New RRC Interim President discusses his vision for the coming year

David-Rew_for-webAt the start of the current academic year, David Rew — formerly the Vice-President of Student Services and Planning at Red River College — took over as Interim President and CEO, following the departure of former president Stephanie Forsyth.

Born in Scotland and raised in Malaysia, Rew has been an RRC employee for the last 35 years, and brings a wealth of experience and expertise to his new role, having in the past served as everything from co-op coordinator and instructor to program chair and dean.

We sat down with Rew to discuss his vision for the coming academic year, as well as his hopes and goals for the College going forward. Continue reading

Rotor Lift

The Jack of All Trades and Master of Many

Many of the trades require a certain set of skills to enter the profession. Of all the trades, it is perhaps the Millwright that offers the opportunity to practice the most diverse set of skills.
The “mill” in the word millwright comes from the early days when specialized carpenters built and maintained workings in flour mills, sawmills or paper mills powered by water or wind. The millwrights of the 17th and 18th centuries were quite different from millwrights today. Back then, they were master craftsmen who completely designed and constructed mills.
James Watt had only just perfected the steam engine by the mid-18th century, and up until then of course, water was the only reliable natural power source. Water was directed over hand-constructed wooden mill wheels to generate power.
Millwrights executed every type of engineering operation in the construction of these mills. They designed the patterns of the water wheel systems, carved their gear mechanisms, and finally erected the mill machines.
Their skill sets included working knowledge of drive shafts, bearings, gearing and mechanical belts. Back in the day, the majority of the workings in a mill were built out of wood, however, as technology progressed, stronger and more durable materials were developed, so metals such as iron and steel replaced the use of wood.
A millwright today installs; builds and maintains; and repairs and troubleshoots stationary industrial machinery and mechanical equipment in sites such as factories, production plants and recreational facilities. Millwrights play an essential role in fertilizer plants, steel mills, oil refineries, pumping stations, gas, hydro, steam, or nuclear power plants, as well as other industries worldwide in which heavy machinery is involved. Continue reading

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Tell us what you think, what you really, really think

Bold Ideas - Dorothy Dobbie
Bold Ideas -
Dorothy Dobbie

It is the silly season for politicians this fall – with three elections looming over the next three to 15 months, every media outlet is bursting with political pundits, pooh-bahs and poltroons, announcing and pronouncing on every topic under the sun.
And now we have the unmediated media – the Internet, eagerly awaiting every pearl that drops from wise and unwise lips.
So here’s a novel idea for novice and experienced would-be politicians: be careful what you write on the Internet. Be doubly careful if you are in any way connected to a campaign, because what you say can and will be used against you – or your political associates.
After all their years in politics, you would think the Steeves would have learned this lesson. Continue reading

Filling in the blanks for your team isn't helping them reach their full potential - nor yours. Photo by Michael Connors.

Picking up on your work team’s slack

So now you’ve done it: as a manager, you have hired on your newest team member and you are quite pleased with the hire. You begin the onboarding process to ensure everyone understands the role of the new hire, everyone is on the same page, and the new employee understands their short and long term objectives in order to achieve success.
Now let’s fast forward into the future – let’s say three years. Your commitment to this same team’s success and to the organization has been noticed by those around you. You have been commended for the ability to form a good team and to retain talent. You have coached your team along, supported them when they have wanted professional development, and celebrated in the successful implementation of several projects.
In fact, you have proven to yourself, that even when there were issues, when some team members may not have pulled their own weight or they needed assistance in some way, you have been there for them.
Where there have been gaps, you have stepped in by putting in the extra hours and have adapted your management style to ensure success. You have taken the burden of the team’s stress, so as to ensure those more senior to you and your peers see the cohesive team you have put together.
Is your team really the cohesive team you make it out to be? Let’s look back at the hires you have made… are they all where you need them to be, to ensure success today and into the future? Continue reading

Good morning to you! Smouldering baked tomatoes with fresh basil and eggs.

Top o’ the morning to ya

Foodies - Ian Leatt
Foodies – Ian Leatt

Sitting on my deck in the summer time, reading a book, listening to my crazy friend the squirrel telling anyone and everyone that this is his domain, I let my mind drift – knowing that, inevitably, it will come back to food.
For breakfast, the question is: what can one cook up that is moderately healthy, and at the same time, well, yummy?
Memories from another lifetime have come flooding back. I hear the seagulls cackling. Not far off is the the gentle lapping sound of the Atlantic Ocean as its water breaks against the warm sand. The sea air is crisp and revitalizing; its freshness lets me know that I am alive. I can almost taste the salt in the air.
The world and all its troubles are forgotten in that minute; there’s just peace and tranquillity. But then a waiter arrives at my table: “Have you chosen, sir?”
I am awake suddenly. “I would like the baked tomatoes with egg, and a couple of rashers of bacon,” I hear myself saying. In that moment we both have our answer. Tomatoes stuffed with a freshly seasoned egg, it will be; bacon on the side. What a beautiful day it is!

Ingredients (serves 4)
¼ cup fresh chopped basil
A tablespoon of butter
8 rashers of bacon
4 beef tomatoes
4 eggs
A pinch of sea salt and freshly crushed black pepper

Using a sharp knife, carefully slice the top off the tomato and scoop out the seeds and pulp from the inside. Place some of the chopped basil inside, then crack the egg into the tomato. Finally, sprinkle some freshly crushed sea salt and black pepper on the egg and dress with chopped basil. Place the stuffed tomatoes upright on a pan and put in a 350 F oven. Bake for 20 minutes until the egg is cooked.
Bacon is the easiest thing in the world to prepare: fry, broil, or even barbecue – your choice. Just remember to pour off the fat. Once all is cooked, slip on a plate, sit back, and enjoy.
Ian Leatt is general manager of Pegasus Publications Inc.

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