Small town immigrants #2

Canada Immigration Forum (discussion group)            
Subject: Small town immigrants #2
  I am reading the career section of the Vancouver Sun. It is bursting with opportunities all over the province. What may be interesting to note is that the majority of jobs are professional but not necessarily ones that I think might be easily filled by a recent immigrant simply because they don´t fall inside the major streams of engineering and IT. I am guessing the majority of jobs pay $50K+

Median total household income in Canada is $60,600. People live on that amount of money- not sure I could but they do. Only 10% of Canadians make more than $60,000, and only 5% earn more than $80,000.

So, if all immigrants arrive thinking they are all going to capture those $80K jobs - we have an expectation problem.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
I also read a similar article about oppurtunities in BC. Closer to my professsion, they are asking for Rebar (stell reinforcement) installers, and Govt. is bringing Civil Engineers but not the apparent demanding one. This installers definitely earn more than the civil engineers with same year of experiences.

That doesn´t mean that Civil Engineers have a tendecny to move for that types of jobs or they should. So if a Civil Engineer doesn´t want to work as a field technician then he musn´t be blamed for over expectation. That installer jobs have money but doesn´t have anything to do with Engineering.

I don´t think majority of immigrants are that stupid to expect a job of 80k after landing. As a matter of fact, with my background I´m still way back from that range if don´t move to CA or the North East.

Diverting the issue with extreme comparison can´t tell anything other than unnecesarry debate.

Immigrants don´t expect to be below the poverty line at least, that is nothing over or under specially for the professional class, I don´t care much for the assulym seekers. There are literally thousands indivudual/collective stories available about this problem, none stated that immigrants wanted 80K jobs but are getting 50/60K jobs and hence feeling disatisfied.

If anything appears like that then please show me.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
I agree with DC; I can´t imagine anyone expecting salaries that high, but then again, I have read the stories about people feeling angry about making an honest wage (as though Canada will automatically provide them with $120,000 salaries).

We live off of a decent wage with no problem, and manage on one income, but we couldn´t afford to go much lower without losing all of our expendable cash, nor could we afford a much more expensive house. Therefore, we feel we need to stay within our current income bracket to make it a a viable move, and we need to find a city that offers housing in our price range.

It is not unreasonable to set oneself for success, but it is important to be realistic. I would hope that if more immigrants put more thought into expenditures vs realistic income potential, there might more success stories.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
wannabe, you are 100% right. you are carefully trying to match job, with city, with expected salary. You are doing exactly what people coming to Canada should do.

You will know exactly what you are walking in to and that is the best recipe for success than you can have.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)


Fort McMurray is a different world than the rest of Canada. They are paying around $15/h to a person to flip burgers at Mcdonalds.

Professional salaries including trades are around 65K to $150K average in this town and just because of the lack of workers I think this is a good town for newcomers.
We have the joy to have lots of different ethnic groups which really helps newcomers to adapt to this town.

Of course, people has to face our hot tropical winters of 45C bellow :)

And those two weeks of summer are priceless.

I think that big booming in terms of money is in the oildsands these days. I wonder if the Alberta government is going to ever make our life easer to keep our good employees that are on a work permit. We need them and they need us. (Sounds like a good businnes doesn´t it?).

Bare in mind that Northern BC hasn´t been fully explored yet, just wait... the Tree Huggers have more oil than you can shake a stick at.

Doing the proper homework before moving to a new country is a big ingredient in the recipe for success.

Should the Government suggest to settle in small towns? that are full of gas, uranium and oil? It will be beneficial for everyone.



(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)

Problem is I suspect rarely guys read any factual real reports before making comments. It is useless to discuss anything if you guys do not want to have a look into reality rather than " I see ..I Know" type logic.

We are talking about poverty rate among the immigrants of 35.8% reported by StatCan. They are below the poverty line dear freinds "NOT BELOW EXPECTATION LEVEL". Wannabe was surprized to know how the "Good Performing" immigrants are surviving with $18,000 or $23,000 annual salary. I just wanted to let her know that most immigrants even are below that income level. It is upto your judgement whether they have to suffer because of "over expectation".

I don´t know any study to quantify the "Over Expexcted" immigrants.

Immigrants low incme was 1.8 times more than the locals in 1980 and 2.5 times in 2000, and 3.5 times in 2003. What does it mean? Their expectation level is getting bigger and that´s why they are becoming more poor? What does Bill say? Progressively they are getting lazy? Unaware of Ft. Mcmurray?

This is not any matter of debate. It was clearly proved.


Before I left Canada many of my Canadian freinds/relative also sugegsted me to try "Alberta Magic". In their world Alberta employers are grabbing people from the streets by throwing laso. Unfortunately I never could grabbed that laso. Just last week 2 of my fellow coursemates moved to the middle east with jobs after gaining "valuable Experience" in working gas station and pizza shop with Canadian Masters degree for almost 3 years. May be they were effortless, lazy, didn´t do their "HOMEWROK".

As you are more interetesd in discussing personal experiecne I prefered to tell you my personal experience.

That doesn´t mean that Alberta doesn´t have any. Yes it has, it provided some jobs, that is spoonful to the total demand. Ft. Mcmurray is not entire Canada or itself can support 60/70 thousands professional immigrants every year.

More funny thing is Canadians getting US Green Card in work category are increasing every year (I see the data including 2006).

Like many myths, the "Skill Shortage" issue was exagerrated by a certain quarter for their own benefits. You may be in the dream world but now I see a good number of Canadians are being aware.

Read this (though I know you woudn´t):

Where there are 5 jobs and 100 applicants 95 have to be rejected; regardless of qualifications.

Please explain me why ON immigration minister Mike Cole commented 3 years ago that the poin system immigration is similar to inviting someone for dinner and then feed him with bones or let him wash the dish. He probably is not aware of huge Alberta boom and looming BC boom that could play a overnight magic. Very sad.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
DC: To clarify, I didn´t express surprise that there are immigrants are living off those wages mentioned, but rather that the wages are so low (compared to what I am used to in the States). Any reference to "over expectation" was in regards to expecting very high salaries without doing one´s homework first (ie: expecting salaries to be similar to somewhere else, or to be in balance with an area´s cost of living, or whether one will need further education or licensing to practice your profession).

I do think it is important to do one´s homework before moving to a new country--any new country. As Americans, we are constantly finding things about Canadian culture that surprises us--and we EXPECT it to (and we are glad that it does)! I cannot imagine doing the move from across the globe and without ever having stepped foot into the country before.

That said, I am in no way implying that "doing one´s homework" will ensure success. We landed over a year ago with full intention of moving north a few months later, only to find ourselves still trying to figure out how, exactly, to swing it without destroying our family´s financial security. We know a great deal of luck will have to have to come into play along with our "homework", but that is true of everything in life. However, I HOPE that by being realistic in our decision will help the odds, and I have to think that by not situating ourselves in a city in which we cannot afford to live or where jobs in my husband´s field don´t exist, our odds of success are increased. Further, because we value the outdoors and nature, we don´t wish to settle in a smoggy suburb or a city in which we´d have to live 30 stories in the sky (or in someone else´s basement for that matter); we just simply wouldn´t succeed in that environment.

Again, apologies if my ramblings are murky today. I don´t wish to offend anyone.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
Thank you Sharon; it really helps to hear that sometimes!
(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
after you do all the homework, there comes a time when you need to make that leap of faith and trust that you will land on your feet. If you have 2-3 months of living expenses that you are willing to view as an investment into the transition - you will be in a very good position to get what you want.

what sort of work are you and your husband looking for?

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)

I didn´t feel bad about your words. It seems to me that you are not aware of the recent immigrants problem in depth. That´s why I wanted to give you a little idea. I have an idea that you aren´t that interested in such discussion like Richard.

Though for anyone, to say somebody "Over Expected" to an educated immigrant living in dire poverty is not unjustified, but also creul. It shows the true face of the immigrant lovers.

I´m not saying that all immigrants deserve white collar jobs or they aren´t liable for the research at all. However, when a Govt. pictures their country as full of oppurtunities and invites immigrants by particular profession then it is more than enough for any confusion. Upon arrival they come to know that the jobs do not exist as they were told. Recently Canadian immigration minister visited India for immigrant hunting. The same story..Why such craziness for the professions that your own country has already surplus? Does it make any sense?

For you it is easy to back & forth between USA/Canada; not so easy for the guys from the other sides of the world. Their response is more direct. They are losing interest for Canada. Though Canada still won´t have any problem with finding immigrants, even professionals, but not the bright ones. Mostl will now come with fake degress and who were originally loser back home. Just from 2000 to 2004 professional immigrant applicants dropped to 177,000 from 300,000.

Frankly speaking, had I not seen Canadian job market in my own eyes, the conditions of immigrants I wouldn´t believe just by reading some forum stories. I was also told before leaving USA such stories 10 years back, at that time I didn´t believe thinking some immigrants always make up stories. That time I was more than willing to exchange one of my hand for Canada immigration literally.

Anyway, I wish you to find Canada as your home and a new start. Hope you or Richard wouldn´t fall into the category of more than 50% immigrants who return to the USA from Canada.


(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
I´ve been reading you guys´ interesting thoughts and comments here in this thread. But frankly I´m not sure what the contention is here, if any.

It seems to me one issue that confuses things is this: American immigrants like Bill, Wannabe, and me may have different expectations than overseas immigrants like Lilly, CBV, DC, and others. They may be more willing to accept certain situations than we do due to cultural and/or economic background differences.

In our situation, we´re coming from a standard of living already similar to Canada´s. I don´t mean to imply that our group is in any way better or superior, but just that attitudes and expectations might be different.

I sense from some in our group that we´re not satisfied with the political, social, or economic atmosphere that we live with in the States. You guys on your side may be more interested (and rightly so) in pure economic improvement above all else. Sure, as Wannabe says, we need to survive finacially in this move. For us it makes no sense to satisfy any of our other desires or needs, only to find ourselves and few rungs down on the financial ladder.

So I guess what I´m positing is that we have a mix of immigration issues and objectives, because some of us come from different circumstances and have diffeent expectations. Yes, DC will probably note that we all need to survive as no.1 issue, and that means getting good professional jobs that are hard to find in Canada. But that´s true in Europe too, yet many prefer to live there.

Ok, end of my rambling. But I´m enjoying you guys´ good discussion.

(in reply to: Small town immigrants #2)
Sharon: Thank you. I know on some level that you are right, and that leap of faith will have to be taken soon. My husband is in the energy business; he currently works as a business analyst for one of the largest energy providers in the country (the position covers a lot of ground, from working closely with the legal department, to the engineering groups, and accounting as well as working on web design, proposal management, etc.), and is working on earning his international Project Management license (should be complete in the next few months). He´s very interested in working with green energy.

DC: again, I never implied that to expect a decent wage is "over expecting". However, checking in advance that wages are indeed what you expect them to be/need them to be/want them to be, and that cost of living is in balance, makes sense to me. I am not a cruel person, nor do I proclaim to have any idea how anyone makes such an enormous leap from across the globe. My point was that it´s BIG enough from literally across state/provincial lines, never mind from so far away.

It is true that I am rather unaware of how much Canada is promoting immigration in other countries. We don´t see it here, of course; most of the immigrating is done the other way (though I will say, all of my Canadian friends here are envious of our move, and wish that they could move back. Some have started threatening their spouses!). I am not accusing anyone of making up stories, but I do see a lot of people who make life more difficult for themselves than they need to (see any immigration forum). This is not my point, however, and I make no judgments on how someone chooses to make such a personal move.

I do not always have the opportunity to join in the conversations, but I always enjoy reading them. I am interested in all things relating to immigration (and all things Canadian, for that matter), given that it´s been such an enormous part of my life for so many years.

Thanks for the good wishes (now can you help me get over this flu?!).