My name is Hao Wang. I have been an IT project manager and consultant for seven years and hold two masters degrees in Finance and Economics. Before landing in Winnipeg in March 2017, I was a client of SOPA (Settlement Online Pre-Arrival). After 6 months of arriving in Winnipeg, I successfully landed a job in my field.
When my Intake Counselor, Milagros Dacwag introduced me to SOPA’s Job Search Strategies course, I thought the job search skills are not new to me as I have professional job experience. I have even recruited staff for my own projects. Therefore, I thought I have both knowledge and experience in writing a quality resume. My thinking changed when I participated in the Job Search Strategies course, which was facilitated by Echo Duan. First, Echo showed me how to create a Canadian-style resume. Then I learned how to tailor and target my resume according to the desired position. She also taught me how to search for job opportunities from the hidden job market and how to expand personal networks.
I sent out the updated resume and I got my first interview. After spending one-and-a-half hour in deep discussion with the company’s IT Director, I thought I would probably get the job. From my point of view, the interview was smooth and I showed my previous experience and project management skills. The result was disappointing.
In the meantime, I had been invited to participate in the SOPA reunion evening. During the reunion, I shared my story with Milagros, Martin and Echo, the SOPA Manitoba staff. Combining experiences shared by other SOPA clients, Milagros, Martin and Echo told me that understanding of Canadian culture played a very important role during the job search. This understanding was somehow beyond my technical background. Through networking with other SOPA students and getting help from the SOPA facilitators, I have improved a lot in both English and in understanding aspects of the Canadian workplace culture.
Combining experiences shared by other SOPA clients, Milagros, Martin and Echo told me that understanding of Canadian culture played a very important role during the job search. This understanding was somehow beyond my technical background. Hao Wang
Six months after arriving in Winnipeg, I got a crucial interview from an IT consulting firm in Winnipeg. After learning of the interview time, I remembered what I learned during SOPA courses immediately. I appreciated Echo and that her very valuable advice applied to my upcoming interview. She helped me learn how to analyze the position’s requirements and mentally prepare for the interview. She helped me improve the answer examples with more details, so I could show the reasons why I should be hired. She even helped me correct some ways of saying things.
At the end of the day, I got the job offer. I was so grateful that I could participate in SOPA’s courses and that I have had Milagros, Martin and Echo supporting me. They helped me in many ways, from writing a Canadian resume, learning how to approach the hidden job market, to preparing for interviews. And I would like to take this opportunity to share my story with every newcomer and tell that SOPA should be the first program you join. You will never regret it.
Immigrating to Canada? Arrive Prepared.