PIP Shares Insights on Engaging International Students & Inroads to Immigrant Entreprenurship

January 2020 Edition of Partnership News by the Peterborough Immigration Partnership

Launched in 2008, the Peterborough Immigration Partnership has been working towards building a prosperous and inclusive community for all. The work of the partnership is broadly organised around working groups that are created to respond to the changing demands of our community. Two of these working groups focus on Immigrant Economic Integration and International Student Support & Retention.

This month, the projects and insights from these groups were highlighted at two presentations/webinars.

Inroads to Entrepreneurship: Local strategies to support immigrant business and local prosperity

Reem Ali, Community Development Worker, New Canadians Centre was a panelist for Cities of Migration’s Learning Exchange webinar series on January 23. The webinar explored strategies being used here in Peterborough and in New Brunswick to support immigrant businesses.

Immigrants face the same challenges in starting a new business as entrepreneurs anywhere. Additional roadblocks can include language, limited knowledge of local markets, regulatory issues, access to credit or vital business networks. Whether running a small business or investing in a new start-up, entrepreneurship has always been a route for immigrants to establish and sustain themselves in new communities. Research suggests that local communities that are willing to invest in entrepreneurs are investing in strategies that will advance innovation and spur creativity for the benefit of all residents (Kao et al. 2002).

During the webinar, Reem presented information about the Newcomer Kitchen Peterborough, a project of the Peterborough Immigration Partnership which ran from 2017 – 2019. Facilitated by the New Canadians Centre in collaboration with the Nourish Project, the Newcomer Kitchen Peterborough project aimed to empower newcomer women with cooking, workplace English and entrepreneurial skills.

Sharing culture and driving growth: How can you engage international students in meeting your needs?

PIP Partners Tracey McConnery, Manager of English Programs & International Student Services, Fleming College and Paul Longhurst, International Student Advisor, Trent University, delivered a Lunchbox Learning event at the Greater Peterborough Chamber of Commerce on January 22.

$114+ million – this is the estimated amount that 2900 international students at Trent and Fleming boosted our local economy in 2018. Participants were asked to consider the role that international students play as consumers, skilled employees and leaders and if they are maximising the opportunities to reach out to this burgeoning population. With recruitment and enrollment projected to grow significantly over time, how can businesses stay current and utilise their skills? At the workshop, participants learned how international students can help meet local labour needs and discussed opportunities for collaboration.

Established in 2008, the Peterborough Immigration Partnership (PIP) is a community-based partnership of individuals & organizations which envisions a community where the meaningful economic, social and cultural integration of newcomers ensures a prosperous and inclusive community for all. The New Canadians Centre is the lead member of the Partnership.

Please contact us for more information and to become involved in this partnership.

View the Minutes from our March 2018 Annual Meeting here