“GDI helped me get started by reimbursing me for some tools & school fees and ensured that I could remain employed during slow periods in trades, even while I was still learning.”
Brian Thomas approached the Gabriel Dumont Institute (GDI) for support with education and employment in 2015. Prior to this, Brian was undecided about which field he wanted to pursue and sought assistance in securing long-term employment. After being introduced to GDI by family and friends, Brian met with GDI Employment Counsellor, Sheena Yew, to begin his journey.
Within a few weeks, Brian secured a position as an apprentice plumber with Metro Mechanical Inc. in Saskatoon. He states, “GDI helped me get started by reimbursing me for some tools and school fees. The wage subsidy (to the employer) also ensured that I could remain employed during slow periods in trades, even while I was still learning.” For over five years, Brian has been employed with Metro Mechanical Inc. He is directly involved with estimating and coordinating project materials and working hands-on when needed.
On May 15, 2020, Brian became a journeyperson plumber and continues to work with the same company. He hopes to continue gaining skills in plumbing installation and solutions, time management, and project management. In the future, Brian has goals of taking on additional leadership responsibilities and investing in the company. He also would like to pursue further education in Mechanical Engineering. His advice to Métis people thinking of a career in the trades is to “advocate for yourself! Don’t be afraid to be curious and ask lots of questions. Find out why you’re doing something. Take advantage of the programs available to you. Invest in quality tools and keep them in good condition.”