Together Project

Story of a Match – Aya on Newcomer Education


Hi! My name is Aya! I am a 21 year-old newcomer to Canada. I am originally from Syria and I arrived in Canada in January 2021. I got connected with the Together Project through the Youth Change-Makers Initiative run by COSTI. Read Aya’s comments on her education in Canada.

1. How has your experience starting school in Canada been for you as a newcomer?

I am currently studying for a BA in Sociology in Toronto and I absolutely love it! I initially struggled a bit with online classes as I am a very social person and having to be at home most of the time was hard but I soon learnt to take advantage of it. Recorded lectures allow me to re-watch the lecture at my own pace, for however many times I need.

2. What challenges do you think newcomers may have in accessing higher education in Canada?

I was very lucky that my university accepted my high school diploma as it is. For a lot of other newcomers, especially those who come from non-English speaking countries where English was not the main language taught in schools, they are often asked to go through a process of transferring credits and evaluating their documents. This process can be very exhausting and overwhelming especially for those who have struggled greatly to continue their education. It costs a lot of money and it can take months before their evaluated documents get sent to the universities/colleges they are applying for.

3. What are your educational goals for the next few years?

I want to graduate! I want to learn as much as I can and utilize my resources and knowledge to be present in the community. I hope that once I conclude my undergraduate studies I could move on for a Masters! The journey never ends and that’s the beauty of learning!

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