Nunavik lures Nunavut IT specialist

Goo Arnaquq likes challenge, loves benefits


KUUJJUAQ — Some might find it strange that a resident of Pangnirtung would leave a good Government of Nunavut job and move to northern Quebec to work for the much smaller Kativik Regional Government.

But not Goo Arnaquq.

The KRG recently lured Arnaquq away from the GN to work as an information technology specialist in Kuujjuaq.

Arnaquq moved last month with his wife, Lizzie Eeseemailie, and their two children, aged nine and 12.

In Kuujjuaq, Arnaquq joined the KRG’s information technology section, whose employees are united by their shared enthusiasm for the region’s growing telecommunications system.

For Arnaquq, who says, “work is work — I work and sleep,” the decision to move to Kuujjuaq was easy: the chance to join a young and dynamic team was appealing.

And the benefits, which include housing and an allowance that lets his entire family take three trips back home a year, helped convince everyone to make the move. His wife plans to open a home daycare, whose operations will be overseen by the government-subsidized daycares in Kuujjuaq.

Arnaquq said he’s looking forward to seeing the KRG’s system grow from small to large, much as he did with the GN’s — but there are also new challenges for Arnaquq in Nunavik.

Unlike the GN, the KRG’s computer system is largely mobile, based 35 to 40 per cent on portable laptops instead of desktop computers. The system is based on wireless telecommunications and it’s expanding every year.

Moreover, of the 10 members of the KRG’s internet technology section, seven are Inuit. They are IT specialists, like Arnaquq, web site specialists, and staff at the KRG-operated Tamaani wireless internet service provider.

Two local agents also provide technical assistance and customer services outside of Kuujjuaq for Tamaani. These employees are role models for students throughout the region.

“I’m hoping we’ll have more young people who will go in for IT careers,” Arnaquq said.

As the KRG’s IT needs and network expands, more upgrades and increased services are planned, which will keep Arnaquq and the IT staff on their toes. These include video-conferencing, a telemetry system for Nunavik water plants and airport weather-cams throughout the region to show conditions in every community.

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