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When you arrive in Alberta

Some newcomers cannot occupy the same position or have the same status they had before coming to Canada. For some, their internationally acquired academic training, even at a high level, may not be recognized. For others it will be their work experience, sometimes despite having worked for multinational companies, which will not be recognized. This is often unexpected even for those who have done their homework before coming and contacted the Canadian embassy or consulate for information. Many of our clients tell us that they were given information suggesting a different reality from what they experienced upon arriving in Canada. Seeing your extensive background and experience minimized can be a difficult thing to accept. Very often it is due to the professional licensing organizations or associations who regulate access to certain professions with their own criteria.  Employers of course are bound by these rules and therefore cannot hire professionals who have no formal accreditation issued by these organizations.

For an experienced immigrant professional, a transition position is preferably a job in the same field of expertise as his former position, enabling him/her to use some of his/her experience and to update some of his/her knowledge in a Canadian context. This type of employment directly or indirectly contributes to your career goal by allowing you to acquire new knowledge and learn the appropriate ways of conducting yourself at work here.

For example, depending on the assessment of their skills and what they were expecting, some of our clients who used to be nurses have agreed to take the training required to become nursing aides or orderlies in Alberta. Some of them who were engineers are currently working as junior engineers or technicians and continue their studies until they become eligible for their certification exams. Others who were architects preferred becoming architectural technicians or draftspersons rather than abandon their field. However, the reality is such that it is not always possible to find employment related to your field. In order to earn a living, you will also need to learn about other jobs NOT related to your former occupation. You will need to redefine your employment goal, based on labour market realities and your financial needs. Your employment counselor can help you to re-evaluate your objective and guide you in your search for a different line of work.