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Trades, nuclear energy, & Terri-Lynn’s journey to support Indigenous communities

Terri-Lynn Woods - OCNI Indigenous Engagement

Terri-Lynn Woods
Manager, Indigenous Engagement and Special Projects Organization of Canadian Nuclear Industries (OCNI)
Port Elgin, ON

From an early age, Terri-Lynn knew that she wanted to work with children and have a career that would impact their growth and development. After high school, she decided to go to university to fulfill the requirements needed to pursue a career in education and become an elementary school teacher.

However, upon graduation Terri-Lynn found herself in a substantial amount of student loan debt with no job prospects. She knew that she wanted to build a life in the community she grew up in and decided to look into other career options – this is when she discovered a career in the skilled trades would offer her financial stability and opportunities for continuous development and growth.

She began her career working as an Administrative Assistant at Bruce Power and was approached by the Power Workers Union to see whether she would be interested in applying for a position in radiation safety. Although she did not have any previous experience in the field, she decided to go through the application process and was invited to
take part in the training course. Since her educational background was in Psychology and Human Development, the skilled trades were completely out of her knowledge base and comfort zone – however, she found that she was provided with enough training and support to be successful in her role.

Over the last few years, Terri-Lynn has experienced exceptional career growth and is now the Manager of Indigenous Engagement and Special Projects at OCNI where she focuses on creating opportunities for Indigenous youth that will help gain experience to qualify for skilled trades positions.

“Learn about all of the skill trades available and try out as many as you can. There are several free programs and workshops available to help you get exposure to the skilled trades and over time, you will be able to figure out which trade is the best fit for you.”

– terri-lynn woods
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