SOPA Courses Hit the Nail On the Head

Lydia Ogunoye joined the SOPA program while still in her home country as she was getting ready for her immigration to Canada. When you are moving to a new country, you need to think about many things in advance to be prepared. At times, people leave learning about job search and work culture to the last minute – but not Lydia. She knew that getting information and learning about job search in Canada was and is an important part of preparation. The best part of her preparation was that she could do it in the comfort of her own home. After her initial online Intake Session with an intake counsellor in Saskatchewan, she decided to start with a self-guided version of the Job Search Strategies course. The Job Search Strategies Express course gave her a glimpse into what there was to know about the job search process in Canada and she realized that there was a lot more that she needed to learn. As a result, she enrolled into the instructor led (facilitated) JSS and Soft Skills courses.

Lydia is an avid and keen learner. She completed several SOPA courses and went through several employment counseling sessions. She is here to tell you in her own words what she learned from SOPA.

“Without any over-statement, I can say that my experience in the Job Search Strategies course was tremendous and in fact, superb. I learned all the skills covered in the course.

While going through the JSS course, I learned that there is actually a distinction between hard skills (job-related skills or technical skills) and soft skills (related to how I organize myself, work and communicate with others). I also learned about transferable skills; the skills you acquire during the job and then use again in a different place. I learned how to use the National Occupation Classification system (NOC), and how to research employment and labour market information on the JobBank website. I learned how to research my occupation as well as equivalencies and credentials and to know whether my occupation is regulated or unregulated.

I must say that I learned a lot from Lisa, my course instructor. Though I knew about different resumes and purposes they serve, I learned more about chronological, functional and combination resumes. I learned about the strategies for improving the resumes. The JSS course also described various resources for finding advertised and unadvertised jobs.

“Without any over-statement, I can say that my experience in the Job Search Strategies course was tremendous and in fact, superb. I learned all the skills covered in the course.”

I learned that my ability to prepare a more targeted resume and cover letter is an added employability skill which should be accompanied by references, recommendations and other job related application documents. All of these items should be presented in a way that is specific, pleasing and attractive to the employers.

Furthermore, I learned about marketing skills. Particularly, how to arrange an informational interview and prepare the 30-second summary. I also learned how to make my social media profile more professional.

The most interesting part to me was learning about interview skills, which entails preparing for all kinds of interviews. I noticed that there is a need for proper preparation in this area to prevent poor performance no matter how beautiful your job documents are. I learned about the stages of an interview process, including how to identify and predict possible interview questions, and how to use the STAR approach to answer various kinds of interview questions. In addition, I learned a lot about what to do after a job interview.

The video clips and information in the courses were very instructive and on point, hitting the nail on the head and driving the points home.

Taking this course is really worth it. I really appreciate the SOPA program that is funded by the Government of Canada, and a special thanks to SOPA counsellors and instructors, especially Lisa (SOPA Saskatchewan JSS Facilitator) and Alissa (SOPA Saskatchewan Employment counsellor.”

Are you approved to immigrate to Canada? Join SOPA today! You’ll arrive in Canada better prepared, more confident and enter the workforce sooner.

Settlement Online Pre-Arrival (SOPA) is an Immigration, Refugees & Citizenship Canada (IRCC) funded program that delivers free pre-arrival services for job readiness, success and retention.Explore the free, pre-arrival resources, services and courses we offer at