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Exploring career options

  • Will Cunningham, ED'16, of Trinity College School, hugs Elspeth Morgan, Career and Recruitment Advisor for the Faculty of Education, at the Options Career Fair.
    Will Cunningham, ED'16, of Trinity College School, hugs Elspeth Morgan, Career and Recruitment Advisor for the Faculty of Education, at the Options Career Fair.
  • Teacher candidates were able to meet recruiters from 52 organizations at the Options Career Fair hosted by the Faculty of Education on Tuesday, Jan. 10.
    Teacher candidates were able to meet recruiters from 52 organizations at the Options Career Fair hosted by the Faculty of Education on Tuesday, Jan. 10.
  • A teacher candidate speaks with a recruiter from one of the 52 organizations that took part in the Options Career Fair on Tuesday, Jan. 10.
    A teacher candidate speaks with a recruiter from one of the 52 organizations that took part in the Options Career Fair on Tuesday, Jan. 10.

Teacher candidates were able to make some valuable connections for the future at the Options Career Fair, held Tuesday at Duncan McArthur Hall.

The annual event brings together potential employers such as school boards, schools and camps as well as several international organizations.

Teacher candidates were able to gather information, meet one on one with a variety of organizations and get some career support from Queen’s partners.

This year’s event drew 52 organizations, up from an average of 40, a potentially positive sign for the job market.

“As a career advisor and as an employment advisor, it really heartens me that there is this many organizations coming and wanting to recruit and hire our graduates, which means something because it has been such a tight job market,” says Elspeth Morgan, Career and Recruitment Advisor for the Faculty of Education. “But now I say to them, ‘Look, we have all these people here, they aren’t here because they don’t want to hire graduates.’”

One such graduate is Will Cunningham, a faculty intern at Trinity College School in Port Hope, who returned to the Queen’s with the goal of helping teacher candidates make the connection that he did at last year’s event.

“At this time last year I had no idea what I was going to do. It was because of this Options Career Fair that I made contact with TCS,” he says. Afterwards he applied and was able to land his first teaching job. “The other reason I came back is that the Education Career Services department at Queen’s is so fantastic.”

Among the organizations in attendance was the Toronto District School Board (TDSB), Canada’s biggest school board. Sam Iskandar, principal of Silverthorn Secondary School and Reika Fuentes, Ed’94, vice-principal of Bloor Collegiate, were busy answering a number of questions from teacher candidates about what the TDSB is looking for.

“A number of people have asked ‘What are you looking for?’ and honestly we are looking for people who connect with kids, people who love what they do,” Mr. Iskandar says. “They ask us should I take anything in particular and we tell them take any subject that they enjoy teaching. You don’t want to be teaching something you don’t enjoy. When you do something you enjoy the kids love it, you’re very effective and the kids benefit huge.”

The Faculty of Education is hosting the annual Teaching Overseas Recruiting Fair (TORF) Jan. 27-29. More information is available online.