Joel Gretton

Joel Gretton
2016 Gold Medal for Academic Achievement
Graduated in 2016 from University of Guelph, specializing in Environmental Engineering

Joel Gretton’s passion for environmental engineering began with a desire to use his skills in mathematics and science to better the world. He recalls how his interest in environmental engineering hatched in seventh grade upon watching the climate change documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. His environmentally-conscious approach was further shaped by his family, teachers, and extracurricular activities at the University of Guelph.

Gretton has received three Engineers Foundation awards in his time at Guelph, and he remembers his reaction each time. Upon hearing he had received the Entrance Scholarship, he found it the perfect reminder to stay focused in his first year. He was appreciative of receiving the Undergraduate Scholarship, as he felt it was “affirmation that my hard work both in courses and in extracurriculars was recognized, and encouraged to continue.” Lastly, receiving Gold Medal for Academic Achievement felt like the perfect send-off for completing his Environmental Engineering degree.

Reflecting on the awards, Gretton adds, “they helped me to focus on what really mattered in university and life, without having to worry as much about the practical details as much.” Significantly, Gretton was able to spend more time with his ailing grandfather before he passed away. He was also able to put more of his attention on academics and extracurricular activities instead of putting in hours at a part-time job.

Content with his current position as an EIT at exp Global Inc, Gretton looks forward to building an environmentally conscious career in engineering. As he moves forward, he offers the following piece of advice for students beginning their degree program: “Don’t stress, but be disciplined, which also includes time for positive breaks.”