Jasmine Boudreau was nervous to return to school at age 25. When her peers were getting going in their careers, she'd be starting over. But her fear of being out of touch was immediately silenced when she started her classes at Université Sainte-Anne. She felt right at home.
Boudreau had always found the idea of picking a career stressful, and withdrew from a university program early on in her life. She didn't want to waste money on a program that wasn't going to lead her into a stable career, and so after high school she tried a few different career paths. "I liked the idea of learning a trade and starting work right away," says Boudreau. She started as a hair stylist, and switched paths into the banking industry. After four years, when she realized her heart wasn't in it, her father recommended she look into programs at Sainte-Anne.
"I was sharing my thoughts with him on finding a career, and since I had never attended college, I was interested in trying it," she adds. Boudreau enrolled after hearing many success stories from those who chose programs with Sainte-Anne. After communicating with the helpful and professional staff at Sainte-Anne, she knew that the Government Office Clerk program would be right for her.
Her program included taking three computer courses focused on Microsoft Office Suite, financial math, accounting, business English and French, administrative procedures and communications. "Each course included a lot of hands-on application, which was wonderful. Once I started my work term, and even after in my job, I actually felt prepared and confident," says Boudreau about the benefit of combining class time and work placements to learn and apply knowledge.
Sainte-Anne's downtown Halifax campus was convenient for Boudreau, and most of the classes were done via video conference since the primary campus is a three-hour drive away in Church Point. "It really didn't feel like my professors were in another city. They were connected with the students and made sure we were comfortable with the pace of the course," says Boudreau about the nature of her small classes. The downtown campus always had a facilitator onsite ready to set up the classes and to be there if the students had questions.
Boudreau was offered a permanent position at Health Canada right after her work term, and felt that the program prepared her on all levels to begin her career. "I was confident and able to hit the ground running. I've seen so many opportunities because of this program," says Boudreau. She is thankful that she found an alternative to the big four-year university program, and adds that it works for some but it wasn't her path or calling.
Sainte-Anne made her feel right at home, with classmates who shared similar goals. "Sainte-Anne really is a place for everyone, and when I think back on my time spent there, I see it as the one thing that really changed me from being a confused young person to a confident adult," Boudreau says. Now she works in a stable job where she is passionate about going to work every day, has purchased her first home and feels like all of the puzzle pieces of her life have fallen into place.