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Sydney Helland

Career Edge paid internship program aims to launch careers of Canadian Reservists


Career Edge has launched a paid internship program for Canadian Armed Forces Reservists with support from Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) in partnership with the Department of National Defense (DND).

Career Edge will receive close to $3M from ESDC to launch an important pilot project for the Canadian Armed Forces (CAF) Reserves in three major geographic cities/regions yet to be determined. The project is intended to help Reservists get the skills and experience needed to overcome barriers to meaningful and sustainable employment within their communities, while continuing to serve their reserve unit.

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Teams that play together, stay together

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The Toronto 2015 Pan Am games are in full swing and have captured the fervor of sports fans across the country, as they root for their favourite teams and athletes. In the corporate world, company leaders try to inspire the same level of fandom and engagement in the office, rather than the stadium.

Studies have shown that greater employee engagement has a significant, positive influence on work quality and revenue, and company-sponsored sports teams are a great way to make that happen for the following five reasons:

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Shifting how we think about internships

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Internships have changed the way businesses attract and recruit talent, fundamentally replacing the entry-level jobs of yesteryear. This changing landscape inspired our most recent workshop, InternSHIFT, an informative and interactive discussion held earlier this month at the 2015 CACEE National Conference in Ottawa. Through this Town Hall Meeting style session, Naguib Gouda, President of Career Edge, led conference delegates through the changing internship landscape, while exploring how paid internships contribute to our economy and social infrastructure.

For those who were unable to attend the conference, we have assembled the key highlights from InternSHIFT below, starting with a quick pop quiz.

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Get the Most Out of Your Summer Interns

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As the temperature outside rises, employers are warming up to the summer internship season; but four months doesn’t always leave much time to make a real dent in many of those seasonal projects.

There are plenty of articles that provide interns with tips to succeed during their internship, but there are also a few things that employers can do to create an environment that inspires optimal performance from their enthusiastic, highly motivated intern during their internship term.

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Federal Government Promises Greater Protection for Interns

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Yesterday, the Government of Canada presented the 2015 Federal Budget, which – among many of our country’s chief priorities – includes a promise of strengthening the Canada Labour Code by extending protection of, “all employees and interns under federal jurisdiction.”

This news represents a big win for those who have joined forces with Career Edge to advocate for fairness and equity for interns in Canada, particularly the Canadian Intern Association, which has advocated tirelessly for interns’ rights since it was founded in May 2012. This inclusion of intern protections in the budget is also being celebrated by all those who have supported the Intern Protection Act (Bill C-636), which is scheduled for voting tonight.

This time last year, Career Edge and the Canadian Intern Association were among many subject matter experts asked to present briefs to the House of Commons’ Standing Committee on Finance (FINA) as part of their Youth Employment Study, and subsequent report. The purpose of these briefs that were presented in a series of Committee hearings was to advise FINA on solutions that would promote higher levels of youth employment.

As a staunch advocate for greater employment and paid internship opportunities for new graduates – including those with disabilities – as well as newcomers to Canada, we are truly thrilled to see that our recommendations were reflected in the budget.

Working with government at all levels and other key stakeholders, we have taken a significant and positive step forward to cultivate socio-economic sustainability for all Canadians by ensuring our youth and new immigrants find meaningful work experience, so they can become taxpayers – not tax burdens.

Your Update on Bill C-636 and Bill 64

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Last month, NDP members of both federal and provincial parliaments introduced bills that – if passed – will extend workplace standards and safety provisions to interns under the Canada Labour Code (CLC) and Ontario’s Employment Standards Act, 2000 (ESA). The introduction of these bills is a big step forward in terms of ensuring fairness and equity for interns, while making the conditions related to unpaid internships more comprehensive for employers.

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Why Paid Internships Matter: Cultivating Tomorrow’s Leaders Today

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The recent global recession threw the economy a curveball, which forced companies to significantly reduce their personnel. Now, with the Baby Boomers beginning to exit the workforce en masse, a labour crisis is fast approaching and Canadian businesses must compete with emerging global markets to attract, recruit, and retain the talent needed for socio-economic sustainability well into the future.

In the TED Talk, “The workforce crisis of 2030 — and how to start solving it now,” Rainer Strack, of the Boston Consulting Group (BCG), highlights this projected labour shortage in Canada, and in the world’s 15 largest economies, over the next 15 years.

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Join us at the Cannexus15 National Career Development Conference

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Career Edge is proud to be a Supporting Organization at the Cannexus15 National Career Development Conference, to be held at the Ottawa Convention Centre, from January 26 – 28, 2015.

As a Supporting Organization, our President, Naguib Gouda, will host a networking breakfast session where attendees will discuss paid versus unpaid internships.

At this Cannexus Connections session discussion questions will include:

  •       When are unpaid internships acceptable?
  •       What’s the difference between unpaid internships and volunteer work?
  •       Why do paid internships matter?

Cannexus15 Conference delegates will also be informed and inspired by three exceptional keynote speakers:

  • Jaime Watt, Executive Chairman, Navigator Ltd & Public Affairs Commentator
  •       Dr Nancy Arthur, Professor & Associate Dean Research, Werklund School of Education, University of Calgary
  •       The Right Honourable Adrienne Clarkson, 26th Governor General of Canada

In addition to the above, the Canadian Education and Research Institute for Counselling (CERIC) will culminate their 10th anniversary celebrations at Cannexus15 with Spark!, a series of TEDx-style talks on diverse topics that will provide the “spark” for you to think differently about your work.

Ready to register? Click here to register as a Regular Member of Supporting Organization and select Career Edge from the list of Supporting Organizations for a 5% discount on registration. If you would like to learn more about the event visit

We look forward to seeing you there!

Career Buzz: “Get an edge on your career with Career Edge.”

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Career Edge was featured on Career Buzz, a radio show broadcast on CIUT 89.5 FM, on December 10. The show was hosted by Mark Franklin, President and Practice Leader at CareerCycles, a Toronto-based career management social enterprise. During the show, Mark interviewed Naguib Gouda, President of Career Edge and a staunch advocate for paid internships. Naguib was joined by Sydney Helland, Marketing & Communications Coordinator at Career Edge, who launched her career through a Career Edge paid internship. During the show, both Naguib and Sydney shared their career stories and chatted about the socio-economic impact of paid internships and the benefits of Career Edge’s internship model.

If you are an employer looking to learn more about paid internships, or a job seeker aspiring to launch your career, play or download the radio episode by clicking here to hear how Career Edge’s paid internship programs can help.

Career Buzz radio show of Dec. 10, first broadcast on CIUT 89.5 FM in Toronto. Produced and hosted by Mark Franklin, president and practice leader of CareerCycles (

About Career Buzz: Career Buzz aims to inspire, educate and entertain listeners in the area of career satisfaction, how careers really happen, and what listeners might do to find more career happiness. If you believe that career happiness and having stories like yours heard is valuable, please consider supporting CIUT and Career Buzz during the twice annual membership campaign, which you can find out about by signing up for the Watch for Clues Newsletter on