You’re graduating, but what happens next?

The ups and downs of three GBC students who are in the journey to get a full-time job

I was in the Kings Lounge at St. James campus with two George Brown College (GBC) students that, like me, are in the last semester of a two year program. The main thing on our mind was the hunt for full-time positions.  

Diogo Azeredo, a GBC business student, was excited that, after he had applied for six jobs in that week, he got a call from a recruiter who moved him for a face-to-face interview. 

Even with more than 10 years of experience as a risk analyst in the banking industry – the same position that he had applied for – Azeredo couldn’t avoid feeling nervous. 

“At the moment I was doing the interview, I was extremely anxious,” he said. “My phone said that I was working out because I was walking so fast around my apartment.”  

You could see how excited he was about this opportunity while he was describing it. His legs were shaking and each time he spoke about the possibility of finishing his program with a permanent position, his eyes sparkled. 

“I’m hopeful to get a job before the end of the semester,” Azeredo said. 

Ana Gabriela Vendrasco, a GBC international business student, is similar to Azeredo from a professional point of view. 
 
Besides the business marketing program she’s taking at GBC, Vendrasco already has a professional and educational background. She has a bachelor’s degree in business administration, a master of business administration in marketing management and more than 10 years of experience as marketing analyst. 

She just got her first phone interview and the recruiter gave her the idea that she would be kept in the selection process. A few days after, Vendrasco received an email saying that the company already filled the position. 

It’s not cheap to pay for a post-secondary education in Canada. In 2017-18, tuition for domestic students at George Brown varied between $3,668 and $20,188 for two semesters. Tuition for international students ranged from $14,931 to $31,515 for two semesters. And tuition doesn’t cover fees and other costs like rent, food, transit and more.

Beside the costs, students also have to deal with the fear of failure. Frustration and uncertainty are some of the feelings during this moment when the only thing students can predict is that the there is no more classes after April 28.

“I’m kind of anxious because everything that is coming is unexpected. So, I think this is a natural feeling,” said Vendrasco. 

But Vendrasco is taking action to build her confidence up in the challenge of trying getting a full-time job in her field. On Saturday mornings, she is doing a continuing education course at U of T (University of Toronto) focused on preparing internationally-trained professionals to succeed and advance in the Canadian workplace. 

“How to practice small talk with people higher (ranking) than me and people with the same level is something I learned there,” said Vendrasco. 

Daniel Kennedy, GBC career services manager, highlighted how important it is for students who are about to graduate to have their interview package ready, and recommends that they don’t wait to finish their programs to start applying for full-time positions. 

“You’re going to want to have a resume, you’re going to want to have a cover letter, and you’re going to want to have some exposure to interviewing,” said Kennedy. 

Prepping for full-time work is exactly what Natália Rabelo, a GBC business marketing student has been doing. Rabelo is expecting to become a full-time employee at the education and immigration consulting company that she’s currently working at part-time. 

“Because I have some job experience, I can’t wait to go back to the workforce and start working full-time again,” she said.

Vendrasco, Azeredo, and Rabelo keep looking for their spot in the career they’re hoping for. Although they knew that their job search would be on their minds every day during this final run, they are also confident about what’s going to happen when they leave GBC’s doors for the last time.

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You’re graduating, but what happens next?