Last week tables, posters and photos lined the entrance of the John Molson building, introducing students to career opportunities outside of Canada. Concordia’s chapter of the International Association of Students in Economics and Business Management organized the event, dubbed the Global Village, to help inform students about certain world issues while also highlighting some of the diversity within the university.
“I think it’s important to learn more about other countries,” said Caroline Cansarau, the organizer of the event. AIESEC provides job opportunities and volunteer positions to graduates in over 100 countries worldwide. The Global Village was an exercise in international awareness, bringing together many of Concordia’s cultural associations and nongovernmental organizations from around Montreal. The event was part of JMSB’s International Business Week.
Cansarau herself went to China for a year-long internship, during which she taught English. She said the experience of teaching the English language in another country cannot be duplicated in Montreal since, more than work, the person is also immersed in another lifestyle and culture.
“I think it’s a great experience,” she said.
AIESEC offers four different types of internships. There is the education sector where graduates can teach English in other countries. These, Cansarau said, “are the easiest to get into.” There are the developmental internships which are primarily volunteer community programs such as teaching in disadvantaged areas or volunteering in NGOs to fight for Human Rights. The other two internship experiences are specifically geared to business and engineering students. The first is business management and the other is technical.
“I’m looking for something in my field and I am open to an international experience,” said Blasco Vijayabaskaran, an engineering student who became a member of AIESEC this year. He is looking into the technical programs offered to IT and engineering students.
According to Cansarau the management and technical programs are not as accessible as teaching English. She said that businesses count on AIESEC to provide talented and motivated students and for that reason the selection process is not as lenient.
Still, there are a lot of opportunities out there. “China, Turkey, Brazil, India and the Ukraine are looking specifically for Canadian students,” Cansarau said.