Mentorship Reflections

Oliver Jerschow, Mentor

Wonhee Yoo, Student

When did you graduate and what have you done since graduating?

I graduated from UC in 1997 with a degree in Geography and went on to do a master of City Planning degree at the University of California, Berkeley.  I worked in the US for a couple of years in California and Washington, DC, before moving back to Toronto and joining an urban planning and design consulting firm.  In 2006 I went to work for the province’s Ministry of Infrastructure, and now I’m an Executive Coordinator for policy in the Cabinet Office covering a portfolio of 12 different ministries.

What are you majoring in and what do you plan to do when you graduate?

I'm majoring on Forest Conservation Science and Environmental Biology. I'm interested in the field of forest management or in working for Ministry of the Environment. I want to live and work in the field where I can make difference by finding mutual beneficial relationship between nature and humans. By finding the path and fortifying management strategies, I want to see that it is possible to live better life by conserving nature. And this is why I want to learn more and work in the Government field.

 Why did you want to take part in the program?

I’ve always valued the insights that I’ve gained from people who have been mentors to me, and I wanted to return the favour.  Some kinds of knowledge only come from experience, and it’s great to be able to share that perspective with someone at a time in their lives when they can really use it!

Why did you want to take part in the program?

I wanted to hear and learn about how to build a career path towards the career of my dream. Because I'm a recent immigrant, I didn't have anyone that I could ask about such matters, so I was very grateful to hear of the UC Career Mentorship Program.

 How the program has benefited you?

I’ve really enjoyed meeting people who are current students at UC, and the program has helped me to stay connected with the college.  It’s also been a good opportunity to reconnect with some friends who were at UC with me and are now serving as mentors in the program too.

I would definitely recommend the program to others (and have).  It’s an excellent way to volunteer your time in a way that makes an impact on a personal level.

 How the program has benefited you?

Through Mr. Oliver's graciously volunteering his time, I was able to hear how he built his career path step by step. He also suggested a lot of helpful tips on how to start building a resume starting from my college life. Moreover, through his connection I was able to talk with a person who works in my dream career field.

I strongly recommend the UC mentorship program to anyone! Moreover, I already recommended to my friend on last year while I was participating on the program!

Future projections: where are you headed?

I intend to continue working in the public service, doing what I can to make Ontario a better place.  Every day is engaging, challenging, and it’s a pleasure to work with talented people who want to make a difference.

Future projections: where are you headed?

I'm currently volunteering for hands-on community environmental groups. I decided to continue my education to graduate level as well. Throughout my master programs, I plan to research the regeneration of forest after a large disturbance, particularly Alberta's oil sand mining zone.