Summer Student Experience at North Shore

Every summer, North Shore welcomes a number of students to be part of our North Shore family for several months and to lend a hand with some of our seasonal work. Many of the students we bring on are enrolled in environmental-related programs in their post-secondary education and are excited by the opportunity to spend the summer working outdoors.

“I love that North Shore has given me many opportunities to learn new things, and apply much of what I have learned in school to industry. North Shore has treated me so well and is truly like a large family,” says Hanneke Kassies, who just finished up her second summer employed with North shore.

Hanneke Kassies, Summer Student, moved to Canada when she was a young child, and is fluent in both English and Dutch.

Hanneke is currently enrolled in the Land and Water Resources Program at Old College where her passion for environmental studies is met with academic success.

She will graduate this December and already has an impressive resume including diplomas in Agricultural Marketing, Agricultural Production, Reclamation and Remediation, and Environmental Stewardship and Rural Planning.

Perusing a career in the environmental field came naturally to Hanneke, as her ambitions for helping farms and farmers become more sustainable stemmed from her upbringing living on a dairy farm.  

Family Farming Business

The Kassies family moved to Canada from the Netherlands in 1998 to find better opportunities in farming and to expand their dairy herd. “I have been milking cows since I could reach the cows and herd them myself,” she laughs.

“The hours are crazy; we start our day at 2:45 a.m. and milk the cows for about three hours,” she explains. “From there we take a short nap until 9:30 a.m. then we continue on with our day.”

Some of the herd on the Kassies Dairy Farm.

A lot of work on the farm occurs throughout the day. “Some of the duties include herd health, breeding, feeding, cleaning, and assisting a cow with calving.”

The cows get one more milking at 3:30 p.m. and a final night time check before Hanneke and her family head to bed for the night. The family has their hands full as the farm provides care for about 500 cows, 25 chickens, 10 cats and 2 dogs!

Over the last few weeks they have also been busy harvesting crops and making bales of hay.

North Shore Experience

Rather than spending her summer on the farm with her family, this year Hanneke spent the majority of her time working in the Conklin and Fort McMurray areas where she did a lot of vegetation management and weed spraying for our clients.

She also travelled to Saskatchewan to complete weed spraying services, and had the chance to shadow a North Shore staff member on a couple of projects including a Phase 1 Environmental Site Assessment.

“One of my favorite parts about working in the field is all the wildlife I have encountered.”

“Safely, of course,” she adds.

“This year I have seen bears, wolves, a cougar, moose, badgers, and many cool species of birds, including Sandhill cranes.”

“Another great part of my experience at North Shore is getting to spend so much time in a helicopter seeing some amazing Alberta views.”

“I had another great summer working with North Shore, and now I am getting prepared to head back to school for my final semester.”

Thank You

Colin Bergen, Manager, Vegetation Management says the summer students were extremely helpful in ensuring our client’s projects were completed over the last several months.

“I want to thank Hanneke and all of the other summer students that joined North Shore this year,” he says. “I know everyone appreciated all of their efforts and willingness to adapt and learn. I’d like to wish all of them well in their schooling and future endeavors.”

North Shore wants to thank our 2019 summer students for being part of the North Shore Family and for a great season. We wish them all the best as they continue to peruse their studies and head back to school this fall.

More Information

Contact North Shore to learn more about our Summer Students, Vegetation Management Services, and how we can help with your next project.  

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