Faculty of Education connects students with employers

By: Cory Habermehl
Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Sara Pace is optimistic she will be among those chosen for interviews after meeting with employers at the Career Expo. Lisa Pace wants to be a teacher.

The 22-year-old London native is currently halfway through her Bachelor of Education degree at Western’s Faculty of Education. Focusing on French in the Primary Junior stream, she’ll be able to teach children from junior kindergarten to Grade 6 when she graduates.

“It’s a great career, there are lots of really exciting options,” said Pace. “But they can be tough to track down sometimes.”

It’s why the Faculty of Education works every year to make sure its students have the best chance at finding employment, and brings potential employers straight to the students with their annual Career Expo.

Hosted in the Faculty of Education building’s gymnasium, the expo is a long-standing tradition.

“It’s been running for at least 15 years, but likely closer to 20,” said Anna Zuber, manager of the Bachelor of Education program. “It’s really a tremendous opportunity to connect our students with all the wonderful career opportunities that exist.”

This year’s expo brought 45 different recruiters and school board administrators together with students. In support of the Faculty of Education’s desire to continue establishing strong international partnerships and opportunities, recruiters and administrators came from a variety of locations, including England, Sweden, Australia, Korea, Kuwait, China, Kenya, Turkey, Hong Kong, UAE, China and Mexico.

Pace, while interested in exploring international opportunities, began her conversations with recruiters from closer to home by talking with the Thames Valley District School Board (TVDSB).

“I just went to the booth there and they had a signup list for French candidates to get onto the part-time list,” she said. “Half an hour later I went to my interview.”

The TVDSB conducted several interviews, said Pace. Successful candidates were told they would be contacted within the next four to five weeks.

School boards in the GTA are also in need of French teachers, and selected applicants to those boards could be working on a full-time basis as early as next September.

“It’s really win-win at our Career Expo,” said Zuber. “The recruiters are looking to hire, and our BEd candidates are looking to work. We put them all together in one place, and the relationships form from there.”

Planning for next year’s Expo is already underway, where Zuber hopes to have even more recruiters in attendance.

For Pace, the variety of recruiters at this year’s Expo has her excited about her future opportunities.

“I thought the Expo was really helpful,” she said. “It highlighted all the options out there, so I’ll work locally for a while, and then maybe expand my horizons from there – we’ll just have to see.”