Our Stories

Career Bridge opens doors to new Canadians

Toronto, February 26, 2010

St. Michael's has forged a strong partnership with Career Bridge, a program that provides internationally trained professionals with local work opportunities. Executive vice president and chief administrative officer John King recently received a leadership award from Career Bridge for his dedication and commitment to the program.

Career Bridge intern Doriana Silva interviewed John King to hear, in his own words, why he sponsors the program.

Q: How did Career Bridge begin at St. Michael's and why do you support it?

John King JK: I’ve come across underemployed international professionals often. Recently, I met a cab driver with a Masters in Business Administration but couldn’t find work in his field. I see so many skilled immigrants that need a hand getting their first opportunity.

We partnered with Career Bridge to open the door to that first opportunity. It provides a credible internship program with qualified people who are eager to succeed. St. Michael's represents the diversity of Toronto, so this initiative is the right thing to do. Education is also a critical piece of what we do here. It's a natural fit and the internships are a learning opportunity for both staff and interns.

Q: Why is Career Bridge good for our managers?

JK: Managers and their teams get to work with a skilled professional with global experience that brings diversity, creativity and innovation to workplaces in Canada. For us, it improves access to learning experiences, while delivering great work. And we get more than our money's worth from these individuals because they're hard working, keen and driven to succeed. It's a win-win situation.

Q: In tough economic times, why is it important to support it?

JK: Every year we set aside funding for six to eight Career Bridge internships. It’s well worth it, particularly during tough times. Career Bridge is affordable, but the value is greater than you may realize. With our small investment, we can provide them with a wonderful and valuable experience. We offer new Canadians a chance for a new and better life here. It also reflects our values.

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