This post was written by Kailha Winter who recently graduated from the Disability Studies Program.
Four years ago I started my journey in the Disability Studies Program, knowing when I graduated I wanted to work in the field. However, I wanted something stable and long term, which is not always easy to find especially when living in New Brunswick. During my schooling I connected myself with organizations, introduced myself to people so they would know my face and volunteered where I could.
I officially graduated in October 2013 and at the point made contact with several organizations and individuals letting them know that I had graduated officially and wanted to meet and talk about possible opportunities with their organization. I knew what organizations I wanted to work with but it was just a waiting game for something to open up or hoping they liked me and my skill set enough to develop a position.
The Neil Squire society approached me, I spoke with the one of the managers. It was working with a different program but I was still open and interested, the interview went well and she was very impressed with my skill set. I had not heard for a few weeks and that is when I was contacted by another component of the Neil Squire Society stating he had an idea and wanted to run it by me and thought this would be perfect for me and right up my alley. He told me that they were opening a new program called the Assistive Technology Help desk and thought I would be a perfect match. At this point I thought that was all I was going to focus on but soon realized that I would be doing so much more. He and others in the organization were very impressed by skills and education that I would get use it in other capacities, such as Assistive Technology assessment, learning strategy sessions and so much more. I finally was put into my dream job. The job I had been working eleven years towards.
I have to say that with a little hard work, making those connections and networks, getting involved part time, as well as volunteer, and getting my face and name out there so people knew me helped me get my dream job. Hard work, determination and persistence paid off. I had lived in New Brunswick for four years and even during school it was difficult to find a job but because of the connections and networks I had made, the committees I joined and boards I sat, on my name and face was out there so when I spoke to organizations when I has those meetings they knew who I was. So my advice is get out and volunteer, join boards and committees, even if there are no openings, getting to know people face to face means a lot in this world, and it shows you are interested in their organization.
Good luck everyone!