About Me

My Canadian immigrant story is laden with unexpected twists and turns.  But I survived.

I was once a wide-eyed newcomer with nothing but dreams.  Now, I am living the life I have dreamed of.

Receiving an award on behalf of my employer

I wish there was a manual for a simple, stress-free, and delightful immigration to Canada.  But there is none.  So, I created this blog to help immigrants and would be immigrants along their journey. 

I hope you find value in reading about: 

How I prepared for immigration to Canada

I prepared for my move. But it never seemed enough.

I graduated from the University of the Philippines with a Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering and a Master’s in Technology Management.  My resume was packed with years of solid experience in the manufacturing industry and academe.  Also, I was confident that my experience of living in the dormitory since I was 12 years old has given me enough resilience, courage, and independence.

I spent countless hours researching various topics from resume formats, to job banks and Canadian culture.  I even tried to learn about proper layering for winter. In addition, I researched immigrant-serving organizations and set-up appointments before arriving in Canada.

In 2011, I moved to Canada alone from the Philippines via the Federal Skilled Worker Program.  Since then, I have proudly called beautiful British Columbia my new home.

Sharing my Canadian immigrant story
Photo of me from the Dress for Success 2019 Affiliate Conference Facebook album

How I overcame barriers

Despite the massive preparation, I experienced barriers.  There were lots of challenges ranging from settlement to career issues.

After five months of a difficult job search, I finally obtained a contract position as a QA Assistant.  Although the contract was extended 3 times, the position did not become permanent.  So I had to go through an even more frustrating job search. At that point, I had Canadian experience but minimal confidence.

After applying to over a hundred companies, I found permanent employment in 2013. With this employer, I am happy to be able to use my education, skills, and experiences.

In 2015, I moved to my own home, obtained my Canadian citizenship, and traveled back home.

How I enabled myself and others to thrive     

Through my exciting journey, I have gained much-needed work experience and upgraded my education.  I was able to build a supportive network, expand my life skills, and gain Canadian experience mostly by volunteering.  

What elevated my immigration experience was my involvement with Dress for Success Vancouver (DFSV) first as a client, then a volunteer, and finally an ambassador. As an ambassador, I had the honor of sharing my story during their 2019 global affiliates conference.  In November 2020, I was given an Inspiration Award for my leadership and achievement within the community.

This year, I graduated from the DFSV ambassador program. But I hope to continue helping more people along their immigration journey. This has inspired me to create a blog.

I still wish that there was a manual for immigration to Canada.  I know that I do not have the eloquence of a professional writer or knowledge of an immigration consultant.  But I have the heart of an immigrant.  I sincerely hope that this blog will make your own journey more enjoyable. 

Come join me as I relive my Canadian Immigrant Story.

Sincerely,

Katrina