BA 2002: Major Psychology, Minor English Literature

 

“My first co-op experience was [my] most memorable because it was my first job, the first time I lived away from home, the first time I drove such a long distance, the first time I lived with roommates… the first time I had to speak English all day long” and I was grieving the death of a loved one.

All of June Wong’s Co-op experiences have taught her how to find information when she needs it, how to talk to people and how to network and ask for references. Overall she has become a stronger and more confident person. “As a result of having been a Co-op student, I built enough confidence to apply for a part time graduate program while working full time to support my tuition,” says June.

June’s various Co-op positions, such as with the Whistler Housing Authority, centered on operational and secretarial work. Through her daily duties of answering phone calls, conducting surveys via phone, and working closely with another research assistant from the UBC Arts Co-op program, June has gained valuable networking and interpersonal skills.

June used the skills she learned from Co-op and practically applied it to obtain her current job as a Family Counselor.  June did not know how she would meet her goals of obtaining a masters degree in Counseling Psychology and how to get experience in her line of work. After doing her homework, she took some prerequisite courses at UBC and VCC and volunteered at the Vancouver Crisis Centre.

Co-op taught June how to juggle her work and school schedule. Using references from her courses and volunteer position, she enrolled in a part-time graduate school for three years while working full time as an Administrative Assistant/Bookkeeper at a landscape architecture firm and then graduated from her MA program.

Soon after, June was hired as a Family Counselor by Family Services of Greater Vancouver where she “provides outreach service to support families in various issues, including and not limited to parenting, marital, mental health, children’s development, connection to the community, etc.”

For June, the most satisfying aspect of her job is the opportunity she is given to be creative. “New challenges always come up at this job and I’ve always had to come up with new solutions to solve the problems.  This part of my job is very gratifying,” says June. June hopes to continue to work as a counselor and to teach and facilitate workshops in the near future.

For past, present and future Co-op students June says, “Don’t be afraid to relocate.  Don’t be afraid to temporarily part with your friends and family.  This is the best time for you to fly.  Be daring and creative.  You never know what your limits are until you have spread your wings.”

By taking the right steps and using the networks and resources available to her advantage, June Wong is the perfect example of a well rounded, hardworking and persistent student who goes the extra distance to achieve her goals even while fighting through hard times.


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