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Insights What inspired Ernesto to become a Chemical Engineer?

As part of our #PeopleDriveResults campaign, this week we have caught up with Ernesto Caner, Senior Process Engineer/Process Lead for the Mining & Metallurgy group, based in Toronto, Canada. 

Tell us a little bit about your professional background

I’m a professional chemical engineer with almost 20 years of experience in consulting, fit-for-purpose and safe plant design.  My career has given me the opportunity to work on greenfield and brownfield projects, primarily in base and precious metals. This means working in gold/silver, copper, zinc, lead, nickel, cobalt, iron ore, and potash. I’ve been lucky to have worked in four countries (Argentina, Chile, Spain and Canada) and three continents .

What inspired you to become a Chemical Engineer? 

My passion for Chemical Engineering started when I was a boy in Argentina. My Dad was a biochemist and recounted stories about invisible atoms and colliding molecules that compose matter. At 7 years of age, I received my first chemistry kit. My curiosity soon took over and asked myself, how could something white turn red?  I consider this point the start of my career. After graduating from high school, I went on to graduate with a diploma from the Universidad Nacional de Tucuman in Argentina. Today my story and career continue as I pursue my passion for chemical engineering.

What is the coolest thing you’re working on?

It is unquestionably the Coeur- Rochester POA11 Project, in Nevada, United States. This is an EPCM expansion project for gold and silver extraction that AtkinsRéalis Lavalin is diligently managing. As the senior process engineer, I lead the preparation of all process engineering deliverables for the Merrill Crowe Plant. There is nothing better than having the opportunity to apply my experience, skills and innovative engineering solutions on a project that is fit-for-purpose, with a safe plant design. I’m blessed to be working on this world-class project with an extraordinary team of professionals; it is greatly rewarding and exciting.

What makes a good day at work?

Starting the day in the right frame of mind is extremely important. For this reason, I start with breathing to get my mind centered and in a positive mood. Then it’s time for coffee and to start my day by smiling in meetings. The power of a smile is underestimated, and it’s amazing to see the difference that it makes. During the day I continue to work on my projects and engage with clients to keep them updated on the project and to ensure they’re satisfied and confident in our work. Once the work day is done and I feel satisfied with what I have achieved, it’s time to spend time with my wife and dog, Koby.

Do you have any pets? Tell us about it.

Koby is my four-year-old Coton de Tulear. He has a lot of energy, even after long walks. We love to play with him and find him hilarious. Koby is a good listener. He’s incredibly smart and always aware of what is happening around him. He’s extremely attached to us and we have grown fond of him around the house; he’s an important member of our family. He brings a lot of joy to our lives and we love the little guy.

What values are important to you?

It’s important to have values as they enable us to be better in every way. 

My Values:
- Faith
- Integrity
- Respect
- Trust
- Honesty
- Authenticity
- Fairness
- Compassion
- Optimism