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I unknowingly started my trouble-shooting career early at my family’s ski shop as a race tuner. This is where I learned how to critically analyze a given product (i.e. GS Skis) in correlation to external parameters (i.e. weather, location, air temperature, snow temperature, start number, limitations of a particular wax, etc.) and make it go exceptionally fast and handle well.
I traveled a lot when I was growing up and subsequently became interested in Geography and technical design but at the time there was no accessible innovation in Geography and learning CAD software/hardware was more of a hobby.
While attending business school, I started rally racing which combined my knowledge of mechanical trouble-shooting with map and terrain comprehension. I found out rallying is surprisingly expensive and the professional work market demand at the time, lead me into a career in software engineering (the ultimate in problem solving). After the tech bubble burst, I decided to slow down a bit and pursue my passion for tech design and subsequently built many large motor exciters for GE. Here I learned that no matter how good a designer one is, getting something manufactured with a minimum of fuss is the key to success… Simplicity is the most elegant design. Moving on from GE, I had the opportunity to use my skills with tech design, software and combine them with Geography. This career move was interesting and lead me on my path to GIS which was a culmination of my life experiences. Upon graduating the toughest GIS course in Canada, I was asked to stay and teach. Teaching expanded my critical analysis ability especially when it came to approaching problems from different perspectives; I think I may have learned more from my students than they learned from me.
Now, as a GIS Specialist at the University of Waterloo I am exceptionally lucky to be able to help guide researchers and affiliates that are literally changing the world around me.