Taking control of your future Upon returning from an internship in Uganda, I took on the position of Vice President of Corporate Relations/Incoming exchange for the Guelph chapter of the world’s largest student-run organization. My job is to raise local short-term internships for international students. Along the way, I have been fortunate enough to meet an abundance of great people who have shaped both my personal and professional development. Two of these individuals have been kind enough to share their stories, and their impact. Aileen Cameron Scotland came to Canada just over a year ago. The reason I chose Canada was more luck than desire, although now that I am here I know I made the right decision. I was in the final semester of my Master’s degree when I started to look for jobs. Since I was from Scotland and the UK was suffering badly as part of the recession, my chances were very slim, especially as my degree title focused on forensic informatics. I was finding nothing, and graduation was looming, so I applied to a student-run organization called AIESEC1. I had no idea what AIESEC stood for, but I learned the program was a sort of student job board, except the jobs were available worldwide. I lucked out and found a “Security Analyst” position at the University of Guelph. The job description was perfect and fit hand-in-hand with my degree; I applied and eventually got the position. I left Scotland May 24th, midway through writing my Master’s thesis, which I completed by myself during my time at Guelph.
8 Powerful Women Winter 2011
When I arrived in Guelph, I was greeted by a group of smiling faces, eager to show me around. I faced a lot of issues in my first year in Canada, including my work permit being lost by Canadian Immigration, living in an overpriced deathtrap of a house, a landlord who was anything but helpful, missing my family, struggling with money, and adjusting to the Canadian seasons given the mild climate of home. It was more than I was used to, but that is where I am glad of AIESEC. As an immigrant, it can be hard to find friends, but going through AIESEC I landed with a group of 10 people who were going to be my “family.” I landed well over a year ago, and since then I have moved on to a full-time position at the university. When I first started my degree, I couldn’t have imagined that in simply a year I would be sitting in a bar in Canada with a Peruvian, a Hungarian, a Romanian and a Canadian eating a burger and watching hockey. Instead of being in Dumfries watching the Solway Sharks play hockey I would be sitting in the Air Canada Centre watching the Maple Leafs
Published on Dec 1, 2011
Published on Dec 1, 2011
In the 2011Winter issue of Powerful Women Magazine, you can read about international women, their challenges and accomplishments. Find tips...