Through AIESEC’s international exchange program, University of Calgary accounting student Irina Lipskaia found a teaching position in Kiev, Ukraine, teaching various levels of English to university students, businessmen and even young children at a summer camp.
Engineers Without Borders is a Canadian organization made up of passionate people who are tackling the complex challenges of development. EWB harnesses the skills and creativity of the Canadian engineering sector to find practical solutions to extreme poverty.
Alvaro Ipanaque had served leadership roles with AIESEC for five years before going on his first exchange. Coming from Lima, Peru, he came here to Calgary not for the weather, not for the skiing, not for the Stampede, but for the job opportunity.
It’s a tricky balance, but for those students who manage to use their ‘international student status’ to its full potential, it can lead to substantial career benefits later on. And it’s a learning process that can begin right from the start of your university experience – or, for some, even before.
In general, if you are: 1) a full-time international student, 2) registered at an officially authorized university or college, and 3) are in possession of a valid study permit, then you can qualify to legally work in Canada.
As an international student or recent grad hoping to break into the Canadian job scene for the first time, keep in mind that being different is okay, but you should still be prepared to be flexible and understand the unique traits that make Canadian work culture what it is.
On an internship facilitated by AIESEC and sponsored by the Shastri Indo-Canadian Institute, Curtis Riep (right) volunteered in Gujarat at the Research Foundation for Governance in India, a non-government organization conducting research on civil rights, proper governance, and other socio-political issues.
I wish I’d been told these things in college. It may have saved me some time and some grief. But, at the same time, I had to walk my own path, just as you have to walk yours. Welcome to the whole world.