Celebrating a strong, creative, resilient Lunenburg County
NOW, MORE THAN EVER...
BY HEATHER MACKENZIE-CAREY
There is something even more genuine than Ethan Hiltz’s infectious smile. It’s his love of Lunenburg County. Ethan grew up in Mahone Bay, graduated from Park View Education Center and completed post-secondary education without ever moving away. He works at ABCO in Lunenburg in a job he loves, living where he loves.
Perhaps that shouldn’t sound so unusual but Ethan knows people think it is. He has lots of friends that felt they needed to move away to pursue careers, although he is quick to add they all intend to come back once they have established themselves. Ethan also has many friends who stayed. He points to lots of opportunity in the trades.
Perhaps it’s because we have a proud Nova Scotia history of providing quality university experiences only an hour away, that we seem to push our youth from high school to university. Ethan thinks that may be a mistake. He encourages people to consider the trades that are thriving in Lunenburg County.
Ethan wasn’t sure what he wanted to do after leaving high school. Looking through the NSCC course catalogue he hit on something that intrigued him. When Ethan graduated from the 2-year Architectural Drafting program, he landed an interview
at ABCO and, despite the job being more mechanical drafting than architectural drafting, the company saw a good employee, a community spirit and a great fit. Ethan’s friend got him the interview. Ethan’s training, talent and flexibility got him the job.
It’s the encouraging workplace and sense of community that keeps him there. In less than three years, Ethan has moved into a management position. Metal fabrication might not sound that exciting, but as Ethan tours me around his workplace, I can see how proud he is of what he’s doing, and for good reason. It is really cool stuff! This is not some “factory job”.
Ethan isn’t going anywhere. He doesn’t feel he’s missing out on anything. In fact, still in his 20s, Ethan just bought a house in Maitland, in the center of Lunenburg County easily accessible to just about every community that makes up the place he grew up.
His life is great!