Mario Reyes started his academic journey at University Canada West with dreams of building a future in Canada and is now well on his way thanks to some help from the University’s Career Development Centre.
“Moving to a different country is, for the majority, a really hard experience. Uprooting yourself and saying goodbye to your established life can be hard,” he said. “Professionally speaking, you are a nobody. Your past experience, your education and all the know-how you possess are often overlooked.”
Mario hails from Guadalajara, Mexico, where he studied biomedical engineering and had seven years of managerial experience. However, he said, breaking into the job market in Vancouver proved to be more challenging than he imagined.
“I decided to try the recommendations WorkBC offers to the general public, but because of my status as an international student the help was limited to some modifications to my CV and information regarding the use of trusted job websites,” he said.
As a student in UCW’s MBA program, Mario, who was getting frustrated with his job search, decided to take advantage of the University’s Career Development Centre.
“They explained how the Canadian job market works… they helped ‘Canada-proof’ my CV and LinkedIn profile,” he said, adding that UCW’s Career Development Specialists gave him job interview tips, including the most commonly asked questions, and held practice interviews.
“They taught me to be patient and to not apply to any jobs without thinking. Each application must be personalized to see if you meet the qualifications,” Mario said. “They always helped me focus and search for jobs with the proper National Occupation Classification (NOC).
“They really put everything into perspective,” he said.
Mario, who graduated with his MBA in 2020, initially got a job as an assistant manager at a restaurant. However, he continued his job search and, in early April, started a new position as an area manager with Amazon.
Mario has some advice for other UCW students: “I would highly recommend paying a visit to the Career Development Centre. They will help you understand the way the job market works here and how you can prepare and search for a job after you finish your education.”
UCW’s Career Development Centre is a free service available to all students. It was created to facilitate an engaging partnership with all its students and alumni as they transition from higher education into the workforce environment and beyond. The Centre offers a variety of employment resources, one-on-one sessions and workshops.
For more information, visit the Career Development page in the MyUCW Student Portal.
Watch our YouTube video to hear more about Mario’s UCW experience.
Published on May 12, 2021.