In My Own Words - Chester Tuck, CRSP, CHSC

Chester Tuck, CRSP, CHSC

When I became a safety officer, I learned of a highly valued designation called the CRSP. When I started looking into the process and requirements, it seemed so far in the distance to achieve, and it became a want(and need) to advance myself and hopefully my career.

Time marched on and two of my co-workers attained their designations. This set in motion the need for me to attain this designation, however at 57 years old, I had to weigh the advantages versus the disadvantages. Being employed full time with Manitoba Hydro and in the process of pursuing my CHSC, I felt my workload was already high. I had to say to myself, “Okay, we’re going for the CRSP” and so I started the process. My Metis heritage says never quit, never give up, and always strive to be your best. The Metis have stood in front of insurmountable odds and took on the task, so I drew on these strengths to help me!

The application process was not easy. The BCRSP has stringent requirements and this made my head hurt at times! The studying begins. At first, it was how do I even start studying or what do I study? I found a 2-day study course in Edmonton, so I went and this was a game changer for this older gentleman. Now I could study logically - I now had reference books and was armed with the will to succeed.

I decided to challenge the exam the first time to get a baseline of where I needed to focus my studies in case I did not pass. I missed passing the exam by 3 marks on my first try with very limited studying! Oh so close! Now I had a baseline to follow as far as where I did well and where I needed to study.

This journey taught me a lot about myself and how tenacious I had to be if I was going to achieve the CRSP. The process forced me to read copious amounts of dry materials that I may have not otherwise read, but most of all it opened my mind to the possibilities and the knowledge I would gain. I soon learned that I loved the process and the learning! I could see how there were so many things that I was learning that I could use immediately to improve myself, the safety of those around me, and advance Manitoba Hydro’s Safety Program and Safety Culture.

The time soon came for my second writing of the BCRSP exam, and yes, I was nervous! What was interesting was when I got to my last question on the exam and completed it, I looked at the timer, and I had 40 minutes left. oh! oh! Did I go to quickly? Did I mess up my second try? Why do I have 40 minutes left? I scratched my head and said to myself I am not reviewing, I made my choices and will stay with them.

Well my results came back on a Monday with a congratulations. I was so proud of myself for achieving the designation, and to make things even better, my CHSC designation came on the Friday of the same week!

What an adventure and one thing I really learned - you can teach an old dog new tricks as long as the dog wants to learn!