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About Us

Career Loans empowers Internationally Trained Individuals (ITI's) in Alberta and Saskatchewan to achieve their career goals, by providing free one-on-one employment and financial counselling and micro loans to eligible applicants.

Career Loans is a virtual program and is especially designed to help newcomers who encounter barriers in having their credentials recognized, or face challenges in securing funding to get re-certified.

Eligible candidates are able to receive loans of $1,500 to $15,000, which can be used towards training, assessment, accreditation, exams, licensing and membership fees, and any required materials. Loan recipients have up to four years to pay off these low-interest loans, and will continue to receive personalized employment and financial counselling  throughout.

On an individual basis, clients are also referred to local based service providers in Alberta and Saskatchewan for services that can enable them to fulfill their potential.

Launched in 2019, this program is funded by Economic and Social Development Canada (ESDC), and coordinated by The Centre for Education and Training (TCET).

Our Team

 

Sonja Johnson

Sonja Johnson

Project Manager

I have worked 20+ years in various non-profit, banking and NGO organisations in the Caribbean, UK and Canada. I have a Masters in International Business and Management from the University of Westminster (London, UK) and a BSc. in Professional Management from Nova Southeastern University in Florida, USA. I come with 15+ years of management experience in empowering staff, designing and implementing programs for newcomers and others in the under-served population. The reason I joined the non-profit sector is because it is the best platform for me to pursue my passion in making a positive impact on the economic empowerment for 2 key client groups; newcomers and start-up entrepreneurs. Favorite motivational quote: “To whom much is given, much is expected.”

Claudia Valenzuela

Claudia Valenzuela

Information and Financial Counsellor (Saskatchewan)

My expertise relies on assisting internationally trained individuals to reach their career goals by offering expert advice on finding the best way to obtaining their accreditation assessed and recognized in Canada. My background is in Career and Work Counselling, Marketing and Retail. I find great satisfaction when I see my clients succeed in their careers and occupations of choice in Canada, through my guidance. I bring over two decades of experience working as a counsellor and facilitator for Internationally Trained Professionals (ITP). The reason I joined the non-profit sector is to make a difference in the lives and careers of ITPs, which is something I strongly believe. Favourite motivational quote: "If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change" Wayne Dyer

Rodika Barbu

Rodika Barbu

Information and Financial Counsellor (Alberta)

I bring with me extensive experience as a Career Counsellor/Assessor/Case Manager and Financial Guidance Counsellor in non-profit sector. I am also experienced in working with Internationally Trained Professionals (ITPs), providing individual one-on-one support/counselling, employment and making financial informed decisions about training selection. I have a solid understanding of immigration issues in Canada and understand the current Immigration Act and policies. Some of my accomplishments include: interviewing clients individually to assess their employment situation, make informed referrals to community partners based on clients’ eligibility, developing and fostering relationships within the community, and building partnerships. Favourite motivational quote: “If you DREAM it, you can DO it.” -Walt Disney

Charles Curl

Charles Curl

Webmaster

I have extensive experience as a Web Developer/Webmaster with a passion for computers and technology since my first Commodore VIC-20 at 10 years old. In the last 6 years I have specialized on the WordPress platform, which excitingly recently hit version 5.0. I’m a technology buff and always looking for the latest greatest tech gear. In my off time I’m a golfer, gamer, and snowboarder. I enjoy assembling computers and gaming machines and all electronics. I hope to serve your technical needs during this exciting process, and help you on your way as an Internationally Trained Professional. Favourite Quote: "The best thing about a Boolean is that even if you are wrong, you're only off by a bit."

Gavin Au-Yeung

Gavin Au-Yeung

Content Developer

While living abroad, I faced many challenges including cultural misunderstanding and language barriers. Thanks to the help of many kind people, I was able to live comfortably in an unfamiliar environment. I relate to the barriers faced by immigrants who are placed in a new country. As part of the Career Loans team, I’m excited at the opportunity to help Internationally Trained Individuals ease into the Canadian workplace. Being the Content Developer for Career Loans allows me to combine my passions for storytelling and helping others. My experience includes creating digital content for websites, blogs, and social media management. I am excited at this opportunity to contribute to something really special. My favorite motivational quote is: “You miss 100% of the shots you don’t take.”

Meet The Team

Meet the Team

PrepCan-Online Newcomer Information Centre is coordinated and funded by:

Centre for Education & Training Mississauga logo Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada logo

careerloans logo

Career Loans provides career counselling and micro loans to Internationally Trained Individuals in regulated and non-regulated occupations and trades, who are looking to return to their chosen profession.



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