Seeds of Success

2014-2015 Issue 2


Have you heard about Seeds of Change? It’s McGill’s online fundraising platform, and it’s had a big impact since its August launch: 1,743 gifts totalling $314,783 has resulted in 24 successfully funded projects for McGill athletes, musicians, and others. As part of the McGill initiative, the School has launched a fundraising project, the Career Workshops and Networking Series, in support of students who are new to Canada or transitioning in their careers. Funds raised from the crowdfunding campaign will go towards Career Advising and Transition Services’ two major initiatives: the Newcomers Workshop Series and the Speaker Series/Networking Events.

“These two activities were chosen because they’re most representative of the needs Career Advising and Transition Services is addressing,” says advisor Maia Korotkina. “Our students reflect the increasingly typical professional who changes jobs and careers many times over a lifetime. In addition, many of our students are new to Canada and in need of support and guidance to successfully transfer their past experience to local aspirations. Both initiatives have been proven to be instrumental in helping participants accomplish their goals.”

The School has set a campaign goal of $4,000. If reached, $1,500 would cover a cohort of 12-15 internationally-trained professionals for the Newcomers Workshop Series, which provides information on Quebec’s labour market, professional accreditation system, and work culture, as well as an individual appointment with an advisor. The additional $2,500 would fund a five-part Speaker Series for 200 students, which helps participants access professional networks and coaching and mentoring opportunities.

“The reality is that these services are most useful to those who can afford them the least,” says Korotkina. “And supporting these two services is a very concrete way to make a difference. The Speaker Series reaches 200 students, and for every person who attends a workshop, that’s someone’s life we help to change. Previous participants consistently attest to the quality, relevance, convenience, and value of these workshops in accomplishing their professional goals.”

Lynde Kavanagh-Ormond, the School’s Development Associate, is supporting the project’s fundraising efforts, and strongly encourages both current students and alumni to get involved.

“It’s a way to get everyone engaged, and to feel like they’re a part of something that speaks to them,” says Kavanagh-Ormond. “Those who provide a gift know where it’s going, and know they’ve made a difference in someone’s life. Every dollar counts, and it’s making an immediate impact.”

The Career Workshops and Networking Series project is now live! Visit to donate.


Zaher Agha, CRHA, Director of Talent Acquisition, Workland

“As a Human Resources professional, I’ve been very fortunate to have worked in different countries across the globe, where I’ve had many opportunities to refine my skills. I started my career in the Persian Gulf, and from there traveled to several other countries, where I attained over eight years of experience in organizational development, recruiting, training, development, and strategic planning.

I then decided to take my career a step further by coming to Montreal, where I enrolled at McGill University’s School of Continuing Studies and earned a Diploma in Human Resources Management. It is at McGill that I had the chance to meet with Maia Korotkina through the Labour Market Workshops, which helped me to achieve the success I have now. I would describe Career Advising and Transition Services as essential, and its offerings deserve to grow.

Currently, I am the Director of Talent Acquisition at Workland, where I’ve been given the opportunity to develop my career even further by sharing my experiences with those around me.”

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