Communiqué Subscription

Sign up to receive the HIO Communiqué to keep up to date with information about upcoming events, program updates, news and issues of interest.

Member Login

Immigrant Success Stories

ALBERTA LAWSON
Senior Personal Banking Officer, Scotiabank

Alberta fell in love with Canada in 1997 while completing a master’s in public administration at Carleton University. In 2003, when she was looking for a fresh start, she knew in her heart that Canada was the place to go.

Alberta left her job with the Central Bank of Ghana and moved to Canada with her three kids. “I thought it would be easier for me to get a job with my experience and Canadian degree,” says Alberta. “But I got here and realized this wasn’t the case.”

Alberta wanted to continue a career in the banking and finance industry, so she took a job with an insurance company as an advisor. She found out about the Ottawa Job Match Network (OJMN) – a project that helps new immigrants find work in their fields – where the staff helped her tailor her résumé and directed her to different networking opportunities. 

At a HIO hosted networking event in the spring of 2009, Alberta met a representative from Scotiabank. Three interviews later, Alberta was offered a job for a higher position than the one for which she had applied. 

Today Alberta has a job she loves. “I can see that my future is very bright and I’m very excited that I’m doing what I want to do, which is helping people become financially better off.”

Alberta credits her success in part to Hire Immigrants Ottawa and OJMN working to bring employers and skilled immigrants together at such networking events in Ottawa: “You cannot assess a candidate just on paper. The real impression is lost and you lose out on an excellent candidate. Networking is crucial for both employers and internationally trained candidates.”

Ever the optimist and one who doesn’t give up easily, Alberta looks at life with a smile and a lot of determination. She is a positive role model for her three children, who are all working towards degrees in business at different post-secondary institutions. And she’s even getting used to the snow.

Read more>>