Mentee Stories

Hannah Mpofu, Human Services, May 2016

“What I particularly enjoyed were the workshops and events that ERIEC organized and facilitated. These sessions turned out to be very informative and educational and provided me with the confidence that I needed for my job search.”

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Emmanuel Onwudiwe, Management, November 2015

“She helped me review my resume and cover letter, and I made a lot adjustments to make them more suitable for Canadian employers. My mentor knows how to make use of great keywords to attract potential employers, and she shared a lot of tips with me.”

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Tsegay Gebrelibanos, Education, October 2015

“It gives me great pleasure to commend ERIEC’s services. Through the Career Mentorship Program, I was matched with Ryan, a lecturer from one of the local universities. We have had several meetings and candid discussions about the Canadian job market, diverse job search strategies and networking with fellow professionals. He helped me a lot in terms of designing, updating and refining my resume and cover letters, more tailored for different institutions, human service agencies and consultancies.”

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Mangulal Halai, Information Technology, October 2015

“My mentor, despite his own setback, helped me maintain a positive mental attitude and gave me essential advice when it came to tailoring my resumes and cover letters. As well as the excellent mentorship from my mentor and all the encouragement from ERIEC,  I have found the monthly Intercultural Workshops (at NorQuest College) to have been of immense benefit to me. This is something that I began to look forward to every month as it got me out of my normal routine and small circle of friends. It’s always great to meet up with my fellow newcomers and share ideas and experiences. I also like that we can chat with the other mentors there who all made themselves approachable and easy to talk with.”

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Nicole Nebril, Non-profit, September 2015

“Coming to Canada is both an opportunity and a sacrifice to me. It’s an opportunity because I thought I would have a bigger chance to wider my career path. While it is also a sacrifice because you have to leave everything behind from the country that you came from and that includes a livelihood and a profession. I had a small business back home and profession as a Community Development Practitioner, but everything changed when I decided to move to Edmonton where I found myself starting all over again and creating new paths of success in my chosen field.”

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Grishma Mehta, HR, January 2015

“She boosted my self-confidence by believing in me and making me feel special. She always told me that I should be proud of what and who I am. We developed and discussed a list of dream employers for myself and for my field and strategies on how to reach out to them. She helped me grow my professional network. We had several discussions about cultural diversity, networking skills and professional development.”

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Claudio Carvajal, Government and Public Service, September 2014

“When I attended an information session that ERIEC provided, I found out that Canadian Culture at the workplace is very different than back home in so many ways. There are many differences like the way to format a resume and cover letter, how to do an interview, and how to interact with people here at the workplace…I realized that if I wanted to get a professional job, I had to overcome my cultural shock by trying to understand the Canadian culture.”

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Martha Chinedu-Okoro, Accounting, June 2014

“I was matched with a wonderful, excellent and informative mentor who encouraged me to keep applying for jobs that matched my experience, skills and competencies. The activities that we did together during the mentee/mentor relationship included but weren’t limited to ”

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Rose M., HR, June 2014

“During the Mentorship program, I attended the Intercultural Workshops run by NorQuest College which boosted my confidence and made me understand workplace etiquette better. I also learnt effective networking strategies.”

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Grace Fotso, Mechanical Engineer, January 2014

“At the Mentorship Program Orientation, I felt really encouraged by the description of mentorship and the joy to meet and exchange with other mentees about many common things that newcomers experience when settling in Canada.  We shared with each other about the challenges in searching for professional jobs.”

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Syed Ajaz, Healthcare Management, November 2013

“Being accepted and getting to know wonderful people who are there to guide you at ERIEC was a wonderful experience.  Not only did my mentor provide me with a lot of guidance about the Canadian workplace culture, especially in healthcare management, the mentor helped me a lot with my resume, interview skills and networking strategies. ”

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Liliana Renteria, Accounting, November 2013

“Working in Canada can be marvellous, but like anywhere else, Canadian opportunities are often disguised as hard work.  They are also not always easy to be found by newcomers.  My strategy was to start from the bottom and keep working up from there.”

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Manju Mathew, Psychologist, September 2013

“Like most of the immigrants, I came to Canada with many dreams.  However, during the first couple of months in Canada, I felt that I landed in the middle of a rough sea.  I have applied to so many jobs but I didn’t hear anything back even though I have a PhD and 10 years of work experience in my field.”

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Nozima Nurmukhamedova, HR/Business Administration, August 2013

With an advanced degree, I have worked in various international settings and big projects. I thought that finding a job would be easy here in Canada but this was not the case. Lack of Canadian experience, Canadian certification and accreditation processes, a new work culture… you name it…these were my new realities…

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Chérif Ly, Education, August 2013

“I have been living in Canada for over two years now. My career objective was to work in my profession and I have worked hard on making this happen here in Canada. I submitted my credentials with Alberta Education and would later receive an interim professional certificate after waiting for almost a year. However, this did not help me reach somewhere immediately, so I started to consider changing my career focus. When I joined the ERIEC Career Mentorship Program, it gave me back hope.”

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Jacqueline Brown, Administration, August 2013

At ERIEC, I was paired with a mentor; she truly understood the requirement for success. She encouraged me to continue volunteering especially in the field that I might want to launch a career path in. One of the huge tools of the mentorship program is networking. My mentor introduced me to a Human Resource Manager of a large business; she further assigned me to another member of her team. It was an eye opener to the world of huge job opportunities.

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Camille Wang, Finance, July 2013

“The day when I attended ERIEC’ mentorship program orientation, I felt really encouraged.  Each mentee at the orientation is professional.  All of us can speak fluent English, and we are eager and ready to contribute to this new country – Canada.  From the beginning of the program, we were eager to start networking with each other.  I have seen myself from other mentees, and I have got more motivation from them.  I was so touched by the moment.”

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Nimaya Lodu, Human Resources, Fall 2012/13

Being in a new country is challenging; having a mentor can help reduce some of the mounting complexity through the guidance, support, and inspiration I receive during the mentorship sessions. It is a chance to learn the culture so that I can be comfortable to relate with people I will always meet along my way. Attending intercultural and special job search technique workshops organized by ERIEC, and hearing testimonies from other speakers who immigrated earlier, help me to feel confident. It also re-energized my attitude towards looking for jobs and getting focused on my career. I feel now that I am not the only one – many have gone through this journey, and I am also now following the path.

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Maria Cecilia (Cecile) Tian, Banking/Administration, Fall 2010

Cecile learned far more from Maureen than skills. “She taught me to be brave and confident. She always encouraged me to believe in myself and to think positively.” Mock interviews gave her practice. “During interviews, I have to be aware of my facial expression and body language. Maureen would frequently remind me to be relaxed, confident and not to be afraid of answering interview questions.” She feels very fortunate to have participated in the Career Mentorship Program and the intercultural workshop.”

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Sanjeev Sharma, Accountant, Fall 2010

“I was very eager to join the program. I wanted to better understand the Canadian work culture and what employers expect. My expectations have been fully met.” Sanjeev attributes much of his success to his mentor, Ishpreet Lamba, Senior Financial Analyst at Exel Global Logistics Canada. The pair started meeting in December and completed their official time together in April.

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Edgar Llanes, Civil Engineer, Fall 2009

Edgar doesn’t hesitate in describing the best thing about the Career Mentorship Program. “I have won a friend, a very good friend. Jay taught me patience and gave me hope. He has been very encouraging. And the time with him has flown. I thought we were just beginning our weeks together, and now, we have only three sessions remaining. I treasure our relationship.”

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Tilahun Bogale, Mechanical Engineer, Fall 2009

Tilahun says he’s been very lucky in learning about the mentorship program and being paired with a Canadian professional. “I can’t summarize in concrete terms everything I’ve learned in a few months, but I do feel more confident in what I’m doing. Showing and feeling confidence is very important. I think my mentor did a great job.”

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Fen Li (Vivian Lee), Electrical Engineer, Fall 2009

“Before I attended this program, I didn’t know what Canadian employers were looking for. I just gave the answers I thought I should say. Now I know more how the Canadian people are thinking and what they want in a professional.”

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