When 28-year old Younes came to Canada from Morocco, he knew finding work straight away would be challenging. “As an immigrant, it’s not always easy to find a qualified job because of the Canadian experience requirement,” says Younes.
“To get a job you need experience and to get experience you need a job!” Younes had always dreamed of living abroad, and as an architect, was drawn to Toronto as a city where he could employ his design skills. “It’s one of the most dynamic cities in North America,” he explains. “Actually, it’s the city which counts the highest number of cranes. Because of the economics and the major firms here I was really motivated to come here to be an architect.”
Creativity has always been important to Younes, who as a child loved playing with Lego, disassembling his toys and trying to understand how things work. In high school, a visit from an architect who told the students about his job was the moment Younes realized his professional calling. “It’s not an easy job but it’s really rewarding and fulfilling to be able to do so every day.” Upon arriving in Toronto, Younes decided to complete a bridging program at Ryerson University, but finding money for tuition was a challenge.
He visited the YMCA Centre for Newcomers where he learned about ACCESS’s foreign credential recognition loans. “ACCESS was really a big relief to me because financially as a new immigrant, especially with the high rents here in Toronto, it would have been really compromising to start without financial support.
Thanks to ACCESS and the FCR loan I was able to support myself financially and be able to focus on my studies.” After only a few months in Canada, Younes completed his course and was hired by a major firm working on a large hospital project west of Toronto. He’s since received additional standards certifications and is working towards being fully licensed with the Ontario Association of Architects.
“I’m really happy that people trusted me and believed in me,” says Younes. “I couldn’t be happier.”
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