What is an affordable career loan all about?

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Tips on accessing a Windmill loan to fund educational training or licensing costs

Clodia was a civil engineer in Syria before immigrating to Canada. She had overcome many challenges to achieve her professional goals in her home country, including gender discrimination — she was one of only two women in her graduating class. But she persevered and established a successful career, first as a surveyor and moving up to project manager.

But, wanting to live in a country that saw women as equals, she decided to immigrate to Canada. “When I finally landed on Canadian soil, my first thought was, oh my God, I am a free woman,” Clodia says.

In her new home of Edmonton, Alberta, however, she realized that she would face a whole new set of professional challenges. She would have to relicense as an engineer, including taking courses and a qualifying exam.

As a single mom, she didn’t have the extra funds to pay for the courses. When she read a brochure about registered not-for-profit Windmill Microlending’s affordable career loans, she was relieved. She could now pay for her relicensing process.

“I contacted Windmill and applied for a loan. The loan was so convenient as it was low interest and allowed me to pay back over time,” she says.

Tyler, a client success coach with Windmill Microlending, says many skilled immigrants are aware they will need to relicense and take qualifying exams in Canada, but they often “underestimate the magnitude of the costs and time it will take. They don’t realize it’s going to equal thousands of dollars, especially for regulated professions,” she says. “Depending on the area of study, the exams can be quite challenging and, unfortunately, some may have to retake them, plus pay for material and prep courses.”

Clodia is one of thousands of immigrant success stories across Canada who have received financial help with an affordable career loan thanks to Windmill Microlending.