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JANUARY 2013 | VOL. 15 | No. 4








Your next career as a marine engineer


how to start conversations with anyone

Evolving with the culture





























BECOME A STAR Whether you need advice on how to get a stellar reference letter, how to manage your social media image, or how to act at the upcoming recruitment fair, we show you how to shine in all aspects of your school life.


complish your self-improvement goals.

38 So you want to be a miner?

O8 Success Stories

What to expect when you enter mining: the myths and realities of the job.

39 Find your TRAVEL adventure through a career in mining Hands-on skills, contacts in the industry, and a leg-up on the competition—why trade schools help land you a job in mining.

40 DIG DEEPER There’s increased opportunity for women who aren’t afraid of a little coal.

Industry reports 34 Evolving with the culture Jobpostings examines the evolution of workplace norms so you know what to expect when you enter the workforce.

42 Blowing hot (and cold) air Mother Nature’s temperamental tendency ensures that heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) experts are in high demand.

45 Marine Engineering Math, science, and adventure lovers are welcome! Marine engineering is a life of travel and job security.

learn about 07 CRUNCHIN’ NUMBERS We give you the skinny on how to beat the New Year’s Resolution stats and ac-

Lesley Van Slingerland shares how she was able to turn her two passions, teaching and sales, into a fulfilling career as Xerox’s national sales instructor. Sponsored by Rogers Wireless.

Jobpostings is Canada’s leading career lifestyle magazine for students and recent grads—but since you’re holding a copy, you probably already knew that. But did you know we’re also Canada’s biggest job board for entry-level, internship, and co-op opportunities? No? Well, now you do. Find your next job at!

1O INTERVIEW SMARTS When interviewing potential employees, Jasmine Konsorada, manager of the audit and assurance group at PwC, wants you to turn your challenges into accomplishments.

12 Start-up Kira Talent: interviewing just got a whole lot more interactive.

14 Become king (or queen) of your school Ever wonder how the student council president made it to the top, or how your classmate manages to be involved in six clubs while pursuing their double major? We give you insider tips on how to be extracurricular royalty.

25 how to start conversations with strangers Five scenarios to help you practice and achieve the gift of the gab.

36 Professional Do’s and Dont’s Three professional habits you should make and three professional habits you should break for the new year.

46 Edu-ma-cation The world is becoming more global, so why don’t you? Consider a post-grad education in international business.

The hidden skills of BAs

A BA—that’s a bachelor of nothing, right? Wrong! And those jokes ain’t so funny when you’re deep in student debt. Your degree is worthy; there’s plenty of skills you’ve earned, it’s just a matter of identifying them.

How to break into PR On the topic of BAs, did you know that it can lead to a career in PR? Yup! Your BA has given you excellent written communication, critical thinking, and research skills. Arts graduates are also creative, innovative, and inquisitive, making them an excellent match for a career in PR.

The art of customer service To really succeed in customer service, you have to love people, and love what you do. You’re not in the business of products; you’re in the business of people. If you’re the type of person who loves to engage, build relationships, and help others, you might just fit in nicely.

Degree pairings You’ve heard of wine and food pairings. Just like a buttery camembert perfectly compliments crisp apples, earning an extra diploma (or a master’s) can supercharge the degree you’ve already earned.











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41 Kinross Gold Corporation 43

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Opportunity to be more than a employee.

to be a partner.


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Canada’s Luckiest Student

05 Insurance Institute of Canada 09

Rogers Wireless


Mining Industry Human Resources Council


The Home Depot How to kick butt at customer service


Search for your next job at

Jobpostings Magazine is published eight times in the school year. Issue dates are September, October, November, January, February, March, April, and May. Copies of jobpostings are distributed to over 105 universities and colleges across Canada. Contents of this publication are protected by copyright and may not be reprinted in whole or part without permission of the publishers. “A New Year’s resolution is something that goes in one year and out the other.”

There’s lots of excitement in store for you as Executive Team Leader. We’re getting our Store Leadership team in place and are seeking ambitious people who can create the best shopping experience for our guests. If you have a passion for developing dynamic, sales-driven teams and are looking to grow your career, we can’t wait to hear from you.

Join our team. Expect the best. © 2012 Target Brands, Inc. Target and the Bullseye Design are registered trade-marks of Target Brands, Inc.




Reinvent yourself For years growing up, I was the shy, awkward kid. Maybe it was because I was an only child, maybe it was because I was smaller than some of the other guys at school, or maybe it was because of the turd munchers who used to pick on me. Whatever the reason, I grew up with a real fear of meeting or talking to new people, trying new things, or even just taking risks and putting myself out there. I’m sure I’m not the only one; all of us go through similar experiences growing up. Unfortunately, my severe shyness followed me from middle school to high school and into university. It was a difficult monkey to shake off my back.

with the 34 Evolving culture Diversity is important to businesses: Business case: Companies adopt diversity and inclusion initiatives because of the fiscal benefits. Legal case: Companies are bound by legislation to follow certain guidelines for the diversity of their employees. Moral case: Companies include policies and initiatives for diversity and inclusion because it’s the right thing to do.


Luckily for me, I connected with a special group of friends during uni who pushed me to try new experiences and take more risks. Slowly, I began meeting more people, being active in more student organizations, and taking on high profile roles (like starting two student magazines). Over time, my comfort level grew and my appetite for putting myself out there grew in step. I wouldn’t say I’m super outgoing today, but being an introvert definitely isn’t a limitation for me anymore.

DAVID TAL self and your abilities, your sense of your self-worth will grow in step. From this, not only will the opinions of others stop mattering, but the greater your feeling of freedom will become. And that’s the key: Freedom. Outgoing people and other forms of “go-getters” aren’t born with any magical powers, they simply don’t care what others think and thus act in their best interests and those they work with.

Since then, what I’ve learned is people don’t realize that shyness isn’t so much a product of their fear of what others may think of them, it’s actually a reflection of what they think of themselves. By building confidence in your-

In the end, whatever personality type you belong to is perfectly fine. But when you let certain aspects of your personality limit your potential, you should make a change in yourself in order to grow past your psychic limitations, and reinvent yourself.

the king of 14 become your school

yourself 27 reinvent and become a star

Studies show that, overall, students who are involved in student clubs and activities are likely to perform better in class than students who are not involved in any extracurriculars.

According to Marky Stein of, “A formal study of hiring managers in more than 400 companies, by the San Jose Mercury News, concluded the average employer makes a hiring decision within 15 seconds of meeting you.”

In the pages to follow, we’ll share tips on how you can grow past your limits. We’ll offer insights on how you can become a star: in class, online, during your extracurriculars, at recruitment fairs, and in job interviews. And for the extra ambitious ones out there, we also have a feature that explains how you can rise to the top of your student club or even become student council president of your school. These tips and skills will support you throughout your career, so as always ... Read on, friends. Email us your thoughts on this issue by emailing Jobpostings at: Letters@

report: a 38 special career in mining Canada’s mining industry accounts for approximately 1 in every 46 Canadian jobs, and employed 363,000 people in 2007.

Where do you want your Where Where do doyou you want want your your education to take you? education educationtototake takeyou? you? Here’s a career path with Here’s Here’s aacareer career path pathwith with unlimited potential. unlimited unlimited potential. potential. What are you looking for in a career? Earning potential? Security? Having the chance to face a new and different challenge every day? What What are are you you looking looking forfor in in a career? a career? Earning Earning potential? potential? Security? Security? Whatever you've learned in school and in life, you’ll have the chance to use it in Having Having the the chance chance toto face face a new a new and and different different challenge challenge every every day? day? the insurance industry. Whatever Whatever you've you've learned learned in in school school and and in in life,life, you’ll you’ll have have thethe chance chance to to useuse it in it in thethe insurance insurance industry. industry. It’s hard to imagine a career choice where you’ll have the opportunity to use more of your skills than insurance. Why? Because insurance is already a part of It’sIt’s hard hard to to imagine imagine a career a career choice choice where where you’ll you’ll have have thethe opportunity opportunity to to useuse everything you do. It protects homes, jobs, cars, property and the continuity of more more of of your your skills skills than than insurance. insurance. Why? Why? Because Because insurance insurance is already is already a part a part of of lives. And because insurance is all around us, the industry has a wide variety of everything everything you you It protects It protects homes, homes, jobs, jobs, cars, cars, property property and and thethe continuity continuity of of careers to match your education and amazing flexibility to change directions lives. lives. And And because because insurance insurance is all is all around around us,us, thethe industry industry hashas a wide a wide variety variety of of along the way. careers careers to to match match your your education education and and amazing amazing flexibility flexibility to to change change directions directions along along thethe way. way. There are more than 110,000 Canadians working in the property & casualty insurance sector. It’s an industry that reflects the face and the values of Canadian There There areare more more than than 110,000 110,000 Canadians Canadians working working in in thethe property property & casualty & casualty society and has a constant need for talented, creative, motivated people. insurance insurance sector. sector. It’sIt’s anan industry industry that that reflects reflects thethe face face and and thethe values values of of Canadian Canadian society society and and hashas a constant a constant need need forfor talented, talented, creative, creative, motivated motivated people. people. Are you a people person? Brokers work with clients to create a strategy to protect their assets. Are Are you you a people a people person? person? Brokers Brokers work work with with clients clients to to create create a strategy a strategy to to protect protect their their assets. assets. Gifted at math? You could thrive as an actuary. Gifted Gifted at at math? math? You You could could thrive thrive as as anan actuary. actuary. Good at listening? As a claims professional, you’ll help people who are coping with an accident, fire or theft. Good Good at at listening? listening? AsAs a claims a claims professional, professional, you’ll you’ll help help people people who who areare coping coping with with anan accident, accident, firefire or or theft. theft. Strategic thinker? You could work as an underwriter and develop the products that keep people protected from unforeseen loss. Strategic Strategic thinker? thinker? You You could could work work as as anan underwriter underwriter and and develop develop thethe products products that that keep keep people people protected protected from from unforeseen unforeseen loss. loss. As your career in insurance progresses, every day can present interesting new opportunities, new challenges, and the flexibility to pursue new goals. AsAs your your career career in in insurance insurance progresses, progresses, every every day day can can present present interesting interesting new new opportunities, opportunities, new new challenges, challenges, and and thethe flexibility flexibility to to pursue pursue new new goals. goals. To find out more about where you might fit in with your post-secondary education, please visit our Web site at You may ToTo find find outout more more about about where where you you might might fit fit in in with with your your post-secondary post-secondary be surprised to find that insurance isn’t what you think. It’s a whole lot more. education, education, please please visit visit ourour Web Web sitesite at at You You may may bebe surprised surprised to to find find that that insurance insurance isn’t isn’t what what you you think. think. It’sIt’s a whole a whole lotlot more. more.

Your interests and your Your Yourinterests interests and and your your experience may add up to experience may may add add up uptoto aexperience great career in insurance. aagreat greatcareer careerinininsurance. insurance.

Sara Runnalls Broker Sara Sara Runnalls Runnalls “A college diploma or university Broker Broker

degree in any subject is helpful “A college “A college diploma diploma university or university for entry into theorprofession, degree degree in any in any subject subject is helpful is helpful although those who have for entry for entry intofinance, into the profession, themanagement, profession, studied although although thosethose who havehave mathematics orwho business studied studied finance, finance, management, management, would have an advantage.” mathematics mathematics or business or business would would havehave an advantage.” an advantage.” You’re a people person and a great communicator

Broker / Agent Broker Broker / Agent / Agent Insurance brokers and agents help consumers

You’re You’re a people a people person person andand a great a great communicator communicator find the right coverage to protect their cars, Insurance Insurance brokers brokers and and agents agents help help consumers consumers homes, businesses, boats and belongings find find thethe right right coverage coverage to to protect protect their their cars, against loss through accident, fire or cars, theft. homes, homes, businesses, businesses, boats boats and and belongings belongings While brokers usually represent several against against lossloss through through accident, accident, fire ormore or theft. theft. insurance companies, agentsfire are likely While While brokers brokers usually usually represent represent several several to sell policies for just one. These are the insurance insurance companies, companies, agents areare more more likely likely entrepreneurs of theagents insurance industry to with to sellsell policies policies for justjust one. one. These These are thethe many offorthem working forare themselves entrepreneurs entrepreneurs of of thethe insurance insurance industry industry or for small independent firms. with with many many of of them them working working forfor themselves themselves or or forfor small small independent independent firms. firms. Gavin Mascarenhas Loss Adjuster Gavin Gavin Mascarenhas Mascarenhas “The best advice is to LossLoss Adjuster Adjuster

specialize in law or “The“The bestbest advice advice is tois to business-related specialize specialize in law in law or or courses.” business-related business-related courses.” courses.”

Loss Adjuster You’re part private investigator and part therapist Loss Loss Adjuster Adjuster The loss adjuster is responsible for ensuring You’re You’re part part private private investigator investigator andand part part therapist therapist that those who have suffered a loss receive the Thecompensation The lossloss adjuster adjuster isand responsible is responsible for ensuring ensuring assistancefor they are eligible that that those those who who have have suffered suffered a loss aby loss receive receive thethe to receive. Whether employed the insurance compensation compensation and assistance assistance they they areare eligible eligible company or and working as an independent to contractor, to receive. receive. Whether Whether employed employed byby thethe insurance insurance the loss adjuster investigates company company or or working working as as an an independent independent the accident, arranges medical treatment contractor, thethe lossloss adjuster adjuster investigates investigates ifcontractor, necessary and negotiates the final settlement theto the accident, accident, arranges arranges medical medical treatment treatment restore policy holders to where they were, if necessary if necessary negotiates negotiates thethe final final settlement settlement as closely and asand possible, before their loss. to to restore restore policy policy holders holders to to where where they they were, were, as as closely closely as as possible, possible, before before their their loss. loss. Michelle Snowdon Underwriter Michelle Michelle Snowdon Snowdon “For a greater advantage, Underwriter Underwriter and the highest placement

“For“For a greater a greater advantage, advantage, value, I would recommend andcourses and the the highest inhighest lawplacement asplacement well as value, value, I would I would recommend recommend successful completion of a courses courses in law inorlaw as well as well as as business insurance successful successful completion completion of aof a program.” business business or insurance or insurance program.” program.” You’re a relationship developer and decision-maker

Underwriter Underwriter Underwriter Underwriters accept or reject risk on behalf of

You’re You’re a relationship a relationship developer developer andand decision-maker decision-maker insurance companies. They assess the kind of Underwriters Underwriters accept accept orbyor reject reject riskrisk onon behalf behalf of of insurance required organizations as diverse insurance insurance companies. companies. They assess assess thesports the kind kind of of as a shopping mall, aThey professional team, insurance required required by organizations organizations asoras diverse ainsurance manufacturer, aby city government a diverse as construction as a shopping a shopping mall, mall, a professional a professional sports sports team, team, company. Underwriters examine a manufacturer, a manufacturer, city a organization’s city government government or or a a every facet of athe operation and construction construction Underwriters Underwriters examine examine its request company. forcompany. insurance, then decide what the every every facet facet ofcompany of thethe organization’s organization’s operation operation and and insurance should cover and how its much its request request forfor insurance, insurance, then decide decide what what thethe it should charge.then insurance insurance company company should should cover cover and and how how much much it should it should charge. charge.













You and









© 2012 KPMG LLP, a Canadian limited liability partnership and a member firm of the KPMG network of independent member firms affiliated with KPMG International Cooperative (“KPMG International”), a Swiss entity. All rights reserved.





Research shows that after 6 months, less than 50 % of people who make New Year’s resolutions stick to it; and after 1 year, that number declines to about 10 %. JANUARY 1ST, 2013

JUNE 1ST, 2013


The holiday binge—eating, drinking, and lazing around—has left you feeling sluggish and not terribly motivated to hit the books and get off your couch. Don’t worry! We, at Jobpostings, have gathered the tips, tricks, and facts to help you tackle your New Year’s resolutions and improve your mind, body, and soul | By Rebeccca Feigelsohn


People who declare their resolutions are 10 times more successful in making changes than those who try to make changes without a declaration.

3 NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS FOR STUDENTS: LEARN A NEW JOB-RELATED SKILL Take a web development course or join the debate club for a competitive edge.

BUILD EXPERTISE IN YOUR FIELD Read industry publications and attend conferences to expand your knowledge.

DEVELOP A 5 YEAR PLAN Think about where you want to be in five years and what you need to do to get there.

The history of making New Year’s resolutions began with the Babylonians approximately Julius Caesar was the first to establish January 1st as the beginning of the New Year in 46 B.C.

To make sure luck will be on your side, avoid eating unlucky foods this New Year’s Eve, such as lobster, they move backwards which could lead to set backs.


The younger you are, the more likely you are to reach your goals. Studies show that 39% of those in their twenties achieve their New Year’s resolutions.








SUCCESS STORIES Lesley Van Slingerland Company: Xerox Canada Ltd. Length of employment: 9 years Degree: Carleton University, Bachelor of Arts: Mass Communication, Schulich School of Business, Master’s Certificate in Adult Training & Development What drew you to your current field? The urge to travel drew me into teaching after university, and then the pull for more income took me to sales. Now I’m a sales trainer and it’s the perfect mix of my two professional passions—teaching and sales. How did you get your current position? When I joined Xerox, I was enamoured by the gifted facilitators who trained me as a new rep. They shared their stories of success and lessons learned the hard way. They asked questions that made me consider how I wanted to sell and what type of mark I wanted to leave behind in the accounts I sold to. I was inspired. It was an ah-ha moment! I knew I found the role that I would work towards. Tell us about your responsibilities There are three fundamental aspects of the work I do: I develop, deliver, and manage training programs for sales representatives. What is the most challenging aspect of your position? Balancing training deliveries, content development, and overseeing a program, all the while keeping in mind what’s most relevant for the learner. You’re constantly trying to balance the needs of the learner against what the corporate direction is, and


keep both sides happy. Adding one more stakeholder to that equation: the end client. My training content should shape Xerox Canada’s customer experience. A sales person should come to my sessions and take away something they will share with their client. The messages need to be clear, compelling, and aligned with the interests of sales, the corporation, and the client. There are a lot of stakeholders whose needs must be met. What is the most rewarding part of your job? The opportunity to stand in front of an engaged group of people who see our class and the discussion coming out of it as important to their success is so rewarding. There’s an energy transfer in a room like that, it’s addictive and empowering for everyone. Getting positive feedback, such as sales people saying my training gave them new insights into doing a job they thought they had down pat, charges me up! Developing the skills of sales people puts more money in their pockets, creates a win for their client, and in the end, our company wins with them. It’s the feeling of being on a winning team. What skills have you learned through your work experience? Where do I begin! A range of skills are required to create, support, and reinforce

knowledge transfer and reinforcement fortification. Some of the highlights include curriculum development and project management, where you pull off a smooth learning event for 30+ learners that requires a lot of details and logistics. At times, you can feel like an event coordinator in this role. Is there one accomplishment you are most proud of to date? With each new role I take with Xerox, I observe for the first month or two and look for a process or program that’s not working as well as it could. I then make it my mission to completely reconstruct it. I’ve done this with the medium for our new hire training to our feedback methodologies. What are your future career aspirations? I aspire to run Xerox’s learning and development organization, or begin my own consulting business. What advice do you have for students looking to land their first job? Separate aspiration from inspiration. Don’t choose your first career role based on what you’d like to be. For example, I’d like to be better at math so I’m going to take a role in finance—that’s backwards and unproductive. Instead choose a job that’s aligned with your strengths.









































































Download speeds like you’ve never seen before. WIRELESS LTE We were first to launch the lightning-like speeds of LTE in Canada – the fastest wireless network technology on the planet. With LTE you can download a song or a photo in under a second.1 So buckle up; the fastest-ever mobile internet speeds are now here.

So what’s next? If you’re with Rogers, you’ll be the first to know.

Rogers LTE network available in select Canadian cities. Visit for details. 1 Times specified are approximations only and will vary depending on size and quality of content. Copyright © 2012 Columbia Pictures Industries, Inc. and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Pictures Inc. All Rights Reserved. ©2012 Rogers Communications.




SMARTS So you screwed up in the interview, huh? They asked the ol’ “What’s your greatest weakness” question and you answered with “cupcakes,” hoping to get a laugh. Awkward. Lucky for you, we have friends on the inside— recruiting friends (the people who’ll be interviewing you). It cost us a few favours, but they finally agreed to explain why they ask what they ask, and what the best answers are. It’s a cheatsheet for interviews. Good luck!

Jasmine Konsorada CA, manager, audit, and assurance group, PwC

Tell me about a time when you faced a conflict and how you overcame it. I always find this a tough question to answer because you have to discuss a time in your life when you were struggling. However, if answered carefully and thoughtfully, you can also highlight your strengths and leadership qualities. As a student, you should draw upon all of your life experiences, including examples from your volunteer opportunities and extracurricular involvements. If I was posed this question, I would respond in a way that would highlight my skills and not my weaknesses. It’s also helpful to highlight a conflict that was caused by externalities (such as weather), rather than an issue that could have been avoided. In school, I was the president of the Business Students Association (BSA), an umbrella organization to all of the associations and confer-


ences within the School of Business, my team and I were the representatives to all of the business students on campus. The BSA holds an annual year end beer-gardens fundraiser and one year we had an unfortunate spring snowfall two days before the event and the university threatened to cancel the event due to the weather. As president and leader of the BSA, I knew I had to step up and take the lead to address this conflict and solve it. I had the committee chair call meetings with the university and I worked with them to think outside of the box and come up with reasons as to why the event should proceed. I also met with the university facility management and brought up our concerns and opinions on how we could approach the issue. After several hours of negotiations and detailed discussions, they agreed to a solution and the team was on damage control. Throughout this challenge, the entire BSA worked as a team to keep the event going. As a leader, I acted fast, I prepared, and I worked with others to ensure the event ran smoothly. I managed this conflict successfully, and it turned out to be a record year for the BSA in profit. The university was happy with the event, and thousands of students enjoyed themselves on the last two days of university. In order to make this happen, it was critical to assess everything clearly and develop plans. The chair of the beer-gardens committee trusted me as his leader to ask for help, and together, we executed an extremely successful event.



Team Kira

Giving interviews a 360 appeal By: David Tal

LEFT TO RIGHT: Konrad Listwan-Ciesielski, Rebecca Panja, Geoff MacGregor, Emilie Cushman, KavI Kistnasamy

“I took a little bit of a different path,” says Geoff MacGregor, 25, an Ivey business grad from Western. “After going to school, I knew I wanted to become an entrepreneur, but I wanted to spend some time in the corporate world first to build up my skills. ... But with all the programs like the Next 36 and some of the great advice we got from our advisors and our mentors, it really took away a lot of those barriers, making it easier to get started as an entrepreneur much earlier.” This feeling of having entrepreneurship in your bones is shared by Geoff ’s coworkers (and company founders), Emilie Cushman, 22, and Konrad Listwan-Ciesielski, 20, Windsor (business) and Waterloo (math and computer science) grads, respectively. Both of these Next 36 graduates got their itch through experiences like running a non-profit social enterprise and grinding out a 100+ page business plan at 4 a.m. for a high school enrichment program. It was from these experiences that Emilie and Konrad created a start-up called Kira Talent. “I guess you could call it a social video, kind of interaction platform,” says Emilie, “one that allows employers to record video questions and send them out to their list of applicants. Essentially, as soon as applicants see the video questions they can reply back through video. The whole thing is timed. Applicants can’t stop, start, or redo anything. And on the employers’ side, they get back this short video that they can share with anyone on the team, comment, and give them a score. They can also combine the video with the candidate’s social profile (Linkedin), as


I never really liked the concept that someone else could dictate how far I could go in life” well as their résumé and application. So it gives you a 360 view of your applicants and keeps everyone on the same page.” So far, keeping everyone on the same page has paid off. MBA programs like Rotman School of Management and the Ivey HBA have begun to use Kira Talent, as well as accounting firms like Ernst & Young. “We provide our customers with a noticeable ROI,” says Emilie. “We’ve talked to a lot of hiring managers before putting this together. It’s really a platform we’ve developed to be incredibly intuitive.” Konrad agrees, saying that, “In the world of enterprise software, a lot of it is bulky, has too many features, is overly complicated and outdated. With Kira Talent, we do our best to keep our product simple and easy to use.” But being your own boss isn’t always smooth sailing. The Kira team shared that when they first started out, they were initially afraid to fail. But through the help of their mentors, they learned that failure is okay, as long as it’s as fast as possible—that’s because failing fast lets you learn and rebuild faster. They also learned the value of being aggressive; when you’re trying to make that sale, making one phone call or email

won’t cut it, you have to be persistent. When asked what still kept them excited about running their own business, Geoff explained that “the victories we get day in and day out are ours, and you can really see the direct correlation between all the work you put in and the outcomes you get out.” For Emilie, “I never really liked the concept that someone else could dictate how far I could go in life. And I think with entrepreneurship you can really wake up every morning and think ‘today I’m going to actually have an impact.’” With big success just around the corner, the Kira team were quick to share a bit of advice that was close to their hearts. “Surround yourself with very smart people,” says Emilie. “There’s a famous quote that says you’re the average of the five people you spend most of your time with. And when you’re young and you have very little experience or knowledge of the industry you’re working in, you really need all the help you can get. For us, we were very fortunate to be surrounded by outstanding mentors that we we’re on the phone with everyday pointing us in the right direction.”

Avoid a Quarter-life Crisis Everyone needs an edge over their competition. As a College Pro franchise manager, you'll learn and use real leadership and business skills today that will help you to stand out when you graduate – and get you on the road to success sooner.

Run your own business Get control of your future Work with like-minded people Make an impact on your life College Pro develops entrepreneurs. If you have big goals and think you have what it takes, find out more today! Take our entrepreneurial quiz at video out our re Check o learn m here to






king Become

n e e of your school u q r o How to get involved, climb the social ladder, and make the most of your school experience By: Patrick Erskine You could feel the energy. Thousands of students clad in blue and gold packed into the Thunderbird Stadium, screaming with excitement, waving towels above their heads. But when the University of British Columbia’s (UBC) president began to speak, a hush fell over the crowd. “Ladies and gentleman, I give you your university Alma Mater Society president, Matthew Parson.” As Parson walked on the stage, the building was once again flooded with a roar most Canadians only experience at hockey games (even if the home team hasn’t won the cup since 1967). The lights shone brightly in his eyes as he approached the podium and prepared to speak. The crowd grew silent once more as Parson delivered his speech, capturing the attention of over 7,000 first-year students.

Images: ©




“For the first few sentences, I was speaking a bit faster than I would have liked,” recalls Parson. “But eventually my heartbeat slowed down and I fell into my groove.” Most university or college students will never get the chance to speak in front of an audience that large, but Matthew Parson isn’t your average student. As president of UBC’s Alma Mater Society (AMS), he’s responsible for overseeing the general operations and management of all the businesses and projects that fall under their jurisdiction (the AMS even owns a few bars and food outlets on campus). All this is in addition to pursuing his biology degree with a minor in economics. Despite his humble demeanor, some would argue that he’s kind of a big deal. However, he isn’t some special breed of student, just someone who one day decided that he was going to step out of his comfort zone and meet some new people. Whether the idea of delivering a speech in front of thousands of students excites you or makes you want to curl up into a ball and weep while Bobby Vinton’s Mr. Lonely plays softly in the background, extracurricular involvement during your university or college stint is undeniably one of the best ways to invest your time. The different types of involvement are limitless

and the benefits are equally so. There’s enough clubs out there to suit every interest, personality, strength, and skill set you can think of. And if you think you’re not the type of person who should pursue extracurricular activities, well … you might just want to reconsider. Whether you want professional business experience or you’re eager to join a Quidditch league, there’s a club for it at your school. According to Parson, there are over 350 student clubs at UBC, with new clubs being constituted every week, and that number doesn’t vary much from school to school. These clubs are as integral to your experience as anything else, and if you manage not to drown in the sea of school spirit during frosh week, you’ll have some great opportunities to connect with them. Matthew Friesen, who now works at the Great -West Life Assurance Company, and is the executive vice president of the Canadian Association of Business Students, was heavily involved in many clubs during his time at the University of Winnipeg. Friesen says that the most important thing to do is to be receptive of people and hear what they have to say. It’s likely that some clubs will be as interested in you as you are in them, if not even more so. “It’s about a party in the first week, I get that. But take an hour out

of your day and see what everybody’s got to offer. Because, honestly, they’re really going to be foaming at the lips for a first year who wants to get involved. They’re going to absolutely love it and tell you everything about the events they have. You can come out to the events and they’re going to remember your face next year, and that will lead to opportunities. It’s smooth sailing from there,” says Friesen. And it’s those opportunities that you’ll be glad you sought after when it finally comes time to look for a career.

A CLUB CAN HELP PUT YOUR CAREER INTO FOCUS If you want a chance of standing out when looking for a career, you’ll want to set yourself apart while you’re still in school. Even some of the biggest university or college campuses pale in comparison to the amount of people out there looking for jobs. Although it’s intimidating, there’s no other place that can give you the same resources that a university or college can offer. So while you’re there, it’s worthwhile to do some things that will help separate you from the pack. Kathryn Farrell is a recruiter with the David Aplin Group in Calgary. Farrell typically works with junior candidates with less than five years of work experience and new grads who are looking to get into the engineering and technical workspace. “I connected with nearly 500 candidates per year. This would include phone interviews, as well as face-to-face interviews. And that’s out of—I would say—thousands of applicants,” says Farell. But there are a few things that make your résumé different from the rest. “Being involved in extracurricular activities, specifically clubs or organizations on campus that relate to a career path, helps you get noticed.” Brittney Hoving knows firsthand that club participation plays a pretty big role in catching the attention of employers. Hoving, co-president of the Human Resources Management Student Association at Guelph, already has a job lined up for when she graduates with her bachelor of commerce degree. “In the interview, they really loved the extracurricular stuff and that’s what they were asking me a lot of questions about,” says Hoving. “When you put your résumé into those databases with hundreds or thousands of résumés, if everybody else has just a degree, it’s those leadership roles outside of the classroom that stand out to employers.”


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lifestyle. It definitely doesn’t make life easier for you, but here’s the secret to success: time management. And that is one of the most invaluable skills you can develop. In a typical week, Jasmitaa Chhabra does more than most people accomplish in a month. Not only is she pursuing a double major in marketing and finance, she’s the president of the Ryerson Marketing Association too. Chhabra is also the vice-president of marketing with a group called Ryerson Students Offering Support, which sends students to South America to build parks and schools. Oh, and she also does a bit of acting on the side. No, she doesn’t have Hermoine’s time turner. But she has learned to develop her time management skills to a point where she’s always able to get a full night’s sleep at the end of the day. “I can’t function if I don’t sleep, so I do need my five to six hours a night,” says Chhabra. “I know people who do it on two to three hours of sleep a night and I don’t know how they do it.”

DEVELOP SOFT SKILLS THAT ROCK Your club activities aren’t just words on a résumé. Sure, sometimes it shows that you’re an outgoing person who likes to be involved, but what employers are really interested in are the soft skills you gain through your experience. It’s not enough just to be the keener at the front of the class anymore. “The theory is good. You need the theory in certain scenarios. But 80 percent of the time, the soft skills that you’re going to learn through networking, through being involved, through actually trying and failing, those are the things that an employer wants to see,” says Friesen. “The degree itself just shows that you have motivation, dedication, and that you can pursue something and complete it.” Soft skills is a buzzword that lots of people like to throw around, but it’s essentially another way of saying people skills. How you carry yourself and interact with others holds a lot of weight in the professional world. If you think you’re awkward around people and that it disqualifies you from certain things in life, you’re wrong. Interpersonal skills, like all skills, are something you must develop. This is where extracurricular involvement can give you a major head start.

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Ervin Cheah found plenty of opportunities to become a better people person while he was the director of marketing at the Rotman Commerce Marketing Association at the University of Toronto. “The reason why I like being involved is because we do get a lot of opportunities to develop our interpersonal skills, communication skills, and presentation skills. There’s a lot of … stuff you do in the workplace that we’re learning how to do in school. So we do develop a whole different set of skills.” Friesen also had the chance to gain practical leadership experience that would help him later in his career. “The student association gave me a chance to run a mini-company. It wasn’t putting in a full amount of time necessarily, but I had 20 ‘employees’ on our student association. We operated with a decent budget and threw about ten events throughout the year. We produced three magazines and had a pretty successful website. I would never have been given that much control or authority if I didn’t get involved.” But … I don’t have the time. You may be wondering how on earth it’s possible to take part in all these extracurricular activities while maintaining your university

Learning how to say ‘no’ is also an important skill you learn very quickly. “The power of no is huge by the way. Someone once said, ‘you can do anything but not everything,’ and that was a really powerful quote to me because it summed up my life. I was always trying to do everything—especially as president—and it was draining,” says Friesen. If you’re afraid of giving up your social life, don’t be. Chhabra was actually able to build a community through her involvement which she may not have been able to do otherwise. The RMA helped introduce her to an entire network of likeminded people. “These are things people enjoy doing. They want to be there, but they don’t need to be there (like in class). It really gives you the opportunity to meet likeminded people,” says Chhabra. “With Ryerson being a commuter school, I felt really distant in first-year. Everyone came to school, went to class and left. There was no sense of community or belonging here.” Chhabra was able to create that community by plugging herself in. Friesen has definitely not sacrificed his social life. Like Chhabra, he was able to find plenty of social activity within his clubs. “I’ve met some of my best friends who will probably be around for the rest of my life through getting involved. Some of the best conferences I’ve ever gone to, and some of the best parties I’ve ever attended, were because of my involvement,” Friesen says. “Work hard, play harder.” Yes, even you can do it.


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Exiting the comfort zone Maybe you think you just don’t have it in you. You’re not an extrovert, so the extracurricular schmoozing doesn’t quite appeal to you. You’ve got a Michael Cera vibe going on, and feel like you just don’t have the personality to take on these roles. Don’t be fooled. This isn’t an extrovert’s world, and it’s okay to be nervous. That just means you’re stepping out of your comfort zone. And when you’re out of your comfort zone, that’s where you really start to grow. As president of the Alma Mater Society at UBC, Parson felt a little detached from the student body. In order to fix this, he pioneered an idea he called the 1,000 Ambassadors Initiative. His plan was to have a personal conversation with a thousand students about their opinions and issues with the AMS during his term as president. As someone who doesn’t identify as a true extrovert, this was a hard step to take. “The biggest obstacle was myself. It’s always difficult to talk to strangers,” says Parsons. “I’d say within my exec team the majority of us are introverted. I’m comfortable enough in a networking scenario, but I’m not fully in my element I would say. There are things that you can learn and skills that you can develop. Things like forcing yourself to constantly interact with people you might not be entirely comfortable with. You develop a comfort level with that. Just like public speaking. If you have a fear of speaking in front of large crowds, the best way to get over it is to put yourself in a situation where you have to do it a lot and channel that anxiety into more of a driving force.” Chhabra wouldn’t identify as a strong extrovert either, but she notices the growth people experience when they push themselves. “I feel like a lot of people that I’ve worked with who have come in as introverts leave as extroverts. There’s that transformation for sure. So I’ve seen people who have been very afraid of public speaking, who don’t want to speak up during meetings, and who are not very confident to state their opinion and tell someone they’re wrong. But throughout the course of the year, the team evolves and people do come out a little bit more outgoing, loud, bold, and more confident.” That’s not to say that introverts must continue to do things that make them feel uncomfortable until they are fundamentally changed. In recruitment, Farrell recognizes that there are just as many important roles for introverts as there are for extroverts; and they’re every bit as important. “I would say 80 percent of the individuals you meet in accounting or finance are typically quite introverted. Are those people typically the ones out there doing the public relations for the clubs? No. Are they doing bookkeeping and finances? Absolutely. So there are definitely opportunities for introverts out there, they just don’t come in quite a loud sparkly package,” says Farrell. “Now with all sorts of social media, you can be an introvert and network and connect with people and get good career advice without actually physically meeting people. It’s not only a face to face networking world anymore.”

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How do I get started? Getting involved at your university or college is incredibly easy. Clubs are desperate for your participation, and they will go out of their way to make sure it’s accessible to you. Though it’s encouraged that you do your homework before you sign your name on any dotted line. Make sure you have a thorough understanding of what the club is all about, and what a leadership position might realistically look like. “Go talk to your elected officials within your university (or college) to get an appreciation for what the job is actually like,” advises Parson. “A lot of professions or positions are sometimes idolized a bit. You don’t want to pour your heart and soul into something and then find out it might not be what you thought it was.” It’s never too early to get involved, and it’s never too late—as long as you’re still in school. Whether you’re a first year or a fourth year, there are opportunities to join clubs at several different capacities. Whether you’re looking to do a little bit of marketing, or your goal is to sit on the board of directors, there are opportunities for students in all years. If you’re on the fence about checking out some clubs, just go for it. You have nothing to lose by going to a club meeting, attending an information session, or checking out an event. You might have the chance to network with some people you’d otherwise never meet. You


could develop friendships that will last the rest of your life. You could learn the skills that will get you hired a few years down the road. You could discover the strengths that will help you succeed later in life, and the weaknesses you have the chance to develop now. “There aren’t a lot of other opportunities in your life that will come about when you don’t have any other commitments, or when you have the amazing support systems around you like in university (or college),” says Parson, who has already experienced the benefits of stepping out of his comfort zone and taking a chance. Parson navigated through the rest of his speech on autopilot. After rehearsing it so many times, he probably could have performed it in his sleep. All he had to do was make it to the end without letting his voice crack. Like a train moving forward over which he had no control, his only option was to make it out the other end of the tunnel. According to Parson, it’s those kinds of moments that take you to places you never thought possible. “Something like that actually is quite powerful because there’s no backing out. It’s something you’re going to find extremely difficult, but an acceptance and full commitment to accomplishing it and doing it successfully can be really transformative because you may end up doing things you have never thought you could.” Parson had no intentions of being any kind of president in first-year. All it took was a simple decision to get involved.

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presentation and teamwork skills with The Home Depot Canada. “I’ve always been personable, and being pleasant is important. But I’ve learned to conduct myself in a professional manner, and use the staff here, or our vendors, as resources. If I don’t know an answer, I can rely on them.”

how to

kick butt at customer service “I saved Christmas.” And no, that ain’t an exaggeration. That’s a direct quote from Dean Cumming, a product placement coordinator with The Home Depot Canada. He isn’t talking about the time he foiled the Grinch—he’s referring to a time when, in a customer service role, he went above and beyond the call of duty. “It was Christmas eve, and there was a wonderful elderly woman who needed a stove delivered immediately,” he says. “But our regular delivery guys couldn’t get it to her that soon. So we had it delivered to the store, and myself and a manager installed it that day, so she could prepare Christmas dinner for her family.” Heartwarming, right? But there’s a lesson to be learned here: awesome customer service can be a game-changer. Yet the basis of great customer service—the type that The Home Depot Canada says is their cornerstone—can be devastatingly simple. In fact, great customer service boils down to one action: Listening. “It’s about developing solutions that you’d appreciate as a customer,” adds Amber Knight, a kitchen designer. “They key is to listen to what people are asking you, and be


honest—no one would expect you to know everything. Then, people start opening up to you. They treat you more like a friend than a staff member.” And customer service skills can take you way, way beyond the sales floor. Both Cumming and Knight, who’ve worked with the company for two and eight years respectively, now coordinate orders, handle office administration, and take on public relations duties—in short, they’re working in managerial-esque positions. And that should tell you two things: First, at places like The Home Depot Canada, retail jobs can bloom into larger roles. Second, learning customer service skills can benefit you in the long-term. How, you ask? Simply add these four careerenhancing (and potentially Christmas-saving) skills to your résumé.

1. Professional skills Or, in other words, people skills. “When someone’s spending $30,000, they want to feel like they’re not just handing money over to some juvenile person that doesn’t know what they’re doing,” says Knight. So along with being knowledgeable at her job, Knight says she learned world-class

“Building rapport is really important,” says Cumming. “A lot of customers will come in here saying, ‘I need a tool to somehow do this.’ A big part of customer service is understanding what people want to accomplish— whether it’s installing a bathtub or building a deck—and then focusing an entire project. Take the time to know your customers and work them through the entire process.”

2. Organizational skills Working at The Home Depot Canada requires plenty of skills: you’ll have to learn about plenty of products; answer questions from customers; manage large-scale projects. In short, you’ll have your plate full and you’ll learn to prioritize your tasks. Plus, prioritizing is a huge part of multi-tasking (a skill that just about every job asks for).

3. Communications skills. At places like The Home Depot Canada, great service equals great communication, and that means being transparent with customers, co-workers, and bosses—a trait that’s beneficial, no matter your role in a company. “If I don’t have an answer, I call and let customers know I’m working on it. A big thing is keeping those lines of communication open, so people don’t feel like they’re being ignored.”

4. Persuasiveness Don’t underrate the power of persuasion. Sure, it’ll net you a sale, but your negotiation abilities will also help you while writing cover letters, interviewing for a job, or negotiating that pay raise. And, says Cumming, you can learn plenty about persuasion when dealing with tough customers—in fact, converting grumpy customers can be the most rewarding part about customer service positions. “The most satisfying part about customer service is working with difficult customers,” he says. “Working with people who are difficult, and having them return to you, is the greatest challenge—and a challenge is what you should strive for. Most customer service people won’t be able to deal with these people—but you’ll develop the strongest bonds with them.” | By: Mark Teo


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serious know-how. And a warm smile. Because working here is about more than helping customers choose the

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how to start conversations


how to start conversations with strangers

Five places you can practice your speaking skills Here are five scenarios in everyday life where you can test, apply, and work on your conversational skills and increase your confidence in opening conversations. Once you get people chatting, they love to talk about themselves, so all you have to do is get the tongues rolling. It’s important, however, to always operate within your own sense of personal safety; listen to your instincts. Once you’re comfortable in one setting, try applying that confidence to a workplace situation, and then to more ‘serious’ topics.

The barista or bartender First and foremost, these interactions include conversation and banter already, so you’re not ‘cold calling’ or doing anything out of the ordinary. I like to turn my neighborhood stores into a quasi-village by making a point of knowing the shopkeepers well. Think of one question or one compliment you can ask the person who quenches your thirst. Make your comment general, and not too personal or invasive, since you don’t know them well yet. If they’re ‘slammed’ with a mob of customers, make your comment short and sweet— a quick compliment will do, and your reward may be a smile or thank you. If you get nothing, you’ve still achieved your objective, which is to practice. Keep trying this with various people or situations, and notice what works best for you at opening doors to conversations.

Random acts of kindness Going out of your way to help a stranger is not only a nice thing to do, it’s also an opportunity for you to engage with someone you don’t know. Help someone carry their shopping bags, offer money to someone who is short of change in line, or pick up the glove you saw someone drop. These good deeds will give you an excuse to strike up a conversation and once again, practice makes perfect. Once I stopped for a bite at a local coffee shop,

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and made a joke to someone ahead of me in line that I’d get this big delicious looking dessert if I could give them half of it. I actually didn’t want to eat the giant bread pudding by myself, so it was genuine. We bantered a bit, and ended up splitting our respective lunches with one another and having a great conversation. The “tone” matters in how you address a complete stranger. Be respectful, but don’t be afraid to be playful. Enjoy a lighthearted conversation with no expectations or hidden agendas.

Upgrade an existing conversation Next, challenge yourself with a goal to enhance your existing communication with a service provider, barista, or shopkeeper. Instead of just making small-talk, make people laugh, or ask follow-up questions from previous conversations. Make it your goal to learn something new about them or challenge yourself to get a free upgrade on a service or product.

Dead zones We all have those people in our lives that we see routinely, either at the grocery store, the library, or walking in the neighbourhood, that we know nothing about. Find something simple to say to them, as it is likely these run-ins will remain routine. A simple ‘hello, how are you?’ will suffice and will help you practice ‘breaking the silence.’ Who knows, maybe these daily run-ins will turn into something more.

The lineup We are constantly waiting: at traffic lights, in stores, in school, in cafeterias, and at restaurants. Try commenting on something around you to the stranger next to you. They may be wearing great boots you can compliment, or you may just simply point out something of interest around you, and you can laugh together for a moment. You don’t need to put an ad on Craigslist for ‘missed connections’ for these kinds of friendly conversations—it’s just another way to practice breaking the ice. Striking up a conversation instead of idly playing a game on your cell phone while you’re bored in a lineup can not only improve your conversation skills, but also improve your mood. With these suggestions in mind, it’s important for you to be prepared to fall on your face sometimes. Being afraid is normal. Mistakes are normal. But the more you try to strike up a conversation, the more you’ll discover interesting people, and your confidence will improve as well. | By Mary Michaela Weber

Mary Michaela Weber is one of Canada’s top communications consultants, known for using wit and a smart sense of strategy. Her company, Voice Empowerment Inc., brings her background of over 20,000 hours of training to CEO’s and Executives in Fortune 100 and Fortune 500 companies, Ivey League University professors, and up-and-comers across North America and the Caribbean.


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Become a star By: Rebecca Feigelsohn By now you’ve probably returned from your winter holidays, relaxed, refreshed, and ready to take on that giant list of New Year’s resolutions you’ve written for yourself. But before you put the finishing touches on that list, how about adding a new goal to it. A new year can mean a new you, so why not make it your mission this year to become a more attractive candidate to your future employers or grad school admissions boards. We’ve done the legwork to show you how to impress your professors, manage your online image, be an extracurricular all-star, rock your elevator pitch, and be one step ahead of your interviewer. Now all you have to do is follow our lead.

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impress your professors Be a go-getter, not a brown-noser It’s the age-old rule that nobody likes a kiss-ass and that tenet isn’t limited to your classmates’ opinions. “It’s really easy to tell when someone’s being genuine about wanting to learn more about their professor … and when they aren’t,” says Stephen Charko, a marketing lecturer at McMaster. Charko got his teaching position in part from being on good terms with professors and administrative staff. He believes having the foresight to “evaluate the courses and professors you have, right at the beginning of the year, and making an effort (to learn about them) from day one,” makes all the difference when trying to build a legitimate relationship. Frank Daley, who has taught at Seneca and Ryerson, and is the author of the Daley Post blog, and is starting a new business called Self Knowledge College, believes that making a good impression is simpler than that: “Show up. Be on time. Don’t disturb the class. Stop chewing gum. Stop using your electronic devices.” He notes that a surprising amount of students don’t follow Woody Allen’s advice that “eighty percent of success is showing up.” Sometimes though, the twenty percent effort that goes beyond showing up to class and taking good notes can make a monumental difference in the way a professor perceives you. “Show a genuine interest in the course material, always be prepared, always be willing to answer questions, and do it in a genuine and professional way,” says Charko. Attending office hours, Daley says, “shows the professor you’re engaged, that you’re connected with the subject, and that you want to go past the lecture or the text. Most students don’t do this.” Once you’ve developed and fostered your relationship with a professor over the course of a semester—distinguished yourself from another nameless face in the classroom—asking for a reference letter or recommendation will be a breeze. “In terms of the direct ask, it’s always easier for someone to play editor than it is coming up with something themselves,” says Charko. If you provide the professor with some direction as to what you’re applying for, what you’re interested in, and your résumé, you’ll be sure to get an authentic recommendation that can be the difference between a job or a spot in a graduate program.

THE Top 3 Must-Haves for your LinkedIn Account A good headshot photo can result in more ‘hits’ Your LinkedIn profile photo can give future employers a good sense of who you are, so you want to select a photo where you look professional and approachable. Elizabeth Garone of the Wall Street Journal’s “At Work” writes that “LinkedIn profiles that include a photograph are seven times more likely to be viewed than those that don’t, according to company stats.”

A catchy tag line “Most people use [the tag line] to put in their current job, and by doing that you’re actually limiting yourself quite a bit, because you want to have something that conveys a bit of your personality,” says Don Power. Sean Nelson of Social Media Sonar blog, writes, “Titles tell people what you are. Tag lines can tell people what you can do for them.” By default, LinkedIn selects your current job title as your tagline, so if you haven’t already customized this feature, make sure you do.

Strong recommendations help, but too many recommendations can hinder Recommendations are “other people singing your praises, rather than you,” says Power. Because recommendations are mostly solicited, “Recruiters and hiring managers do read recommendations and take them into account, though it’s unlikely that a recommendation would make or break a LinkedIn member’s chance of getting hired,” writes Forbes’ Susan Adams. Genuine recommendations can add value, but non-specific ones can be off-putting for potential employers.


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Google yourself Manage your online image so future employers see the ‘best’ you In the age of the interweb, Google is the go-to destination when wanting to learn more about anything … including people. But how many of us have Googled ourselves? Well if you haven’t fallen prey to a vanity search yet, do yourself a favour and Google websites, images, and videos to see what comes up when someone searches for you. If you have a common name, it might be more challenging to find the real you (be sure to put your name in quotes for a more accurate search), but once you do, you might be surprised at what you find. Perhaps you accidentally changed your Facebook privacy settings and that shameful photo from frosh is now online? Maybe that staff member you worked with over the summer is bad-mouthing you on their blog? Or maybe not, you’ll never know until you Google. According to’s “Google-Yourself-Challenge,” 79 percent of recruiters and hiring managers screen candidates by reviewing their information online; so you should be sure that what they find they’re going to like. But don’t get too worried, we’ve got your back. Here are some of the ways to successfully manage your online image so people see the best you. Don Power, who lives and breathes social media on a daily basis, is a social media consultant and professional speaker. Point-blank, he urges people

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to “avoid anything that can paint a negative picture about you.” This includes, but isn’t limited to, photographs of you drinking, comments about drinking, anything derogatory, racist, or any use of profanity. His advice is that “people’s profiles should be open, a word we use in the industry is transparent, and that allows you to organically link to other profiles that you have to carry on the conversation from one medium to another.” However, he warns that if you’re going to use Facebook for personal matters, use your privacy features effectively to ensure that only family members and friends can see your activity. In order to use social media to your advantage, Power says, “You should have a profile on at least the major platforms … for career building purposes: LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, and to a certain extent Youtube.” However, he does recognize the challenge of keeping up all of these different profiles, “I think it’s very, very difficult to maintain more than one or two, where you’re active enough that you’re actually using it as social media was meant to be used for, and that’s to network, interact, and build relationships with people. So pick one that really floats your boat, that you have a passion for, because doing that will allow you to make it sing for you.” Another emerging social media site that’s worth exploring is— sometimes referred to as an online business card—this personal webpage can be used to link visitors to all of your other activity online, and includes a personalized photo along with a paragraph about what you’re passionate about. This tool can be particularly useful for someone who maintains multiple platforms and wants to ensure a common linkage between all profiles. “allows you to own your identity and determine how you’re portrayed to potential employers,” says Laura Gluhanich, who works at With over one million users currently using the service, having an webpage is an opportunity to show more of your personality and showcase your talents and accomplishments.




Be an extracurricular all-star Balance is key We all know that getting involved in activities outside of the classroom, having school spirit, and giving back to the community makes you look like a well-rounded, philanthropic, dogooder, but other than the intrinsic satisfaction these extracurricular activities give you, what other benefits can you gain? “Lots,” says Josh Bovard, a recent McGill grad with a whole lot of experience under his belt and a résumé that bursts with soft skills and leadership experience. Bovard’s long list of accomplishments include his role as former president of the residence council, a role that involved working with representatives from different residences, as well as some administrative staff; past president of McGill Students for Right to Play, an on-campus club that fundraises for the organization that seeks to improve the lives of disadvantaged children through sport; former vice president external for Red Thunder, a sports club that aims to increase school spirit; and previous global health care coordinator for the Montreal World Health Organization (MonWHO), aimed to raise student awareness about world health issues. Bovard was also a peer tutor for the Science Undergraduate Society (SUS), an organizer of frosh events, and was a part of the management carnival committee, if his other accomplishments weren’t enough already. “University isn’t just an academic experience, it’s a social experience. You need to learn to balance your personal life, with your social life, with your academic life, with your extracurricular life. And all of them are important and valuable aspects of your experience,” says Bovard. His extracurricular involvement gave him time management, leadership, and organizational skills that are extremely marketable qualities to any career path he chooses to pursue in the future. “I think the most important [skill] I learned was really how to work with a team and understanding the team dynamic,” he says. “It all starts with learning to be a leader, but also learning to be led, because both are desirable skills for any team.” Getting involved in university also opened doors for Bovard, he was able to establish contacts with people he would have never met otherwise, and participate in things he would otherwise have not. “You never know where you can meet someone, and then all of a sudden you have a connection,” he says. “And you never know when that connection can turn


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into something more.” For this extracurricular all-star, finding balance is essential, something Bovard didn’t accomplish successfully until his final year. But the drive and desire to help members of his community is something Bovard has continued to have since graduation. Since moving back home to Vancouver, Bovard started a peer mentoring service at his old high school to improve students’ math skills. “By being active and involved in the community at university, I came back with that same attitude. I said ‘I see something that can be improved, and I want to be active, I’m going to get involved.’” His final words of wisdom to students is to “Make your own involvement; you don’t necessarily have to wait for an opportunity to come up.”

Stand out during recruitment fairs Rock your elevator pitch Recruitment fairs can be a challenge for the shy types—not only do you have to ‘sell yourself ’ to future employers, you’re also up against the best students in your faculty who are all competing for positions at top firms. What’s an introvert to do? Inna Royz, current staff accountant at Ernst & Young Toronto, who participated in McGill’s accounting recruitment and thereafter obtained a summer position at Ernst & Young Ottawa, believes these students should practice being in unfamiliar circumstances. “Put yourself in situations where you can practice speaking to people you don’t know—you can do this at bars, on campus, or in the classroom” she says. “Knowing how to appropriately and politely join a conversation is the key.” An elevator pitch, which is a concise, practiced, thirty-second pitch for you to “tell your story,” can also be a helpful tool for nervous students. Meant to convey key information in a short amount of time, an elevator pitch is helpful for recruitment events because it’s a targeted statement that’s meant to be memorable. An elevator pitch isn’t meant for you to list off your résumé, but is an opportunity for you to be engaging and tell a potential employer what your strengths are and how your goals fit with the organization you’re interested in being employed at. Preparing this pitch in advance is essential, but be wary of sounding too stiff and rehearsed, if you sound like you’re reading a script it will seem unnatural. To prepare for the accounting recruitment fair at McGill, Royz met with advisors, spoke with older students in her faculty, and conducted research online in order to get a sense of how to cater her application to what the firms were looking for. Before the formal interview process, there were a series of informal networking events where Royz felt that her strengths included being “friendly, outgoing, mature, and that I asked thoughtful questions that couldn’t be answered by information online.” As conversations were rarely one-on-one and more often with a firm’s representative and a group of eager accounting students, Royz says, “It’s not about dominating the conversation, it’s about having a conversation with everyone, including your peers.” In order to stand out amongst this crowd, however, Royz speaks to the importance of being yourself, presenting yourself as a future employee, and the value of personalized follow-up emails. “I emailed everyone I had a conversation with,” she says, and “I continued the impression I had already made at the event.” She did that by referring to the conversation they had and ensuring the tone was professional but also appropriate to the relationship she had already built.

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how to


Attending a career fair or a job interview is like a first date, you want to make an impact and you want them wanting more. First impressions are important, and how you look is often how potential employers judge your capabilities as a candidate; you need to dress the part.

Be well-groomed Make sure your hair is freshly cut and conservatively styled, beards are trimmed or shaved, and makeup is applied lightly – no trying out your new smoky eye technique.

Colour scheme Stick to black, grey, or navy for widest appeal. That baby blue suit you wore to prom has no place here.

the part

Shoes 5-inch stilettos are a no-no, as are sneakers, combat boots or moccasins. Make sure your shoes are clean and well-polished.

standout piece Whether it’s an interesting tie for men, a handbag, or unique pair of tights for women, you should have one accessory that will help distinguish you from the pack.




Impress an interviewer Stay one step ahead your interviewer Now that you’ve secured an interview, either at a potential job, internship, or for admission to a graduate program, you’re probably in major need of guidance. David Perry, managing partner of Perry-Martel International Inc. and co-author of Guerrilla Marketing for Job Hunters 3.0 has insider tips that will help you prepare, succeed, and be remembered at an interview.

Interviewees should also use all available resources at their disposal, including the company blog and industry website. “Be able to discuss where the company fits in their industry and how the megatrends are going to or are affecting its growth and profitability,” says Perry. During your interview, be sure you’re prepared to tell the interviewer why you’re interested in the organization and how working there fits into your career plan. Perry believes, “The clearer you are with the interviewer about why you’re there and how you can contribute, the sooner you’ll land your dream job.” Perry suggests avoiding colloquialisms at all costs, phrases such as: like, you know, and gotcha, have no place in the interview room. He also says that asking questions that could be answered on the company website shows that you’re lazy and didn’t do your research, so there is such a thing as a stupid question.

Perry suggests reading the organization’s annual report, particularly the CEO or president’s message before your interview. “It outlines the objectives for the upcoming year. Refer to the piece during your interview and ask how the organization faired against the deliverables,” he says. This is a step beyond what most people do before interviews, and will distinguish you from your competition who merely read the “About Us” page on the company website.

Lastly, the follow up. “You need to send a thank you note. It’s great opportunity to demonstrate ‘project completion’ as less than 1% will bother,” Perry urges. An email will do, but a hand-written note will show that you’ve gone above and beyond your call of duty.

You should also look up your interviewer on LinkedIn to understand their background, their previous jobs, and their education. Ask why they left their old job and took this position, notes Perry. “That will stop them in their tracks and force them to sell you on the company and the role. No one else will do this. You will be remembered.”

If you’ve been paying attention, then by now you’ll know how to get a rockin’ reference letter from your professor, ensure your online image portrays you in your best light, beef up your résumé and gain essential skills, impress the heck out of that recruiter you just met, and be remembered after your interview. You’re welcome.


What do you say …

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Turn your potential into performance BMO Financial group is committed to an inclusive, equitable and accessible workplace. By embracing diversity, we gain strength through out people and our perspectives. Hiring opportunities for People with Disabilities: Summer and Full Time roles Customer Service Representatives If you are a person with a disability, please email your resume and cover letter to and include Job Postings in the subject line. Visit to discover other opportunities with our team today.

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Evolving with the culture A historical look at diversity and inclusion at work “The difference between behaviors that were tolerated in the eighties and what’s accepted now are immense,” says Wendy Cukier, founder of the Diversity Institute at Ryerson University. “People had sunshine girls all over the walls, they would comment on your body parts and other women’s body parts, and there was no recourse. You simply sucked it up.” Thankfully, after decades of striving for equality and diversity in the workplace, we’ve come a long way. As Canadians, diversity is as much a part of our culture as politeness, toques, and Tim Hortons. According to the 2012 Forbes Insights report, our country is ranked seventh on the global diversity index, which reflects the diversity of our workforce, which has significantly grown over the years. While there’s still a lot of room for growth and progress, we’ve definitely made some impressive strides.


Women in Canada are given the right to vote


Human resource departments love to use terms like diversity, inclusion, and tolerance, but what do they mean for employees? In order to ensure diversity and inclusion is put into practice in your workplace, it’s important to have an understanding of these terms. “Diversity refers to the idea that we see real or perceived differences between people based on certain characteristics,” says Dr. Ron Ophir, assistant professor at the School of Human Resource Management at York University. “They can be demographic characteristics, identity-based, or more functional. It’s very broad, while inclusion is about how different people feel they have a voice and impact on decision making in the organization.” Dr. Ophir also notes that, while the terms diversity and inclusion definitely belong in the same camp, they can mean very different things.


Non-enfranchised aboriginals given the right to vote

“Inclusion deals with being a real full fledged member, compared to diversity which in general doesn’t [necessarily] take that into account.” This idea of diversity and inclusion in the workplace didn’t just pop out of thin air. Several historic moments in Canadian history have played a role in paving the road for equality in the workplace. In 1919, women were given the right to vote, which brought us a step closer to gender equality. In 1960, non-enfranchised aboriginal people were given the right to vote. The civil rights movements during the 60s also played a huge role in the advancement of gender, class, and race equality. These moments in history helped lay the foundation for what would become the Employment Equity Act in 1986 (and later revised in 1995). The act is meant to encourage equal opportunities in the workplace for women, people with disabilities,


Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms (kind of a big deal)

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From 1999 to 2007, employed men with disabilities grew from 48% to 56% Representation of visible minorities in the federally regulated private sector rose from 5% in 1987 to 15.9% in 2007 Women in the federally regulated private sector grew from 4.7% to 25.9% from 1987 to 2007

GROWTH (%) 10





aboriginal people, and visible minorities. Michael Bach, the director of diversity, equity, and inclusion at KPMG, notes that we’ve arrived at a good place more recently. “If I look back, the eighties were about exclusion. There was blatant discrimination going on. The nineties was the ‘I treat everyone the same’ generation, where phrases like ‘I’m colour blind’ came about. Whereas, in the 2000s and beyond, there’s been the recognition that differences exist—though not all employers actually do this. “It’s really been a game changer because now we’re saying ‘Okay, we need to talk about the different cultures people come from, their expectations, and their work style.’ It’s become a much more complex situation, but it’s also become a more valuable conversation,” says Bach. Though admittedly complex, these are the types of conversations organizations are more than willing to have. That’s because of the business case, which “takes a financial, cost effective look at diversity and says that there are a variety of reasons for why having a diverse workforce will be good for the organization,” says Ophir. “A diverse group has the potential of reaching better solutions to problems and identifying those problems sooner. So there’s








the benefit of having multiple points of views from people coming from multiple different backgrounds.” The fact that businesses now view diversity as an asset is indicative of how far we’ve come with equity in the workplace. It’s also a sign of our changing culture in Canada and how businesses must adapt in order to breed success. “Demographics are changing, the marketplace is changing, the workforce is changing, so companies need to take advantage of diversity and inclusiveness,” says Janet Naidu, the president and founder of HR Diversity Solutions Canada. “These terms are important because without them it’s like a melting pot, which is not what we’re about in Canada. Canadians value their cultural identities—and all identities as a matter of fact. So these words act as pillars that corporations continue to enshrine in their mission statements.” Although Canada has made leaps and bounds towards greater diversity and inclusion in the workplace, we still have a ways to go. “We’re comprised of people from different backgrounds and it’s part of our source of pride. And rightfully so! But that does not mean that all issues of discrimination have been resolved,” says Ophir. “We’re sadly far from it …. It’s not








intentional, but adverse impact happens when we have seemingly neutral policies or practices on how we treat people, but we actually are not aware of the discrimination that happens as a result of that.” So where do we go from here? Bach, for example, would like to see the Employment Equity Act to be updated to include the LGBT segment of the population. Naidu says that simply to have these policies isn’t enough, they need to be brought alive by engaging the employees. “Create a diversity day, create affinity groups …. Have some sort of awareness session for employees. Without engagement, you lose the whole message that you have in your mission statement on diversity and inclusion.” We’ve progressed from a time when policies on diversity, inclusion, and equality in the workplace didn’t exist, to a time when these policies are actually important to a company’s growth and success. The important thing to remember is that worthwhile change always takes time. “We’re talking about a cultural and societal change in many of these situations, so they don’t happen in a vacuum and they don’t happen in one day,” says Ophir. When working towards positive change, all we can do is take it one victory at a time. | By: Patrick Erskine

1995 - Revision of Employment Equity Act

1986 The introduction of the Employment Equity Act



Accessibility for Ontarians with Disabilities Act

2005 The introduction of the Civil Marriage Act




Habits to make and break to advance your career It’s the beginning of a new year and there’s no better time to do some professional self-reflection. It’s an important exercise in the path to career growth and development, and should be done regularly. But this process should not be confused with making New Year’s resolutions, which are done once per year and are often unrealistic and prone to fail. Career selfreflection, on the other hand, should be done regularly and goals should be realistic. Part of evaluating your professional self is looking for improvements that you can make, including assessing your professional habits. Here are some suggested habits to form and ditch in order to help your career progress.

Professional habits to break Professional habits to make Network, network, network I cannot stress the importance of networking enough. Networking will increase the number of connections you have; the more people you know, the more opportunities you’ll have to expand your knowledge and find work in your chosen field. Your networking strategy should include being active on social media sites; however, you should also be present at networking events and talk with people who are in your field. Meeting someone face-to-face will leave a much better impression than simply connecting with them online.

Review your online presence frequently Update your professional networking sites, as employers will use sites like LinkedIn to search for talent and get more information about candidates, so your profile should match your résumé. But ensure that your privacy settings are activated on your personal social media accounts, so that information about you is accessible only to those who are given access. Finally, stalk yourself ! Search for yourself online. Some employers will do a comprehensive search of you; you should be aware of what they will find.

Be open minded to opportunities When graduating from university or college, you might not be able to find an opportunity that’s exactly what you’re looking for, so you need to keep an open mind. Rather than focusing on whether the opportunity is the perfect role, focus on whether the opportunity will give you some experience in your field and/or other skills that can be transferred.

Dependence on electronic communication Although texting, tweeting, and emailing is easy and readily available, it’s important that people are able to communicate face-to-face or over the phone in the workplace. Communication is a fundamental skill in any career and is a skill that needs to be continuously improved on. Face-to-face communication is especially important when you’re building new relationships or resolving conflict; it can be hard to know the meaning or tone of a message in electronic communication. The next time you find yourself communicating via electronics, try walking to the person’s desk or picking up the phone and talking with them.

Helicopter parents Some parents want to be very involved in your academics and the early stages of your working career, but it’s important for potential employers to see that you’re independent and in control of your own life. Parents should not call employers to request interviews for you or check up on the status of an interview. Employers are hiring you, not you and your parents as a team.

Not knowing what you want When applying to jobs, listing your experienc and educational background, and asking the employer which roles you should apply to gives the impression that you lack focus in what you really want to do. The hiring managers and HR representatives are not your career counselors. Instead, do research and talk to the employer only about the roles you’re suitable for and interested in. This approach will show that you’re knowledgeable about their company and have the drive and passion they are looking for.

Assessing your habits from time to time is important for your continued professional development. When evaluating yourself, make note of the areas that you would like to improve on and create a plan for making those improvements. We’ve reviewed three professional habits to make and three professional habits to break. Consider these habits, but also review others that might help in your career development. Good luck! | By: Allison Mitchell JOBPOSTINGS.CA | JANUARY 2013


So you want to be a miner?


Special Report on Mining

So, you want to be a miner? Trade schools can help you get there JOBPOSTINGS.CA | JANUARY 2013

In the mining industry, gone are the days when knowing someone in the mines guaranteed you a job—nowadays, you need technical skills, theoretical background, and a good work ethic to make it in mining. “We’re typically looking for at least one year of post-secondary before we have people come into the organization,” says Heather Bruce-Veitch, director of external relations for the Iron Ore Company of Canada (IOC) in St. John’s, Newfoundland. “[It gives you] a higher level of skill and more flexibility for us in terms of moving you throughout the [company].” With this trend in the industry, trade schools can be a great place to prepare you for a career in mining. “A great many [mining jobs] require a technical skill set,” says Katherine Bruce, program coordi-



closely with industry to help students be better equipped to find jobs after graduation. “We have a program advisory committee at Cambrian College … made up of industry persons who act as advisors [and provide] suggestions on what we can do to improve the outcome for our students,” says Bruce. “As far as employment goes, [our faculty, recruiters, and employment office] have very strong ties to industry and we utilize our personal contacts from industry to secure positions for our students.” Jacob Viitamaki, a recent graduate of the Blasting Techniques program at Sir Sandford Fleming College notes the benefits of the practical experience gained at trade school. “In the program you actually get to practice what you study, handling explosives and the devices to monitor explosions,” he says. “[It’s] helped me be prepared for a job as a blaster or even a blasting related industry, such as monitoring.” Once you’re working, trade school can also be a great way of getting additional training. Paul Audette, a construction and maintenance electrical apprentice in Gogama, Ontario is currently enrolled in trade school to get his red seal electrical ticket. “Now that I’m working out in the real world, I can apply what I’m learning to what I’m doing at work,” says Audette. There are many summer positions available for students in mining programs. According to BruceVeitch, every year IOC hires between 120-150 post-secondary students at a base rate of $26 per

2nd SAFEST INDUSTRY In 2009, the mining industry was ranked the second safest industry in Ontario

nator and professor of Mining Engineering Technology at Cambrian College in Sudbury, Ontario. “That isn’t to say that we throw the theoretical part of it out the window, but it’s a smaller component.” Not only are technical skills and theory important, but soft skills like attention to detail and working well with others are becoming crucial to getting hired. “Having a good working ethic is becoming more of a requirement than even the technical skills— and we get that straight from industry,” says Bruce. “In our evaluations for each course, we’ve allotted a percentage of marks based on our observations of the professional conduct of students.” Small class sizes help create an interactive environment—at Cambrian College, labs are capped at 20 students—and many programs partner


hour. These positions can help students transition into the workforce after graduation. The industry has also become much more inclusive, and operational roles aren’t just for manual labourers anymore. “Trades have changed significantly over the years,” says Bruce-Veitch. “A lot of businesses have engineered methods and technology to try to reduce or alleviate things like heavy lifting or heavy manual work.” According to Bruce, operational roles can open up countless opportunities. “If you want to work in South America or in the Arctic, or if you want to go to Africa or Mongolia, then mining is for you,” she says. “To make that happen, you’re going to need a credential, and a great place to get that credential is going to be a technical school.” | By: Kiera Obbard

Find your overseas adventure through a career in mining The ups and downs of mining Travelling to places like Russia, Kazakhstan, Argentina, Brazil, and Nevada isn’t common place for most people, but Stephen Ball has been to them all, thanks to his job. He came across the mining industry “by fluke” while talking to an administrator of the mining program at the British Columbia Institute for Technology. “I just sort of gravitated towards (the mining industry),” says Ball. It was “the allure of this whole other world that I wasn’t aware of.” After completing a technical diploma in mining from BCIT, Ball studied mining engineering at the University of Montana. Since his graduation in 2005, the Calgary native has worked in six countries over the past seven years. While mining is a global industry that involves serious opportunities for overseas adventures, some jobs within the sector offer more travel time than others. Ball’s excessively stamped passport proves that mining engineers get their fair share of globetrotting. James Leader, an instructor of the Mining and Mineral Exploration Program at BCIT, says “both junior and senior engineers might be assigned to a company’s overseas operations for periods of time ranging from a few months to several years.” The lifestyle they experience depends on how well-established or large the mine site is, but the majority of the time mines are in very remote places with few luxuries. Geologists also have travel opportunities, but they are more likely work on exploration projects that require shorter trips. Lifestyle-wise, geologists are more likely to be working in a camp-setting during an exploration. For both roles, “The challenges can be numerous, from fighting off nasty insects that bite, to the difficulties of working in a foreign language and a culture where things aren’t done the same way as in North America or Europe,” says Leader. However, the challenges of working and travelling in the mining industry are also the perks. While adjusting to new cultures can be difficult, it can also be a rewarding experience. “For me, the opportunity to go all over the world has been a great experience that I wouldn’t change for anything,” says Ball. Those in the mining industry often spend large amounts of time, about six weeks straight, working at the mine site. This is followed by a several weeks off, when you can choose to fly home or stay




“We’ve got people in the desert of Africa, at a high-altitude mine at 55,000 metres in Chile, and in far east Russia,” says Colleen Gillis, manager of Global University Affairs at Kinross. “The program allows students to get on-the-job training. It allows you to learn new languages and get very specific mentorships from people in those locations.”

in the area and make it a vacation. Companies will often pay some of your expenses during this time off too. Exploration geologists may spend most of their time working, but can often linger and explore the region after their work is done. Unlike most other industries, you get to the exciting part fast. Many mining companies have programs to give recent graduates travel experience right away. For example, Kinross Gold Corporation has New Graduate and Student Job programs, including one called Generation Gold. Every year, 10 recent graduates are admitted to the four-year program that puts them at a different location each year.

She says Kinross looks for people who are adaptable, flexible, and involved in their community. Some previous work experience, such as summer exploration projects, co-op experience, or internships are important as well.




mineral extraction metal production

Travelling on its own is a pretty big perk. FYI, Ball recommends Brazil, the weather is more agreeable than Russia. | By Michelle Hampson

$10.3 $11.9

mineral processing


Working at several mine sites around the world can really boost your career too. Ball, who has been managing mines for the past two years, took an engineering professional development course to demonstrate that he’s keeping up with the industry. “What it really boils down to is: what are your experiences and what kind of situations have you been involved with? I’ve been quite lucky to be involved in some world class projects around the world. Those experiences are what employers really look at,” he says.


(in billions)

Digging deeper

For women in mining, the opportunities are endless When you think of mining, you probably picture headlamps, coal, and men with pickaxes. With advancements in technology and a diversifying workforce, however, the mining industry of today is much different from the past.






To enter the industry, the education and training needed depends on the type of job you’re looking for, but in general, grade 12 education is required. Students should also consider intern positions to expose them to the industry. “The mining industry sees work experience as incredibly important,” says Sturk. “Not only that, but joining professional associations like the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) and Women in Mining (WIM) is a great way to network. Also, MiHR has a virtual mine mentor program that can connect students with workers in the field before they graduate—all of these things are important on a résumé.”


Canada’s mining industry accounts for approximately 1 in every 42 Canadian jobs.

But if you’re a critical thinker, want to make a difference in the community, and enjoy travelling, you might be suited for a career in mining. “The mining industry is a global industry. At Goldcorp we have 18 sites that are located all across the Americas,” says Ellefson. “So there are many diverse job opportunities and the opportunity to explore different locations as part of our training and development programs.” Once inside the industry, there are a number of training opportunities available.

Trista Dobratz, a recent graduate from Northern College in Porcupine (Timmins), began working in the Underground Department at the Dome Mine for Goldcorp Porcupine Gold Mines (PGM) as a student in 2009.

“We’re very supportive of on-going education and career development,” says Ellefson. “Onthe-job-training, as well as in-house training are available for a broad range of activities …. Continuing education is a must in technologically advanced businesses, such as mining, so we’re very supportive of development activities that help support our position as an industry leader.”

“I loved my job from day one,” says Dobratz. “I found the environment so intriguing and I was constantly learning something new.”

Going forward, emphasis will be placed on attracting more women to the industry as job opportunities increasingly become available.

Employment opportunities range from administrative, technical, or operational roles, to finance, human resources, or executive positions. Not only are there many opportunities, but the number of women in the sector is rising as well.

Changing perspectives on women in mining, says Dobratz, is one of the greatest benefits to working in the field. “The compliments I receive from my coworkers and management are reassurance that it’s possible to change the stereotype that mining is just for men.”

“It’s not like mining of the past where you needed to be swinging a pickaxe all day,” says Sturk. “People may have thought traditionally that women may not be a good fit for the sector, but things have changed and there’s no reason why women can’t take on any role in the industry.”

“We’re seeing more and more women join Goldcorp and join the mining industry in general, in roles from truck drivers, to trades to engineering to geology,” says Jenine Ellefson, director of Talent and Recruiting at Goldcorp a senior gold producer with headquarters in Vancouver, B.C.

Dobratz cautions, however, that working at the operational level may not be for everyone. “In production and development mining, you have to be physically fit,” says Dobratz. “The job is very physically demanding and requires a certain amount of strength.”

So if you’re considering a career in mining, use the resources you have at your disposal. Sign up for MiHR’s virtual mine mentor program, join an organization, or apply for a student position. After all, in such a diverse industry, the possibilities are endless. | By: Kiera Obbard

Although women represent 14 to 16 percent of the industry, and fill mostly administrative roles, opportunities for women in mining are growing. “MiHR estimates that about 112,000 people are going to be needed in the mining industry by 2021,” says Melanie Sturk, director of Attraction, Retention, and Transition with the Mining Industry Human Resources Council (MiHR). “Women can work in any position in the mining industry, and there are actually over 120 different occupations in the sector.”


Source: The Mining Association of Canada

KINROSS BELIEVES IN PUTTING PEOPLE FIRST. Kinross Gold Corporation is a Canadian-based gold mining company with mines and projects in Brazil, Canada, Chile, Ecuador, Ghana, Mauritania, Russia and the United States. We currently employ over 8,000 people worldwide. Our core purpose is simple; we aim to lead the world in generating value through responsible mining. With this focus we have managed to transform ourself from a junior mining company into one of the most respected top-tier gold mining companies in the world. Launching a career in mining can be a life changing experience. Kinross Gold Corporation offers opportunities to students and new graduates in all areas of mining. You will gain hands-on experience, learn from industry experts, and equip yourself with the leadership skills to take on any role, anywhere in the world. Which program is right for you?

Over the course of this four year international program, students will work in four different global locations. You will receive training and mentorship, work with exciting people, contribute to real-world projects and be immersed in different cultures and languages. This program is open to candidates with a degree in Mining / Engineering / Geology / Environmental / Metallurgy (or related).

(Open to residents of the United States) This three-year program offers students the ability to stay in their home country and move throughout different mines and projects. Each of the two work assignments are located in the U.S. This program is open to candidates with a degree in Mining / Engineering / Geology / Environmental / Metallurgy (or related).

There is a growing need for exploration geologists in mining. This four year international program offers students a way to focus on this specialty.

Each year, Kinross hires students for intern positions at our offices and mines throughout the world. This is an opportunity to gain on-the-job mining experience and jump start your professional career.

Find out more about these exciting programs and explore your potential with careers at


Blowing hot (and cold) air


Blowing hot (and cold) air

Seasonal extremes mean a demand for heating and cooling technicians Imagine living through the Canadian winter without a furnace, or enduring a summertime heat wave within the concrete confines of a building without air conditioning. You could invest in an axe for chopping firewood, or in several packs of batteries for a portable fan, or you could get a heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) expert on the scene. HVAC technicians install and service the systems that keep places toasty during cold snaps and breezy through scorchers. And these climate-controlling workers are in demand. “There has been additional demand for these [HVAC] jobs because the work force is getting older,” says Glenn Walsh, chief instructor of the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Technician Program at the British Columbia Institute of Technology. “Plus, people are getting used to air conditioning in their cars, and perhaps wanting it in their homes. Refrigeration and air conditioning is prevalent everywhere, so more units, more demand, and more maintenance.” The demand for heating and cooling systems, and the required maintenance work to keep them humming, have grown across the country despite the global economic slowdown. Governmental regulations and incentives to create more energy-efficient buildings have spurred a healthy demand not only for new construction projects, but also for retrofits. Buildings both old and new need trained HVAC workers to install and service heating, ventilation, and cooling systems, and it’s work that lets you boast both your brains and brawn. “You get to do all sorts of work with your hands, since HVAC is a pretty broad field,” says Royce Rapozo, who graduated from Toronto’s George Brown College with a diploma in heating and refrigeration in 2009. “You end up servicing different equipment, but you also have to be able to troubleshoot in different situations and solve new problems every day.” Rapozo is currently completing an apprenticeship that he secured with the United Association of HVAC and Refrigeration Pipefitters, Local 787. He admits that the work can at times be demanding on the body. “There can be a lot of physical work, but if you’re doing mainly service jobs there’s usually less labour, but a lot more troubleshooting. If you get into construction, there are a lot of installations and more physical work.” In addition to the hands-on work, a lot of travel could be thrown into the mix. HVAC service technicians can have up to ten calls a day, and those requests can be scattered across a city. If testing your mind and body daily doesn’t provide enough satisfaction, there’s always the positive feeling of knowing that at the end of the day, you’ve helped people. “You get a sense of satisfaction in fixing people’s problems, and for mechanically inclined people, it’s a chance to make a good living,” says Eric Montford, operator of Northwest Residential Heating and Cooling in Winnipeg.


You also have to be able to troubleshoot in different situations and solve new problems every day New HVAC workers’ salaries range from $35,000 to $40,000 a year, depending on the company and the type of work being done. As with most careers, earning potential increases with years spent on the job, and experienced technicians can warrant $55 an hour for their services. There’s also room for advancement into the roles of business owner, project manager, or estimator. “Those management-type jobs would have lots of office work, less work in the field,” says Montford. “Constant updating with new technology is always needed to advance, but just using the Internet is a great way to stay up to date.” If you’re a technically inclined problem solver with a physique that can handle travel and manual labour, check out a HVAC training program at a local college to help you establish the fundamentals needed to break into the HVAC field. | By Rasheed Clarke

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A “Submerging” Industry


A “Submerging” Industry Marine engineering offers adventure, travel, and high pay

Captain Peter Buell is the director of the Great Lakes International Marine Training and Research Centre at Georgian College, his son is a recent program alumnus and is now a 4th class marine engineering officer. After passing his exams, Buell’s son sent out four résumés the Thursday following his graduation. The next morning he had two job offers. Marine engineering officers are a hot-ticket item in Canada, “There’s no question that engineers are needed, we can’t make enough right now,” says Buell. As a marine engineer, you’re in charge of operateing and maintaining all the technological systems needed on the tanker, cruise, tug boat, coast guard, or supply ships—from the air conditioning to the sewage system. With 64.3 percent of engineer officers aged 45 to 64, according to Service Canada, baby boomers will likely be retiring soon and creating increased labour demand. Openings are also readily available due in part to the marine industry’s silence; the multitude of career opportunities available to young students hasn’t been effectively advertised. “It’s an engineer’s market right now,” says Russell Oye, lecturer at the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) Marine Campus and appointed chair of the Vancouver branch of the Canadian Institute of Marine Engineering. “If all the maritime institutes in Canada were to graduate 100 percent class loads, they’re worried that we wouldn’t be able to meet the demand.” To support this, a recent study conducted by Strategic Directions Inc. reports that “Access to marine career opportunities must be enhanced to meet the future marine transportation and offshore oil and gas industry needs in Eastern Canada.” “It’s fair to say we have something of a modest shortage on both Canadian coasts and the Great Lakes,” says Jeffrey Smith, the elected

chair of the National Council of the Canadian Institute of Marine Engineering and former chief engineer in the Canadian Navy. “It is a good job market in Canada, better than the job market currently.” Now that you know there’s vast opportunity, here’s the benefits: you’ll have a rewarding career, the opportunity to travel, great pay (averaging between $52,000 and $74,000 a year and increasing with rank, according to the Canadian Coast Guard), and nine months of working for 12 months of rewards. Are you thinking “sign me up?” We certainly are. But first you have to make the cut. Programs tend to focus on math, so if you two are B.F.F. and you get along with chemistry and physics, you’ll be a good fit. According to Smith, you’ve also “got to be a person who is confident with working in the unusual environment that working with machinery and with other people at sea can be.” There is one drawback. Though it might be appealing for students with loose ties to home and a sense of adventure, becoming a marine engineer requires extended periods of travel and lots of time on the water. So make sure you have your sea legs before committing and know you’ll be leaving family and friends behind. Not ready to jump-ship? The easiest route to become an engineering officer is to enroll in a college that offers a cadet training program (see Transport Canada for a list of certified marine engineering institutions). The programs are three to four years and include “sea going” terms, letting students pay for their education as they train, allowing them to graduate with little or no debt. The goal is to move up the ranks to become a 1st class engineer, though the way to the top is not short. “Between the entry level, which is the 4th class engineer, up to a 1st class engineer you need to acquire at least 36 months of sea service. But everyone knows that no one is going to sail continuously for 36 months, so it may take up to lets say, five years, probably,” says Bruno Duguay of Transport Canada. There’s a sea of opportunity out there for eager and hard working graduates, all you have to do is climb on deck. “They have these [engineers] that can retire at any time, but they don’t have anybody in the wings,” says Oye. | By: Rebecca Feigelsohn




Become tomorrow’s globalized business leader An international business post-grad can build your cross-cultural management skills As the Canadian market becomes increasingly globalized, acquiring a post-graduate education in international business management can give you the tools and knowledge you need to do business overseas. “The benefit of a program like this is that it reflects today’s global business environment, whether it’s in the product, service, or non-profit sectors,” says Janice Brown, coordinator of the international business management program at Seneca College, in Toronto. From masters’ degrees to college certificates, students have several post-graduate opportunities to specialize in international management. “Having many different options out there is great,” says Dr. Pedro Márquez, dean of the faculty of management at Royal Roads University (RRU) in Victoria, B.C. “If a student wants to go to China for three years, they can. Programs have been designed to send people overseas. There are also programs that focus less on the people side, and more on international law and putting together marketing campaigns.” RRU offers a one-year master’s program in global management, combining the business competencies with cross-cultural management. “It focuses on the business aspects, including finance and marketing,” says Dr. Márquez. “But there’s also a heavy weight in the people side.” Recent alum, Marc Tassé, found the cultural component the most beneficial. “It isn’t just business practices, like you would learn in an MBA,” he says. “We learned finance, economics, and business strategy. But we took those concepts and learned how it’s happening in North America and how it’s happening in other countries.” Seneca’s program also combines both elements.

You’re mixed up with people of different cultures and different backgrounds. When you get people from China, Russia, and Canada, working together, everyone has different mindsets.” “Seneca’s program is very collaborative, with subjects that are ‘managerial-oriented’; from ‘digital business applications’ to ‘global trade research and analysis’ to ‘consulting across cultures,’” says Brown.

students and 50 percent international students. “You’re mixed up with people of different cultures and different backgrounds. When you get people from China, Russia, and Canada, working together, everyone has different mindsets.”

Consider the post-graduate certificate in international management, offered by Fleming College in Peterborough, Ontario. “Our program is focused on international business than cross-cultural management,” says Russell Turner, coordinator of the program, who adds that students get a taste of marketing, finance, accounting, management, and importing and exporting.

Some programs offer internships, while others have applied research projects, to create handson learning experiences. “Students are solving real business issues,” says Turner.

Students can enter these programs from different backgrounds, says Dr. Márquez. “There’s no particular discipline (needed). A bachelor of commerce would be a great idea, since they learn about the business aspect. But a bachelor’s degree in sociology or geography would be great as well, since they appreciate different cultures. What we need are people who are highly interested in learning about international business and travelling around the world.” One of the program’s greatest benefits is also the greatest challenge, which according to Tassé, is the cross-cultural teamwork. “(It’s) a very teambased program,” he says, adding that RRU’s program consists of about 50 percent domestic

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Upon graduation, students can find an array of opportunities and earn anywhere between $85,000 to $100,000 a year, Dr. Márquez estimates. Brown notes that “Seneca graduates have found work in a wide variety of fields, from financial planning to marketing (non-profit and for profit) to overseeing logistics for large international firms.” Tassé is now entertaining two job offers—one at a pharmaceutical company and one at an Australian biometrics company expanding to North America. He says a need exists for domestic companies looking to expand beyond Canada’s borders and companies abroad who are expanding in North America. “It’s not necessarily someone who wants to work overseas, but someone interested in other cultures and other places. It’s for someone who’s looking for that bridge between cultures.” | By: Samuel Dunsiger

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Ross University

RUSM is a provider of medical education offering a MD degree program. Over 9,000 graduates have chosen RUSM because of integrated curriculum, outreach opportunities and well-earned reputation for providing the education that enables our students to pass their US and Canadian licensing exams and obtain excellent residencies

Sheridan College Our one-year graduate certificate programs enhance your diploma or degree with a blend of theoretical knowledge and work experience that fully prepare you to launch your career. Choose from more than 20 programs in the arts, business, technology and community service fields.

American University of the Caribbean School of Medicine (AUC) AUC has provided a quality medical education to more than 5,000 graduates and provides a US-model education beginning with two years of medical sciences taught at the St. Maarten campus, followed by clinical education in affiliated hospitals in the US and UK.


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Profile for jobpostings Magazine

Jobpostings Magazine: January 2013 Vol 15. No. 4  

Canada's largest career lifestyle magazine for students. In this issue, we include a special mining report, the secret to successful network...

Jobpostings Magazine: January 2013 Vol 15. No. 4  

Canada's largest career lifestyle magazine for students. In this issue, we include a special mining report, the secret to successful network...