How SOPA Is Preparing Me For Canada
Are you approved to immigrate to Canada? Now what? How to prepare before you move to Canada?
Nopporn Chanmekha is moving to Canada from Thailand. When he got his approval to immigrate, he signed up for the SOPA program right away. I’ve met Nopporn while he was taking SOPA’s two self-guided courses. SOPA is an online program and most of our communication is virtual. And thanks to our modern technologies that allow us to connect with people while they are on the other side of the world! Isn’t that great? Nopporn is in Thailand and we’re doing this interview post while he is still going through our program. I invite you to read about his immigration story to help you find answers about the SOPA program.
Hello Nopporn! How do you say in your native language: “Hello my name is…”
สวัสดีครับ ผมชื่อนพพร จันทร์เมฆา
Nopporn, can you please tell us where are you from?
I’m from Thailand, a country located in South East Asia.
Can you tell us a little bit about yourself and your family? Why did you decide to immigrate?
I worked at a commercial bank for six years before resigning to pursue a Master Degree in the USA in 2001. After going back to Thailand I got married to my lovely wife and we now have two beautiful boys of 12 and 7 years old. My wife, Pawadee, has a bachelor degree in accounting. She worked in the commercial bank for 10 years before quitting her job to take care of our boys. She now helps with her family’s business. She speaks English a little, so she would need to take English classes when we arrive in Canada. It may take some time before she starts to work. My older son likes everything about English language and likes English songs, he likes to listen to Justin Bieber, a Canadian singer. He likes American basketball and he is already a fan of the hockey team ‘Winnipeg Jet’. My other boy, he is a joker of our home. He is a charmer and everyone just loves talking to him.
When I thought of ways to provide my kids with the better environment, good high education and better quality of life, I thought about Canada. Since I had a friend in Winnipeg, I asked her to help me with our application. It took three years before our family received a permanent resident visa. As soon as we had our visa I thought that before coming to Canada I need to prepare myself, so I signed up for the SOPA program.
“I feel that SOPA shifts me closer to Canadian working environment and I already feel a part of this new working culture. Canadian Workplace Integration was an excellent course. I got many concepts and ideas on how employees practice in the workplace. It’s good to understand unwritten rules before facing the real workplace. I believe that many successful stories begin with SOPA.”Nopporn Chanmekha
So now, let’s imagine you are at an interview in Canada. Let’s practice your 30-second pitch.
My name is Nopporn Chanmekha, and I have experience in financial institutions in Thailand for 15 years. My most significant role was screening and approving vehicle loan applicants. The key success factor in this industry that I have to maintain would be dealing with risk management. To demonstrate and identify the risk appropriately, I had to gain strong skills of credit and financial analysis. Obviously, I am equipped with these skills. Now I am looking for a position that will allow me to utilize my professional background and analysis skills to secure the company’s profitability. To continue my career, I would like to keep strengthening these competencies through my work experiences in the financial field.
Name two things you consider yourself to be very good at.
Clearly describing and intentionally listening
When you think of Canada, what 3 things come to your mind first?
1. Great opportunity for education and career path 2. The high quality of life 3. Ice Hockey
What questions did you have about SOPA before registering?
What kind of services does SOPA provide for newcomers? How can SOPA help newcomers to settle family smoothly in Canada?
And why did you decide to register for SOPA?
I do believe that this program is able to help me be better prepared, help me with my job search and help my family settle appropriately in Canada.
How would you describe the SOPA program to a friend or colleague?
I would strongly advise my friends, colleagues and any newcomer to register in all SOPA courses. Especially, if they need a well-prepared plan so that they can land in Canada with the most confident footstep.
How did your SOPA course prepare you for Canada?
I finished two self-guided courses: Canadian Workplace Integration and Working in Canada and I’m going through Soft Skills Course: Working with others. I feel that SOPA shifts me closer to Canadian working environment and I already feel part of this new working culture. Canadian Workplace Integration was an excellent course. I got many concepts and ideas on how employees practice in the workplace. It’s good to understand unwritten rules before facing the real workplace. It will help reducing unexpected situations. No matter what was your company’s culture or how broad is your work experience in your home country, SOPA courses will help you understand Canadian culture better. I believe that many successful stories begin with SOPA. I am excited to use and apply what I gained from SOPA to appropriately settle in Canada.
What do you think could make the SOPA program even better?
I can’t think of anything. The program is just so great.
– Interview was prepared by Albina Ziatdinova
Albina Ziatdinova is based at the Immigrant Services Association of Nova Scotia (ISANS) in Halifax and currently monitors SOPA’s two self-guided courses: ‘Canadian Workplace Integration’ and ‘Working in Canada’ for all of the provinces where SOPA program is offered. She also monitors and coordinates SOPA’s main social media channels. Albina is an immigrant herself and she knows just how important is to get a timely and reliable information. She immigrated 6 years ago to Halifax, NS and since then has been working at ISANS. Albina is passionate about helping clients arrive better prepared.