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Student Nursing Journeys

20 Years of Supporting Internationally-Educated Nurses to Become Canadian Nurses

It has been more than 20 years since the day OMNI College was founded, in a suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.  Over the course of 2 decades, the College has proudly supported internationally-educated nurses in their quest to become Canadian nurses.

Nurses come to OMNI from all walks of life, and from countries all around the world.  Each of their journeys is unique.  Yet they all share the same common goal: to work as nurses in Canada. 

In celebration of OMNI College achieving its 20 year milestone, we released a series of “Nursing Journeys” to share more details about our student’s own unique stories, and how they achieved success here in Canada.

Read a few of our students’ stories:

Vol. 1 – Ian Canogoran | Philippines

Ian is now a Canadian Registered Nurse living and working in the beautiful eastern Canadian province of New Brunswick. However, the journey was not easy. 

Ian wanted to migrate to Canada and learned about Canada’s Federal Skilled Worker program. He tried to apply, only to find out he did not qualify. He almost gave up. READ MORE

Vol. 2 – Sachiko Hikawa | Japan

Sachiko was studying English in Vancouver at the time.  She had left her job as an RN at a university hospital in Japan because she was burnt out.

In Japan, she worked long hours with overtime required every day, requiring her to do extensive nursing research on top of her day-to-day job and also attend meetings on her days off.  With only 7 days for vacation per year. Sachiko decided to leave it all behind. READ MORE

Vol. 3 – Wilma Rodrigues | India

Wilma had a dream to come to Canada for a very long time.  

She heard that Ron Burke, the Founder of OMNI College, would be visiting Kerala, India, to conduct an information session for nurses in India. Although she lived in a different city and could not attend in–person, she really wanted to meet with Ron and thus arranged a Skype meeting. 

It was during that meeting that she felt the doors opened for her to realize her dream. READ MORE

Vol. 4 – Chinenye Ugwuoke | Nigeria

When she first came to Canada, she had to leave her family behind.  It was not easy to be away from them. But during her studies away from her family, she ended up also finding another form of ‘family’ in Canada.

This feeling of being with ‘family’ helped her get through her studies and the nurse registration process in Canada.  And today – Chi is a Registered Nurse in Canada. READ MORE

Vol. 5 – Yue Sun | China

Originally, Yue wanted to study and work abroad for the sake of her son. She worked in China as an RN for 16 years, but in China, nurses usually are not considered as professionals and they receive little respect from patients and even their own family members.

At first, the USA and Australia were her top choices but then she began considering Canada too and comparing all of the countries.  After a lot of research, she chose Canada as her #1 choice. READ MORE

Vol. 6 – Amandeep Dhaliwal | India

After graduating in India in 2006, nursing was not regarded as a respected profession.  Amandeep wanted to have the opportunity to make a difference. 

She felt that she needed to get out of India as she didn’t feel that staying would ever give her that opportunity. Since Amandeep came to Canada, all of her dreams have come true.  She describes her journey as a “rebirth”. READ MORE

Vol. 7 – Sang Yun Kim | Korea

Sang came to Canada through an agency – which originally placed him in a different school in downtown Vancouver. Within his first few days in class, Sang was dissatisfied with that school and realized it would never help him attain his goals.

He ended up making an appointment to sit in on a day of class at OMNI College, and within a few minutes of that class he knew instantly that he needed to switch schools. READ MORE

Vol. 8 – Gerald Garcia | Philippines

Gerald knew long ago he wanted to settle in Canada. He saw the amazing benefits that permanent residents and citizens in this country had access to.

At first, his family encouraged him to gain experience in a fast-food chain in the Philippines. They thought perhaps that would be his best way to get to Canada. However, Gerald knew he wanted to be a Nurse. It was his calling. READ MORE

Vol. 9 – Catherine Ikponwosa | Nigeria

As an internationally-educated nurse from Nigeria, Catherine knew she would continue her education overseas because she felt that, “Back home, there were not a lot of opportunities for nurses. So right from the moment when I chose to study nursing, I knew that I was eventually going to go overseas to continue my education.

Most of the schools were into specialty courses which is great, but based on my personal goal, OMNI was the only school I found that made the cut for me.” READ MORE

Vol. 10 – Janus Ediza | Philippines

Janus is a Licensed Practical Nurse in Canada. He works in the city of Grand Forks, British Columbia.

“I love my work here in Canada.  My coworkers and employers are so supportive in what I do and they all genuinely want me to excel in the work that I do.  Even though I did enjoy my work in the Philippines, it’s so much better here.” READ MORE

Vol. 11 – Archi Ornelas | Mexico

Archi paved the way for other Internationally-Educated Nurses from Mexico.  Originally from Guadalajara, Archi successfully navigated the path to becoming a Registered Nurse in Canada. 

“Not many Mexican nurses took this path before me, but that didn’t stand in my way.” READ MORE

Vol. 12 – Jennie Arceno | Philippines

Jennie came to OMNI College from Leyte and Cebu, Philippines.

Just 4 days before her she received her student visa approval to OMNI College in Canada, she was surprised to find out she was pregnant. While many others may have gotten scared and opted to cancel their plans to study abroad, Jennie remained determined and decided to go for it anyway. She started her program at OMNI when she was 4 months pregnant.  Her story is truly one of determination and courage. READ MORE

Vol. 13 – Peter Karanja | Kenya

Peter came to OMNI College from Nairobi, Kenya.

After 5 years working as an RN in Kenya, Peter was looking for greater international work experience and an opportunity to further his career.  He is now successfully licensed and employed as an RN in Canada. READ MORE

Vol. 14 – Aiko Miyazaki | Japan

Aiko came to OMNI College from Japan.

Aiko’s will to start learning English came from one patient in her home country. Not being able to communicate without the help of a translator, made her realize the limited reach she had. Although completely unaware at the time, her courage and continued heartfelt care for her patients would lead her pursuit to learn a new language and change her life forever. She is now successfully licensed and employed as an RN in Canada. READ MORE