A Second Chance

A Second Chance
Chris Carroll -
Region 1

Chris Carroll, a 21-year-old Fort Frances Métis, wanted a second chance at success. After being laid off from his job as a short order cook, Chris was hopeful he would find that chance. With help from Region 1 employment and training coordinator, Dana O’Donnell, he was relieved to find not only the support he needed to go back to school, but the advice to determine what direction he would take once he was there. After careful research, Chris decided on the Heating, Ventilation and Air Conditioning program at Algonquin College where he received training in all aspects of the varied trade. Though difficult at the onset, Chris thrived in his studies, and topped the Dean’s Honour List two out of three attempts, culminating in his graduation from the program with both an oil burner technician and gas technician license. Chris, who opted to do a traditional two-year program in a more challenging and condensed one-year program, credits his perseverance to the support he received from family and friends in his hometown of Fort Frances.

He acknowledges the importance placed on preparation and job-training to job success, but is quick to point out the often undervalued first-step. “Getting the interview, either in person or by telephone, that is the most important step. If you cannot produce in a competitive market you will spend more time looking for jobs than getting offers,” he says. Now finished his program, Chris is confident he has built a secure future for himself. “When I started researching about the heating and air conditioning field I found out that 98% of employees are full-time and I knew there was job security”. He offers a glimpse of where his second chance at a new life will lead and, ultimately, the rewards that come when one works hard to pursue personal dreams: “I have a great knowledge of the inner working of a home now and how to spot flaws. That’ll help when I decide to buy my first home”.