Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

Best of 2018: Our top 10 stories of the year

techlifetoday's top 10 of 2018

Each year, techlifetoday shares hundreds of stories that inform, entertain and help make sense of important issues happening today – all with a distinctly NAIT connection.

We've detailed the work of an alum who is working toward a more sustainable future for his First Nations community, shared new insights about the impact of solar energy, informed about an exciting new approach to serving industry, and unpacked major issues such as the business of cannabis and impact of the #MeToo movement. 

With that in mind, we are proud to share our top 10 stories of 2018 – a mix of our most popular and favourite reads from the past year. 

1. Time's up. #MeToo has come for the skilled trades

Me Too and the trades

This story, which explored the impact of the #MeToo movement on the skilled trades, has clearly resonated with readers. It's our most popular story to date, no doubt because the issue of harassment-free workplaces transcends all sectors as a right of all workers.

2. Solar shines in dead of winter – even in Edmonton, study finds

Solar study at NAIT

A five-year study by NAIT Alternative Energy Technology staff and students helped disprove long-held assumptions about the impact of snow and winter on solar energy. The final result could mean brisk business for solar installations in Edmonton.

3. Trudeau on hand to open NAIT’s new Productivity and Innovation Centre

It's not every day that the prime minister visits campus, which Justin Trudeau did in September to help NAIT celebrate the opening of its newest facility, the Productivity and Innovation Centre. Built with a $35-million investment from Ottawa, the facility is a cornerstone for the polytechnic's exciting new approach to serving industry.

4. Youth and Duty: Chief Billy Morin pursues long-term prosperity for Enoch Cree Nation

Enoch Cree Nation Chief Billy Morin

This award-winning profile introduced readers to alumnus Chief Billy Morin (Civil Engineering Technology ’11; Bachelor of Technology in Technology Management ’13), who is walking a line between tradition and progress as one of the youngest leaders in the modern history of Enoch Cree Nation.

5. How to make a wasp trap

Wasp in a cup

Don't you hate it when wasps ruin your summer barbecue or campout? It turns out a lot of people do and wanted to watch Physics chair Jocelyn Crocker teach us how to make wasp traps on the cheap. Sure we almost got stung making the video, but it was fun and worth it.

6. What you breathe when you’re exposed to unwanted cannabis, cigarettes and vaping

What does the legalization of marijuana and a sharp spike in vaping mean for Canadians already concerend about the impact of second-hand smoke from cigarettes? Respiratory Therapy instructor Graham Werstiuk (class of ’06) breaks down an important public health issue.

7. A lost piece of NAIT history resurfaces

Program from 1963 grand opening of NAIT

A piece of NAIT's history dating back to opening day in 1963 was found unexpectedly and NAIT president and CEO Dr. Glenn Feltham was only too happy to preserve it for posterity. Judging by this story's popularity among readers, he wasn't the only one that was happy to see it resurface.

8. Why a blanket exercise made me disappointed, uncomfortable and angry

Techlifetoday writer and editor Scott Messenger shared a powerful first-person account of a Blanket exercise and what he learned about the ongoing impact of colonization. The headline sums it up perfectly, but we encourage you to look deeper.

9. Spark of inspiration: Elise Coppens blazes a trail in corporate cannabis

Cannabis entrepreneur Elise Coppens

Cannabis changed Elise Coppens's (Marketing ’10) life and now it's transforming her career as well. This profile explores the career arc of one of Canada's up-and-coming cannabis pioneers who's leading the way in an burgeoning industry.

10. Techlifetoday launches new podcast

techlifetoday podcast host Liz Pittman

We're only three episodes into our first season, but it's been a lot of fun exploring a different form of storytelling. And there's lots of great stories still to come.

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