After I finished university, I was still living in Toronto and looking for a job in my field. In the meantime I was doing an unpaid internship and working a few part-time jobs to pay the bills. After about a year of looking, I hadn’t gotten any closer to starting my career, so I decided to start exploring my options.
After some research and contemplation I took a chance and applied for some jobs in the Northwest Territories. I knew there was a demand for skilled workers and luckily for me I managed to land a job within a week! Within a month I had packed up my life and hopped on a plane to Yellowknife in the middle of February. I wasn’t sure what to expect, I had never been this far north in my life. The only thing I knew about Yellowknife was what I learned from TV and the Internet.
Yellowknife is really a place where you can be as busy or as bored as you want to be. I would describe it as a really small ‘big city’. The lifestyle here is a little more laid back and the people very social and welcoming. There are people from all over Canada and the world living here and you’ll find most of the same amenities you would in a much larger city.
What I love most about living here is the vastness of nature that surrounds you – the fresh air and clear blue skies. Since moving here I’ve joined the Board of Directors for the Western Arctic Moving Pictures Society (WAMP) and started learning the bagpipes with the Northwest Territorial Pipe Band. I’ve participated in local artist competitions and done a little salvaging at the famous Yellowknife dump! I’ve spent a lot more time outdoors since arriving here: enjoying the Snow King’s castle this spring, going out for hikes and visiting some of the communities whenever the opportunity arises.
I consider myself very fortunate to have the kinds of opportunities I've had in work and travel. I like living in a close-knit community like Yellowknife. I would recommend to anyone who is curious about the Northwest Territories to take a chance and come. Before I moved here I asked myself "What do you have to lose?" Little did I know it's what I've gained that makes this where I want to be.