Vera Chen is a second-year Bachelor of Commerce student at Dalhousie University, currently completing her first co-op work term at Dalhousie’s Undergraduate Academic Advising Office. Vera’s involvement in the Workplace Experience Program allowed her to develop skills, build interest in the marketing field, and learn about Canadian workplace culture while working at Halifax Port Authority. Below, Vera discusses her experience.
“I attended an ISSP session where I met Jennifer Coombs, and she recommended that I participate in the Workplace Experience Program. What appealed to me the most about the program was being part of a company, working closely with experienced staff, meeting new people, and getting the chance to understand a real Canadian workplace.
During my month at Halifax Port Authority, I got the chance to learn alongside a marketing coordinator who had over twenty years of experience with the company. My supervisor and I worked closely, which allowed me to build my expertise in web communications and social media. She is now a valuable reference for me.
My first impression of the Canadian workplace was that it is a little different from my country, China. Everyone in the office sees each other as a friend because every employee is valued. They work together and are willing to help others. I have learned to work with my co-workers as a team to meet a higher standard for our office.
I really enjoyed the experience and engagement in the workplace. I have developed communication and analytical skills and was able to build great relationships. Those skills are benefitting me in my current co-op job as I am required to work with social media marketing tools such as Facebook and Webchat.
I would definitely recommend that everyone consider participating in this program to gain work experience for their future co-op jobs and also build their ability to quickly absorb and apply new information.”
The Workplace Experience Program gives international Bachelor of Commerce students who have little to no Canadian work experience a chance to spend time in the Canadian workplace to learn about the culture and expectations. Students can also receive recognition for their participation by adding it to their Co-Curricular Record. Interested in gaining valuable experience like Vera? The deadline to submit an application is this Sunday, February 28th. For more information, visit our website and complete the application form.