For students and new grads – a conversation with Career Education Specialist, Ken Lee

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Show Notes

In this first episode of 2021, Sujani sits down with Ken Lee who is a Career Education Specialist at Ryerson University. His role is to specifically support students in the area of health. I love this conversation because the episode offers practical tips for students and new graduates. We really wanted to provide guidance to help navigate your careers.

You’ll Learn

  • What a Career Education Specialist’s role (also known as a Career Centre or Coop Centre) within a university is, and its value.
    • What students can expect from these services career centre (i.e. resume writing, networking).
    • How Career Centre services have changed in the face of a pandemic.
    • Why students should reach out as early as possible (i.e. first year) to these Career Centres/services, even if they don’t need any help or guidance just yet.
    • Whether students’ questions and concerns for their public health careers have changed since the pandemic.
  • How Career Centres help students achieve their goals: we take a common goal that students come to Ken about and talk through the type of advice we’d offer them.
    • A specific question we tackle and discuss strategies for is: “how do I get policy/research type roles and/or experiences?” 
  • Strategies related to the following top questions received by PH SPOT from public health students and new graduates:
    • How do I get public health experience – specifically, if I am about to graduate soon and need to quickly build experience?
    • What cover letter tips should I keep in mind? (Hint: Regurgitating what the organization knows about themselves is not enough anymore. It’s no longer about “what” you said, but how you say it.)
    • How do I get a mentor? Do I need a mentor? What’s the difference between a sponsor and a mentor? How to build strong relationships and give back to your mentors.
    • Skill building: How to build skills outside of your academic courses?

Today’s Guest

Ken Lee

Ken Lee is a Career Education Specialist with the Career & Co-op Centre, Ryerson University where he designs and delivers high-impact programming that equips students for careers in a rapidly evolving world. Prior to his journey in higher education, Ken brings experience working in the non-profit sector. His particular focus was guiding individuals in discovering creative ways to achieve their career goals while finding fulfillment, satisfaction and balance in their lives. The developer in him lives to watch the people in his life grow, succeed, and turn their dreams into reality. Connect with Ken on LinkedIn (make sure to add a note that you listened to this podcast).


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About the Show

PH SPOTlight: Public health career stories, inspiration, and guidance from current-day public health heroes

On the show, Sujani sits down with public health heroes of our time to share career stories, inspiration, and guidance for building public health careers. From time to time, she also has conversations with friends of public health – individuals who are not public health professionals, but their advice and guidance are equally important.

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