Our project aims to improve immigrant integration programs by exploring the immigration and settlement process from the perspective of professionals and trades people who are clients of Winnipeg’s Success Skills Centre, an agency that offers employment assistance services to immigrant professionals and skilled workers. We make three observations on the integration experience of immigrant professionals and trades people in the Manitoba labour market. First, recent immigrants to Manitoba through the Provincial Nominee Program (PNP) have been educated and skilled, yet their labour market participation has often been restricted to general labour and entry-level employment. Second, immigration policy sets a minimum amount of money that an adult immigrant has to bring with him or her, resulting in a demand/supply mismatch in the labour market. Finally, employment has not been a fair or effective stepping-stone to integration in the case of visible minority immigrants. Our research indicates that a strict labour market definition of success fails to capture the expectations and real life goals of new immigrants.
Key Words: immigration, professional immigrants, workforce, integration, Manitoba