Success occurs when an individual with a certain skillset is given the opportunity to grow. Currently, all over B.C., there is a greater opportunity than ever before to jump into the workforce. One current Dawson Road Maintenance (DRM) employee is seizing the opportunity of employment after he took a leap of faith to enhance his education. By recently obtaining his Certificate of Apprenticeship as a Piledriver and Bridgeworker, Nathan Murphy has a solid base of knowledge and skills to stabilize the bridge and road maintenance projects in the Cariboo.

“Hopefully with this new education, I will have the chance to help the company in more areas moving forward,” said Murphy, 24.

The timing couldn’t have worked out better for Murphy, either. He won’t have to look long or hard to find jobs within DRM over the next few years.

“Nathan Murphy has been with the company now full time for four years. Previously, he was a part time labourer on the crack sealing crew. Nathan was given the opportunity to join the bridge crew in 2017 and has since completed his piledriving/bridgeworker apprenticeship. We are all incredibly proud of him for doing so,” said Skylar McCarthy, Superintendent of Bridges in the Cariboo.

Murphy started on this path four years ago in the Pile Drivers, Bridge, Dock and Wharf Builders training centre in Delta, B.C. It’s a specialized ticket that is only recognized in B.C., compared to an electrical ticket, which is recognized across Canada. McCarthy believes that the niche region that the ticket is valued in is a reflection of why there is such a demand for jobs.

“I would say that it’s one of the more unknown trades out there. It’s great that Nathan is taking advantage of this opportunity. I would encourage anyone else to seriously consider the program,” said McCarthy. “Nathan has been a valuable team member and looks forward to continue learning his trade and growing his role within DRM.”

A Williams Lake product, Murphy only needed to be down in the Lower Mainland for school for six weeks each year – a small sacrifice for a great opportunity. The remainder of each year, he came back home and worked underneath McCarthy as an apprentice.

One of his favourite projects he helped out with as an apprentice was the installation of the bridge on Knife Creek in the summer of 2020. In one month, he gained an immeasurable amount of first-hand experience and knowledge.

The sky is now the limit for the tradesmen, Murphy. Whether it is keeping the highway safe for his community or completing yearly updates on the bridges in his Service Area, Murphy will be very busy over the next few years. A challenge that he is very much prepared for and excited to begin, all because he made the decision to advance his education. DRM wouldn’t mind it if a few more prospective employees followed in Murphy’s footsteps.