About Stepwest

We are one of Canada’s fastest-growing work and travel providers and a Recognized Organization (RO) by the Government of Canada.

WE ARE A RECOGNIZED ORGANIZATION

We are proud to be a trusted Recognized Organization by the Government of Canada under its program International Experience Canada (IEC).

A ‘Recognized Organization (RO)’ title is awarded to organizations that have passed a rigorous application, screening, and selection process by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC), via International Experience Canada (IEC).

The eligibility criteria is based on the quality of work and travel programs provided, the volume and reciprocity ratio of Canadian to foreign international youth processed, and internal operations that work to continuously grow and improve the services being offered.

Our sister company, Stepabroad, gives young Canadians the opportunity to experience work and travel in destinations around the globe.

IT’S ALL ABOUT YOU

No two people are the same. We all have different interests, ambitions and needs – we want to know yours. Our programs are personalized to meet your needs – whether you’re looking for a professional internship at a top Canadian startup, work experience at a resort in the Canadian Rockies or to work and study in Vancouver.

Since 2010, we’ve been helping young participants from over 35 countries work and travel in Canada with guaranteed work experiences through our Internship, Working Holiday and Study and Work programs.

Our focus is to create the best possible experience to help you grow personally and professionally. We’ll be there every step of the way – from initial idea to planning, living and working in Canada, until you return home – to ensure you are safe and make the most out of your experience abroad.

Our Team

Thomas Prieur

Chief Experience Officer

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

France, Canada, Ireland.

My top tip for moving abroad:

When I land in a new country, I usually go straight to the local market, and check out the type of produce they have, pay attention to the way people communicate and what they eat. Then I usually proceed to the nearest food stall and order whatever people around me seem to be eating and enjoying. Best way to get an immediate shot of local culture!

My top tip for living in Canada:

Vancouver is a very multicultural city, so there are a lot of opportunities to try food from all over the world. If you are on a budget, I highly recommend New Town bakery in Chinatown for a taste of Hong Kong. Their steam buns at $3.50 a piece is a great bargain, and their coconut buns are to die for! One block away is Fortune Sound Club, a great venue with a lot of live music and events.

My top moment in Canada:

Years ago in Tofino, on a sunny hot summer day, a local fisherman was kind enough to take a few of my friends and I on his boat and drop us off on a local island a few km away for a couple of days of “remote camping”. After setting up camp, the sun was already setting, and a group of curious otters came to play nearby. I still vividly remember the tangerine orange sunset backdrop with the playful dark otter shadows. Breathtaking.

Carolina Perez Baso

Sales & Marketing Director

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Spain, Germany, United Kingdom, Italy, United States, Canada.

My top tip for moving abroad:

It does not matter if English is not your first language, you will be surprised by how many conversations you can get started just because of your accent or English. Talk, talk and talk!

My top tip for living in Canada:

Canada is huge, so it can be overwhelming what are the places that you want to visit first. Make a destination list and organize your time in Canada to visit those places. My favourite place is Tofino during the summer, I’m always impressed by how beautiful it is!

My top moment in Canada:

When I travelled to the Canadian Rockies during the summer and saw that the blue turquoise lakes are actually that colour. I was always under the impression that they could not be that blue, but YES, they are that impressive blue. I still have the challenge of jumping into one, I have not been that brave yet!

Katie Wagner

Placement Manager

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Canada, USA, UK, Austria.

My top tip for moving abroad:

Have an open mind! That would probably be the biggest advice as moving to another country means adapting and understanding new traditions and ways.

My top tip for living in Canada:

Visit as many lakes as you can! The natural colour of the water is stunning, and you don’t even need to drive too far from the city to find them! Garibaldi highlands are just under two-hours from Vancouver, and so is the Fraser Valley!

My top moment in Canada:

Visiting Banff and Jasper National Parks! The nature is out of this world, truly a bucket list destination!

Lizzie Shipley

Digital Marketing Manager

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

England, Canada, Panama, Honduras, and Colombia.

My top tip for moving abroad:

Go for a run! You’ll get familiar with your local surroundings, see the sights and earn the beers after. Also, book a ticket to Sofar Sounds to see local artists performing in intimate venues.

My top tip for living in Canada:

If you’re living in Vancouver and want to learn to ski or snowboard, invest in an early-bird ski pass for the local mountains. Grouse normally offers complimentary days at its sister resort, Revelstoke, so you can plan an epic ski trip the following winter.

My top moments in Canada:

There are too many! But to whittle it down: hiking the North Coast Trail on Vancouver Island, tree planting across BC’s interior, spotting a black bear take a morning dip at Widgeon Lake and seeing a moonrise over the mountains at Brew Hut near Whistler – it was better than any sunset or sunrise I’ve ever seen!

Adeline Hadijanto

Travel Coordinator

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Indonesia, Canada, Austria.

My top tip for moving abroad:

The Meetup application is a great platform where you can meet people with similar interests. Also, if you’re a student, the University often has social events, so make sure you participate whenever you can, because that’s where you can meet new friends and build your social or professional networks as well!

My top tip for living in Canada:

If you’re new in Vancouver, don’t be afraid to make conversation with strangers. Making friends in Vancouver is not easy, but you’re not the only one, so struck a conversation with someone new and you’ll be surprise how many people are just in the exact same situation as you ☺

My top moments in Canada:

I’ve skydived in Victoria on Vancouver Island, discovered the most delicious ‘Raspberry Lychee Danish’ from Crust Bakery while there and taken the helijet from Victoria to Vancouver. Also, hiking to the peak of Cascade Mountain, the backdrop of Banff, and dipping into the third lake in Joffre Lakes.

Anne Horst

Placement Coordinator

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Germany, Ireland, Canada.

My top tip for moving abroad:

In the beginning it is hard for everyone. No one feels comfortable in a new place with new people right away, so remember that you are not the only one feeling this way. There are always like minded people that are looking for similar things to you, you just have to look in the right places. For example, if you like music you should go to live concerts / music bars!

My top tip for living in Canada:

Vancouver is a very expensive city, so make sure you check the monthly rent before you come and plan to live here. There are cheaper options in Greater Vancouver like Surrey or Abbotsford, it really depends on your needs.

My top moment in Canada:

One of my favourite moments ever in Vancouver was skiing during sunset on Grouse Mountain. I looove skiing, but in Europe most places do not offer night skiing so I have never seen a sunset while skiing down a snowy mountain. Grouse probably has the best views of Vancouver and seeing the sunset over my favourite city, doing my favourite sport… just incredible!

Louise Leeson

Placement Coordinator

THE COUNTRIES I’VE LIVED AND WORKED IN:

Ireland, Greece & Canada.

MY TOP TIP FOR MOVING ABROAD:

It can be scary and unfamiliar in the beginning, but don’t let that hold you back. Go and explore different places, meet new people and try different foods. Living abroad can be such an eye-opening experience if you embrace it.

MY TOP TIP FOR LIVING IN CANADA:

Explore outside the city. Vancouver is beautiful but there is lots more to see in BC. Take a car or bus outside the city on your weekends or days off and explore the mountains, lakes and other towns around. They are simply spectacular and totally worth it!

MY TOP MOMENT IN CANADA:

Houseboating on Shuswap Lake.

Olivia Vik

Social Media Specialist

THE COUNTRIES I’VE LIVED AND WORKED IN:

Canada, Australia, and Indonesia.

MY TOP TIP FOR MOVING ABROAD:

Be kind and gentle with yourself! Embarking on such an exciting adventure can be hard sometimes, but I promise it will be worth it. The self-growth that comes from stepping out of your comfort zone is irreplaceable. Don’t let your fears stop you!

MY TOP TIP FOR LIVING IN CANADA:

Get outside! Canada is full of so much beautiful nature. Take a day trip to a nearby national park or lake. Try something new like skiing or canoeing. Be prepared for lots of different types of weather and activities.

MY TOP MOMENTS IN CANADA:

My top moment in Canada would be going for a sunrise surf session at Long Beach in Tofino. I’m a beach girl at heart. There is something so special about waking up with the sun and being the only one on the waves.

Mariah Chand

Placement Coordinator

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Canada.

My top tip for moving abroad:

Try everything, embrace yourself in the culture and just enjoy and be good to yourself, take the time to adjust to your new life, this is an exciting time that can sometimes be overwhelming – but always remember this is going to be one of the best times of your life, and you should be proud of that!

My top tip for living in Canada:

See as much as you can, Canada is so big and has so much to offer. Maybe you want to try a new winter sport, spend a weekend camping by the ocean, see the city skylines, and everything in between. You can do it ALL here, and I think that is something everyone that lives here should take advantage of.

My top moment in Canada:

One of my favourite winter actives to do is go Snow shoeing up on grouse mountain, it is such a fun and beautiful experience. I have been doing this most winter since I was about 10 years old, and it never gets old!

Komal Handa

Lead Placement Specialist

The countries I’ve lived and worked in:

Canada, India.

My top tip for moving abroad:

My top tip for all of those planning to move to Canada would be to explore all the different options and not limit yourself. Believe in yourself and keep your ambitions high. Set milestones for yourself to celebrate your small achievements.

My top tip for living in Canada:

Networking would definitely be one of them!! If you are attending school or working, it is always a great idea to put yourself out there. Talk to people, and get to know the culture to be more comfortable. There are multiple magazines for new immigrants to help them settle down in a new country.

My top moment in Canada:

Getting my first corporate job would be my top moment in Canada. Being an international student myself, I understand the struggles. After multiple failed interviews and applications, getting my first job in this industry was very fulfilling. Hence, I decided to stick to this profession where I can help people like me get some career help.

Jessica Maclean

Placement Specialist

THE COUNTRIES I’VE LIVED AND WORKED IN:

Canada.

MY TOP TIP FOR MOVING ABROAD:

Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone and try new things. Explore as much as you can and engage with the local community!

MY TOP TIP FOR LIVING IN CANADA:

We Canadians are known for being polite and friendly but there is no need to say sorry after every sentence (even though I’m guilty of doing this!). Do what the locals do, say hi to neighbours and don’t let the cold, snow, ice or rain stop you from going outside and enjoying the great outdoors.

MY TOP MOMENT IN CANADA:

I was born and raised here so there are many! Over the years, I have travelled to every province and territory, (with the exception of Nunavut-that’s next!), and it’s such a diverse, friendly and spectacularly beautiful place. I have met a lot of amazing people along the way.

Tater

Chief Security Officer

The countries I’ve lived and worked:

Canada, France.

My top tips for moving abroad:

Sniff out the food scene.

Top moments in Canada:

Meeting sea dogs for the first time!

OUR MANDATE

Our current mandate is to allow more Canadian youth to embark on work experiences abroad in order to create a 1:1 reciprocity ratio with foreign national youth coming to Canada.

We want to be able to provide both Canadian and foreign youth with the same amount of opportunities to travel to a new country and to gain work experience. Through these experiences, we aim to see youth immerse themselves in a new culture and eventually grow into mature and well-developed citizens who will be active and engaged members of their respective communities.

OUR VISION

We see a future where we can empower Canadian and foreign national youth, regardless of their socioeconomic status, to work and travel anywhere on the globe cost-effectively.

We enable youth to immerse themselves in a new culture and eventually grow into mature and well-developed citizens who will be active and engaged members of their respective communities.

Our Values

Become a Global Citizen

Our aim is to help you grow personally and professionally. Living and working abroad will make you more culturally aware and understanding, as well as giving you the necessary skills to boost your global career.

Genuine Support

In each of our locations, our on-site coordinators and partners will go the extra mile to support you throughout your work experience. We are proud to see our values reflected in our reviews online.

Cost-Effective

Our programs are built with affordability in mind; we want to enable all youth, no matter their economical background, to enrich their careers thanks to our travel and work experiences in Canada.

Study, Work and Travel in Canada

Want to know more about Stepwest? Get in touch with our team to learn more about how you can study, work and travel in Canada with Stepwest.

Let’s start planning your trip of a lifetime in Canada!