Kyra Nankivell (IndE 2T3) keeps herself very busy. In addition to studying industrial engineering, she’s actively training as an Engineering Officer in the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) with 32 Combat Engineer Regiment.
“I think the military is a real curiosity for a lot of people,” she said, “I’m always happy to share my experience so others can gain a better understanding of what the Army is really like. There are some amazing opportunities that many don’t even know exist. For instance, last summer I navigated myself and five soldiers through wooded terrain at 2 AM using only a paper map, compass and red light.”
Kyra had an interest in the CAF since she was 12 years old, but didn’t join until after completing her first year of studies as a civil engineering student at U of T. After speaking to a recruiter and learning more about the different options available to her she decided to join the officer pathway. Shortly after, Kyra transferred to industrial engineering to pursue her interest in programming and business.
“The officer pathway has given me the opportunity to be a leader. I’ve learned what it means to take responsibility for myself and others,” said Kyra, “I have really enjoyed planning missions, presenting orders, and executing small-party tasks with a diverse team – it’s an experience a lot of young people don’t get to have in civilian life.”
Kyra’s experience with the CAF pairs surprisingly well with her life as an engineering student. The study techniques she developed in first year helped her learn basic military skills quickly and pass the numerous tests that were part of her training. From the other side, being a soldier has taught her to complete tasks with intention, including her assignments, and how to build relationships with people from all sorts of backgrounds.
“The tight-knit engineering community reminds me of the Army, we support one another and collaboration is essential for success,” she explained.
During her time in the CAF Kyra has met people with a wide variety of careers, those with Master’s degrees or PhDs and even someone who worked on building the highway system in Miami.
“It’s a great way to meet people who might be able to mentor you or help you explore a future career you’re interested in,” she noted.
Do you have questions about the Canadian Armed Forces or want to connect with Kyra? You can reach out to her on LinkedIn.
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