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CAREER OPTIONS FOR CANADIAN POST-SECONDARY STUDENTS

CAREEROPTIONSMAGAZINE.COM WINTER 2015 / VOLUME 29 NO. 1

“JUST BE YOURSELF, DEAR” AN INTERVIEW WITH

SHOPIFY’S DOUG TETZNER PAGE 14

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ARE CAREER CENTRES YOUR SCHOOL’S BEST KEPT SECRET?

22 WHY YOUR TECHNICAL

SKILLS AREN’T ENOUGH TO GET YOU THE JOB

30 SPECIAL SECTION: INTERNATIONAL


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CAREER OPTIONS WINTER 2015

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The cultural DOs and DON’Ts of working abroad

DYNAMIC

CRITICAL THINKER TEAM PLAYER

LEADER

RESPONSIBLE ARTICULATE

PROBLEM SOLVER

HARD WORKING

RELIABLE

22

Are you failing to communicate your skills?

IN EVERY ISSUE

5 EDITOR’S LETTER FEATURES

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There’s Nothing Soft About “Soft Skills” By David Lindskoog

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14

By Jane MacDonald

By Robert Nettleton

Career Centres: Your School’s Best Kept Secret

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5 Tips to Building a Memorable Personal Brand By Sara Kandathil

“Just Be Yourself, Dear” An Interview with Shopify’s Doug Tetzner

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Upskilling to Even More Career Options By William Johnson

22

INTERNATIONAL

The “Softer” Side of Job Hunting And Why Technical Skills Aren’t Enough to Get You the Job By Emma Tranter

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Test Your International IQ— Are You Ready to Work Abroad?

“You look familiar. Have we met before?”

By Jean-Marc Hachey

Disclosure in the Graduate Environment 6 Tips for Students in Transition By Chelsea E. Mohler, MSc, Emily M. Duffett, MA and Dr. Mahadeo A. Sukhai, Ph.D.

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So You Want to Teach Abroad? Let’s Get You Certified By Aisha Biberdorf

38

Certified to Teach Abroad? Now Let’s Talk Etiquette

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By Richard Coelho

Experiential Learning Through Volunteering

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By Valérie Gosselin & Catherine Stace

Studying in the Sun By Danielle Klassen

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CAREER OPTIONS EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

Paul D. Smith MANAGING EDITOR | GORDONGROUP

Robert Nettleton PROJECT MANAGEMENT | GORDONGROUP

Omer Abdallah ART DIRECTION | PRINT MANAGEMENT GORDONGROUP

Leslie Miles DESIGN & LAYOUT | GORDONGROUP

HAVE YOU CHECKED OUT THE CAREER OPTIONS WEBSITE? FOR TODAY’S MEDIA-SAVVY, CAREER-FOCUSED STUDENT! » Job hunting resources » Featured employers » Career event listings » Videos and more!

Emily Barclay DIRECTOR OF ADVERTISING SALES | GORDONGROUP

Kirill Kornilov ADVERTISING SALES | GORDONGROUP

Colleen Hayes DISTRIBUTION REPRESENTATIVES | GORDONGROUP

Stirling Coulter-Hayward CONTRIBUTORS

Aisha Biberdorf Richard Coelho Emily M. Duffett Valérie Gosselin Jean-Marc Hachey William Johnson Sara Kandathil Danielle

David Lindskoog Jane MacDonald Chelsea E. Mohler Robert Nettleton Catherine Stace Dr. Mahadeo A. Sukhai Emma Tranter Klassen

BLOGSPOT » Students, career educators and guest bloggers share their thoughts about post-secondary education, entering the workforce, finding the “right” job and getting a career on track. Submit your own blog ideas at careeroptionsmagazine.com/ community/blog

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Career Options is published bi-annually in January and September by the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE), 720 Spadina Avenue, Suite 202, Toronto ON M5S 2T9

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Tel.: 613-634-2359 Fax: 416-929-5256 Email: pauls@cacee.com Website: careeroptionsmagazine.com FOR ADVERTISING INQUIRIES, CONTACT KIRILL KORNILOV,

Director of Advertising Sales, gordongroup: Tel.: 613-288-5363 Fax: 613-722-6496 Email: kkornilov@gordongroup.com Website: gordongroup.com ISSN: 1712-1183 The Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE) is a national, non-profit partnership of employer recruiters and career services professionals. Our mission is to provide authoritative information, advice, professional development opportunities and other services to employers, career services professionals and students. Career Options is distributed to students at post-secondary institutions across Canada. Career Options is available free of charge through campus career centres. NOTE: The opinions expressed within are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect CACEE policy. No part of this magazine may be reproduced in whole or in part without written permission of the publisher.

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WE WOULD LIKE TO THANK OUR ADVERTISERS… 21 Athabasca University 13 Bilingual Job Fair 34 Brighton College Canada 19 Canadian Natural Resources 8 Canadian Bureau for International Education 42 COTR’s Adventure Tourism Business Operations 24 Engineers Canada 39, 42 Enterprise Rent-A-Car (ERAC) 17, 29 Humber College, School of Social & Community Services 37 Kativik School Board 6 Manitoba Government Tuition Fee Rebate 43 Manitoba Nurses Recruitment and Retention Fund 5, 42 New York Chiropractic College 2, 42 Ontario Council on Articulation and Transfer (ONCAT) 25 Saskatchewan Government Insurance (SGI) 28 Schlumberger CA RE EROP TI O N SMAGA ZIN E.COM

44 St. George’s University 18, 42 The Canadian Payroll Association 41 The Centre for Digital Media (CDM) 35 The National Job Fair and Training Expo 34 The New England Center for Children (NECC) 33 University of Regina 42 Washington University of Health and Science 5 You’re Next Career Network


EDITOR’S LETTER

We Don’t Have a Skills Gap—We Have a Communications Problem

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ou may have noticed that Canadian media has been full of reports about a skills shortage in this country. Employers report difficulties finding suitable candidates (that would be you), while economists and analysts are saying that data is showing none of the expected indicators of a systemic, comprehensive shortage. Here at the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers (CACEE), we have data that reveals one possible cause of a shortage of skilled young talent. Recruiting strategies have changed, and everyone is learning the new rules. This means—and is explored in the article by Emma Tranter beginning on page 22—that we don’t have a skills gap, we have a communications problem. With that said, you should know that there are real skill shortages in select regions and sectors. Employers in western and eastern regions of Canada are experiencing actual recruiting challenges and across the country there are shortages within select sectors (oil and gas, skilled trades). Much of that demand has been for skilled tradespeople, a form of training that has been out of favour for quite some time. But these authentic shortages don’t tell the whole story. Let’s consider the communications problem: What caused it? What we can do about it? There are employers who have committed to the exclusive or near exclusive use of social networks to source applicants, moving away from first-person recruiting efforts like campus visits. This approach invites many more applications because anyone with a Twitter account can learn about postings, and then visit the corporate website to apply. This seems like good news for you, especially if you attend a school with a lower profile. For the recruiter, it introduces a challenge: the potential volume of applications goes up considerably. Most respond by pairing social network recruiting with an Applicant Tracking System (ATS) to turn a flood of applications into a manageable stream of candidates, but selective screening criteria that is based on keywords limits the number of qualified applicants who become candidates. There’s a short term solution: Career educators and students who encounter these systems respond by figuring out the magical keywords so that they can beat the filters. Eventually, when enough applicants figure this out, employers then change the keywords, or implement a new process (assessment centres are emerging as a tool). This is the recruiting arms race, and like the military arms race, it is expensive and it does not solve the problem it is intended to solve. There is also a longer term solution: We can communicate authentically, using a common language that is intended to create understanding, instead of using jargon intended to trip up applicants. Employers, educators and students can work together to identify the true skills needed in the present labour market, and agree upon the words that describe them. If we do this, we can replace the “arms race” with an open and effective recruiting process that aligns skills with needs, applicants with opportunities. But this will take a while to achieve. In the meantime, you should probably work with your career service staff to figure out the keywords.

PAUL D. SMITH is the Executive Director of the Canadian Association of Career Educators and Employers and Editor-in-Chief of Career Options magazine. Email Paul at pauls@cacee.com

FOR MORE INFORMATION, PLEASE VISIT: cacee.com, careeroptionsmagazine.com

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By Jane MacDonald

CAREERCENTRES: YOUR SCHOOL’S BEST KEPT SECRET.

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hat is one of the best kept secrets at post-secondary institutions? It is the career centre office! Although it may have different names on other campuses, the primary purpose of a career centre is to provide programs and services on career and employment topics. We can loosely categorize the services and programs available at a career centre in the following three categories: career advising, career information, and employment services. CAREER ADVISING is coaching or career counselling services designed to help you explore your career options; assess skills, values, and interests; and identify job search strategies and decisionmaking skills. Other programs and services can include job search information, resumé and cover letter critiques, mock interviews, networking, workshops, and portfolio development.

Career centres provide CAREER INFORMATION to help you relate your skills, experience, and goals to the workplace. It can also help you explore career choices and the career decisionmaking process. Many career centres provide career information through self-assessments and career planning resources, labour market information (local to global), graduate or professional schools information, employment directories, and employment advertisements. A common resource career centres use is “What I can do with a degree/major in…?” This tool contains relevant skill development needs, occupational choices, examples of companies who look for individuals with this degree, and other useful resource links. Having the right information will help you make an informed career decision. For anyone looking to explore work opportunities and connect with prospective employers, you can

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take advantage of a career centre’s EMPLOYMENT SERVICES. In most cases, career centre staff develop individual relationships with many local and national employers and graduate/professional schools. Through job advertisements, you learn about employers who have part-time, summer, or post-graduate job openings. Throughout the school year, career centres also organizes many job/career fairs, information sessions, and meet-and-greets with employers. These events provide you with direct access to employers and can help you understand what companies may be a right fit for you. The best advice for anyone looking for resources on how you can link your education to the available jobs is to “Ask questions.” Feel confident that by getting an answer to your career-related questions, you can save time in the job application process, make informed academic course choices, or better understand career interests. I guarantee there is a dedicated group of career services professionals who are keenly interested in helping you discover your career journey and help you connect with the workforce. CO

JANE MACDONALD has over 15 years of experience in studentfocused career coaching. She teaches professional development seminars and the academic component for StFX Co-op Program.

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TIPS TO BUILDING A MEMORABLE PERSONAL BRAND By Sara Kandathil

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IT WAS A SMALL NETWORKING EVENT—AN OPEN HOUSE MEET-ANDGREET, SO TO SPEAK. BEING ONE OF THE FIRST TO ARRIVE, THERE WERE ONLY A HANDFUL OF PEOPLE THERE, INCLUDING ONE GIRL WHOSE FACE WAS STRIKINGLY FAMILIAR. III

Immediately I felt I recognized her, but I couldn’t quite place her face. Was it school, work, or perhaps a friend of a friend? I just couldn’t remember! But, sooner or later, I knew, she was going to approach me—after all, there were so few of us who showed up this early. I made my way over to the refreshments—racking my brain trying to place her. Finally, I just decided to head over, introduce myself, and see if some small-talk would trigger my memory. Her name was Jane Greensmith (name changed for privacy reasons), but she introduced herself as though she hadn’t met me before, and even offered me her business card. And that’s when it all clicked: I hadn’t actually met her before! My memory didn’t fail me! (Well, not entirely anyways). Her business card was stamped with her well-branded profile picture, the same profile picture that she had on LinkedIn where she postes updates and articles on a regular basis. I had never met Jane before, but noticed her status updates filled my social media feeds and we shared a number of professional connections, so I eventually added her as one of my own connections. The moment I received her business card, I realized she was the epitome of personal branding. She had created such a strong online presence through her brand, that even before I met her, I thought I already knew her. It is because of Jane Greensmith that I came to understand just how powerful personal branding can be if you’re a professional looking to really establish yourself within your chosen career. And with that, I bring to you:

5 TIPS FOR DEVELOPING YOUR PERSONAL BRAND

SARA KANDATHIL is Career Specialist with the BCIT Student Association. Connect with her on Twitter @SaraKandathil

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1 | STREAMLINE THE DESIGN

The design of your brand is like nonverbal communication: You could be saying all the right things, but if you’re using baby pink font on your resumé and have Hello Kitty pictures on your website, you might not be taken as seriously as you’d like. Consider the tone and feel that you want to portray, and be mindful of how your font style and colour scheme reflect that. Secondly, be consistent with your font style and colours throughout all of your branding materials—resumé/cover letter letterhead, business cards, Twitter, blogs, websites, etc. Make it easy for people to recognize your brand.

2 | AVOID THE “SELFIE” HEADSHOT

A professional looking picture—particularly on your LinkedIn profile—goes a long way. That’s not to say that you have to get a professional set of headshots taken; however, at the very least, ask a friend to take an individual picture of you. Stay away from selfies or failed cropped photos where your best friend’s shoulder is still in the frame. And of course, smile! A smiling face is always a more welcome first impression.

3 | SAY IT WITH A TAGLINE

If you could describe your brand in 3 words, what would they be? Your tagline can be used as your LinkedIn headline or Twitter bio, on your website, or even as the footer on your resume. Of course, it should be professional, but adding a little creative flair is what makes a brand memorable. Check out some of the bios of professionals you look up to on Twitter to get some ideas.

4 | FIND A PLATFORM TO SHOWCASE YOUR WORK

LinkedIn now allows you to add in special projects, but depending on what skill sets you want to highlight, you may be looking for a larger space to showcase your pieces of work and accomplishments. You may consider your own website or online portfolio through free sites like Wix or Weebly.

5 | BE GENUINE

At the end of the day, a brand isn’t a brand if it isn’t truly you. Before creating your brand, take some time to reflect on the values, skills, passions and traits that define you. Think of how you want to represent yourself professionally and what you want hiring managers and professional peers to know about you. There you have it: create a strong brand and online presence, and before you know it, people may begin to think they’ve met you before they’ve really met you! CO

CA RE EROP TI O N SMAGA ZIN E.COM


A

re you caught in that catch-22 situation where you can’t get the job without the experience, but you can’t get the experience without the job? You’re not alone in that situation, but there is something you can do about it. Volunteering provides you with more than that “feel good” feeling. It’s a great opportunity to gain the necessary experience you need in order to qualify for a job by donating your time to an organization for a couple of hours a week—or whatever suits your schedule.

EXPERIENTIAL LEARNING THROUGH VOLUNTEERING

By Valérie Gosselin & Catherine Stace

Volunteering can help you achieve your career goals in so many ways, but here’s just a few to consider: Putting your academics into practice. Imagine you are studying accounting and volunteer for an organization that hands you their accounting receipts in a shoe box. You could design and implement a standardized accounting system and train the staff on how to use it. This could go a long way in demonstrating to prospective employers you are responsible, innovative, and you are a team player. Explore your career options and expand your horizons. This is your chance to try out different industries or career paths, or simply try something you never thought of before! Volunteering opens up the doors to experience a career path before you dive into an expensive degree or certification program. Develop your skills or hone the ones you already have. By volunteering you can apply your theoretical knowledge in a practical setting. You might be able to put programming skills to use and build your portfolio to show potential employers, or use your position to get a chance to practice your second or third language. Build your network. Volunteers come from a variety of age groups, lifestyles and career paths. You have the opportunity to learn about other careers and career paths while making contacts in those fields. It can also be a great opportunity to be linked to someone who knows someone who’s hiring. Even if the volunteering work is not related to your dream career, you might be surprised by the people you’ll meet. Developing a wide network that can attest to your skills and commitment is always a good thing.

Insider sneak peek of the organization. Learn a company’s culture, the workload, expectations, the challenges and develop your contacts in the organization or the field. You could get a sense of what it is like to work in that type of organization. For example, the work culture in an NGO setting can be different from the corporate culture. This will help you decide if you want to work for this organization in the future and how to target your application.

Opportunity for personal growth. Don’t underestimate the sense of giving. The personal fulfillment and sense of achievement can help you define your values and perhaps even direct you along unexpected path. When you volunteer you are helping yourself and the organization. Go ahead take a risk! Be adventurous and do something that you have never done before! Your future self will thank you. CO

VALÉRIE GOSSELIN is studying career development at Université du Québec à Montréal. CATHERINE STACE is a Career Advisor at McGill University. She has been active with CACEE at the regional and national levels for many years.

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

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WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

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WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

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WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

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IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

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TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION IDENTIFYING AND SOLVING PROBLEMS

TEAMWORK AND LEADERSHIP

WRITTEN AND VERBAL COMMUNICATION

There’s

NOTHING SOFT about “SOFT SKILLS”


By David Lindskoog, MA

H

ave you ever thought about what is meant by the term “soft skills?” While the distinction from skills focusing more explicitly on numbers, machines, and patterns is taxonomically helpful, the word “soft” unfortunately comes with baggage we could do without. In fact, the word is far more often associated with tones of insult or shortcoming than anything actually desired– especially in a context as dominated by competition and self-promotion as job seeking. Yet, in survey after survey, employers are identifying what are traditionally thought of as soft skills as their most sought-after abilities in new hires. To name but a few: written and verbal communication; identifying and solving problems; teamwork; leadership.

EMPLOYERS ARE IDENTIFYING WHAT ARE TRADITIONALLY THOUGHT OF AS SOFT SKILLS AS THEIR MOST SOUGHT-AFTER ABILITIES IN NEW HIRES. I wouldn’t blame you for experiencing feelings of confusion. Just to the side of the soft skills emphasis is a constant stream of encouragement extolling the virtues of degrees made of “sterner” stuff, requiring “harder” skills: science, technology, engineering, and math. Because we love to categorize by nature, it can become really hard to get away from an either/or perspective when it comes to these kinds of skills. In reality though, you have many skills that help to define you as a complex individual. These skills defy outdated categorizations, and they all have value.

grouping them might be their shared application to, or association with, people. And as someone who spends their workday listening to them at their most vulnerable, I’d suggest that there’s most certainly nothing simple or easy about people. All skills can be improved with time, practice, and the right kind of training. For the more quantitative skills out there, a straightforward path often exists. Want to become more skilled in calculus or a programming language? Learn the methods, apply them, then learn more complicated ones and apply those. It might take a long time and lots of repetition, but eventually you are left with more confidence in that skill. Things are less straightforward if what you want to learn is how to communicate a complex idea in an understandable way, or collaborate in a group of conflicting personalities, or simply listen to someone in a manner that makes them feel heard. Even professional email etiquette seems too difficult a skill for a surprising number of people! The good news is, these are absolutely still skills that you can improve, and the even better news is that you have nearly limitless options as to how you can do that. I chose to volunteer and work part time during my own studies. You may choose to pursue experiential education opportunities, or work abroad, or go on exchange, or simply travel somewhere new. As you reflect on these experiences, you’ll discover you’ve grown. And while there’s nothing soft about that, it sure doesn’t sound hard. CO

DAVID LINDSKOOG is a clinical counsellor in Vancouver, BC with a background in post-secondary career counselling. He writes regularly on his website, thedayjob.ca.

There’s nothing soft about the in-demand skills listed above. In fact, a more accurate way of

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“Just be yourself, dear”

AN INTERVIEW WITH

SHOPIFY’S DOUG TETZNER By Robert Nettleton


Shopify pod

If you have never heard of Shopify, you may be missing out on a pretty awesome career opportunity—and not just because Shopify employees have access to sweet office perks, such as a yoga studio, an arcade and catered lunches five days a week.

B

ased in Ottawa, Ontario, Shopify provides commerce solutions to anyone looking to sell online, in store and everywhere in between. Today, Shopify powers more than 120,000 stores around the world. Since opening its doors in 2004, Shopify has become somewhat renowned for its non-traditional approach to recruitment and interviewing, focusing much more on a person’s soft skills—their story and passion—rather than just the technical skills that they possess. Career Options leapt at the chance to speak with Doug Tetzner, Shopify’s Director of Talent Acquisition, to learn more about this unconventional approach to hiring and what advice he has for those on the job hunt— especially if they want to work at Shopify. Career Options (CO): What inspired your non-traditional approach to recruiting and hiring? Doug Tetzner (DT): A lot of companies when it comes to recruiting will fall into this trap of “Well, let’s just find people who have done it before.” So it becomes a search for a “been there, done that” candidate. Whereas we much prefer to … find people who are great at what they do and are passionate about what they do, get to know them, and bring them in and have them grow within our environment. 16

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What we’re really trying to do is find high-quality people who are fully engaged in what they do. It’s more about getting to know them versus a typical QA of “tell me a time where you were challenged.” Interviewing can be a very stiff and uncomfortable process in a lot of places because it’s really about asking questions and looking for the right answers, whereas with us it’s about getting to know the people. CO: What are some of the key soft skills you look for as part of your role in talent acquisition for Shopify? DT: Number one is authenticity. Shopify is a very real place. We look to hire people that can be themselves. It sounds like advice from someone’s mother: “Oh, just be yourself, dear!” It’s also easier said than done. We look for people who are comfortable with themselves and are a certain way and can be that way. They don’t present a mask or a kind of persona that they think we want to see. Number two is…we could find someone who has great skills and an awesome background, but if we think they’re going to be an [expletive], we just won’t hire them. At work, you need to be able to get along with people. And a lot of what is great about a company is when people are working well with people they work with.

CA RE EROP TI O N SMAGA ZIN E.COM


CO: Do you think soft skills are more important than technical or “hard” skills? Would you be willing to take the risk on someone who may be less technically-inclined and less qualified for the job on paper, but have a lot more potential in the personality department? DT: The hard skills and soft skills are equally important... It comes down to people who have been fully engaged in what they do. You could interview two different people that have both worked at McDonald’s but just had very different experiences there. One would know exactly how the place worked, and what they did, and be able to get into great detail about it and have a conversation about it, and the other, who maybe didn’t really care about being there, wouldn’t be able to answer any questions about it because they, in fact, weren’t “there.” If people can come into our environment and be fully engaged…it’s what we look for.

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CO: In some cases, you’ve ask candidates to describe a typical day off in their life, show you a funny link, or demonstrate their thick skin or sense of humour in an application. Why is this information important to finding the right candidate? DT: There [are] a couple reasons for it. The first is just so we can get to know them a bit, versus just “Here is my cover letter and here is my CV.” When someone shares the link to the funny thing they have seen on the Internet or describe their weekend, you get a better understanding of them. The second reason is that there [are] quite a few people who apply for jobs where it’s just about volume—they don’t actually read job postings or put much time and attention into their application. So they will not actually see the part about linking to the funniest thing or, quite frankly, read the part where it says “Make your cover letter out to this person.” They’re just so used to “I’m going to apply for 25 jobs today, crank them out and copy and paste my CV and cover letter.” So we’ll put some interesting things in the job postings just to see who’s actually reading them. Now that trick will be ruined once this article comes out.

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We had [one job posting] where we put in the middle of the text, “Please make your cover letter out to Dear Mario and Luigi,” and about 40% of applications just didn’t. It was “To whom it may concern,” or “Dear hiring manager.” I’m convinced a lot of people just don’t read [the job postings]. They just see the job title, see it as a lottery and just apply.

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The people who do the best in the job search are the ones who can do a bit of research and write a customized cover letter. It goes a long way. Human beings are actually reading this stuff. Contrary to popular belief, we’re not just doing keyword searches.

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CO: To play into your process a bit, how would you describe a typical day off in your life? DT: A day off in my life? I’ve got a couple of kids. I’m married. A lot of our weekends are hanging out with the kids, taking them to activities and doing things around the house. It’s kind of all consuming and it’s awesome. There’s always grass to cut or there’s always things to be done… Even as you asked me to describe it, I’m like, “That doesn’t sound very exciting.” I’d like to go skydiving!

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Shopify snowboard office

Shopify cabins

CO: You’re not just looking for people who have exciting weekend plans are you? DT: No! No not at all. Asking about their typical weekend is just to see how their writing skills are because you’re asking them to write something that isn’t their standard cover letter and you get to know them a little bit more. We don’t read those things and go “Oh that’s dumb, that’s boring.” CO: What are some of the questions you like to hear from candidates in an interview? DT: The only questions that I want to be asked are questions that the

candidate honestly wants the answer to. Do a bunch of research on the your career options at company and as you’re doing that Shopify, visit shopify.com/careers research, things will naturally come up and you wonder, “Oh how does that work?”or “I’m curious about this.” Ask those things versus, “Oh I’ve heard it’s really good to ask this question, so that’s why I’m going to ask it.”

Explore

I feel that recruiting and interviewing is broken in a lot of places because it’s become this standardized question and answer thing. Candidates come in, with rehearsed answers to questions, companies come into it with standardized

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questions and it’s this odd interaction. It’s unlike any other human interaction you would ever have. What we prefer to do is have a conversation. So whatever questions come up in the conversation that you’re genuinely curious about, ask those. But don’t ask things just to be seen as asking questions. CO: What’s the craziest or most outrageous thing that a candidate has ever done to get your attention? DT: There’s a developer here who came over from France, rented an Airbnb, got a 613 phone number, then applied. And in this awesome cover letter, he was basically saying, “I came over from France and I either want to work for Shopify or another company in Toronto that I’m going to go see, but Shopify is my first choice.” But to actually come here and then apply, I was like, “Holy smokes. Talk about effort.” And we hired him, and he’s awesome.

CO: Awesome. Is there anything else you’d like to add?

Follow Doug on Twitter @DougTetzner

DT: In a job search, research the company you want to work for and then go after them in a very targeted way. You’d be better off [applying] for three companies and spending a lot of time on them, versus applying for 30. It’s not a lottery. People read these applications, so you’d be better off doing a good job with them. Second is just show up without an agenda and be ready for a conversation. Be in the moment and being there for the conversation goes an absolutely long way, versus having things you want to get across because you think they need to know those things, and when they ask a question you just veer off. Just be in the moment and have a conversation. CO

CO: Lastly, if you could create a recipe to create the overall perfect Shopify candidate, what would that recipe look like? DT: I’d say: 1 part fully engaged and caring about the things they’ve done up to this point. There’s nothing better than someone who is just into what they do—whatever that is. 1 part being themselves—people who can have a conversation and just be themselves is always great! Lastly, 1 part constantly learning.

ROBERT NETTLETON is a multipurpose writer, educator and hardcore Stevie Nicks fan. Follow him on Twitter @Robulous

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UPSKILLING

By William Johnson

TO EVEN MORE CAREER OPTIONS

H

olly is a program coordinator at a local non-profit organization. She’s been working there for four years, learning on the job, and increasingly taking on more responsibility. She’s recently decided that she’d like to pursue a certificate in business management and possibly learn a new language. Given how she perceives 20

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the current employment environment—a volatile job market, modest growth in the economy, and an increasing number of adults with post-secondary education—she believes her decision is nothing short of necessary, and has the potential open more doors. Holly, to put it more plainly, is upskilling.

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Why do people upskill or pursue second career training? Reasons seem to coincide—57% are seeking promotion at their current company, 47% are looking for advancement at a new company, and 42% are looking to enter a completely new field of work according to the KGWI. Some more nuanced explanations might be that employees are being passed over for promotions due to new staff with advanced degrees or specialized training; some professionals are looking to increase their standing (and salary) at their current firm; or to simply obtain a new job.

Maria Mitchell, from a portrait by H. Dassell, 1851 [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Holly isn’t alone—according to the 2013 Kelly Global Workforce Index (KGWI), approximately 60% of workers globally are “either actively seeking further education/training, or are considering it.” This survey of over 120,000 people in 31 countries across the Americas, EMEA and APAC regions takes a generational approach to opinions about work.

WHATEVER THE REASON, BEFORE YOU OR ANYONE CONSIDERS SECOND CAREER TRAINING, BE SURE TO CONSIDER THE FOLLOWING: SKILL TYPE - What type of upskilling are you considering? Are you looking to obtain soft skills, such as leadership training, or hard skills, like project management or learning a new language? FINANCES - How much will this cost you? Do you have the money to pour into a costly course, or can you afford to take time off of work? CURRENT WORK SITUATION - If you have told your current supervisor about your plans, how do they feel about this? Are they a proactive employer who celebrates this type of initiative? TIME - Do you have the time? And what might you have to de-prioritize as a result of this new focus? WHY - Ask yourself, “What does success look like?” and determine the why behind this decision. Only when you can answer that should you comfortably move forward. A key part of this process is research—the costs, resources available (including financing from the government or your HR department), and time required to achieve your goals. What will also help is good old face-to-face conversations with senior professionals. They can tell you what additional skills they have acquired over the years and what, in their opinion, makes someone more valuable as an employee. Most importantly, consider whether what you’re doing fits into your overall career plan and lifestyle. CO

“ We have a hunger of the mind, which asks for knowledge all around us.” › Maria Mitchell: Obsessed Observer Can you learn anything with your head in the clouds? Just ask America’s first female astronomer. Fascinated with the skies at an early age, Maria followed her passion through daily life. She worked as a librarian and a teacher’s assistant, all the while still gazing at the night sky. That’s how she discovered Miss Mitchell’s Comet. It’s amazing what you can discover when your passion and your life collide. Learn with us on your own schedule, in your own time… and prepare to shine.

WILLIAM JOHNSON is an Ottawa-based student engagement and communications professional working at the post-secondary level. Follow his insights at williamjohnson.ca and on Twitter @notionport

open. online. everywhere. Learn more at athabascau.ca/mitchell

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DYNAMIC

CRITICAL THINKER TEAM PLAYER

LEADER

RESPONSIBLE ARTICULATE

PROBLEM SOLVER

HARD WORKING

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RELIABLE


The “softer” side of JOB HUNTING And why technical skills aren’t enough to get you the job. By Emma Tranter

A

fter graduating from post-secondary school, students often begin tirelessly searching the job market before ultimately accepting and attending interviews. Yet, while many candidates are selected for interviews based on the technical skills and credentials on their resumés, some experts suggest that many young job hopefuls often struggle to convey the more personal and less practical qualities. Failing to properly communicate these more personal, less practical qualities—referred to as “soft skills”—could actually cost you the job. A 2013 report from Prepare for Canada called “9 Soft Skills No Immigrant Should be Without,” defines soft skills as “the interpersonal, communication, behavioural, and organizational skills that cross all jobs and industries.” These soft skills include communication, leadership, or presentation skills, along with the ability to think critically. They contrast with hard skills—the

more tangible, technical skills—such as knowing how to program a website or write an argumentative essay. Soft skills are just as important as technical skills in the workplace. Soft skills help people communicate and collaborate effectively. Building interpersonal relationships with coworkers, bosses, and customers is essential to the way people perceive an individual in the workplace. An awareness of the possession of one’s own soft skills makes it is easier to establish these interpersonal relationships. Without soft skills, the workplace would be a dull place. Work would not get done on time, people would be late to meetings, and no one would listen to the ideas of others. Without time management, organizational, and listening skills, how would a workplace function?

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SOFT SKILLS ALLOW US TO USE OUR TECHNICAL SKILLS AND KNOWLEDGE IN AN EFFECTIVE AND INFLUENTIAL WAY.

More so is the fact that our technical skills—or hard skills—actually depend on our soft skills. Soft skills allow us to use our technical skills and knowledge in an effective and influential way.

In Canada, there is debate surrounding whether Canada has a skills gap. A skills gap refers to the difference in the skills required for a particular job and the skills possessed by the employee.

associate vice-president of student and academic affairs at the Fisheries and Marine Institute at Memorial University. Shea has taught in Memorial’s Faculty of Education, specializing in postsecondary and adult education and is the founding editor of the Canadian Journal of Career Development. He said the term “skills gap” is often incorrectly used to refer to the difficulty we have communicating our skills. “When I hear the term ‘skills gap,’ I tend to think of it more as a skills mismatch,” he said.

What is often interpreted as a shortage of skills, or a skills gap, among university and college graduates is actually our inability to convey not only the soft skills we innately possess, but also the ones we have developed while in school. In fact, many recent graduates aren’t even aware of the soft skills they have acquired throughout their education.

Shea noted post-secondary institutions should not only teach students theory, but also how to apply theory to practice. He said experiential learning plays an important role in preparing students for the workplace. “It’s about getting students to reflect on the competencies that they’re gaining from their studies. We need to find more ways of engaging employers in that conversation to say, ‘What are you really looking for?’” Shea said one way to get students to reflect on the soft skills they possess is through group work. He said when students work in groups, they can reflect on their positions within the group and identify whether they play the role of leader, note-taker, or presenter. “It’s one of those things that we really have to get students and colleges and universities reflecting on. Not just what competencies students may gain from outside the classroom, but also what happens inside the classroom.”

“When we talk about soft skills, it’s almost like something soft and off to the side. They’re some of the more difficult things to find,” said Robert Shea,

Alex Usher is the president of Higher Education Strategy Associates. He said he believes Canada needs to have a better transition between school and

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the labour market. “For students that are getting the Canadian Journal of into the workplace, Career Development at ceric.ca/cjcd/ they don’t know how to describe their abilities. I think equally businesses aren’t very good at devising questions that will elicit that information,” Usher said.

Read

Usher and Shea agreed that although post-secondary institutions offer practical experiences through things like group work, students aren’t aware of the skills they acquire through these projects. “We ask students to work in teams without explicitly teaching them how to work in teams,” Usher said. Usher said when assigning group work, he believes university and college courses need to set aside a portion of the class to explain what a team project means in terms of the different roles each member of the team will take on. “We don’t build it into the curriculum,” he said. “We just assume in four years of university [students] pick this stuff up.”

only have to determine if they meet the degree requirement for the position, but also reflect on whether they possess the necessary skills. In addition to students and employers playing a role in redefining the socalled skills gap among graduates, Shea said communities need to rally around the issue of skills shortages in order for it to improve. “We have to get past this thing that universities and colleges and post-secondary institutions aren’t necessarily preparing their graduates for the world of work. I think we are. I think what we don’t have is the ability to connect the dots,” he said. Usher and Shea both said the failure among graduates to communicate their skills is slowly improving. “The whole notion of learning outcomes has got to go a little bit further before people start really assessing that stuff well,” Usher said. “If we can help students find the skills or the competencies they want to develop, then I think we’ll be richer as a country,” Shea said. EMMA TRANTER is a second year journalism student at Carleton University. Follow her on Twitter @emmtranter

Shea said employers should also play a role in establishing the soft skill set needed for the job. While most companies put out job ads searching for candidates with a specific degree, Shea said companies should also assess the competencies they are looking for. This way, students seeking jobs would not

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By Chelsea E. Mohler, MSc, Emily M. Duffett, MA and Dr. Mahadeo A. Sukhai, Ph.D.

DISCLOSURE IN THE GRADUATE ENVIRONMENT: 6 Tips for Students in Transition

A

re you a student with a disability transitioning from undergraduate to graduate education? If so, you likely have many questions regarding the disclosure process. To whom do I disclose? What and how much do I disclose? How will disclosure impact future opportunities? These are just some of the questions that this tip sheet will answer to help guide you through your disclosure process.

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careers.slb.com

85

years of

innovation >125,000 employees >140 nationalities ~ 85 countries of operation Who are we?

We are the world’s largest oilfield services company1. Working globally—often in remote and challenging locations—we invent, design, engineer, and apply technology to help our customers find and produce oil and gas safely.

TIP #1: Disclosure is highly personalized. There is no right or wrong way to go about the disclosure process. It varies for everyone, based on disability, the program of study you are planning on taking, and the type(s) of accommodation being sought. Some students may choose not to disclose, which is perfectly acceptable. It is important to understand the pros and cons of the choice to disclose (or not)—if you feel comfortable doing so, talking the choice over with people you trust would be beneficial. You must do what is right for you and your education. TIP #2: Be prepared for a very different environment in graduate education, compared to your undergraduate studies. Overall, graduate education involves a greater degree of independent work/research; independent fieldwork, lab work, or practicum placements; less course work; a more significant degree of “learning outside the classroom;” a greater focus on research and thesis requirements; and an expectation to publish and present academic work. Graduate research in general is a more student-driven learning process. Students in graduate education must lead their disclosure process, knowing who to talk to and what they should disclose. As opposed to undergraduate education, where a Disability Service Office (DSO) on campus acts as the go between students and faculty/departments, in graduate education, the onus is on the student to undertake this process. TIP #3: In graduate school, students must take a more active role in implementing accommodations because the “standard” accommodations (i.e. those routinely offered by a DSO for undergraduate students) may not always be applicable or relevant. For example, extra time in a written exam is not applicable in the context of an oral thesis defence; assigning a note-taker in class is not appropriate for departmental seminars that may not occur regularly.

Is a career in maintenance for you?

1Based on Fortune 500 ranking 2011. Copyright © 2014 Schlumberger. All rights reserved.

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IF YOU’RE PLANNING TO DISCLOSE, USE THESE DISCUSSION POINTS TO HELP GUIDE THE CONVERSATION. Not all of these must be used when disclosing, they are simply meant to offer some broad guidelines to aid in the process. • Provide general information about the specific disability/ies requiring accommodation;

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• Why you’re choosing to disclose your disability (i.e. its impact on academic performance); • The type of academic accommodations that have been effective in the past (in undergraduate courses);

What will you be?

• The type of academic accommodations you anticipate needing in the graduate environment; • How your disability can affect your course of study. Source: The 411 on Disability Disclosure: A Workbook for Youth with Disabilities

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BACHELOR OF

The choice to be an active participant in the accommodation process will require knowledge of the policies and practices of accommodation and/or disclosure; knowledge of the graduate administration in your department; as well as other people outside of the DSO who may be important. This information may be readily available through departmental resources, such as websites, calendars and registration sites, and will foster early disclosure and more prompt, effective accommodation. As part of your decision-making around disclosure, it is important to do this research up front. TIP #4: If you make the decision to disclose, deciding on to whom to disclose is an important step. Disclosure can take place to the DSO, your supervisor, other faculty members or your department. You may have to disclose your accommodation needs to several individuals before the accommodations can be discussed by a team. Remember, not everyone needs to know everything, only disclose to those to whom you feel comfortable doing so.

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TIP #5: It is your choice to disclose a need for accommodation (as opposed to disclosing a disability diagnosis). An often misunderstood fact is that when disclosing you do not have to disclose an actual diagnosis, but rather instead a need for an accommodation. The DSO is the only body that must actually receive a confirmation of diagnosis. Students, disability service providers, and faculty must realize that there is a difference between disclosing a diagnosis and the need for an accommodation. What is necessary to get an accommodation in place is a statement of need, not a diagnosis. The need must be documented by a third party—it is not a request alone. TIP #6: You must make the decision to disclose at a time that best works for you. There are many different options for how disclosure can take place. It is important for students with visible and invisible disabilities to understand the benefits and drawbacks to disclosure, and how the choice to disclose (or not) can impact their academic career. Disclosure of invisible disabilities poses unique implications for students in the form of labels that carry significant stereotypes and societal stigmatization. Students with visible disabilities must also decide on disclosure during the application process or during the first meeting with their potential supervisor(s), advisor(s) or departments. All students with disabilities face the questions of how much to disclose and disclosing a need for accommodation rather than their disability. There are many different approaches of how, to whom and when to disclose. Within the graduate environment, it is important to put a plan in place for appropriate and accurate disclosure. No one form of disclosure works for all students, but it is important to understand pros and cons of disclosure to various parties. With an increased number of students with diverse needs, understanding disclosure is critical. Given the sensitivity of this issue, it is important for different university departments to work collaboratively to create an inclusive graduate education environment. CO

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CHELSEA MOHLER and EMILY DUFFET are members of the National Graduate Experience Taskforce, empanelled by the National Educational Association of Disabled Students. DR. MAHADEO SUKHAI is Canada’s first blind biomedical researcher and serves as the Taskforce chair.

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TEST YOUR

INTERNATIONAL IQ— ARE YOU READY TO WORK ABROAD?

By Jean-Marc Hachey

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INTERNATIONAL

Going international requires more than just wanderlust. Whether you’re encountering members of a foreign culture on a sightseeing trek, or applying for a professional position abroad, it’s your international skills that will set you apart from the crowd. Start building your International IQ today while at school or by going abroad!

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sation is lively and intellectual. You enjoy the dialogue, and you know these conversations are so much better than the typical North American conversation about weather, neighbours, or the costs of housing renovations. People with high International IQs can converse intelligently about international news, world events, and multiple countries and their ethnicities. To become an international person, start traveling and read world politics and learn geography. YOUR FIRST TEST QUESTION: How many countries are there on Earth?

I

magine yourself in a few years looking for an international job, applying to study abroad, or selling your skills as an international intern. What can you do to stand out ahead of the rest of the applicants? Consider the following insights, which may help you understand what international recruiters are looking for and will help you learn how to join the ranks of those working and living abroad. POLITICAL, ECONOMIC AND GEOGRAPHIC KNOWLEDGE: Imagine a dinner conversation taking place around a table in a lush garden terrace— in your temporary home in Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso. Your seven guests are from France, Belgium, the US, and Burkina. The expatriate conversation is rich in world politics, economics, and geography. The conver-

KNOWLEDGE ABOUT THE INTERNATIONAL ASPECTS OF YOUR FIELD: There is an international aspect to every field of work, to every area of study, and to each and every field of interest. If you are going to go international, you have to develop a good knowledge of the international aspects of your area of expertise. Know which organizations work internationally in your field, what the types of jobs are, and what aspects of your work have an international application. Knowing how your specialization is practiced in an international setting allows you to focus your education, job research, networking contacts, and your discussions with peers on landing the right job for you abroad. A bit of research will uncover the international aspects of your area of expertise: look for the umbrella organizations, the websites, the trade magazines, and international conferences in your field.

HELP! “WHAT’S NEXT AFTER GRADUATION?” “WILL YOUR FIELD OF STUDY GET YOU A JOB?” “WHERE DO YOU SEE YOURSELF FIVE YEARS FROM NOW?”

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INTERNATIONAL

YOUR FIRST CHALLENGE: talk to people in your field who have worked overseas to find out what skills they have and how they broke into working internationally. CROSS-CULTURAL ETIQUETTE AND SKILLS: Do you know when to burp at a table and when to hold it in? Can you figure out how close to stand next to a stranger in an elevator or while holding a conversation at a cocktail party? Can you tell that someone is being polite when they agree to your proposal, but that they will not follow through? International people have the cross-cultural skills and knowledge to be effective in another culture. They study the country’s belief systems, modes of behaviour, and attitudes before they arrive. International people are like cross-cultural detectives. If they are thrust into an unfamiliar culture or meet someone with an ethnicity they have never encountered before, they will be sensitive and skilful and will quickly display the appropriate cross-cultural traits required to make any new relationship work. Their skills are portable and can be carried from country to country, place to place, and culture to culture. The ability to speak a few words in the local language is also important to those living there. YOUR FIRST ASSIGNMENT: Acquire these skills at home by seeking out people from other cultures, becoming active in cross-cultural groups, and learning a second or third language.

PERSONAL COPING AND ADAPTING SKILLS: Can you deal with change? Can you deal with having to eat soup each morning for breakfast, as they do in some parts of India, instead of sitting down to cereal? Can you sleep in a room with a humming fan, a stifling mosquito net, and the constant noise of goats and chickens just outside your bedroom window? How about being so overwhelmed with a continuous stream of well-meaning visitors—so many that you fake the need for prayer time just to have two hours alone? These are just a few of the numerous cross-cultural challenges that require so many small adjustments that you may think at times that you are going mad. With practice and insight, you can improve your personal coping and adaptation skills to help you deal with culture shock. People who enjoy living and working overseas are adaptable and tend to embrace challenges. You will face changes in culture, friends, work, climate, and food. Therefore, having a sense of adventure, as well as humour, curiosity, and a great deal of patience, is invaluable. To prepare yourself, you can do volunteer work or become active in organizations which put you in contact with other cultures, either in your home country, or by visiting a country where the culture is radically different from your own. YOUR TEST QUESTION: Do you like change? Your ability to enjoy change may be the single biggest factor in assessing your suitability for work and life abroad.

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DO YOU HAVE WHAT IT TAKES

TO WORK ABROAD? GENERAL TRAITS: enjoyment of change, desire for challenge, having street smarts, sense of adventure, open mindedness, patience, and curiosity. ADAPTATION AND COPING SKILLS: emotional stability and ability to deal with personal stress, understanding of culture shock, receptivity, flexibility, humour, and self-knowledge. INTERCULTURAL COMMUNICATION SKILLS: tolerance, sensitivity, listening and observing skills, nonverbal communication skills, and second language speaking skills. WORK-EFFECTIVENESS TRAITS AND SKILLS ABROAD: independence and self-discipline, training experience, resourcefulness, versatility in work, persistence, organizational and people skills, leadership, energy, a calm demeanour, project planning skills, writing skills, verbal communication skills, diligence and dedication, loyalty, diplomacy and tact, and a philosophical commitment to your field of work. CO

JEAN-MARC HACHEY is a bestselling author and the online publisher of MyWorldAbroad. His website helps university students develop their global career skills with 300+ articles and 4,000 resources! Purchase individual access or check out the 30+ Canadian universities that provide free access to their students at myworldabroad.com/register.

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So YOU WANT TO TEACH ABROAD? LET’S GET YOU CERTIFIED.

By Aisha Biberdorf

Getting your certification to teach abroad can be a lengthy process, but for those of you looking to take the first step to a new adventure abroad, here’s what you should know: CHOOSE THE RIGHT COURSE FOR YOU First things first, you have to pick the right certification course. Since teaching abroad has become more and more popular throughout the years, schools around the world have a greater choice in selecting the right candidate for the job. This means that it’s a competitive industry, but you can give yourself the advantage by making sure that you meet the minimum requirements for the country you want to teach in. Many countries require applicants—at minimum—to have a bachelor degree and formal TESOL/TESL/TEFL certification. Without these qualifications, you run the risk of not getting job, or getting a job that may not be as well-paid as someone who successfully meets the minimum requirements. While choosing a certification course, keep in mind that not all TESOL/TESL/TEFL courses are accredited. Make sure you consider the academic standards of the class, accreditation, price, and credentials of the school. Look out for practical work experience opportunities too. Some online certification courses may be ideal for their convenience, but you miss out on valuable classroom experience that may help you secure a job.

You can get the most out of the classroom experience by being engaged and fully participating in group activities; interacting with your fellow classmates to help you grasp new terms or concepts; and taking advantage of an available teaching practicum offered through your school. In addition, make an effort to learn the language—as much as possible—of the country you intend on teaching in. It will make your experience easier and much more enriching. CHOOSING YOUR INTERNATIONAL DESTINATION AND FINDING A JOB After you’re fully certified, it’s now time for the exciting part: choosing where in the world you would like to teach. While researching, you will get an understanding of which countries have the biggest need for certified English as Second Language (ESL) teachers. France remains one of the most popular places to teach English, which is great for any bilingual or francophone Canadians! Lastly, it’s time to get your resumé ready and start applying, applying and applying! There are specific guidelines for an ESL-specific resumé and cover letter, which are important to follow so you can ensure a positive first impression to employers overseas. Pay attention to the application instructions and always submit by the deadline. Good luck in your adventures! CO

Note: Be sure to ask about the school’s ability to help you find employment after graduation! GET THE MOST OUT OF YOUR CLASSROOM EXPERIENCE Now it’s time to successfully complete the course and all of its requirements. Depending on the course you decided to take, you may have a lot of tests, projects, and readings that you must complete.

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10 POPULAR DESTINATIONS FOR ESL TEACHERS (and the minimum requirements!)

BRAZIL (Bachelor Degree and many schools require in house training) CHINA (Depends on location) CZECH REPUBLIC (TEFL course certificates) FRANCE (TEFL) JAPAN (Bachelor Degree. TEFL is not required) MEXICO (Bachelor Degree) SAUDI ARABIA (Teaching experience) SOUTH KOREA (Bachelor Degree) THAILAND (Bachelor Degree and TESL)

Learn while you teach! Share your passion for learning and cultural diversity. At the Kativik School Board, you will play a role in the development of our students in one of the 14 Inuit communities located along the coasts of the Hudson Bay and Ungava Bay. Its administrative centre, presently located in Montréal, will ultimately be relocated in Nunavik.

Source: tripbase.com

Teaching Opportunities

THE BEST WEBSITES TO FIND A JOB, HOUSING, AND FINANCIAL AID www.esl101.com/find/jobs

2015-2016 School Year

www.tefl.com

• Elementary • Secondary

www.eslcafe.com/joblist

You will soon have a teaching diploma or permit equivalent to a bachelor’s degree valid in Canada, and are able to teach many subjects at the elementary or secondary level? We want to hear from you.

www.esljobfeed.com www.eslcafe.com/jobs/ www.eslteachersboard.com www.ihworld.com

We offer many interesting benefits including trips, an isolation premium, subsidized housing and food cargo allowances.

SCHOLARSHIPS FOR TESOL

To find out more about teaching opportunities available, come meet with us at one of our Information Sessions or at the on-campus Career Day of your choice. Please bring your resume to the campus Career Day event. Full details are available on our website at www.kativik.qc.ca.

www.matesol.info/financial_aid.htm

* many universities have different programs for this. www.georgebrown.ca/esl/tesl.aspx

If you cannot attend in person, we encourage you to send your resume, by January 16, 2015, to Nunavik@kativik.qc.ca and indicate the subject for which you are applying in the subject line of your e-mail.

AISHA BIBERDORF is a crafty digital designer who perpetually strives for digital perfection. She is a recent graduate from the Interactive Multimedia Developer program at Algonquin College and now works at gordongroup marketing + communications in Ottawa. Follow Aisha on Twitter @AishaBiber

To avoid duplication, we ask that candidates submit only one resume. We thank all applicants for their interest, but only candidates considered for hiring will be contacted. No phone calls, please.

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CERTIFIED TO TEACH ABROAD?

By Richard Coelho

NOW LET’S TALK ETIQUETTE.

Y

ou’ve earned your certification to teach a second language and you’ve probably spent countless hours mulling over where you want to go and why. Do you want to immerse yourself in a new culture? Meet new people? Make money? Whatever the driving force, teaching a second language allows the freedom to explore another part of the world that may not have been possible otherwise. As someone who lives in Canada, odds are you’ve mastered one of two languages, English or French—or maybe both! Either language will open up doors for you to teach across the globe. If you want to teach English in French-speaking country, it certainly helps to have a firm grasp on the French language to help you communicate with staff and students. Experiencing new cultures, discovering those hidden gems in a bustling metropolis or small rural town, comes with some responsibility. Wherever you plan on teaching it comes with its own set of social customs and etiquette that you will need to know. When a simple hand gesture can be a sign of thanks in one culture and a sign of disrespect in another, a couple of Google searches can save you a lot of embarrassment. When you’re fresh off the plane and navigating your way to your new home away from home, you’ll undoubtedly feel that sense of “culture shock.” Getting used to your surroundings will be made that much easier if you’ve done your research and prepared yourself. BEFORE THAT 16-HOUR PLANE RIDE, FOLLOW THESE GENERAL GUIDELINES TO HELP SMOOTH YOUR TRANSITION AND MAKE FOR A MORE ENJOYABLE EXPERIENCE: • Hit up the travel section of your local library or bookstore. While the Internet is a wealth of knowledge, you can’t guarantee the source of information is truthful or accurate depending on the source. A good guidebook on your country can be a valuable investment.

you cope with your new surroundings. As a foundation, learn the proper way to greet someone formally or informally, how to say “thank you” or “no thank you,” and maybe some of those basic phrases, like “where is the bathroom?” Make sure you keep expanding your vocabulary as you go to not only make your life easier but to get more out of your experience. • T  ake note of your verbal tics and physical gestures that you do most often. Now seek out a list of dos and don’ts for your host city and see how you measure up. While this is easier said than done, if you make a regular habit of the don’ts, begin phasing them out or find an alternative that won’t offend. You’re bound to trip up, but if you put in the effort it will be appreciated. • Y  ou’re going to need to eat to live. Start looking into local cuisine and eating as many different recipes as you can. Dine out and practice cooking meals at home with the supplies you can find in your host country so you get a varied experience. Knowing what you like and what you don’t can save you some embarrassment at your local restaurant or from going hungry. • If you’re young or young at heart and planning to tackle the local nightlife, it is important you look into what that entails. You may be familiar with North American customs and know what does and doesn’t offend, but there can be a whole different set of rules in your host city when approaching someone for a dance or buying someone a drink.

• It  may not be a prerequisite to know your host country’s official language, but learning as much as you can and applying it to your daily life can help 38

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CONSIDER SOME OF THESE CULTURAL DOS AND DON’TS: Country: CHINA DO: Wave someone over to you with your palm down. Don’t point or use your finger as this is commonly used for dogs and would be considered rude. Think about this when running your classroom.

Country: SPAIN DO: Be sure to dress well for any occasion. Appearance is very important. Avoid flashy colours and keep in mind the state of your shoes, it’s the most important element of an outfit.

DON’T: Write anything in red ink unless it’s when you are correcting a student’s work. Red ink is used for letters of protest.

DON’T: Waste your food. It is better to say no when offered food than to leave it on your plate.

Country: BRAZIL DO: Make eye contact with those around you, even when you are walking through the streets or on public transit. It is considered normal and polite.

There you have it! You don’t have to master a culture right away, but putting in the effort to know the basics will help you ease into your new environment, and earn respect from the locals. Bon voyage! CO

RICHARD COELHO is a Carleton University

DON’T: Get too drunk. Brazilians do not get drunk often and do not respect people who drink too much.

journalism grad currently working for the federal government. Netflix is his jam. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

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EDITOR’S PICK

STUDYING IN THE

By Danielle Klassen

I

magine a world where your classroom overlooks the ocean and your walk to campus is on sand, not concrete. Imagine working toward your degree while you work on your tan. The Caribbean provides numerous opportunities for Canadian students looking for more than a week at an all-inclusive resort—here’s a snapshot. “I would say a typical Canadian experience in the Caribbean tends to be fairly short, pretty touristy,” says Bronwen Tucker. “Not to say there’s anything wrong with that, but studying here for four months definitely means you get to know a country a lot better.” Tucker spent her fall semester in Holetown, Barbados. She enjoyed spotting monkeys while on afternoon runs, ocean dips with tropical fish, and south coast surfing lessons. Somehow, she still found time to earn course credits. Tucker was initially drawn to Barbados for her program, studying at the Bellairs Research Institute—a McGill University science facility—but she quickly became captivated by the beaches, wildlife and scuba diving. “Studying abroad anywhere is obviously an amazing opportunity, but the Caribbean is just such a polar opposite from Canada in so many ways that there’s constantly new things to try,” she says. In her arts and science degree, she’s opted for a concentration on the environment that she’s been able to develop in ways she says would never have 40

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been possible in Canada. With their more fragile ecosystems, Caribbean countries see first-hand the effects of climate change, she says: “Environmental problems especially don’t stay within borders, so I think being able to see them from as many angles as possible is crucial.” Outside the classroom, Tucker gets around the island on hot, crowded, reggae-blaring buses. She says with the cheap travel, she was able to explore every corner of the island. “The east coast of Barbados is not nearly as developed and there are

“IT FEELS REALLY GOOD TO BE GETTING SOME PRACTICAL EXPERIENCE IN MY FIELD.” barely any resorts or hotels there, but it is one of the most beautiful places I’ve been to,” she says. Tucker’s Bellairs classmate Jodi McNeill says studying in Barbados is an experience like no other. “Since Barbados is a small island, we have been able to really embrace the culture... It’s a great mix with the school component to have that.” On days off, the group of about 22 students could CA RE EROP TI O N SMAGA ZIN E.COM

be found appreciating the Bajan culture at street parties called “fish fries,” or unwinding at “rum shops,” which Tucker describes as a corner store and bar hybrid. With all the exploring, it’s a wonder that the students get anything done, but Tucker explains that it’s all about group encouragement. “Everyone really wants to get outside. We all motivate each other and plan when we’re going to do our work around what we want to do,” she says. For both students, the experience is still about learning. Through her program, Tucker also found an internship that allowed her to work with the Sustainable Barbados Recycling Centre. In Barbados, she says, there are no separate recycling pickups, so the government contracts the centre to filter out reusable materials before they end up in a landfill. “This is pretty important on such a small island, because there are only so many places they can put their waste,” she says. McNeill was able to complement her studies in international development through an internship in the food security industry. She says the experience will be an incredible career asset, because the organization she worked for is closely linked to her ideal employer: the Food and Agriculture Organization of the UN. “I like the hands-on approach to learning in this program,” she says. “It feels really good to be getting some practical experience in


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my field.” For McNeill, the biggest adjustment has been learning to work on “Bajan time.” In this laid-back culture, being prompt does not tend to be a priority, which clashes with her project’s dependency on time. “Getting people to commit to filling out our audits has been challenging at times,” she says. “But you learn to work with the differences and adapt.”

THERE ARE 152 CARIBBEAN UNIVERSITIES AND COLLEGES TO CHOOSE FROM ON WEBOMETRICS’S RANKING OF UNIVERSITIES. Visit webometrics.info to learn more.

Tucker and McNeill both say studying in the Caribbean allows for a taste of coastal culture different than any other. “It’s a beautiful place to be, and it’s really interesting to be in the same region you are learning about in the classroom to actually perceive dynamics and lifestyles,” says McNeill.

The Canada-Latin America and the Caribbean Research Exchange Grants program (LACREG) was created to strengthen ties between Canada and South and Central American countries. It provides funding for researchers interested in international development. Visit aucc.ca to learn more.

With 30 territories in the region to explore, all with diverse landscape and wildlife, the Caribbean offers limitless opportunities for students to explore and learn more. “Each country in the Caribbean has its own personality as well. I only really know Barbados, but I’d say there’s probably an island out there for everyone. It’s a pretty diverse region,” says Tucker. Surely there’s an island for you—so why not find out? CO

LARGEST CARIBBEAN COUNTRIES (BY POPULATION) Cuba Dominican Republic Haiti Jamaica Trinidad and Tobago

For more information, please

* First appearance in Winter 2013 edition.

Based in Toronto, DANIELLE KLASSEN works as a publicist and is a graduate of Carleton University’s School of Journalism. Connect with her on Twitter @daniklassen.

visit: mcgill.ca/bellairs, webometrics.info, aucc.ca, careeroptionsmagazine.com

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@ONTransfer

PLANNING YOUR NEXT MOVE ?

VISIT ONTRANSFER.CA AND LEARN HOW TO TRANSFER YOUR CREDITS AMONG ONTARIO’S COLLEGES AND UNIVERSITIES. ONTransfer.ca is funded by the Government of Ontario and maintained by the Ontario Council on Articulation and Transfer. Cette information est aussi disponible en français.

get certified! Want to know more about a career in payroll? Follow us on Twitter @cdnpayroll or LinkedIn The Canadian Payroll Association or visit payroll.ca for more information.

Courses offered at colleges and universities across Canada. Online courses start monthly.

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certification@payroll.ca


©2014 St. George’s University

Sometimes cutting edge research means fewer incisions for patients. John Beshai, MD SGU ’96

John Beshai, MD chose SGU because of its high placement rates, legacy of successful alumni, and the diverse, interdisciplinary perspective that comes from having 400 faculty members from more than 48 different countries. His professors encouraged him to think beyond the easy answers, and that lesson has served him well. Today, he is a cu“ing edge cardiac researcher at the Mayo Clinic, where he initiated and led a clinical trial on the impact of pacemakers. He found that for a lot of heart patients, pacemakers are not the best treatment option – and that’s going to help a lot of people get the care they need while avoiding unnecessary risks and costs. Dr. Beshai is just one of 12,000 SGU graduates, including more than 1,000 Canadians, who have practiced medicine all over the world. In 2013, our Canadian students obtained a 99% first-time pass rate on both the USMLE Step 1 and MCCEE.* SGU placed over 770 graduates into first-year US and Canadian residency positions in 2014, and is the #1 provider of doctors into first-year US residencies for the last three years combined.** A medical degree from SGU will change your life, and the lives around you. SGU.edu/md US/Canada: 1 (800) 899-6337 ext. 9 1280 sguenrolment@sgu.edu * Data as of April 2014 ** According to published information as of June 2014

Grenada, West Indies

Career Options Post Secondary Winter 2015  
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