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Navigating Employment Opportunities in Manitoba: Insights from Employment Services Manager at the Immigrant Centre of Manitoba

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Moving to a new country is both an exciting and challenging endeavour, especially when finding suitable employment. 

Amie Membreño, the employment services manager at the Immigrant Centre Manitoba, shares valuable insights into the journey of newcomers seeking employment in Canada. One of the initial challenges immigrants face is aligning their career goals with the Canadian job market. 

“One of the first things they need to do is figure out what they want to do in Canada,” says Membreño. 

While some individuals can continue working in their previous field, others might need to consider alternative career paths due to factors such as unrecognized credentials or language barriers. 

“For those looking for a job, my first suggestion is to set a goal of finding an entry-level position in your field,” advises Membreño. 

Recognizing that gaining employment directly related to one’s profession may take time, she emphasizes the importance of starting with a more accessible position. The Immigrant Centre works closely with clients to craft resumes that highlight their experience and make them stand out to potential employers. 

Contrary to the misconception that there are no job opportunities in Canada, Membreño points out that the country currently boasts one of the lowest unemployment rates in the last 40 years. She urges newcomers to be realistic about their expectations, acknowledging that immediate access to their dream job may not be feasible. “It’s probably more accurate to say, ‘I can’t immediately start working in my dream job,'” she adds. 

Adapting to a new environment is gradual, and building a professional reputation takes time. Membreño notes that companies often prefer promoting individuals within the organization who have demonstrated loyalty, even if they lack formal education. This loyalty becomes an asset that surpasses the qualifications of external candidates. 

The Immigrant Centre of Manitoba assists individuals with intermediate or beginner English proficiency, catering to those seeking entry-level positions. Membreño clarifies that while there are organizations designed for professionals fluent in English, their center aims to help newcomers secure their first jobs and guide them toward achieving their long-term career goals. 

Membreño encourages newcomers to Canada to be proactive in seeking entry-level positions, emphasizing the importance of building a foundation that aligns with their long-term career aspirations. The journey may require patience and adaptability, but with the right guidance and support, immigrants can pave the way for a successful career in their new home. 

– Yuliia Kovalenko, U Multicultural

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