up with the costs associated with going to school full-time, especially as an adult.”
Available to students entering either the Heavy Duty Equipment Technician or Electrician foundation programs at the College, the Scholarships are a legacy of Teck’s $1 million donation to the College in 2018. Each year, six Scholarships are available, including two for female students and two for Ktunaxa Nation members.
With the simplicity of the application process, and the potential rewards available, Jesse sees no downside to seeking out financial awards.
“I would highly encourage other students to apply for bursaries and scholarships as they can help out immensely with the cost of attending full-time school,” he said.
With the end of his foundation program nearing, Jesse remains confident that his change of direction was the right one for him.
“It has been a very positive experience and I’m happy I made the decision to attend college this year,” he said. “I was the oldest in the class of 16 which I was a bit concerned about, but it only ended up helping me. I’ve gained experience in many different parts of life which helped me through this program.”
Jesse’s next goal is to find an employer sponsor, earn his Red Seal and become a journeyman heavy duty mechanic. He’s remains grateful for the support he has received so far in his pursuit of a new career.
“This scholarship helped me to make ends meet and achieve my goals of finishing the first year of my apprenticeship,” Jesse said. “Thank you to Teck for helping me do so and for your contributions to the College.”