Hometown: Prince Albert, SK
Band: Big River First Nation (Se-Wa-Se-Hum 1997), SK
Program: Professional Cooking certificate
Hometown: Taber, AB
Band: Onion Lake Cree Nation
Program: Business diploma
Sheldon and Crystal Buchta, a First Nations couple, are sharing their educational journey at Sask Polytech’s Prince Albert campus. Crystal is in Professional Cooking; her husband Sheldon is in Business.
Crystal’s journey began when she saw information about the cooking program on a bulletin board at the Prince Albert Grand Council office. The part about spending approximately 70 per cent of class time in hands-on training caught her interest. After enrolling, she also signed up for the weeklong Summer Transition Program.
When classes got underway, Crystal knew she’d made a good choice. “I found I enjoy being in the kitchen and cooking every day.”
Crystal encouraged Sheldon (who’s from Alberta) to also look at Sask Polytech. He started in the Aboriginal Policing Preparation program but is now in the Business program. He and Crystal hope to blend their talents and start their own business in the future.
“Sask Polytech is a great place to learn,” Sheldon says. “The diversity is amazing, the instructors are very knowledgeable and there is a program that’s a good fit for anyone to learn.”
Crystal and Sheldon both believe in education. “I always tell people to get their education. The more options you give yourself, the brighter future you will have,” Sheldon says. Crystal agrees, “Stay motivated on your pursuit of education, because in the end, it will all be worth it.”