Scholarship Winner Almost Overlooked ICT Career Option

On November 17 Ryerson University Business Technology Management student Oksana Kilik was presented a $5,000 scholarship cheque from ITAC, money raise through donations at the association’s annual golf tournament. In a thank you letter, Ms. Kilik outlines how the BTM program, spearhead by ITAC, has changed her life.

head shot of young student

Oksana Kilik

When I first came to John Cabot Catholic Secondary School, I avoided anything that was IT related. I thought that technology was complicated, and I would never understand it. It was only when I got to Grade 12 that my option changed drastically.

I was called into the principal’s office after my first semester and was told I did not have the right credits to graduate. He indicated that taking a computer technology course would solve the problem. I was scared. I didn’t know anything about coding, but I took the course anyways. To my surprise, web development became my favorite subject  I started researching all kinds of codes, and developing many kinds of websites. I ended the classes with a 94% and decided to take another technology course the following semester.

Inspired, I started researching for ITM programs, as an alternative to the business program I originally planned. When I came across the BTM program in my searches I knew right away that this was the perfect program for me.

Through high school, I took all kinds of business-related courses, from general math courses, to accounting, to economics; I thought that this would be my direction in university, but realizing that I also love technology and coding, BTM provided me with the perfect solution. It’s almost as if this program was made just for me.

As I have moved through Ryerson, I have learned something  important in every class. From creating a high-performing company in GLO-BUS, to developing an e-health system through flow charts in Visio, to constructing databases with SQL server, I have acquired experience and knowledge that I will be able to apply in the real world. The professors in the BTM program really recognize how important hands-on-learning is, and all their group assignments reflect this.

I am a very hard worker who is very persistent. I like to challenge myself, and prove I can accomplish what others thought was impossible. When I set my mind on something, I will work endless hours until I get the exact outcome I was looking for.

To feed my creative side, I became a marketing associate for the student group WITM: Women in Information Technology at Ryerson University during my second year of studies. Here I had the opportunity to create all the posters for all their event, as well as all the flyers, pamphlets and name tags. This is another reason why I chose the BTM program, because it provided me with the option of taking marketing along with my technology courses, allowing me to take advantage of my creative side.

I am currently completing my first co-op placement at TD Bank as part of the Corporate Segment Technology Solutions (CSTS) group. It is an experience I am extremely grateful for, but most importantly I am grateful for the amazing supervisor/trainer I have been provided with. She has trained me on multiple different programs and made me the owner of TD’s websites, so that I can manage and design them.

II once read this quote online: “It never gets easier, you just get better” and this is the motto I live by. The things we once found difficult are easy for us now, and possibly one of our greatest skill sets, so the things we find difficult today will become effortless one day; you just need to be persistent and never give up.

Thank you to ITAC for recognizing my hard work.  I could not be more grateful.

Oksana Kilik