A University of Prince Edward Island student would like to help high school graduates at home and abroad to easily find the best post-secondary institute for themselves.
Noshin Abedi, a fourth year student from Iran, has launched a free PEI student employment assistance and counseling service, which mostly helps international students get all the information they need to choose a school or come to Canada.
It’s called PathCan, and Abedi works with UPEI students Jesse Champion and Ali Ravagy. The trio received a start-up payment last year for servicing their agency during UPEI’s Panther Pitch — a business promotion competition at the school.
She said she is eager to help students find the right school and that having the right university advice goes a long way.
“If you get counseling, you save your time, money, and career, and you’re much happier with what you’re doing,” she said.
Going even further for customers
Prior to setting up PathCan, now Abedi helped Holland College graduate Sina Bayat come to study on the island.
Bayat is from Iran and wanted to study abroad, so she contacted Abedi – who was working in a recruitment agency.
“While I was 16 and 17 years old, I was [wanted] To leave my country for a brighter future.”
Abedi provided information about Bayat’s schools from several countries, but he chose to study on PEI because of friends he knew here.
“She was my advisor. I got accepted into UPEI, got my visa, and then she [helped] He transferred me from UPEI to Holland College.”
He said Noshin helped Bayat more than he expected. She helped him find his first job on Prince Edward Island, and most recently helped Pyatt’s father get a visitor’s visa to come to the island.
“I applied for [permanent] Accommodation a week ago and she also helped me with that. You helped me with the files that I am [needed] “I really appreciate her,” Bayat said. “She is a really nice lady.”
COVID-19 presents new challenges
With COVID-19 restrictions in place, it is difficult for international students to come to Canada. Last month, CBC News reported that nearly 1.8 million students and aspirants to Canada have not yet processed their applications.
“With the COVID-19 situation, IRCC has decided to reduce the number of students it approves. It is very stressful for many truly deserving students who are fully prepared to begin their education in Canada,” said Abedi.
She and her PathCan team hope to provide the right advice and steps for international students, as COVID-19 restrictions have made their journey to study in Canada more difficult.
Abedi said PathCan helps local students on PEI, but is focused on potential international students because of the challenges they may face, such as the language barrier.
“Einglish [may be] She said, “Their second language, or the system is very new to them, so our main market is international students. But we are developing a system and working on some packages that will be useful for local students.”
The School Employment Agency acts as a consultant for the search and recruitment of international students into UPEI as well. They are a resident company of the Startup Zone subsidiary of the Charlottetown business incubator.
CEO Cheryl Macaulay said PathCan is a great addition to the Startup Zone.
“They have an incredible work ethic and provide a valuable service to international students,” Macaulay said.