Sky Lennie joines the Parsons Giant Mine Remediation Project team as an environmental technician. Her journey here is uniquely northern and a call to all young Dene.
Born in Wrigley, a small 140-person community in the Deh Cho area of the NWT; a community of tradition, where it’s known as Pedzéh Kı̨́ or "Clay place." It lies in a pristine area on the banks of the mighty Mackenzie, snuggled by mountain ranges. Sky’s interest in the outdoors and especially the land started in her early teens when she felt an inexplicable love of the land that grew as she got to know it better. Something she attributes to being raised by her grandparents and to her seven years in army cadets where she learned about herself, others, and the land. So birthed a passion that has shaped her decisions in life, forced her to find courage she wasn’t sure she had, and deepened Sky’s desire to learn more about the world and the land she loves.
After graduating from high school in Yellowknife Sky worked for the Det’on Cho Corporation now known as Det’on Management LP. The company supported her taking three programs with them in six months. The Environmental Monitoring Coordinator program where she observed the environmental and the impact of industrial activity, and how to communicate the information; the Contaminated Site Remediation coordinator program where Sky learned much more about remediation; and, the Environmental Site Assistant program. Taking these courses was a confirmation that her passion and joy was the journey she was being let to take. Eager to learn and in need of work, Sky found work in Yellowknife with Golder Associates Ltd. to work at the Giant Mine where she supported the hydrologists. This has inspired her to work more toward the water side of the environment; so next Fall when she goes to back to school – upgrading so she can get into the studies she wants, she’ll bring not only her passion and love of the land; she’ll have the confidence of knowing she’s doing what she loves.
Sky does not mind office work but prefers being outside and learning about the land and our relationship to it because as Sky put it “there’s always something new to learn and new knowledge I never had before. It’s really rewarding, and in 2.5 years that it’s taken me to gain experience and know the direction I want to go in.” Sky’s thinking of Aurora College but she’s working on getting her grade 12 science so she can apply to college or university, confident they’ll be less stressful because of her work and life experiences; thankful for the help and guidance of family and individuals that pointed her in the right direction along the way. “It seems like it was meant to be. To do something you love every day and excited to go to work. it’s a sign that I’m moving in the right direction.”
Sky wants to inspire and challenge all young Dene to know the land traditionally and scientifically, and to “see the sacredness of the land and the importance of knowledge of the world traditional and modern.”