Pursuing passions through Career Programs

February 20, 2019 - 3 minutes read

Bahar Ahmadi (left) pictured with Jessica Pui Yeu Shum, MSc Research Coordinator

Stepping into life after secondary school can be intimidating, but with Career Programs it can make the transition a little less intimidating. This course allows students to partake in a range of 90-120 hours of work experience to develop their skills and hone their interests. Two students at Sentinel Secondary School have embarked on transformative work experience journeys — Bahar Ahmadi and Sherry Yu.

Since January of 2018, Bahar Ahmadi has been working at the Vancouver General Hospital (VGH) research pavilion under University of British Columbia’s respiratory medicine department. This project has aimed to promote health literacy, specifically Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease (COPD) and asthma. During her time at VGH, Bahar has promoted health literacy by ensuring patients understand the information that has been shared with them by their health care provider. She also listens to taped conversations and later summarizes them for her Research Coordinator. By doing so, Bahar has learned valuable communication, writing, observation and research skills— all imperative to post secondary. By the end of her work experience, Bahar was able to collaborate with a published physician from Iran to create a poster which was presented at the 11th Annual Heart and Lung FEST 2019 event. Her time at her placement has not only increased her skills but has given her a portfolio—ready to launch her into post-secondary.

Saina Nemati, Elise Verdin,Dr. David Ng, Sherry Yu, and Sarah Pudritz at the UBC labs

Another student, Sherry Yu has been connected to David Ng, University of British Columbia Professor for Advanced Molecular Biology. In collaboration, the team has created the West Coast Biology Phylo cards aimed at making marine biology education engaging through captivating visuals and entertaining play. Throughout the process, Sherry has learned leadership and analytical skills which have enabled her to create a successful project, so much that it is now being sold to the Vancouver Aquarium with distinguished Ocean Wise branding.

By joining the work experience course in secondary schools students can ignite their passions and also build their personal profile for university. Layla Caspar, a teacher at Sentinel Secondary phrases it is a “test run before they leave [the schools] doors” which allows them to learn about themselves and choose a path of education in post secondary. The Careers Program is a great way for students to explore their passions and develop their skills before they embark on their post secondary journey.