FedNor Youth Internship jump starts a career

Meet the Minister
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FedNor Youth Intern Michael Saad joins Tony Clement, Minister for FedNor, Nipissing-Temiskaming MP Jay Aspin and Nipissing University President, Vicki Paine-Mantha, for a tour of the campus in North Bay last summer. Michael has since completed his internship at the University and is now employed full-time with the school’s Student Development Office.

It’s been a smooth and swift transition this fall for Michael Saad as he settles into his new job at Nipissing University in North Bay. As Administrator with the Student Development Office, Michael comes well-prepared for the position, having successfully honed his skills at the University during his placement over the past year under FedNor’s Youth Internship initiative. A graduate with degrees in Communications Studies and Advertising, Michael was thrilled at the opportunity to get valuable work experience at a high-profile institution such as Nipissing University.

“As the Economic Development Intern with the University, a large portion of my responsibilities revolved around event coordination for students, faculty, staff as well as university and community stakeholders,” says Michael. “Through this internship, I was exposed to a broad range of the Nipissing University community both on and off campus.” Michael adds, “It was an excellent position to integrate myself into what I view as a very highly regarded organization in the region.”

Michael Saad obviously integrated very well into the organization as he was hired full-time at Nipissing University upon the completion of his internship. Just in time for what has been a very busy fall semester at the school. “My office is the front line for students who require personal and career counselling as well as academic assistance,” he says. “And, from the projects I worked on during my internship, I’m now helping to plan our annual Homecoming plus act as project lead for Nipissing University's 20th Anniversary Birthday Party.”

One of two Economic Development Interns hired by Nipissing during the past year, Michael Saad’s experience mirrors the goal and the success of FedNor’s Youth Internship Program to ensure we keep our best and our brightest right here at home, in Northern Ontario. Since its inception in 1997, the program has been providing post-secondary graduates with the opportunity to acquire the necessary experience and transferable skills to secure permanent employment in Northern Ontario. Since that time, FedNor has provided more than $36.5 million in funding to help over 1,365 young Northerners in both the public and private sector make the successful transition from the campus to the workplace.

During a recent trip to North Bay, FedNor Minister Tony Clement and Nipissing-Temiskaming MP Jay Aspin met Michael while touring both Nipissing University and Canadore College. The 25 year old native of North Bay was pleased to share a common bond with the Minister. “It was very clear that Minister Clement was supportive of youth initiatives leading to job creation,” says Michael. “I told him support from organizations like FedNor was making it possible for me and for other new grads to gain professional experience and demonstrate our abilities to large institutions such as Nipissing University.”

As Northern Ontario evolves into a more diverse and knowledge-based region, there are more and more possibilities for Northern youth to contribute to its changing economic landscape. And weeks into his new career at Nipissing University, North Bay’s Michael Saad looks to be taking full advantage of his opportunity.

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