September 2019 Smart Connections: Alternative Career Paths

Our second event for this year’s Smart Connections program series was themed Alternative Career Paths, hosted by the Edmonton Region Immigrant Employment Council (ERIEC ) and was held yesterday, September 26th, 2019 at the Matrix Hotel, Edmonton. A total of 135 internationally educated professionals attended the event!

Our goal was to provide information about career paths in the Life Sciences in Alberta, presented by Robb Stoddard from BioAlberta; Project Management, provided by Colin Knoll, Director at the Project Management Institute of Northern Alberta and in the growing cannabis industry, presented by Jesse Cheetham from Fire & Flower. Three of the presenters were successful female immigrants who shared their difficult path to success: Claudia Villeneuve form University of Alberta, Martha Vega-Smith from Suncor Energy and Catalina Vasquez from Nanostics. Their message was clear: never give up, be flexible and ready to reinvent yourself any step of the “integration road”.

Evaluation from the participants in the Smart Connections event yesterday who responded to the survey was the following:
92.59 % rated the event as Excellent or Very Good.
88.46% responded that information that they gathered from the event in improving their knowledge of alternative career paths in Alberta was Extremely Helpful or Very Helpful.

The following are a few quotes from the attendees who responded to our post-event survey:

What did you like the most about this event?
“I liked the fact that most of the presenters were people who have passed the same way we are going through now but managed to be successful”
“Speakers were Inspiring & this makes a huge difference to immigrants”
“The variety of industries, and ideas represented”
“Invaluable knowledge and motivation lectures”
“Hearing from all the presenters about their settlement journey in Canada and the career path advices are so motivating”
“Extent of material covered Quality speakers/topics”

What can we do better for our future events?
“Create more of such events as many as you can because its very helpful for immigrants to know more of what they can do”

Thank you to all our speakers for their informative and inspiring presentations! Thank you for helping professional immigrants participate in the Alberta economy to their full potential.

The mini market place was very well attended. We thank all our exhibitors: Government of Alberta, PMI, NAIT, NorQuest College, Windmill Microlending, Empower Me program, Fire & Flower and Wayfinders Business Cooperative.

Of course, we would also like to thank you to all of the participants, community partners and volunteers for their contribution and collaboration in helping to make another great ERIEC event!

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