Career Conversations Panels

Water droplets making contact with a pool of waterCareer Conversations, sponsored by York Alumni Relations, is a series of panel and webinar discussions that focus on various fields of interest and are designed to provide students with an opportunity to connect with employers and alumni; gain insight into areas of interest to them; and get advice from professionals currently working in the field. During these sessions, employer and alumni participants will answer questions from a Career Centre moderator, students and new graduates about:

  • their personal career paths
  • how their university education is relevant to their particular position
  • the realities of the sectors they work in
  • strategies for entering the sector
  • opportunities within their fields
  • resources for connecting with professionals in that field
Register for these panels on the Career Centre’s online system using Passport York (you must sign up for an account on the system before you will be able to register for any events).

Upcoming Career Conversations Panels 2014-15

Jan
29
Thu
2015
Career Conversations: Discovering Green Careers
Jan 29 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

In partnership with the Faculty of Environmental Studies. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Are you concerned about the environment and interested in a “green” career? Want to meet York Alumni and other professionals working in jobs where environmental stewardship, sustainability and justice are important?

Connect with professionals currently enjoying environmental careers and get the inside scoop on what it’s really like to work in this field. During this panel professionals will share their personal stories about breaking into the field, how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experience helped them succeed in their jobs and what types of opportunities are available in the field. The panel will be moderated by one of the Career Centre’s team members and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Participating Panelists

Jonathan Abrams
Manager, Waste Diversion Initiatives
Progressive Waste Solutions
Alumnus: BES Environmental Studies, 1999

Jonathan Abrams is the Manager of Waste Diversion Initiatives for Progressive Waste Solutions (formerly BFI Canada Inc.) based at its corporate office in Vaughan, Ontario. Mr. Abrams joined Progressive Waste Solutions in 2005 as the Operations Manager for the company’s Hamilton, Ontario district which serves a population base in excess of 500,000 people. Mr. Abrams was responsible for the day-to-day operations of the district including route management, customer service, fleet maintenance, environmental health and safety, labour relations negotiations as well as recycling and transfer station operations. Mr. Abrams has been employed in the waste industry since 1999 and holds degrees in Political Science and Environmental Studies both obtained at York University.


Vlada Liashko
Project Technologist
Pinchin Ltd.
Alumnus: BES Environmental Resource Management, 2010

I am originally from Belarus and came to Canada when I was 13. I never knew I would be looking for mould, water damage or indoor air quality issues in buildings and making recommendations on how to address them as a career. I am very fortunate to have this job because I enjoy it! It is always different and exciting.


David MacMillan
Community Energy Planning Consultant
City of Toronto, Energy Efficiency Office
Alumnus: MES Environmental Studies (Planning), 2013

My primary role is to prepare community energy plans for selected areas within the city in order to identify opportunities to improve energy performance, contribute to local economic development and strengthen resilience. I work with various City Divisions, local utilities, developers and external consultants to implement these plans through the preparation of business cases and policy frameworks.


Andrew Plunkett
Sustainability Coordinator
York University
Alumnus: MES Environmental Studies, 1999

I was interested in sustainability from a young age – basically since the term came into use – and having studied it in high school, undergraduate and graduate school, I’ve had the good fortune to work in sustainability for the past 15 years. I’ve worked in several countries across four continents, and while the places change, at least one thing remains the same: to affect change, you need to engage people in the work that you do.


Jamieson Saab
Manager – environmental programs
The Home Depot Canada
Alumnus: MES Environmental Studies, 2011

I sort of fell into sustainability after I finished my BComm and I’ve never looked back. I get to help companies find ways to minimize their impact on the environment. The work I do is important, and gives me a lot of variety to work with a lot of different parts of the business. I speak 4 languages and have lived in places like China and Mexico.


Sophia Sestito
Environmental Manager
EllisDon
Alumna: BES Environmental Politics, 2007

I’ve always found myself to be business savvy and after completing my degree in Environmental Politics in the Faculty of Environmental Studies, I knew that in the workforce I would combine my love for the environment with environmentally friendly business practices.

Many people see construction as ruining the environment but in my position, I have the opportunity to work with industry and apply environmental stewardship throughout construction and into maintenance periods for many of the contracts we hold.

It’s an exciting time to be working in the environmental field. In the short seven years I have had the pleasure of working in the field that I am passionate about, I have seen dramatic changes for the better and I look forward to the rest of my years implementing sound environmental procedures, as well as influencing policies and best management practices in government, focus groups and in the construction world.

As cliche as this may sound, I am living proof that each one of us has the power to make a difference and can lead by example. What do you want your legacy to be?

Feb
5
Thu
2015
Career Conversations: Careers in Science: Alternatives to Professional Schools
Feb 5 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm

In partnership with the Faculty of Science. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Interested in a career in science but not sure if professional school is for you? Want to meet York Alumni and other professionals working a variety of fields?

Connect with professionals currently enjoying careers in science and get the inside scoop on what it’s really like to work in a variety of fields. During this panel, professionals will share their personal stories about breaking into the field, how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experience helped them succeed in their jobs and what types of opportunities are available in the field. The panel will be moderated by one of the Career Centre’s team members and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Participating Panelists

Anthony Amin
Director, Analytical Research and Development
Sanofi Pasteur
Alumnus: PhD Biology, 1986

I am currently working for Sanofi Pasteur, a vaccine research and development company that is part of the Sanofi Group. It is a rewarding career for me to be working in the vaccine industry, because I know we make products that saves hundreds of millions of lives each year around the globe. Very impactful.


Tushar Shah
Project Manager, II
Patheon Inc.
Alumnus: BSc Biology / Chemistry, 1997

If you had asked me 15 years ago what my future plans were, I would have said work in a lab and, hopefully, start some kind of business. If you had asked me if I was going to be a Project Manager, I would have said what is that? I did not know that such a profession existed. This profession can be applied to personal and professional life and in any field one pursues. Being in this position, I realize how much of an impact a project management process has on the growth of a business/institution and personal lives.


Michael Strong
Applications Scientist/Materials
MG Chemicals

Degrees: Bachelor of Science & Masters of Science, Laurentian University
Graduated: 2005 (Bachelors), 2008 (Masters)
Current Career: Applications Materials Scientist

My education has allowed me to diversify in the job market. I have worked as a professor assistant in the Middle east, coating applications director in the Maritimes and currently work with leading edge technology companies to provide custom solutions for emerging products. It’s cool being on the ground floor working with companies like Tesla, GoPro and Apple on novel technologies.


Nama Vythilingum
Pharmaceutical Sales Associate
GlaxoSmithKline
Alumnus: BSc and MSc Biology, 2003 and 2008

When I started at York in 1999, I thought that I was on the path of becoming a doctor. Little did I know that 15 years later my education and career path would have been so multidisciplinary to include biology, research, teaching, pharmaceuticals, sales, personal coaching and immigration. If there’s one thing that experience has taught me it is not to put any blinders on and to stay open to opportunities.


Amro Zayed
Associate Professor
York University
Alumnus: BSc Biology, 2001 & PhD Environmental Science, 2006

Dr. Zayed was awarded the Governor General’s prestigious Gold Medal in 2007 for his doctoral research on bee conservation genetics. He held a Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada’s Postdoctoral Fellowship at the University of Illinois’ Department of Entomology (2006-2008) in Dr. Charles Whitfield’s Laboratory. Dr. Zayed then served as a Fellow for the Institute for Genomic Biology’s Genomics of Neural & Behavioral Plasticity Theme (Theme Leader: Dr. Gene Robinson) at the University of Illinois (2008-2009). Dr. Zayed rejoined York University’s Department of Biology as an Assistant Professor in 2009, where he leads a research program on honey bee behavioral genetics and genomics. Dr. Zayed received the Government of Ontario’s Research and Innovation Early Researcher Award in 2010.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Feb
12
Thu
2015
Career Conversations: Discovering Careers in Computer Science
Feb 12 @ 4:00 pm – 6:00 pm

In partnership with the Lassonde School of Engineering. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Interested in a career in Computer Science? Want to meet York Alumni and other professionals working in the field?

Connect with professionals currently enjoying careers in Computer Science and get the inside scoop on what it’s really like to work in this field. During this panel, professionals will share their personal stories about breaking into the field, how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experience helped them succeed in their jobs and what types of opportunities are available in the field. The panel will be moderated by one of the Career Centre’s team members and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Mar
11
Wed
2015
Career Conversations: Careers in Public Policy and Politics
Mar 11 @ 1:30 pm – 3:30 pm

In partnership with the Centre for Student Success, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Interested in a career in Public Policy or Politics? Want to meet York Alumni and other professionals working in the field?

Connect with professionals currently enjoying careers in policy or politics and get the inside scoop on what it’s really like to work in this field. During this panel, professionals will share their personal stories about breaking into the field, how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experience helped them succeed in their jobs and what types of opportunities are available in the field. The panel will be moderated by one of the Career Centre’s team members and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Mar
18
Wed
2015
Career Conversations: Entrepreneurship, Self Employment and Start-ups
Mar 18 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm

In partnership with the Centre for Student Success, Faculty of Liberal Arts and Professional Studies. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Always wanted to start your own business or work for yourself? Curious about what a career at a start-up might look like? Want to meet York Alumni and other professionals working as entrepreneurs or in brand new companies?

Connect with professionals currently enjoying careers in entrepreneurship & start-ups and get the inside scoop on what this kind of work is really like. During this panel professionals will share their personal stories about starting out in their careers, how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experience helped them succeed in their work and what types of opportunities are available to those following similar paths. The panel will be moderated by one of the Career Centre’s team members and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Participating Panelists

Andrew Stulberg
Wealth Manager, Stulberg Wealth Management – Investors Group
Alumnus: BA Sociology, 2006

Upon graduating from York University in 2006, I jumped head first into a career in financial services. Fast forward to almost a decade later, I now head a team of financial professionals that provide holistic wealth planning to Toronto’s high net worth communities. Me and my team are highly sought after for our customized tax reduction strategies and advanced wealth management techniques, for high net worth retirees, those preparing to retire, and fellow business owners.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).

Mar
26
Thu
2015
Career Conversations with Portuguese Language Speakers
Mar 26 @ 2:30 pm – 4:30 pm

In partnership with Portuguese Studies, Department of Languages, Literatures & Linguistics. Sponsored by York University Alumni Relations.

Wondering where the knowledge of a second or third language can take you? Want to meet bilingual and multilingual professionals currently enjoying exciting careers?

During this panel, Portuguese-speaking professionals will share their personal stories. They will discuss (in English) how their career paths took them from graduation to where they are now, what knowledge, skills and experiences helped them succeed and what types of opportunities were available to them. The discussion will be moderated and followed by an open forum where students will have an opportunity to ask the panelists their own questions.

Registration is required. You may register for this event on the Career Centre’s online system (you must sign up for an account before you will be able to register for any events on the system).