A job in nature, an easy choice
My name is Hollee Janusitis and I am a student in the Environmental Technology program at Georgian College in Barrie.
Spending time outdoors makes me feel connected to our world, and inspires a sense of awe and wonder. So, choosing a profession that involved nature was an easy choice. There is so much to learn from nature and it teaches us great lessons. As a teenager, my Aunt took me on ‘Wild Women’ expeditions, where I had the opportunity to learn about wilderness survival skills and explore my love for nature with other women. During these expeditions I listened to the women's inspirational stories and took away great life lessons from their teachings. Shared experiences in nature bring people together!
My main project this summer was the ‘Impede the Reed’ project at Parks Canada. My team managed phragmites and other invasive plants in Georgian Bay Islands & Bruce Peninsula National Park. We used GIS (Geographical Information Systems) programs to map the invasive patches and used different tools to remove them. I was also involved with other ecology projects such as EMAN tree health (Ecological Monitoring and Assessment Network), bat & salamander monitoring & wetland surveys. Working on restorative projects this summer made me really understand the impacts that the environment faces everyday and really inspired me to go further into a green career. Seeing the positive impact of these projects made me feel fulfilled. I gained an appreciation for field work because I was surrounded by plants and animals everyday and learned about Ontario’s diverse nature. I gained great experience using different types of technology this summer, which was so much fun to learn. My summer co-op encouraged me to continue working as a field technician; I love being able to explore new environments, work towards conservation efforts and make a difference for the environment.
The majority of my team consisted of women. I was able to observe how women lead, teach and inspire everyone in the workplace and how I can implement those skills I learned in my career. The community of women allowed me to grow my network, they wanted to see me succeed and encouraged me to grow. It is a goal of mine to continue representing women in the green industry and to hopefully influence others to choose the same! Working with other women brought a fun culture to the workplace and we enjoyed working together everyday. Watching the women on my team take on work challenges and continuing to give their best, inspires me that I can do the same.
I’m hoping that future generations of girls and women will aspire towards green careers and to keep inspiring others to do the same. Green jobs are empowering, interesting and fulfilling and we need to continue to offer new opportunities to women all over Canada. I am hopeful that there will be an abundance of opportunities for women to explore the green world. After completing my awesome co-op with Parks Canada, I am keen to take risks and seek out opportunities that may be out of my comfort zone and I am excited about my future in the green industry!