Our chat with BBA 14’ alum Christine Qin Yang
Christine works for the Nova Scotia Department of Intergovernmental Affairs as their International Relations Officer. She is also an active member of the MSVU Alumnae Association Board of Directors and sits on the Mount’s board of governors. Christine is an amazing role model for all Mount students!
Tell me a bit about your job and what you do on a daily basis?
As an International Relations Officer, I am mainly responsible for communications, strategic planning, and International relations for Nova Scotia. I specialize in developing relations with China, as China is Nova Scotia’s second largest and fastest growing trading partner.
How did you find this job?
When I worked at Halifax Partnership, I always made it a point to network, build relationships and see how I can contribute the most to Halifax and NS. This led me to realize that the NS-China relationship was growing, and then I could potentially be a part of that if I developed my skills enough. When I finally came across the job posting, I was already semi-prepared, and so I jumped at the opportunity.
If you were to go back in time, would you have predicted that you would be working in this industry and be in a similar position?
If we go back far enough, definitely not, I am quite honoured as an international student to be able to serve the province in the way I do.
As a member of the MSVU alumnae board what does your position entail?
I sit on the Alumnae Event Committee and Segmentation Committee to organize events for alumnae and friends.
Why did you decide to become a member of the alumnae board?
Even before I graduated from the Mount – I knew I would want to stay involved and look for ways to give back. After graduation I continued to recognize the positive influence and impact it had on me and so I wanted to find a way to serve the Mount community.
You have had some wonderful jobs after graduation. Can you tell me about your experience landing your first job after graduation?
I pretty much networked my shoes off for months after graduation, until suddenly, I started to really know people around the city, and within different companies and organizations. I enjoyed attending events and getting connected to others- and it happened that there was an organization (Halifax Partnership) who was seeking an individual to coordinate their connector program and do just that. Soon I found myself a job, and a platform, where I could help other new immigrants and recent grads grow their skills and network in hopes of finding meaningful employment.
What classes would you recommend students take if they want to pursue a similar career path to you?
I would say that classes focused on business, international relations and communications would be the most applicable. My current role, and many other roles in government relations really depend on someone having the ability to work well with others, communicate efficiently and understand the world.
Lastly, if a new graduate wanted to get involved like you have, what advice would you have for them?
I think the Mount has so many great events, interesting initiatives, and a great network. In saying that, I believe that new graduates, including myself, simply need to get there and be involved. It really all comes down to how many hands you shake, how many events you attend, what you learn, and how many relationships you develop in the process.