This is the second of a four-part series of articles on previous Skills Canada medal winners in recognition of National Skilled Trades and Technology Week Nov. 6-12, 2017.
ST. JOHN’S, NL – Myles Burry remembers well what it takes to become a winner at Skills Canada competitions.
The 22-year-old Wesleyville native is a graduate of College of the North Atlantic’s (CNA) Architectural Engineering Technology program. As part of National Skilled Trades and Technology Week, CNA is reaching out to its alumni to see how their past participation in these competitions has helped them in their career pursuits.
“I have always been interested in architecture,” said Burry from Dalhousie University in Halifax, NS. “It has a mix of creativity and design, and also math and science, which I was always good at. (My time at CNA) gave me a lot of exposure to the field. I remember when competing we learned a lot about gauging our time, being organized and time management. We couldn’t see what the other teams were working on, I knew I had as good a chance as anyone to do well.”
In 2015, Burry and his team won gold at the Skills Canada – Newfoundland and Labrador provincial competition. They went on to compete in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, where they took the silver medal.
“It showed me that I was capable of doing it. It was an affirmation of my skills in what I wanted to do with my life,” Burry said.
His association with Skills Canada didn’t stop there. In 2016-17, he went on to become a judge at the provincial competition, and what struck Burry most was how interesting it was having the shoe on the other foot.
“It was interesting to see how the grades were based,” he recalled, saying that if he had his time back he would have focused on other things than what he did while he was a competitor. “You have to be realistic, and not spend too much time on the things that really don’t matter when it comes to the overall presentation.”
Burry says that every student who has the opportunity to get involved in Skills Canada competitions should.
“All the skills you learn will apply later on when you get out into the workforce,” he said, adding that in his case, his technical background from CNA has helped him in his current studies by giving him skills that many others in his class have yet to be exposed to.
After completing his program at CNA, Burry went on to graduate from a two-year Bachelor of Technology at Memorial University in August 2017, and a month later, he began studying Architecture at Dalhousie. Here he hopes to complete a two-year bachelor’s program followed by a two-year master’s degree.
“There is definitely a lot of work involved,” he said of his current program, but likens it to his time spent with Skills Canada. “You find it stressful while you’re doing it, but after, you are proud of what you’ve accomplished once it’s done.”
College of the North Atlantic