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    Next stop Edmonton

    by John Curran
    Northern News Services
    Published Wednesday, August 13, 2008


    NNSL Photo/Graphic

    Heather Kodzin is flanked by her friends and fellow Wekweeti residents Patti Magrum and George Kodzin.

    Wekweeti/Snare Lakes - Wekweeti's Heather Kodzin is enjoying her summer working in an office, but it's a job she's looking forward to quitting. That's because when the recent high school graduate is done her stint with the Tlicho Government, she'll be hopping on a plane and moving to Edmonton in pursuit of her dream.

    "I'll be studying nursing there at Grant MacEwan College I've always wanted to be a nurse," she said. "I'm scared but happy at the same time."

    There isn't much help available for people who get sick or injured in her community, she said.

    "That's why I want to study to be a nurse," she said. "I want to be able to help the people of Wekweeti."

    Having lived her entire life in this smallest of Tlicho settlements which has a population of about 137 it would mean a lot to her to be able to build a career that would give her the option of remaining there while still earning a good living. She said it's a very friendly community and it's located beside the Snare River.

    "I enjoy going for long boat rides and camping, too," she said. "I also like playing baseball and other games."

    More than school

    While learning to be a nurse is an important goal for Kodzin, it's not the only part of living in Edmonton that's getting her excited as moving day nears.

    "I've kind of always wanted to live there, just for a few years though," she said. "It's the shopping, I come from a big family and I want to be able to buy lots of new clothes for all of my nieces and nephews."

    The one downside is that she'll have to say goodbye to many good friends while she's off studying and that won't be easy, she admitted.

    "Beverly Tsatchia is my best friend at home," she said.

    "She and her six-year-old daughter will be two of the people I will miss most when I go away to school at the end of August."