Omar’s story is complex and unusual, but it has aspects that are relatable to so many job seekers in Canada.
While working as a Health and Safety Officer on construction sites in Colombia he discovered some suspicious activities that made him fear for his life. He left Columbia and decided to enter Canada. He is now a refugee claimant hoping he will be allowed to stay as a permanent resident.
“The program has been very helpful in understanding my needs in pursuing my career goals and finding ways to approach that. Thank you so much BiM, thank you Career Paths and most of all thank my career counsellor!” – Omar
In order to survive, Omar quickly found work at a warehouse, but got injured and had to stop working. He approached a WorkBC center for help with his job search and from his Case Manager learned about Career Paths. He found that our program was the most suitable to his job search needs and joined the program.
Following a review with his employer, Omar has been promoted from a Safety Administration Assistant to a Project Manager. Moreover, with continued support and partial funding from Career Paths, Omar is also working towards completing a number of qualifications that will allow him to re-enter his original profession!
If, like Omar, you are an immigrant in Canada and need help attaining work in the profession you are trained, educated or experienced in, then you can contact our team to see how they can help you.
Join us in Surrey for a special information session from the Teacher’s Regulation Branch.
Shawn McMullin | Director of Professional Excellence & Outreach, Teacher Regulation Branch
Shawn will be discussing the teaching certification process and participating in a Q&A period. Please bring your inquiries, take time to network and share information with the other teachers/instructors.
Virender Hunjan | Special Education Assistant, Surrey School District
After the Q&A, we will welcome Virender, an internationally trained teacher, who will speak about employment experiences in Canada.
|What is an informational interview?
Informational interviews are an informal opportunity to collect information about a career that interests you. By talking to someone else who’s already in the know, you have the potential to gain insider information about a company, industry, specific job role and/or career path.
Switching the tables, and becoming the one asking the questions, is a skill that takes time to master, but it can help you with reducing interview stress and building confidence. Being able to conduct an informational interview can become one of the most efficient tools in your job hunt, so here are some tips to help you master it!
1. Don’t let fear control you.
Connecting with strangers can be daunting, but you can take baby steps. If you don’t feel comfortable messaging people on social media and Linked In, ask your family, friends and neighbours if they know anyone in their own network they could refer you to. You know what they say, 70% of success in life is just showing up! So… get out there and try!
2. Keep it short, keep it sweet.
Ask for 20 minutes of their time. You want to create a professional work connection and gain insight, so 20 minutes should be plenty of time to make a good impression and gather the precious advice you seek.
3. Research and prepare.
Think of 10-15 questions that you want to ask, then have a look at the company’s website or google information about the profession and see if you can find answers that satisfy you. Doing research will help you create and identify the best questions to ask.
4. Dress to impress.
It’s true, you are not interviewing for a job, but you want to be remembered for your smart, professional approach, not for the comfortable hoodie and flashy runners you put on in a rush.
This is potentially the most important! The hardest part is over, now you just need to follow-up to cement the connection for the future. Remember, this person has taken time to talk with you, a thank you note shows that you are grateful and it may even be the difference between recommending you for a job… or not!