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Saturday, September 15, 2007

The barrier of "Canadian Experience"

Now that I'm back working on coming to Canada again, I'm thinking once more about issues of employment once I arrive. As such, an article in The Star caught my attention. In the article, "Employment breakthrough" The success of a Toronto and Vancouver based internship program is described.

The program is, "Career Edge, a private non-profit agency that links qualified immigrants with employers that provide them with paid internships to gain valuable experience and mentoring for periods ranging from four to 12 months."

I can't say I've ever understood the "Canadian experience" barrier. I guess because this sort of thing doesn't exist in the US. Here, we don't really care where your experience or skills come from. If you have them, and can do the job, then you have a chance. It's not a case of having every qualification possible and then someone asking, "and do you have US work experience?" It simply isn't an issue.

But in Canada, it is. Crazy to think that new immigrants, even skilled immigrants would come to a new country with work experience in the country. And talk about a 'Catch 22" - that you need Canadian work experience to get a professional job in Canada, but you can't get the experience, because you need it to get hired!

The only way through this is paid or unpaid internships...and this is where programs like "Career Edge" help.

I know when I get to Canada, even if I am still working on projects for my US clients, I am going to contact this organization right away.

1 comment:

  1. Honestly, I think it exists in the US as well...

    I know it was a headache for me when I first came to Canada. I actually found my first job through a staffing agency, who didn't care much about my lack of experience as long as I could legally work. Lots of people do that ;)

    Correr Es Mi Destino