Ben North

Posted on March 3rd, 2013

Student (Environmental Studies) - Wilfrid Laurier University, Waterloo ON
Sandbar Ontario Ranger, 2010
When I was 17, I was given the opportunity to be an Ontario Ranger in the Dryden District of Northwestern Ontario.  I was introduced to the forestry industry, to fire management, and to historical sites. I was taught low-impact camping and became a much more proficient canoeist. 

But the biggest way in which the program contributed to my personal development was through the relationships I made with fellow rangers and program staff. Living in the same building as twenty-one other guys my age was a transformative experience. There was no room for tension, living in such close quarters, so the bond that our whole group formed by the end of the summer was astounding. I still consider my fellow rangers to be brothers, and I know they share with me the sadness of the program’s closure.
Following my summer experience, I have gone on to study Environmental Studies at Wilfrid Laurier University, have continued working for the Ministry of Natural Resources, and have developed a true passion for our province. The Ontario Ranger Program has done so much in terms of setting me up for success, and it has gotten me excited about giving back to our province in the same way I have benefited from it. I am absolutely devastated that future generations will no longer have this opportunity, and this cost-cutting measure seems to be stepping on the kind of program that distinguishes our province as being particularly remarkable.

Posted in not categorized    Tagged with Sandbar, 2010


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