As the sales and recruitment manager, Suji oversees the recruitment efforts internationally. She has over 8 years of experience in international education. Suji enjoys sharing her experience with passion helping international students to start off on their new journey in Canada.
Get to know Suji as she gives a brief outline of the programs at Sterling College.
What, exactly, is your role as the Sales & Recruitment Manager?
In my job, I recruit international students for college and help them find their dream and goal. I also assist them in finding the right program that will allow them to succeed in Canada as well as in their home country.
What steps does the college take to keep students safe?
I do get those questions quite a lot recently. All COVID measures are in place. As you walk into our campus, you will see the plexiglasses all boarded up around our reception desk and our advisor’s desk. Social distancing signs are also everywhere. We are doing our very best to keep our students safe, and also, we have our readiness plan approved by the Canadian government. The program is approved to be run and offered to our students under COVID safety measures. Visitors and students are currently welcomed to stop by and take a look around. We are also giving a campus tour. Just contact me or any of us on campus to set up an appointment, we will be happy to help.
When does the campus plan to open for on campus studies?
We plan to reopen in September, but some of our students are still abroad and others are still awaiting approval for their study permits. Then, in September, we’ll probably have a hybrid format. We’ll have half the classes on-site, half online.
What do students enjoy most about this college and what makes Sterling College unique?
Our college is actually very unique. The first thing you notice about our campus is that it feels like a big family. We are not a big college. We are not a big university. We are a private college located in downtown Vancouver, so we have an excellent location and also a small class size. On average, there are 25 to 30 students per class. This means that our teachers can give each student more attention. So you feel that you are in really good hands and that you are being well taken care of. We hear that a lot from students.
What opportunities should students take advantage of?
There are 2 types of programs. We offer Business programs that include 1 year of study and 1 year of co-op. The co-op program is a paid work experience. We offer programs in Nursing and IT as well. These programs are also 2 years, but do not include co-op. However, after graduation, students can apply for a Post-Graduation Work Permit, and this will probably be up to 3 years. In our college, we have two streams of programs. This really depends on your personal and professional goals. A lot of international students come to Vancouver to study but also hoping to find something permanent to settle down and move here. For that to happen, education is fundamental.
You can start at college because if you don’t put yourself out there and make connections, you won’t be successful. In Canada, who you know matters a lot when it comes to looking for a job. Students often believe that they need as many credentials as possible so their resume will look good, but when they don’t have connections in the city, they may not have the best opportunities. I would definitely encourage my international students to go out there and meet students in similar situations to themselves, mingle with your classmates and people who are seeking to hire you. If you plan on settling down in Vancouver, I recommend either Nursing or IT programs that offer you the open Work Permit after graduation.
What if students want to continue their education after graduating? What are their pathways options?
We have 2 university partners. It is at University Canada West where you can switch from our Business diploma to the Bachelor of Commerce. There is also Yorkville University, where you can complete the Bachelor of Business Administration. After you complete your studies at one of these universities, you can apply for a 3 year open work permit. That could be a really great option for those of you hoping to move abroad or looking for something a little long term.
When do programs start?
It varies depending on the programs. The Nurse and IT programs have two to three intakes a year. They are held in January and September. Nursing programs are also offered in May. Business programs have a little more intake, about four to five per year.
Anything else you would like to add?
So, I just want to say that our Sterling College has a lot of benefits for international students. First of all, the location. Being located in downtown Vancouver provides many opportunities, especially employment opportunities.. From our instructors, staff, advisers, and campus director, everyone on campus is very friendly. We are here to help every student, so please don’t hesitate to ask for help. As an international student myself many years ago, I know how scary it can be going abroad all on your own and trying to make something out of it from scratch. The fact that the school provides support right from that very beginning is actually very important. I can really relate to it. I really look forward to welcoming everybody!