Hello everyone, my name is Shi Vivian Yu. (AKA. V!v!@n in our Wechat group.) I am currently a volunteer working for CCPAA and have been an active member of the team since February 2015. Today, I came to share my story of how I landed on my first job after graduation. I wish that my experience will be an inspiration to my peers and eventually provide some guidance when it comes to job-hunting.
I have just got confirmation from Hwelen Young – our mentor at CCPAA for resume workshop and the upcoming mentoring program that I was hired for a junior internal auditor position at eHealth Ontario. Despite the luck factor, I think I have also worked very hard for this opportunity and got myself prepared for it.
Same as most of the graduating students, I was once very confused about how to find the first job. School work is complex enough and it seems impossible to ever have time for job-hunting. Luckily enough, I was able to attend CCPAA’s resume workshop that was held on February 22nd. Not only I was able to get my resume revised during the workshop, I was also able to connect with our mentors – Hwelen, Fang and Ismail. They are very helpful and dedicated towards helping members of CCPAA. Of course, we cannot ignore the hard work that was contributed by our volunteers and the committee that initiated our mentoring program.
I could not emphasize the importance of networking when it comes to job-hunting. Research has shown that 80% of the job posting were never advertised, which is surprising but true. If I have not met Hwelen at the CCPAA’s Resume Workshop, I would never have opportunity to impress her, and to consider posting the position at Ryerson, given the fact that eHealth Ontario has never partnered with Ryerson University before If Hwelen did not see my potential and willingness to help other members in our Wechat group, there would be no point for her to go through the tedious process to post this job at Ryerson. I cannot express how thankful I am to Hwelen’s kindness and how lucky I am to have known her through CCPAA and kept in touch with her after the resume workshop.
There is one thing I think is worth mentioning: it is not wise to network just because you need a job. Do not be desperate. Opportunities come and go. All you need to do is to get yourself ready and actively participate in our Wechat group discussion and help others. One thing Hwelen and I share in common is we both believe that contributing to the society and making it a better place is important. I think many of our CCPAA members have seen me trying to help others to the best of my ability. I have been actively answering questions, providing guidance, sharing articles whenever I could. I did not know about this upcoming job opportunity when I decided to help others. It simply makes me feel better to be able to help. As I have told Hwelen before, I believe that my own power may be small, but when I help someone and that person turns around to help another, together, we could make this world a better place.
Some advices for students still in 2nd and 3rd year of study:
Don’t take time off during summer and try to find an internship/ co-op if possible. Or you will find when it comes closer to graduation, your competitors all have some sort of working experience but you don’t. It will be hard to compete with your peers when you could not demonstrate to the employer that you are competent for the job through past work experiences.
As a graduating student from Ryerson University double majoring in finance and accounting, one thing that I regret most is that I was not able to go on an internship/co-op due to heavy course load and I needed to finish all my courses within 3 years to be able to enroll in the CGA legacy program. Internship gives you an insight of the industry you are about to work and also helps you to determine which stream of accounting you would prefer to work in after graduation.
Thank you for taking some precious time of yours to read through this rather lengthy article. I hope my two cents in job-hunting could provide some guidance on how to land on your first job and I wish you the best luck on job-hunting.