Welcome to Aboriginal Access to Engineering, Queen's University

Nalaine Morin

Nation: 
Tahltan
Degree: 
Mechanical Engineering Diploma, Bachelor of Applied Science
Job title: 
Metallurgical Engineer

Type(s) of Engineering:

Metallurgical
Favourite thing: 

"Developing working solutions to problems at hand."

Like lots of curious kids, Nalaine grew up asking a lot of questions. "When I was young, I found that I was always asking myself why," she recalls. As a kid, she was also fascinated by how stuff worked, "Especially the industrial machinery at the sawmill where my dad worked." When Nalaine's dad had to go to work on a Sunday, she would tag along with him just to examine all the different machinery at the sawmill.

Nalaine always knew that when she left high school she'd be working towards a degree in engineering, "It just seemed like a normal path for me and I wanted to be able to go back and work for my people." The difficult part was trying to figure out what field of engineering she should study, "I wanted to go into environmental engineering, but found that [at the time] not many universities offered it." With a little contemplating, the influence of her high school math teacher and an interest in metal and materials, she decided to pursue a degree in Metallurgical Engineering. She recalls, "My math teacher made me enjoy math and learning so much that I was eager to continue on with my schooling so that I could just learn more."

This year, Nalaine graduated from the University of British Columbia with a bachelor's degree in Metallurgical Engineering. She explains that even though "university was difficult at times; sometimes the course load was a bit heavy, it was an excellent learning experience." Her advice to students, "It is extremely important to practice good time management skills, do a lot of reading on your own, and always try to make a connection between science and math and everyday life."

For Nalaine, the best thing about school was meeting new people. "I still keep in contact with a lot of the people I met in school. Most of them have gone on to excellent and exciting careers with big companies."

Nalaine has also gone onto a very exciting career working as a Metallurgical Engineer at the Hudson Bay Mining and Smelting Co. in Flin Flon, Manitoba. Nalaine's job is to monitor, optimize and implement changes that will help improve the plant's performance. A lot of her work consists of testing, trouble shooting, data reporting and writing reports and procedure manuals.

Outside of work, Nalaine enjoys kayaking, skiing, playing tennis and traveling. She would also like to go back to school to pursue a master's degree in Environmental Engineering. For Nalaine, her "goal as an engineer is to always protect our Mother Earth." She would like to encourage young native students to go to university and pursue a degree in engineering or the sciences so that they "can help protect our environment" and work to create self-sufficient communities.

Queen's University
Kingston, Ontario, K7L 3N6, Canada

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