#110 - 198 East Island Hwy, Parksville, BC V9P 2H3      Tel. 250.248.3205   Fax. 250.248.4154

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Tip of the month



If you are looking for work, plan to attend the WorkBC Hiring Fair hosted by the Career Centre on Thursday March 16th from 12pm-4pm at Ecole Ballenas Secondary School in Parksville. With upwards of 50 employers on-site, this is a unique opportunity and a terrific way for job seekers to connect face-to-face with businesses who are looking to hire!

Here are some tips and suggestions on how to start planning for the job fair and your job search in general – we want you to be successful!

Step 1: Attend a “How to Prepare for a Hiring Fair” workshop

Learn networking strategies to ensure your success when you meet face-to-face with employers. Understand what you need to prepare before, during and after the Hiring Fair. Watch for these workshops coming up in early March.

Step 2: Dress for Success

This is no different than attending a job interview at an employer’s place of business, so you need to dress neatly and appropriately. If you need interview attire, set up an appointment to see an employment consultant here at the Career Centre – we can help.

Step 3: Research Registered Employers

You can get a step ahead of the competition by checking the list of businesses participating in the fair and researching your favourites! You can learn a lot about a company by looking online, including a glimpse of their work culture and values. After completing your research, prepare a list of questions to ask employers when you are at the Hiring Fair.

Step 4: Bring Several Copies of Your Resume

Take a folder with you containing a list of the employers you want to meet, as well as several copies of your resume, cover letters (addressed to specific employers) and letters of reference (if you have them). Be prepared to hand out additional resumes to employers not on your list. If you need assistance with creating/updating your resume, be sure to attend our Resumes and Cover Letters workshop prior to the Hiring Fair (workshops run February 6 and 22).

Step 5: Be Prepared for an Impromptu Interview

You may have two to five minutes to market yourself to a potential employer and gather information, so make the most of your time. Prior to attending, develop a one-minute “presentation statement” to highlight your qualifications. For more information on marketing yourself, consider attending our Branding “YOU”  workshop (February 7 and 21) and/or Acing the Interview (February 7 and 27).

Step 6: Network! Network! Network!

Practice the perfect greeting including eye contact, as this will make a good first impression. A Hiring Fair is a great opportunity to connect with employers and other job seekers that can support moving your career forward. Push yourself to connect with as many people as you can at the Hiring Fair.

Step 7: Collect Contact Information

Write down the name of the person and company you are interested in and their contact information, or make sure to ask for a business card from them. This will support you with Step 8.

Step 8: Send a Thank-you Note

Stay ahead of your competition by sending a thank-you note or email to your employers of choice the next day. If you do this via email, make sure it is in proper business language; no jargon, abbreviations or spelling mistakes.

The Career Centre’s Hiring Fair is a free event for job seekers to connect with local employers. For information on upcoming workshops or to register, call 250.248.3205.

We look forward to seeing you on March 16th at Ecole Ballenas Secondary School from 12-4pm!


What is One Small Thing You Can Do Today for Self-Care?

It’s a new year and why not start off by taking good care of you! It’s a great first step in working towards that new job or career you’ve been considering!

Ever wonder what happens when you don’t take care of yourself?

Consequences of Not Practicing Self-Care:

Jacqueline Getchius, a licensed professional clinical counsellor, lists the consequences of not practicing self-care on Psych Central which include:

• Low energy
• Feelings of hopelessness
• Less patience
• Increased headaches, stomach aches and other physical symptoms of stress
• Difficulty falling and staying asleep
• Binge eating or increase in unhealthy eating habits
• Worsening mental health symptoms
• Burnout
• Difficulties concentrating
• Relationship challenges or strains
• Reduction in performance at work
• Less motivation to engage in social activities

 https://eugenetherapy.com/article/50-self-care-ideas-for-a-bad-day/

 See a Doctor Online: https://www.telus.com/en/personal-health/my-care/doctors

 Video – 5 Self Care Tips When You Feel Broken: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=P7pkZmJSXLY

 https://cmha-yr.on.ca/get-support/

 https://bouncebackbc.ca/

Crisis Lines · Vancouver Island Crisis Line 1-888-494-3888 · 1800SUICIDE 1-800-784-2433 · Mental Health Support 310-6789 (no need for “1” in front of this number) Talk Suicide Canada 1-833-456-4566.

In this new year, let’s all make a point of taking good care of ourselves. The results will benefit not only ourselves, but everyone around us – employers and job seekers alike!



It’s easy to get bogged down this time of year. The holidays are upon us, it’s almost a new year, it feels like money is going out in a steady river and you might be looking for a new job. Whether you’re unemployed, underemployed, or looking for a change, it’s important to make a conscious choice to remain positive and thankful for all that you currently have. Here are some of my favourite articles and pointers on how to keep an attitude of gratitude this holiday season.

6 simple tips for staying thankful during a tough job search:


If you’re struggling to keep motivated and positive during your job search, a journal may help enormously:

How to Keep a Gratitude Journal During Your Job Search

Do you need to be shown why it pays to be optimistic? This article is for you!

3 Ways Having Gratitude Improves Your Job Search Results

In this Ted Talk, Brother David Steindl-Rast tells us how to use gratitude in your job search:


There are many benefits to practicing gratitude which may lead to a more positive job search outcome. A quick google search reveals an almost limitless supply of articles from many points of view. Science tells us that people who regularly practice gratitude by taking the time to observe, be present, reflect, and demonstrate compassion and kindness towards others, tend to experience more positive emotions, are more resilient, sleep better, and have lower stress and anxiety levels. All of which, can potentially impact the outcome of your job search efforts in a very positive way!

November 2022 – TIP OF THE MONTH

Informational Interviews!

Are you searching for a new career but need help figuring out where to start? In addition to contacting your local WorkBC Centre for assistance, you could broaden your job horizon by conducting Informational Interviews.

What is an Informational Interview?

Informational interviews are when the job seeker (you), interviews the person who would typically conduct the job interview. Informational Interviews are usually less formal than job interviews and are more of a conversation you guide with your questions. Perhaps there is an organization that aligns with your passion or values, but you are unsure if your skills fit any of the roles they are recruiting for. An Informational Interview can be a great tool to learn about the necessary skills before you apply. Or, perhaps you are considering switching to a new industry and your knowledge about the type of jobs available is limited. In either of these situations, an Informational Interview can be a great way to get your foot in the door at an organization you are interested in learning more about as you conduct your full job search.

 How to get an Informational Interview?

You can phone and ask if it is possible to meet briefly with the employer (or hiring manager). Be sure to share with them that the purpose of your request is to learn more about the organization and the different employment opportunities available. Likewise, if you are shopping at a business that interests you, and they have a “Help Wanted” sign posted, this can be excellent time to inquire if someone might be available to chat about what it is like to work there. An Informational Interview of this kind may even lead to an on-the-spot job interview!  In either situation, be sure you have your questions prepared and that you have a way to record a few notes during the interview.

Should I bring a list of questions to an Informational Interview?

YES! As mentioned above, bring a written list of at least three relevant questions to ask about working in the industry, or that are specific to the organization. This step not only shows you are eager and motivated, but also demonstrates you are organized and a critical thinker!

Example Questions to ask in an Informational Interview:    

Your questions will need to tailored to suit the person you are meeting with. For example, if the person you are meeting with currently holds a similar position you are interested in, you would ask, “What do you like most about your work?”  However, if the person you are meeting with is from the HR department, you would ask “What do most people who work here say they like about their work?

The following questions are suggestions for when you meeting with someone who currently works in the occupation you are inquiring about:

  • What do you like best about the type of work you do?
  • What do you like the least about the type of work you do?
  • What kinds of problems do you deal with?
  • What do you perceive the organization’s culture to be? What type of person do you think bests fits this culture?
  • What type of training opportunities are offered to employees in this industry?
  • What are your main responsibilities as a…?
  • What is a typical day (or week) like for you?

Most importantly, one of your questions should be “Are you hiring?” If the position is advertised, then there is no need to ask. However, if there are no current postings, be sure to ask about their hiring plans as you conclude the interview. Lastly, be sure to ask if they have any feedback or suggestions and show your gratitude for the time they spent with you.

Informational Interviews are great as they are low-pressure, less formal than a job interview, and the conversation can showcase your interest in the organization/industry, presenting an opportunity to let them know you are serious in your job search.  As well, an informational interview may encourage them to consider how your current skills might be a potential fit for future opportunities!

Keep in touch – we’d love to hear about your next Informational Interview experience!


Career Centre

#110-198 East Island Hwy,
Parksville, BC V9P 2H3
Tel. 250.248.3205
Fax. 250.248.4154

Mon-Tues 8:30am-4:30pm
Wed 8:30am-6:00pm
Thurs-Fri 8:30am-4:30pm

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Career Centre logo

#110-198 East Island Hwy
Parksville, BC V9P 2H3
Tel. 250.248.3205
Opening Hours:
Mon-Fri: 8:30am-4:30pm