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UWaterloo Alumni Podcasts

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UWaterloo Alumni Podcasts present personal stories and professional expertise from our global network of grads. In "Uncharted" alumni open up about their career journeys to inspire your own path. In "Alumni Know" grads share their expertise on today's timely and important topics. "Event Broadcasts" bring UWaterloo alumni events, including lectures and expert panels, straight to your earbuds.
56 Episodes
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After completing her co-op terms at the University of Waterloo, Alice Chu (BA ’18) felt a corporate career was no longer the right fit for her. On this episode of Uncharted, she shares her journey from the Honours Arts and Business program to a thriving career in the food industry, then pursuing a second career in law. Alice opens up about her transformative co-op terms, how an exchange to Singapore ignited her passion for food and how she’s committed to lifelong learning and pursuing new int...
In May, the University of Waterloo launched a new alumni chapter in Ottawa. As part of the event, alumni from the Ottawa region joined an expert panel to explore happiness. Moderator: Salman Jivani (BA ’11, MA ’17), associate vice-president, office of advancement, University of Waterloo Panelists: Dr. Linda Duxbury (BSc ’75, MASc ’77, PhD ’83), professor, management, Carleton University Niraj Bhargava (BASc ’86), founder and CEO, NuEnergy.ai and The New Energy Group ...
Michelle Li (BSc ’05) has always been interested in sustainability and took a leap in 2017 to become vegan when she wanted to do more to decrease her own carbon footprint.Today, she’s the founder of Clever Carbon, a playful educational website with the goal of increasing carbon literacy amongst consumers. “When we don’t understand the impact, it’s easy to ignore it.”Michelle is also passionate about empowering other women working in climate and has founded a global network of over 4,000 ...
It can be daunting to decide what schools you want to apply to and what you want to study when you’re only a teenager in high school. But it’s important to remember that what you choose to study doesn’t always dictate what type of career you’ll have. And it didn’t for Ahmed Mezil (BASc ’14). He’s one of many alumni who have taken an unexpected career journey. How do you start in engineering at the University of Waterloo and end up becoming the CEO of the cleaning company Hellamaid? That’...
Think back to when you got your first bank account. What year was it? How did you deposit cheques, pay for items or check your balance? I bet a lot has changed since then. Today, you can do all of this from your phone, in any location you choose. Thanks to the financial technology (or FinTech) industry, more is changing every day. Our banking apps are constantly being updated with new information and tools. Do-it-yourself platforms are giving more access and control than ever. And AI has...
It happens every spring. You might not want to, but you have to file your income taxes. Collect your documents, file through an accountant or online platform, and through some magical math you'll discover your fate: payment or refund. If income taxes seem like a mysterious government equation, this episode is for you. Andrew Bauer (BA '03, MAcc '03, PhD '12) is a Canada Research Chair in Taxation, Governance and Risk. He's also an associate professor in Waterloo's School of Accounting an...
Money is personal. And we have a lot of feelings about it. How could we not? Our financial situations directly affect our lifestyles, health and even our self-worth. On top of that, our financial situations as children can change the way we deal with money later in life, leading us to avoid opening bills, overspend or take unnecessary risks. So, how can you improve your relationship with money and build good habits? Lianne Hannaway (BMath '02, MAcc '02) joins the podcast to explore the p...
Life can be expensive. Between rent, debt payments, savings and personal expenses — it can be hard to keep track of what's going in and out of your bank account each month.If money feels overwhelming, don't worry! Michelle Hung (BMath '08) joins the podcast to break down all the components of a budget, so you can create a monthly practice that works for your needs today and in the future. After Michelle graduated from Waterloo, she spent seven years working in investment banking and venture c...
Earlier this year, alumni in Waterloo Region shared their journeys to unique careers. At the Road Less Travelled event, students and alumni joined us to hear from four grads of the last decade who took an unexepected path. In today's episode, we'll listen to their stories. You'll hear from BeBlended founder Aileen Agada (BASc '21), artist Saphera Peters (GBDA '20), UX researcher Michael Cao (BSc '15, MSc '18) and health tech entrepreneur Keenan Sarani (PharmD '21). If you like this...
Universities are not just schools. They're also communities, and today's guest understands that deeply. Robin Jones-Stadelbauer (BA '12, BA '22) decided to study social development because she wanted to work with Indigenous communities, like the one she'd grown up in. But her time as a student was difficult. She felt disconnected and isolated from the her Indigenous culture. Eventually, she decided to take a break and moved home. Later, Robin returned to Waterloo as a staff me...
There are more than 230,000 Waterloo alumni located all over the world. The beauty of having such a large, global community is that you're bound to find other alumni you can connect with — people who come from a similar background, live in the same city, or share the same interests as you. In this episode, we speak with alumni who are helping to facilitate those connections. Thoko Phiri (PhD '18) and Margaret Mutumba (PhD '23) both came to Waterloo as international graduate students in t...
Monika Snowdon (PhD '21) is a nano-scientist. During her PhD, she created microscopic structures that look like tweezers to stabilize carbon nano-tubes when manufacturing microchips. It's a very specific solution for a very specific problem.But Monika's career hasn't been so specific. If anything, Monika is a great example of how one type of experience or knowledge can transfer into a different area. That electronic nanotech experience she got as a PhD student? She uses it today as a sci...
On June 28, 2023, two weeks after we recorded this episode, the University of Waterloo was confronted by a hate-motivated, violent attack. A professor and two students in the Philosophy 202/Gender and Social Justice 222 course were attacked because they were exploring issues related to society and gender. As a community, we stand united against all forms of violence, hatred and bigotry. We are committed to fostering an inclusive, safe and welcoming environment for everyone. While ...
Originally recorded in May 2021, Brad Regehr (BA '93) shares how he reconnected with his identity and culture, and what the future holds for Indigenous rights in Canada. Brad is a member of the Peter Bellantyne Cree Nation in Saskatchewan. A grandchild of a residential school survivor, and a survivor himself of the Sixties Scoop, he's worked in Indigenous law for more than 20 years. In fall 2020, he was named president of the Canadian Bar Association—the first Indigenous president in the orga...
Everyone makes mistakes, but most of us don't like to talk about them. Last month, the Vancouver Alumni Chapter invited three Waterloo grads to turn their biggest blunders into talking points. The Mistakes That Made Us event featured a discussion with startup founder Ian MacKinnon (BMath '06, MMath '08) and life leadership coach Gloria Eid (BA '11). Moderator Matt Manuel (BASc '93), principal PM manager at Microsoft, shared some of his own flubs too. In this episode, you'll get to ...
In 2008, David Kennedy (BMath '02) and his co-founders launched a website where users could create comic strips about themselves and their friends. From the beginning, people had a special connection with the animated characters that looked like them. Eventually, those characters became what we now know as Bitmoji — emoji that look like you, and represent your emotions in a more authentic way than a yellow happy face can. As a computer science grad with strong interests in the arts,...
Arda Öcal studied math at Waterloo because it would lead to a stable career. But he was more interested in media. He wrote for Imprint and hung out at CKMS, Waterloo's student radio station. After graduation, he followed that passion, and today he's the host of Sportcentre and NHL on ESPN. So, How did Arda find his way to ESPN? Mostly, by saying yes. Over the years, he said yes to any opportunity, gaining new skills and experience along the way. With each "yes," Arda stepped into a ...
In a future that promises opportunity and waves of disruption, great leaders will need more than technical expertise to deliver results for their organizations. Rose Patten is the Special Advisor to the CEO of BMO Financial Group and Chancellor of the University of Toronto, and just last week she joined the UWaterloo community to discuss her new book, Intentional Leadership: The Big 8 Capabilities Setting Leaders Apart. In today's episode, you'll hear that discussion with UWaterloo Presi...
If you're an international student or new grad, this episode is for you.Job Search Club is a new program for international visa students at UWaterloo. Every week, students gather for online sessions that will help them prepare for their post-graduation job search. In today's episode, you get to be a fly on the wall in one of these sessions, where four international alumni share their experience starting a career in Canada. You'll meet financial analyst Limei Chen (BMath '21), entrepreneu...
Michael Cao came to Waterloo's Kinesiology program thinking that he might become a doctor or physiotherapist. At that point, he had no idea that his bachelor and master's degrees would give him an edge as a user experience (UX) professional, or lead him to work at TheScore. Today, Michael is a UX researcher and leader, whose work plays a vital role in how I -- and thousands of other fans -- get the latest news about our favourite teams and players. Michael joins the podcast to talk about...
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