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Permanent link (DOI): https://doi.org/10.7939/R32H2D

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Skilled Worker Immigrants’ Pre-Migration Occupation Re-Entry Experiences in Canada Open Access

Descriptions

Other title
Subject/Keyword
Internships
Health
Pre-Migration Career Confidence Effect
Loss
Foreign credentials
Anomie
Temporary career challenges
Workplace communication
Communication skills training
Career
Citizenship and Immigration Canada
Immigrants
Personal compromises
Re-credentialing
Immigrant professionals
Immigration
Career compromises
Compromises
Acculturation
Ethno-cultural community avoidance
Reframing
Language
Immigration policy
Self-advocacy
Occupational success
Career success
Family compromises
Jobs
Career change
Diversity training
Career transitions
Canada
Counsellor competency
Self-presentation
Equality
Resilience
Type of item
Thesis
Degree grantor
University of Alberta
Author or creator
Avni, Anoosha E.
Supervisor and department
Merali, Noorfarah (Educational Psychology)
Examining committee member and department
Everall, Robin (Educational Psychology)
Shankar, Janki (Social Work)
Yohani, Sophie (Educational Psychology)
Leroy, Carol (Elementary Education)
Buck, George (Educational Psychology)
Department
Department of Educational Psychology
Specialization
Counselling Psychology
Date accepted
2012-09-28T09:27:38Z
Graduation date
2012-09
Degree
Doctor of Philosophy
Degree level
Doctoral
Abstract
Skilled worker immigrants, who are professionals that migrate to Canada for employment purposes, account for a significant proportion of newcomers to Canada each year. Upon arriving in Canada, they quickly learn that the education and experiences obtained in their countries of origin are of little to no value. Research on skilled worker immigrants has focused on their reactions to unemployment or underemployment, employer discrimination, emotional distress, physical illness or injury, and taking survival jobs for financial reasons. To date, no studies have been conducted examining the experiences of skilled worker immigrants who have successfully re-entered their pre-migration occupations in Canada. The purpose of this qualitative interpretive inquiry study was to explore the career transition experiences of an ethnically mixed sample of skilled worker immigrants who have successfully re-entered their pre-migration occupations in Canada over the course of their settlement process, to better understand the factors that contributed to their resiliency. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with ten skilled worker immigrants (5 males, 5 females) from a wide range of professions who overcame career challenges in the Canadian labour market and secured jobs in their fields of training from their countries of origin. Since interpretive inquiry is an emergent research design where the researcher selects data representation methods that best capture participants’ experiences, narrative analysis and analysis of narratives were utilized. Chronological narratives of participants’ long-term career trajectories revealed they experienced multiple challenges and barriers, including identity regression, career boredom, cognitive dissonance related to receiving low financial compensation for their skills during periods of underemployment, uncertainty about how to present themselves to Canadian employers, and difficulties adapting to Canadian workplace communication norms. Participants refused mediocrity, perceived underemployment as temporary, utilized time management skills to facilitate re-credentialing, and engaged in professional networking. They utilized creative methods to re-enter their pre-migration careers, including adaptive flexibility, ethno-cultural community avoidance, making career and family compromises, and learning self-promotion/self-advocacy. Implications for counsellors wanting to learn about how to assist skilled workers with career decision-making, as well as policy makers wanting to create systemic changes to better assist skilled worker immigrants, are discussed.
Language
English
DOI
doi:10.7939/R32H2D
Rights
Permission is hereby granted to the University of Alberta Libraries to reproduce single copies of this thesis and to lend or sell such copies for private, scholarly or scientific research purposes only. Where the thesis is converted to, or otherwise made available in digital form, the University of Alberta will advise potential users of the thesis of these terms. The author reserves all other publication and other rights in association with the copyright in the thesis and, except as herein before provided, neither the thesis nor any substantial portion thereof may be printed or otherwise reproduced in any material form whatsoever without the author's prior written permission.
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