Students frame up a home with an ocean view in the background

Scuttle Bay home welcomes support from VIU’s tiwšɛmawtxʷ Carpentry Apprentice Program

May 1, 2024
Author: Steve Gallagher, Neh Motl Editor, reprinted with permission

Hands-on learning - with a view

In 2023, a devastating house fire en­gulfed the home of Tla'amin Elders Randy Timothy Senior and his sig­nificant lifelong partner, Mugsi. For­tunately, no one was seriously hurt in the fire but the loss of personal belongings is priceless.

With the support of the VIU tiwšɛmawtxʷ Carpentry Appren­ticeship program and Tla'amin Construction, the difficult thought of rebuilding became a reality, providing comfort for the Tla'amin Elders.

“We have been trying to coordinate a job site project for a few years,” said Carpentry Instructor Jonathon Bratseth. “The relationship between the Tla’amin Nation and tiwšɛmawtxʷ is of the highest importance to VIU. What a pleasure to be able to put our hands to the task of strengthening that re­lationship and supporting Nation members with our new skills.” 

Working on a job site provides a true-to-life experience for students where they gain necessary skills. The stu­dents also gained valuable cultural and traditional knowledge working with Tla’amin Nation’s archeological team during the excavation phase.

Craig Galligos is the Construction Services Manager for Tla'amin Nation. “The next phases of work involved our nation crews working to get the floor slab in the home, and sealing up the building once the windows and doors were installed."

Tla’amin Construction Services is very excited about the partner­ship with VIU tiwšɛmawtxʷ and looks forward to working together on future projects. This case was a true win-win situation.

The subcontractors (plumbers, HVAC, Electrical) started their work in early-mid April once the interior walls were framed.

Archaeology work findings

Scotty Galligos shared about the rich history of the location. The setting is also particularly beautiful and students saw many humpback whales and orcas. Tla’amin Culture and Heritage Technicians (CHTs) and In Situ Archae­ology from Powell River were able to monitor work and test for ar­chaeological materials.

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