“Mentoring is a brain to pick, an ear to listen, and a push in the right direction.”
– John C. Crosby
Potential new immigrants who are in the process of immigrating to Canada soon have many things on their mind – A new life, new work environment, new world. They have all these questions they want answers to – What kind of job opportunities should I be applying to? Do I have a resume that is right for the Canadian job market? How do I write an effective cover letter that can get me results? What are the expectations from me in my new Canadian work place? Our program participants have shared with us that they just want someone to listen to them, direct them and validate them. They need a mentor.
A ‘mentor’ is usually a more knowledgeable or experienced person who guides the less knowledgeable or experience person often referred to as the ‘mentee’.
At CanPrep, we offer online mentoring as part of our pre-arrival employment services to Canada. Our mentoring program – Canada InfoNet connects Internationally Educated Professionals (IEPs) to experienced professionals in Canada who act as mentors.
Who are our mentors?
Our mentors are passionate and motivated professionals who understand the challenges of immigration, many from personal experiences. They are investing their time to give mentees a better understanding of their industry in Canada. They want to help build their confidence which is essential to setting and achieving personal goals.
The primary motivation of Mentors of our online program is to provide guidance and support. They share their knowledge of industry standards and practices, certifications, training and education, and the job search itself through a safe and easy online format. This has helped mentees formulate strong job search strategies which has a huge impact on how soon they can find employment.
Why online mentoring?
There are many ways that a Mentor’s time and effort can have an impact. Mentees will:
- Gain insight into Canadian work and values
- Understand current workplace and industry trends
- Receive critical feedback on resumes and interview techniques
- Get help with self-marketing techniques and confidence building
- Identify skills required by market demands, and guidance on licensing processes in their province of landing
- Gain access to professional networks
- Understand how to present themselves in the best possible light to potential employers
What is the impact of mentoring on program participants?
Nitesh is a professional who is in the process of immigrating to Canada. He applied to CanPrep and started working with his Employment Counsellor on the different components of the program. Since he had optimal time for a 10 week partnership with an online mentor, his Counsellor connected him to Rick who has been a star mentor with Canada InfoNet for many years now. Nitesh (mentee) and Rick (mentor) used the online mentoring system to discuss various topics that Nitesh had concerns about. Towards the end of the partnership, Nitesh felt:
It was a wonderful experience to interact with a working professional who has been living in Canada for many years and who knows the complete ins and outs of the labor market there. For a new immigrant like me, the most important part is to get guidance on how I can get a job in a competitive market. I am glad that I was connected to an experienced and knowledgeable mentor through CanPrep and I really got a very good insight on how things work in the Canadian job market.
His online mentor had contributed to building his confidence to start a new phase of life for him and his family.
How does online mentoring work?
Mentors and mentees are usually signed up on Canada InfoNet which is an online, interactive, mentoring platform. Each mentoring partnership lasts for 10 weeks long. The partnership goes through 5 different stages of Orientation – Relationship building – Learning Conversations – Building Networks – Moving On.
The online discussions occur on a secure private discussion board at a time of convenience for the mentor and the mentee. The program requires at least a weekly 1 hour communication in total. This gives enough opportunity to build a relationship between the two and also to move through the various phases of the program.
How to sign up for online mentoring?
Internationally Educated Professionals with a permanent resident visa, still living in their home country and planning to arrive in Canada in the next 3 to 6 months are eligible for online mentoring. To begin with, they can sign up for the CanPrep program here. Once their eligibility has been established, a CanPrep Employment Counsellor will get in touch with them for the next steps.