Program: Major in Communication, Minor in Business, Extended Minor in French
The combination of a communications and business education, combined with a native fluency in French, has provided SFU undergraduate student Barkha Ramnauth with solid professional experience upon which to build her career – and all long before she is set to graduate.
Barkha has found the education she has received in both her communications and business classes to be complementary, each adding value to the other. The analytical skills that business classes impart, for example, have offered greater insight into her communications education. She is confident that the combination will ultimately offer her an edge in the employment market.
“Majoring in Communications with a Business Minor has been very helpful – I realized very quickly how interconnected the two disciplines are,” she says. “Communications does not just require interpersonal skills, it requires you to research the problems, look at the bigger picture, and understand how markets and globalization work. These are all applicable skills that you learn through business.”
Barkha has supplemented her education with professional experience from early in her studies. Initially working in a student position for the Canada Revenue Agency, she was subsequently promoted to the role of Bilingual E-Services Tax Payer Client Service Agent. The role utilized many of the skills – from both business and communications – that she learned through her SFU education.
She has also taken advantage of the real-world experience offered through SFU’s co-op program, working as a Technical Marketing and Business Analyst for tech company NZ Technologies Inc. She supplemented her professional roles by volunteering for not-for-profit agency DIVERSEcity, working on the organization’s Bundle Up Campaign, a donation drive to help ease the transition of refugees to Canada.
“I would like to work in marketing or PR in future, and co-op is useful for obtaining experience in the real-world that will help with the career I want,” says Barkha. “As good as learning in the classroom is, you cannot get better experience than working for a real company.”
Barkha is in no doubt that the combination of co-curricular activities and leading-edge education SFU offers have provided her with a resumé that will appeal to employers upon graduation – and she believes that by adding a business minor to her curriculum it allowed her to choose exactly what direction she wants her career path to take.
“Communications is such a vast field that it is sometimes hard to narrow down what you want to do, but that is where the business minor came in,” she says. “Through it, I took a marketing class that was very hands-on, and it was through that experience that I figured out that my communications skills would be suited to marketing. Without my business minor I probably would not know what I wanted to do in my career.”