The following blog post was written by Laurel Madro, Program Coordinator of the Centre's Corporate Readiness Training Program (CRTP). CRTP is a full-time program developed to accelerate the successful transition of internationally educated professionals (IEPs) into the Canadian workplace.
The Centre for Excellence in Immigrant and Intercultural Advancement partnered with leaders in Calgary’s human resources (HR) community to create a realistic interview experience for IEPs. Learners from CRTP and mentees from Bow Valley College's and CRIEC's mentorship program practiced job interview skills with HR professionals. It was a practical learning experience that allowed for direct feedback from experienced interviewers, helping CRTP learners develop competitive interview skills.
Senior HR professionals volunteered their time on three occasions to participate in simulated interviews. Following each interview session, they led a panel discussion where tips and strategies were shared with participants.
Learners shared this feedback about the interview sessions:
"The mock interview sessions organized at Bow Valley College was very helpful for me. HR professionals provided true and clear feedback that helped me improve my weaknesses and stand out during an interview. I was also able to perform well in my real interview and got hired." Poonam Kumari, CRTP Alumni, HR Specialist
“The experience of having a human resource manager asking me technical and behavioral questions prepared me for real job interviews. These specialists made accurate comments and gave feedback that helped me build my speech and answers in a logical, descriptive, and interesting way.“ Ilse Barrios, CRTP Student, Office Administration
“Having the opportunity of interacting with HR professionals was a very valuable experience for me. I was able to feel how is "the real thing" out in the market and learn from the experience.” Eleana Sahmkow, CRTP Student, Supply Chain/ Purchasing Professional
The HR professionals shared that the talents, qualifications and experiences of the IEPs compared extremely well with local professionals. They were confident that CRTP learners would be assets to organizations that value diversity and inclusion, helping to build a high performance employee base.
A huge thank you to our HR leaders who prepared our students for successful entry into the Canadian workforce; Laurel Towler, David Fulton, Cathy Phillips, Lauren Linnell, Noranne Dickin, Susan Hollister, Peter Chung, Michele Whelan, Shelley Billinghurst, Ruthanne Wutzke, Carole-Anne Aube, Jim McPhail, Tyler Cleveland, Shelley Rathie, Kathy Phillips, Landis Jackson, and Joan Batycki.