Tell us your story
I was an economist in the Philippines where I worked at the central government’s socio-economic planning & policy agency for many years. Although my first degree was B.Sc. in Social Work from the University of the Philippines, I obtained my M.A. in Development Studies (Economic Policy & Planning major) at the International Institute of Social Studies in The Netherlands. But when I came to Canada in the early 90’s, obtaining a professional position was an elusive dream because I didn’t have a Ph.D. after my name. So I settled for a ‘working poor’ job, first as a hotel worker and then as a cashier in a dollar store from where I was eventually laid off. I then decided to go back to school: at Ryerson University where I graduated with a Certificate in HR Management and subsequently volunteered at the Catholic Community Services at York Region (CCSYR) for 6 months while holding a part-time job as an administrative cum CSR assistant at WEATECH (Women Entrepreneurs in Advanced Technology). All these career moves led me to the door of Skills for Change in 1999 where I was hired as a Facilitator/Counsellor for the Sector Terminology, Information and Counselling (STIC), the first ever bridging program in Canada.
Your favourite quote or mantra
My fave mantra is from the ‘Good Book’: “Faith, hope, love remain, these three; and the greatest of these is love” (1 Corinthians 13:13)
What do you enjoy most about working at Skills for Change?
What I I enjoy the most about working at Skills for Change is that it enables me to fulfill the promise I made years ago when I migrated to Canada with my young family and I experienced the seemingly insurmountable problem of finding a good job: to help newcomers and immigrants find a productive role in the Canadian labour market.