Tracy's blog

I’m Tracy Au and I have graduated from the Professional Writing program from university. I am an aspiring screenwriter, so this blog is used to promote my writing and attract people who will hire me to write for your TV show or movie. I write a lot about writing, TV, movies, jokes, and my daily life and opinions. I have another blog promoting my TV project at

Tuesday, June 7, 2016

Market research and data analysis/ medical jobs

May 17, 2016 "Market research and data analysis skills in short supply": I cut out this article in the Globe and Mail by Virginia Galt on Nov. 12, 2012.  I haven't read this article in a long time.  Now that I read it, the job seems kind of hard.  I cut it out because I worked in market research as in at a call centre where I call people to do surveys and have most people hang up on me:

When Humber College conceptualized its new research analyst program, it practised what it intended to teach – analyzing the market and tapping into “a tremendous need.”

Employer response was resounding, and the college was flooded with applications from students – most with undergraduate university degrees, many with master’s degrees, and a couple of PhDs.

“It was an easy sell, quite frankly, because there was such a demand for it,” says Jason Galea, associate dean of the School of Liberal Arts and Sciences at Toronto-based Humber College Institute of Technology & Advanced Learning, which launched the program this fall.
Only a handful of other Canadian colleges, including Georgian College based in Barrie, Ont., and Algonquin College based in Ottawa, offer graduate programs that concentrate on market research methods and data analysis – skills that, industry leaders say, are in short supply.

“I think these programs are going to crop up in different areas [of the country],” says Georgian College professor Jeff Cole, citing growing demand from the private sector for more sophisticated market intelligence and the public sector’s need for more comprehensive research on which to base public policy decisions.

Prof. Galea adds: “Given that we are part of the so-called information age, the demand for social and market research has increased. ... We have so much information to deal with. Because of the pace of society, we now need experts who can make sense of all that information, who can identify what is relevant and irrelevant. Organizations have recognized the need for good research on which to base key policy and strategic decisions.”

Ricardo Gomez-Insausti, vice-president of research at BBM Canada and chairman of the advisory board for Humber’s research analyst program, says it has been difficult, as an employer, to find graduates who possess not only the hard statistical and technical skills needed to gather reliable data, but also the theoretical knowledge needed to understand consumer behaviour.

“Every time we would search to get a hire, it was very challenging,” says Mr. Gomez-Insausti, whose company, along with others in the industry, will build on Humber’s classroom lessons by providing three-month internship opportunities next spring.

By then, the students will have completed courses covering all major aspects of the research process, Prof Galea says. “There is a need for people who are qualified to do a range of things – everything from research design, information retrieval and evaluation, analysis and interpretation, preparation and presentation of research findings.”

Anna Meliksetyan chose the research analyst program because, like many of her cohorts, she was not quite sure what to do with her undergraduate degree. (She majored in law and society at Toronto’s York University.)

“When I graduated and started looking for work, it was really difficult for me when I was writing my résumé and I got to the skills section. I couldn’t think of any skills to write other than a great communicator and a good writer. I couldn’t think of any technical skills.”

After teaching English and Canadian culture in China for a year, Ms. Meliksetyan, 26, returned to Canada and enrolled at Humber.

“I can already name off the top of the head three skills I have learned: No. 1 is writing proposals. No. 2, at the very minimum, I can do some statistics on Excel and present the information to someone who does not understand the theory, but will be able to understand the results of my research. No. 3, I can build a basic survey,” Ms. Meliksetyan says. “That’s exactly what I was looking for. I wanted to get hard skills.”

Prof. Cole says the research analyst program at Georgian College also attracts university graduates, like Ms. Meliksetyan, who want to apply “that knowledge, curiosity and skill they have towards a career in applied social research, program evaluation or marketing research.”

“We funnel about 60 per cent of our students to the marketing research industry, which consists largely of research supplier firms, names that the general public may or may not be familiar with – Ipsos, Harris/Decima, Environics.

“But, increasingly, we are placing our students into organizations ... that have a research function within them – places like Kraft, Kellogg, Loblaw, CBC, the Weather Network,” Prof. Cole says.

“They do research to understand their share of the market, or what customers think of the packaging or the product itself, and increasingly they are building staff internally to assist the company in those marketing functions.”

Prof. Galea said there is also a growing demand in the not-for-profit and public sectors for social-based research and program evaluation that the new generation of research analysts will be able to meet.

Adds Prof. Cole: “We have lots of history grads here, lots of psychology grads, lots of poli-sci grads who come to our program, and we are immediately able to articulate a set of [career] opportunities that might be of interest to them.”

"It's not just doctors and nurses we need": I cut out this article in the Globe and Mail by Tamara Buluja  on Nov. 12, 2012:

It’s been well documented that Canada faces a shortage of doctors and nurses. But other health occupations, such as paramedics, occupational therapists and radiation technologists, are also in need of educated professionals, according to the Association of Canadian Community Colleges.

“Given the involvement of these specialists in all stages of health-care delivery – from diagnosis to treatment and recovery – shortages will impede access to diagnostic and therapeutic health-care services, increasing wait times for medical procedures,” said James Knight, the president of ACCC, in a statement earlier this year. Graduates from these courses are quickly snatched up for jobs within six months of graduation.

Humber College Paramedic program
Humber’s two-year paramedic program has been readying its students to work on the front line of medical emergencies with Ontario’s ambulance services since 1976, program co-ordinator Lynne Urszenyi said.
Roughly 60 per cent of graduates found jobs working for ambulance services as paramedics, while another 34 per cent find work in related fields.

Students leave the program with roughly 550 hours of practical experience in both ambulance and acute-care hospital settings. While most paramedic programs have work placements only in the final year of schooling, Humber’s paramedic program is unique in placing students in an ambulance 150 hours in the last month of the first year.

“If a student figures out that they don’t like the program or if it’s too stressful for them, they can leave before wasting another year in the program,” said Katherine Adamko, a student in her final year. “The program is tough. It places a lot of demand on you, which I think will help to set us up to be hired.”

The program partners with Toronto and Peel region for ambulance service training as well as the Humber River Regional Hospital and the Brampton Civic Hospital.

“We want to broaden the students’ view of health care, so they get to see what happens to a patient after they drop them off in an ambulance,” Ms. Urszenyi said.

The program admits 70 students each year but is competitive. To ensure admission is fair, all applicants, irrespective of whether they’re coming from high school or medical school, must write Humber’s tests in chemistry, biology, math and English language, Ms. Urszenyi said.

NAIT Respiratory therapist program

Respiratory therapists diagnose and treat people who are suffering from heart and lung problems, and specialize in airway management. At NAIT’s three-year program, students learn in simulations and practicums how to work as respiratory therapists.

Ben Rauschning, a registered respiratory therapist and the program’s central clinical liaison, says each student will do rotations in several fields, such as hospitals, emergency rooms and rehab clinics.

“It’s always a one-on-one pairing with a registered therapist, because they need to balance patient care with teaching needs and it’s most effective that way,” he said.

Most students find placements near the NAIT campus within the Edmonton area but might also accept placements in nearby municipalities, such as Red Deer.

He says the program’s selling point is the high number of work placement hours, including six weeks in neonatal care, three weeks in a pediatrics intensive care unit and one week in a pediatric ward.

“There’s always a tug of war with the industry that wants more graduates because of labour shortages and the school making sure we’re training the candidates in the best way possible,” Mr. Rauschning said, adding there will be an “uniquely high demand for the next few years” with a new hospital opening in Calgary and other new projects.
Eighty-two per cent of its students are employed within one year of graduating.

Dennis Smith, 30, had a part-time job as a respiratory therapist at an Edmonton community hospital before he even graduated.

“It was one of the places where I did my clinical experience and they hired me in March when I was student on the condition that I would finish the program,” he said.

BCIT Radiation therapy program

One of the common treatments for cancer is radiation therapy. British Columbia Institute of Technology’s radiation therapy program prepares students to work as the health-care professional responsible for delivering a therapeutic dose of ionizing radiation for treating a malignant tumour. The 33-month program runs year-round and through the summer period when many students are off, but the intensive program is designed to get students into the work force as quickly as possible, said Bill Dow, BCIT’s dean of the School of Health Sciences.

“We find that most of our students come to a place like BCIT because they are career-focused and want to get into the job pronto,” Mr. Dow said.

The Burnaby-based program favours students from British Columbia over other candidates because it was designed to fulfill the province’s need for radiation therapists. The program is competitive, with three applicants for every seat.

“Four years ago, there was lots of concern within the discipline and the province that we were going to face a shortage of radiation therapists,” Mr. Dow said. As a result, BCIT increased the number of program seats from 64 to 80 and some other seats were opened up in the province.

“But at the same time as we increased the spots, the global economy meltdown happened and some of the vacancy rates dropped off as people postponed retirement,” he said. “The needs are still high for radiation therapists, but we don’t want to overshoot on the number of graduates the province actually needs and also want to make sure all our graduates find jobs quickly.”

Students have a 90-per-cent employment rate within six months of graduation, he said.


At December 22, 2016 at 12:55 AM , Blogger Blogger said...

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