Featured Stories

Featured Stories

Perfect Timing Story by Rolf Savella

Anita Roop Langara Continuing Studies AlumnaAnita Roop's career did not get off to an easy start. After being hired by a local engineering company in 2011, Anita found herself in a very challenging situation. She started the position with little office computer skills and grew disappointed by the limited amount of training and support she received from colleagues. Although Anita made the difficult decision to resign eight months later, the experience helped her recognize that she had a skills gap she needed to address.

While on Employment Insurance, Anita worked with a WorkBC case manager to create an action plan. From extensive research to attending meetings to participating in employment workshops, the two began the process of getting Anita back into the workforce. As part of the plan, they explored the opportunity to go back to school.

Her case manager inevitably referred Anita to Raymond Chow, Langara’s Computer Technology Program Coordinator. Raymond, who is also an instructor, helped Anita identify the skills she needed to get back in the workforce and planned her program of study, which was approved and sponsored by WorkBC. “He helped me a great deal through my journey. He was kind, compassionate, and wanted to help me succeed regardless of my past.” In 2012, she completed the Computer Skills for the Office Certificate Program.

When asked about her decision to go back to school, Anita expresses her gratitude and how it changed her life. “I remember walking into my first course and seeing that I was the youngest student there. It was an inspiring moment because it gave me the perspective that it’s never too late to change your current situation. For me, making the decision to go back to school was difficult but investing in myself to secure a stable career was my main goal. Getting my certificate has made me feel empowered and confident about my skillset, my future development, and myself. It’s been a rewarding career path.”

Anita currently works for a junior mining company as an Office Coordinator/Receptionist

Luis Ribeiro Excel Instructor

No one knows first-hand the value of Excel in the work place quite like instructor, Luis Ribeiro.

As a Excel expert and certified Microsoft Master Instructor, Luis has vast amounts of experience and knowledge when it comes to the spreadsheet application that is used to calculate, organize, and graph data.

 “With Excel, I take students from zero to a skill level that will make employers sit-up and feel that there is value in that individual,” said Luis.

He goes above and beyond to help students become familiar with Excel in a fun and invigorating environment. He prides himself in creating engaging, practical classes.

 “The first and foremost experience people in my class will encounter is that it is going to be fun. I go out of my way to be humorous and entertaining to make the students really enjoy the sessions,” he said.

Luis’s passion for teaching comes from the satisfaction he gets from bringing individuals with little to no skills in Excel to a level where they are able to handle the  environment confidently.

 “I would describe my sessions as extremely stimulating. They cause you to think about problem solving with Excel because I give interesting assignments with real world situations,” explained Luis.

 With several years’ experience outside of teaching as a corporate trainer for numerous large and well-known organizations and presently working as a technical analyst and in-house trainer – he is an educator with immense expertise in his field.

Luis knows first-hand the high value employer’s see in individuals who have the ability to use Excel in the workplace. 

 “In all businesses - numbers drive the business. Excel is by far the single most versatile computer skill that you can bring into any working environment,” he said.

It's never too late to learn Story by Cheryl Minns

Lise found herself at Langara after she discovered that employers want to see certification of computer skills on a résumé. Although she worked in an office environment for almost 18 years, she hadn’t taken any courses for the programs she used that she could put on a résumé.

She chose the Computer Skills for the Office Certificate Program because it had all of the courses that employers required for the jobs she was applying for. She recalled her first day at Langara when the program coordinator gave her a campus tour, assisted her with the registration process, and helped her find her books in the bookstore.

"It was a great start to seven months of hard work," she said.

During her last semester, while she was studying for her Simply Accounting exam in English and conversing with a friend in her native French, Lise was approached by the owner of Santevia Water Systems. He invited her to come in for an interview because the company was looking for someone who could do accounting and bookkeeping and speak French. She got the job shortly afterwards and currently works with the company in customer service and sales.

Although Lise entered the program as a mature student, she soon realized that her age didn't affect how well she did in the program, it was a matter of determination.

"I realized that if I really applied myself and got well organized, I could get good grades," she said. "I worked hard to keep on top of the assignments and tests."

Her advice to students: “Put in your time and you’ll do just fine. It's worth every minute of it.”