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Brayden Johnston - gaining practical experience in high school

Brayden Johnston

McDonough Canada recently welcomed Brayden Johnston, Fredericton High School co-op student, to our shop through the Co-op Education 120 program. This program is designed for students who want to explore potential career opportunities through self-assessment and workplace experience.

Brayden grew up around Fredericton, New Brunswick's capital city about 20 minutes from our Mactaquac shop. Currently living in Scotch Settlement, Brayden enjoys the greenery and sights in the area year-round, and drives by the McDonough shop frequently on his way home. Always staying busy helping his family around their property, Brayden couldn't want to get his first part-time job in the summer of 2018.

The Career Exploration 110 and Cooperative Education 120 courses integrates both classroom learning with actual work experience. This initiative is delivered under the Department of Education guidelines, and places students at worksites where they are challenged to learn by doing. Brayden was excited to work with his teacher, Ryan Hamilton, to sign up for FHS's co-op program to gain this valuable experience, and to re-affirm his desire to enter the trades after high school. Crediting his neighbors with suggesting McDonough specifically, knowing that the type of work we do matches with Brayden's interests, we were very excited to welcome Brayden to the team.

"Mr. Hamilton was a great deal of help in teaching me and my classmates how to properly apply and interview for a job, and I'm happy to say that it has worked out well for me" - Brayden Johnston

We spoke with Ryan Hamilton, and he discussed how the school to work transition programs are a wonderful way for students to safely explore a field of their interest. There are not many options to 'test drive' a career and often times these students have misconceptions of what a particular career entails. 

"Opportunities provided to students, like Brayden is having at McDonough, are so valuable and gives them a unique opportunity to gain experiential learning and networking opportunities to help them decide their future career. As Co-operative Education and Career Explorations teachers, we’re very thankful for the opportunities that are provided by local companies for our students." - Ryan Hamilton, Fredericton High School

Currently, Brayden is shadowing our welders and machinists, as well as performing various shop maintenance and administrative duties alongside our team members. Brayden has long held the goal of becoming a red seal welder (a red seal is the national standard of excellence for welding and other skilled trades in Canada), and has expressed interest in continuing to work at McDonough once he graduates from high school. He has had a positive experience thus far, indicating that the work environment and atmosphere of the shop is very welcoming and inviting, and that his career choice has been reinforced by his experience at McDonough.

While Brayden is quite new and has yet to see full machines go through the shop, he has expressed an appreciation for the team members who work the various machines in our shop and is excited to get a chance to see various stages of the manufacturing process - but he has made it clear that he still has a soft spot in his heart for welding.

Welcome aboard, Brayden!

More information about this New Brunswick-wide program can be found on the Government of New Brunswick's website.

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