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Career Crossroads

Storytelling Podcasts

Getting to where you want to be in your career is not always as linear as we might think. On Career Crossroads, host Jonathan Collaton talks to one guest each week about the expected and unexpected choices they have made to get where they are in their career today. Starting with the question of 'what did you want to be when you grew up?", they discuss all the jobs they have had, the people that influenced them, and the decisions that led them to their present career. They reflect on how sometimes we have these 'crossroads' moments where we have to pick one thing over another. The episodes are about the guests and their stories.

Getting to where you want to be in your career is not always as linear as we might think. On Career Crossroads, host Jonathan Collaton talks to one guest each week about the expected and unexpected choices they have made to get where they are in their career today. Starting with the question of 'what did you want to be when you grew up?", they discuss all the jobs they have had, the people that influenced them, and the decisions that led them to their present career. They reflect on how sometimes we have these 'crossroads' moments where we have to pick one thing over another. The episodes are about the guests and their stories.

Location:

United States

Description:

Getting to where you want to be in your career is not always as linear as we might think. On Career Crossroads, host Jonathan Collaton talks to one guest each week about the expected and unexpected choices they have made to get where they are in their career today. Starting with the question of 'what did you want to be when you grew up?", they discuss all the jobs they have had, the people that influenced them, and the decisions that led them to their present career. They reflect on how sometimes we have these 'crossroads' moments where we have to pick one thing over another. The episodes are about the guests and their stories.

Language:

English


Episodes

Priyanka - From Diesel Engines to Technology Consulting

2/24/2021
#24 – Early in her professional career in India, Priyanka Ojha has moved around a lot. It started when she got her degree in mechanical engineering and was quickly recruited by Bosch to work in their diesel engine pump division. But one year into that career, Priyanka decided to expand her professional credentials and began a Masters of Business Administration in Finance. That led her to jobs in business development and employee engagement before she packed up to move again – this time to...

Duration:00:56:46

Ivan – From Commerce to Vocal Coach

2/17/2021
#23 – Ivan Lu was driven by respect and competition to follow in his brother’s footsteps in a corporate career. To make that dream a reality he decided to get a degree in Commerce, something that would provide him with a variety of opportunities when he graduated. While in university, his internships/co-op experiences helped him realize that some of what he was studying was just not that interesting. He did not want to sit in a room and crunch numbers so upon graduating he tried to find a...

Duration:00:45:58

Chris – From Diamond Sales to Skate Shop Owner

2/10/2021
#22 – Chris Johnson has an idyllic life working at his own skate shop, Passion Board Shop, in Eau Claire Wisconsin. But when he was 18, life didn’t look like it was heading in that direction. With an interest in sales, Chris decided to study business at the University of Minnesota Duluth but quickly decided the degree was unnecessary. As he had learned working at a Zoomies store in his teens, you just had to be a good salesperson to succeed in sales, and that is what he wanted to do. Chris...

Duration:01:03:32

Scott – From Law, to Silk Screen Printing, to Small Business Consulting

2/3/2021
#21 – Raised in rural Kansas, Scott Mason would look up at the stars at night and dream of two things – disco and the big city! After finishing his undergraduate degree in Minneapolis, Scott was accepted into Columbia Law School and was quickly trying to find his place in New York. Upon realizing that his passion lay more in advocacy work, and not in litigation, he began working for the City of New York. During his 20-year career there he was involved in numerous projects and initiatives...

Duration:01:11:56

Sarabeth – Career Hybridity from Art to Innovation

1/27/2021
#20 – From switching schools in undergrad, to working in the Bahamas, to living in 4 states before she was 30, moving around was never something that held Sarabeth Berk back. She had never been afraid of change, from the moment she decided to shift away from her plan of working with computers in university. Instead, she went in an entirely opposite direction and studied art. Upon graduating, she loved the creativity working as an art teacher gave her and found roles that she enjoyed. At the...

Duration:01:09:44

Josh – The Lawyer Who Tried to Avoid Law

1/20/2021
#19 - Growing up near London, England, Josh De Luna decided to study law in university, but not because he wanted to become a lawyer. He was busy trying to figure out who he was and how he fit into this world – law just seemed like a fun thing to study along the way that would also appease his parents' wishes. Upon graduating, Josh left for an adventure in Brazil, volunteering for an environmental NGO, but many months later he decided to come home when the lifestyle wasn’t a good fit. Thus,...

Duration:01:14:41

Yemi – Accounting to Economics, In Three Countries

1/13/2021
#18 - Growing up in Nigeria, Yemi Timson aspired to achieve greatness. Despite her parent's wishes that she become a doctor, she had an interest in accounting and economics and completed a diploma at the University of Jos. While considering further education in accounting, she began to look to the career of Dr. Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, the Managing Director of the World Bank as a template for what she should aspire to be. A promotional video with jet skis from Eastern Mediterranean University...

Duration:01:17:01

Jonathan – Digital Marketing -> World Traveler -> Leadership Coach

1/6/2021
#17 - When leaving high school, Jonathan Miller took the route that many would say leads to success; he went to Wilfrid Laurier University, did co-op, and graduated with a business degree. His co-op secured him a good starter job in Toronto and it seemed like, at 22, he was at the beginning of a long career in marketing. But just over a year into his career, he took a trip that changed his perspective on what mattered. Upon returning, he quickly realized he wanted more of that adventure and...

Duration:00:58:40

Ania – The Many Careers Before Interior Design

12/16/2020
#16 – Ania’s career path has taken her many places. When she was in high school she wanted to be a lawyer but a guidance counsellor crushed that dream. When she wanted to go to fashion school in Los Angeles, the almighty dollar crushed THAT dream. After an amazing experience at Conestoga College, she finally settling into a career in business, however, a tragic loss led her to realize there was more to life than work. She began to look for something that would give her a better work-life...

Duration:01:29:43

Tyler – Hockey Broadcaster With A Pit Stop

12/9/2020
#15 – As a kid raised playing ball hockey on the streets of Toronto, Tyler Madarasz always knew he wanted to work in hockey. But when it came time to pick an education pathway to get him to his goal, Tyler wasn’t totally prepared. He ended up picking a program that was not what he expected and quickly realized he needed to make a change. After getting advice from a family friend, he found his way to the College of Sports Media where he immediately fell in love with the program. During his...

Duration:00:50:17

Sen – From Surgeon to Healthcare Improvement Specialist

12/2/2020
#14 - While cultures around the world are different, parents are all the same; they want their children to have a good life, and a stable career can help make that happen. That’s why Sen’s parents recommended that their son, a bright student, should become a doctor. The world always needs doctors, in good times and bad, so Sen took their advice and ended up as a surgeon in his native China. After a government policy change pushed him away from surgery and into the role of Quality Care...

Duration:00:58:04

Will – The Winding Road to Becoming a Youtuber and Twitch Streamer

11/25/2020
#13 - Will Smyth (a.k.a ImperialJedi) didn’t always know he was going to be a Youtuber/Twitch streamer, but he did have ambitions to do something grand or different. Racecar driver? Radio host? He couldn't settle on one thing, so when he had to pick a path out of high school, he decided to attend the University of Guelph. The plan was to work in either law or law enforcement, but an ‘existential crisis’ led to him abandoning that idea. While taking some time off from school, he stumbled upon...

Duration:00:49:25

Kait – From Fashion, to Marketing, to Human Resources

11/18/2020
#12 - Kait’s journey to her current career took her through a winding road in her late teens and early 20’s. She tried multiple educational paths and finally settled on fashion as her career of choice. But the path to being a Merchandising Manager was bumpy, and she turned to a more stable office administration role where she thrived. With a constant urge to better herself, and with the support of her colleagues and friends, she moved across the country, again, to begin a marketing program...

Duration:01:16:02

Brandon – From Passion for Polymers to Savvy at Sales

11/11/2020
#11 - Brandon was always good at chemistry and had plans to invent new materials after getting a university chemistry degree. But as university wrapped up, he realized that he did not want a future filled with lab work, so what to do? His university experience gave him the skills and the drive to work with people, so after some deep reflection, he decided a job in sales would make him happy. Utilizing the Wilfrid Laurier University Career Centre, he found a local start-up that seemed like a...

Duration:01:13:18

Zahra – Channeling her Creativity as an Author and Marketer

11/4/2020
#10 - Zahra can trace her creative streak back to her time as a child, when she created products to sell to her friends. After planning to work her way into a career in psychology, she realized that she was more interested in understanding what people want. Upon the advice of a friend and some reflection, she realized that the aspect of selling those childhood products she enjoyed the most was not inventing them, but convincing friends of their value. A career in marketing seemed like the...

Duration:00:49:37

Heather - Social Work to Social Parenting

10/28/2020
#9 - As a good student in high school, Heather Patel did not have an exact goal in mind when she decided to attend the University of Waterloo. Three degrees later she had found her calling; helping others as a social worker. With a busy career and three children, the idea of having a place where parents could come together to decompress and learn from one another all while their children were entertained, was appealing. Thus, Heather’s side-hustle Play-A-Latte was born. Hear the whole story...

Duration:00:51:17

Ronak – From Biomedical Sciences, to Marketing, to Entrepreneur-Barista

10/21/2020
#8 - A young Ronak Patel was practical, so a career working with computers seemed like a smart decision. When he realized the passion wasn't there, he pivoted to working towards becoming an optometrist but again the passion was missing. After taking an economics course, he found his lane and worked towards his passion for marketing, entrepreneurship, and connecting with people. After a decade of honing his craft in a variety of jobs, Ronak and his wife decided to strike out on their own and...

Duration:01:15:19

Brendon - The Politician or The Priest

10/14/2020
#7 - Brendon Bedford knew what he wanted; the perfect middle-class life and the chance to make a difference in the world. After finding a happy place working in politics, an opportunity arose to work at the university he called home for 4 years. He jumped at the chance for a more stable work-life balance and he finally had everything he wanted; a stable career, a house with a picket fence, and a loving wife and daughter. And yet, something was missing. One day something hit him - literally -...

Duration:01:12:47

Aatir - Fixing People's Problems For A Living

10/7/2020
#6 - Aatir got his first job at 15 years old and has not taken a break from working since. When he attended the University of Waterloo, the first thing he did was get an on-campus job, which led him to consider a career at the University's Office of Advancement. But his real crossroad moment came during the winter break after his first term, where he went to an interview for a summer job that would change his life. When you know the path to your dream job, does school matter anymore? Listen...

Duration:00:52:49

Rachel - From History Degree to Occupational Therapist

9/30/2020
#5 - From a young age, Rachel Peters watched her mom's surgery videotapes, so a passion for medicine was always there. But after deciding to get an undergraduate degree in history, how does someone end up in a career as an Occupational Therapist? Rachel's story involves an overseas graduate school and work rotation that sparked her interest in becoming a neuro-specialist. After studying and working abroad for 7 years, she moved back to Canada in 2019 to continue her career. Let's take a...

Duration:01:04:35