Solmaz Talebipour had a mining engineering background from her native Azerbaijan. After settling in Canada, and working her way back into mining through a technician role, she felt she wanted to do more.
While on a maternity leave, she assembled her prerequisites and applied to BCIT’s Computer Information Technology (CIT) Diploma Program. Part of her route to reskilling included an IT internship to further build her resume before graduation.
“all of the hard work and hands-on experiences prepared me for the real work environment” – Solmaz Talebipour, CIT Grad
A worthwhile challenge
Solmaz landed her internship as an IT Infrastructure Support Analyst at the Canada Revenue Agency in Vancouver. She spent her time installing, configuring, maintaining, supporting, and troubleshooting hardware and software on multiple platforms; updating and maintaining hardware and software inventory; monitoring system component performance and usage; and logging, monitoring, investigating, and resolving problems.
“Before starting this position I did not have any experience related to the IT industry. In the beginning, I felt overwhelmed and frustrated due to my lack of technical knowledge,” admits Solmaz.
“It was challenging, but I learned a lot. I learned what my boss or manager would expect from me as a junior IT analyst. I learned what my weaknesses are, how to improve them, and how to use my strengths to achieve my goals.”
Re. the internship, she say “go for it – it is challenging, but it will pay off.”
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Not all “hard” skills
Solmaz credits the program with setting her up for future success. “CIT was so intense, we had too much homework and many projects,” she explains. “But all of the hard work and hands-on experiences prepared me for the real work environment.”
As to the range of the program, “besides all the technical knowledge and courses, we learned soft skills as well,” says Solmaz, “for example, how to manage time and work within the team.”
Now employed as a technical support analyst at Exan software, Solmaz says “I enjoy every minute of it!”
“Every day I am learning new skills, taking on new challenges, and I never get bored. My continual honing of problem-solving skills has even helped in my daily life.”