On December 14th, NPower Canada hosted our National Graduation Ceremony, to celebrate the accomplishments of hundreds of graduates from our Junior IT Analyst and Junior Data Analyst programs. As noted by our CEO, Julia Blackburn, we were excited to celebrate our newest graduates, who “made a brave decision to pursue a career in tech and challenged [them]selves to develop professionally,” pushing them a step closer to achieving their career goals.
To commemorate each of the six provinces we serve, graduate speakers were selected from Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec. Here are short excerpts from the inspiring speeches they shared:
“For me, this was the first time that I’d attended a program with such a diverse assemblage of people. It was a great experience to be a part of. We’ve all had our trials and tribulations. Taking care of children, holding down some form of employment, or managing time, but Npower Canada’s inclusiveness is so encouraging and welcome.” – Phillip T., Alberta Graduate Speaker
“Immigrating to Canada and juggling the responsibilities of being a mother with two children came with its challenges. I began to be interested in tech, as it offers diverse careers and various remote opportunities, but I did not have the background in this area and needed to upskill. Now [after completing the program], I feel equipped and ready to take on new challenges in the world of Information Technology. ” – Hlupekire B., Nova Scotia Graduate Speaker
“I was able to immerse myself in new, fascinating knowledge, and I discovered a new passion, that of navigating a world of endless innovation in complete safety, where problem-solving has become an adventure in which every customer need is an opportunity for growth. All this has been possible thanks to the combined efforts, perseverance and benevolence of the entire dynamic team at Npower Canada, who kept telling us and convincing us that we could do it. ” – Zaghé J., Quebec Graduate Speaker
“Once I entered into the [Junior Data Analyst] program, I discovered a profound sense of involvement and interest. The hands-on activities became more than just tasks; they evolved into opportunities to apply theoretical knowledge in a practical setting. Finally, I want to acknowledge my support systems… the instructors, career specialists, mentors, friends, and family who have been there every step of the way. I cherish those relationships, for they are the pillars of strength that will continue to support me in the chapters ahead.” – Ayisha, British Columbia Graduate Speaker
“As a newcomer, prior to joining the NPower Canada program, I faced many challenges…like failure to obtain suitable housing, financial difficulties and unemployment. Looking back from when I joined the program to having completed it, the experiences that I have obtained through this program have shaped me into a resilient, resourceful individual ready to tackle the complexities of the data-driven world. Something I didn’t envision before joining the program. My Career is going to skyrocket with the skills that I have obtained from this program, and the career support that I will obtain from my Alumni Placement Specialist.” – Immaculate K., Ontario Graduate Speaker
“Before embarking on this transformative journey with NPower Canada, I found myself at a crossroads – struggling with lost confidence, and grappling with the challenges of unemployment after being laid off from my previous job. Throughout the program, I experienced unwavering support from the NPower Canada team. The comprehensive assistance, including mental health resources, the opportunity to engage with industry giants like Google and Okta, and the guidance from dedicated mentors, made the journey truly wonderful.” – Ansel W., Manitoba Graduate Speaker
At the graduation ceremony, NPower Canada also highlighted some of our partners, who play a crucial role in helping us achieve our mission and launch deserving job-seekers into rewarding careers. Ultan Geraghty, Head of Aladdin Client Business in Canada, from BlackRock, shared a few words to encourage our graduates in this next phase of their journey. Geraghty shared, “You are all the future talent, the workforce that will drive not just our business but the broader economy and that’s just a great thing to see.”
We were also pleased to award Compugen with our Employer Achievement Award. Compugen has been a key partner of NPower Canada’s growth, since 2017. From mentoring events, workshops and employment opportunities, Compugen has continued their commitment to supporting NPower Canada participants and alumni. As of December 2023, Compugen has hired over 88 alumni from across Canada and continues to support our program offerings by sitting on our Industry Council. Susan Oliver, Director, Talent and Culture at Compugen Inc. proudly accepted the award. Oliver shared a few words of encouragement to our graduates,
“As you embark on the next phase of your journeys, remember the importance of being kind, especially in the workforce. Surround yourself with people who challenge you; you won’t learn and grow if you don’t have that. Be curious; it leads you to a meaningful career and life. Congratulations graduates and thank you NPower Canada.”
Google.org’s Ana Tomas, Small Medium Business & Grow with Google Marketing Lead, was present to award a graduate with the Emerging Leader Award. Google has hired over 140 NPower Canada graduates, and Ana shared, “Google learned that everyone deserves to learn these skills in the emerging field of tech. Congratulations to each and every one of you graduating today. You have made a massive stride in your career journey by completing this program.” Ana presented Leticia P. with the award for exhibiting true leadership throughout the program and inspiring their community. Congratulations Leticia!
Once again, we would like to thank our staff, board members, industry council members, partners, families and friends, who joined us at this special event to celebrate our newest NPower Canada alumni. We can’t wait to cheer them on throughout this next stage of their journey.