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In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, we just had to share an internship success story with a romantic twist that has emerged from the Canadian Immigration Integration Program (CIIP)‘s referral program with Career Edge Organization that provides internship opportunities to eligible, job-ready CIIP clients immigrating to Ontario.

Recently, we were delighted to learn that a pair of CIIP clients from China were both successful in landing Career Bridge paid internship opportunities. To add to the charm of this news, we also learned that the two successful CIIP clients just happen to be husband and wife!

While chatting with Hong Bin Liang about his experience immigrating to Canada with his wife, he explained, “Back home, I have over ten years of work experience in finance and accounting, but in Canada, it’s zero. [This internship] has been a good opportunity for me to get some Canadian experience that I can add to my resume.”

Hong Bin told us that after registering for Career Bridge himself, he encouraged his wife, Lei Chai, to register too, saying, “I talked to her and said that it’s a great program and she should register too… when my wife and I applied for other jobs on the Internet, we probably sent about 100 emails but got no response. But with Career Edge, we got a lot of interviews, and finally, we got the internships, so it’s really great.”

Both Hong Bin and Lei have been in their internships for over a month and have found it quite easy to settle into the Canadian workplace. Lei added that the support of her coach has been very helpful in facilitating her integration by familiarizing her with new accounting systems and the organizational culture.

We had the opportunity to speak with Alex Katz from Heinz Canada, where Lei is currently completing her internship. “In today’s business environment, everything is global,” said Mr. Katz. “Heinz is a global company that has a lot of standard processes and uses standard systems around the globe. What [Lei] was using in China is similar to systems used at Heinz Canada.”

Mr. Katz explained that Heinz has a standard recruitment and onboarding process, and hiring Lei through the Career Bridge program is seamlessly tied into their procedures without requiring any additional effort or resources. Pleased with how well Lei has been fitting in while contributing her international skills and experience, Mr. Katz said, “In her first month, she’s made great progress in terms of picking up the tasks that we’ve given to her; she fits very well within Heinz’s culture.”