Continuous learning for our employees is a core value at Greenstone Building Products. We are always looking for educational opportunities for our staff to encourage them in their roles. Last month two of our plant team members, Jon and Nick, got to attend a special trip hosted by the Science and Technology Internship Program (STIP). Back in September, Greenstone partnered with the United Nations association in Canada under STIP which helps foster the growth of jobs for youth in the natural resources sector. We were able to host three interns and the program has allowed for us to offer them training opportunities, such as the trip they were invited to this March!
Jon and Nick (two of our plant operators) took a once-in-a-lifetime, 5-day trip to the Rocky Mountains called the HOWL Experience. As part of this program, they were able to engage in climate and conservation talks led by organizations, award winning educators, Traditional Knowledge Keepers, leading scientists, industry leaders, professors, and mental health experts. Afterwards, they climbed through the Rockies and took a tour of historical sites.
The trip kicked off with a two-day conference where interns were lead through a variety of experiences that allowed them to reflect and explore their lives as they move forward in their career journey. There were approximately 32 interns from a wide range of employers all across Canada, where they could share and build connection amongst each other. Many of the interns bonded talking about their work experience and this allowed Jon and Nick to talk about their experiences at Greenstone. A moment that stood out to Jon and Nick was hearing from speaker Theresa Westhaver, an Indigenous women raised in the Skwelk̓wélt (snowy mountains) of Jasper, AB, Canada. She shared her passion for sustainability from an Indigenous perspective, sharing traditional teachings and singing the glacier and water song for the group. The interns were able to visit her family’s land in Jasper and learn about the earth and the effects of climate change in the area.
They see this trip as helping them at Greenstone by understanding the importance of the ecology of the earth, and how having a product like the ICE Panel is important in helping reduce the impact on climate change.
Not only did Jon and Nick get to partake in a great learning experience, but the program also brought the interns on excursions for the remainder of their time such as hiking, museums, and gondola rides up the mountains. One of the days that was memorable for the interns was snowshoeing through the mountains where they had a picnic at the very top, allowing them to interact with their peers and learn about the nature that surrounded them. On their way down, they had a massive snowball fight which Jon and Nick recall as being intense but really, really fun! Another moment they highlighted was attending Sulphur Mountain in Banff. Leaders shared a story of the bears that come down everyday to enjoy the sulphur. They believe these bears to be the spirit of Indigenous Ancestors coming down to take care of the land!
Overall, Jon and Nick shared that this was an experience of a lifetime. Being able to see the mountains and glaciers was really important to them as climate change is having a major effect and they may not be around in 50 years. The interns and staff that attended made the whole experience memorable, they connected on so many levels and learned from one another. They see this trip as helping them at Greenstone by understanding the importance of the ecology of the earth, and how having a product like the ICE Panel is important in helping reduce the impact on climate change. Making this knowledge available to our employees is an important priority for Greenstone, as our goal is and always will be to provide sustainable and energy efficient building products.
We want to send a special THANK YOU to the United Nations Association in Canada and the Canada Green Corps for creating the Science and Technology Internship Program that provided our employees with this amazing experience!