About Ruth 

Hello Everyone! I’m Ruth

Career Counsellor, Education Consultant, Employment Coach

If higher education were a stock, it would be the darling of Wall Street.

Brandon Busteed on the convincing and confusing value of higher education – Forbes Article 2019

I agree with Mr. Busteed, cautiously. He provides some convincing arguments for why higher education is a great investment.

I must admit, I’m biased toward the notion that no education is wasted. And while it’s clear to me that pursuing higher education is worth your time and money, I also know through my own personal and professional experience that:

The path from education to work is neither direct, nor easy.

Why? First, the world of work is changing at a dramatic pace. In this crazy gig economy, where Artificial Intelligence (AI) is taking over a huge number of tasks that can be automated, more education alone does not guarantee ultimate work success.

Second, having a great education builds knowledge and skills, but not necessarily in ways that lead to a job offer. In my own case, I had completed two degrees before I discovered how to both recognize and land a great job. That came from working at an Executive Recruitment boutique and gaining the inside scoop on how employers make their hiring decisions.

Third, though support for our transitions abounds, we don’t always discover this until it’s too late. For example, despite two university degrees under my belt,  I didn’t realize the power of the Career Centre until years later when I worked in one of Canada’s finest.  I missed a terrific early opportunity to put my best self forward and transition successfully from education to work.

In May 2018, I retired after 18 years working at the University of Toronto, where I helped thousands of students explore the next step on their career journey. My goal in this blog is to research the changing relationship between education and work and explore tensions young people face in navigating their education and work decisions.  I’m keen to generate dialogue among students and early career adventurers, their parents and loved ones, educators and career supporters. I hope to offer readers insight and inspiration.

My Experience

  • 18 years at the University of Toronto (U of T) working in co-op education, academic and career coaching,  counselling and training
  • 3 years at York University career coaching undergrads, grads and doctoral students in the Faculty of Environmental Studies
  • 7 years at Deloitte in Human Resources Consulting, focusing on executive, managerial and professional search, performance management and compensation
  • 5 years’ experience creating, testing and refining strengths-based resilience and mental wellness programs for young adults
  • Extensive program and resource development experience from 20 years in consulting, co-op education and career centre environments serving education and work transition needs of young adults
  • Between the ages of 12 and 25, worked in over 30 crappy jobs until I figured out how to get a real job
  • Most unusual jobs: Flat Work Operator at the Banff Springs Hotel and Bicycle Tour Guide  with Butterfield & Robinson (B&R) in France

 

My Education

  • Master in Education, Career & Work Counselling focus, University of Toronto’s Ontario Institute for Studies in Education (OISE)
  • Master in Environmental Studies, Quality of Work Life focus, York University
  • Honours Bachelor of Arts, French Linguistics, Laval University

My Favourite Vocational Assessment Tools

  • Myers Briggs Type Indicator
  • Strong Interest Inventory
  • VIA Signature Character Strengths

" You went above and beyond with your editing and really made sure you got to know the kind of person I was when we met in person. You pushed me outside my comfort zone and really rode it through with me, just like you promised. I truly could not have competed this graduate school application without you."

SC – Millenial pursuing a Master’s Degree

"You’ve been a wonderful help and inspiration to me and I truly appreciate all the time you have taken to aid me in my search . . . or is it a quest? Having met and spoken with you has helped me make this a positive and even “fun” experience."

SS – management consultant moving to industry  

"Wow! Fantastic! I feel like a new man! Thanks so much for your help."

PS – mid-manager with a new resume, on the move

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