After years of working in healthcare, Jacylou Pallorina was ready for a change. Having come to Canada from the Philippines, immigration was a subject that was close to her heart. She just needed a training course that was flexible enough to fit around her work schedule.
Herzing College’s online immigration case manager program fit the bill. She completed the training in November 2022 and now works for a Toronto-based immigration consultant—the very same immigration consultant who supervised her internship.
We interviewed Jacylou to learn more about her experience in the program and get her advice for prospective students.
Q. Jacylou, could you share a bit about your background and what you were doing before Herzing?
Jacylou: I finished my nursing degree back in the Philippines. In 2007, I started to work in Canada when my aunt sponsored me as a live-in caregiver.
But then I didn’t continue with my nursing. I failed one of my courses twice and got so disappointed that I just wanted to do something else.
During COVID, I got hired at the Canadian Red Cross. I was deployed everywhere. We helped facilities with outbreaks and we helped with mobile vaccinations.
I considered doing a personal support worker course, but that required in-person training and I was still working with the Red Cross.
So I thought about what else to do. My background is healthcare, but I was really interested in immigration. I have a lot of friends and family members that have problems with applying for work permits or visitor visas, and I just wanted to be able to help. And Herzing’s program was online, so I could do it from anywhere. It gave me the flexibility I needed.
Q. How was the instructor, course material, and general vibe in class?
Jacylou: The course material was easy to follow and understand. Whenever I had questions I asked my instructor and he was very responsive. He gave us examples, which was excellent because if you don’t have examples you can’t really relate to what he’s talking about.
Sometimes it was difficult, but because of the technology we have it was easy for me to check the terms online if I didn’t know the meaning.
Every week we picked a topic, discussed it as a class, and wrote an essay on it. I don’t usually like writing, but I was really engaged in the topics and enjoyed doing the essays.
Q. What was the most challenging part of the course?
Jacylou: The presentations could be a bit challenging because we had to connect with other classmates. I was very fortunate that everybody was really participative and cooperative.
We had to set up meetings, but at one point I was out of the country and there was a time difference. So the class started at 6:00 and that was midnight where I was, but I still joined the class.
The thing about this course is that it’s not like you just look at the syllabus and that’s it. You have to read about it and you have to make sure all the documents you’re filling in are the correct ones. You have to be patient.
Q. What was your internship like?
Jacylou: My internship was really good. The immigration consultant I worked for taught me how to do a lot of forms, and it was really interesting because there were a lot of different clients and this was the real thing. I had to make sure I filled in the right information with the right spelling and everything, or else it wasn’t going to work and everybody would be in trouble.
I found it a little scary, but I wanted to learn. We did visitor visas, spouses sponsorships, everything that we learned in school.
A few months after I finished the course, she asked me to work for her part time, so that’s what I’m doing now.
Q. Tell us about your role there.
Jacylou: I’m working there twice a week. I help the consultant with all the documentation at the office and all the things that she needs. She gives me a particular case that I have to finish in a certain amount of time and she’s there guiding me what to do next.
I’m taking the load off her work. So it’s really helping her build her business. She has a lot of clients and I’m there to help her.
Q. What has your experience taught you that you think other students should know?
Jacylou: The forms are always being updated, so don’t use the ones you have on your computer. Always go back to the website because that’s where you’ll find the updated forms.
It’s different when you’re an individual doing your own application and when you’re a representative doing an application for someone else. The immigration officers treat those applications differently because they expect you as a representative to know what you’re doing.
So you have to be careful and make sure all the documents are the right ones and have the correct information. If there’s a single piece missing, the application will be returned, which is not good for us or for our clients.
It’s also important to protect the client’s confidentiality. You don’t talk about a case. And you don’t tell clients what they’re supposed to do, because that’s an immigration consultant’s job. Even my own friends and family, I always tell them that they have to seek out an immigration consultant for advice.
Q. So how would you rate your overall experience with Herzing?
Jacylou: The school is pretty good. They’re up to date and everything. Whenever you send an email or some questions, they respond right away. And I was really happy with the internship they found for me.
I was really grateful that I did the immigration case manager course because it really opened my mind to not only immigration, but also our rights as Canadians. It gave me the knowledge I can share with my friends and family.
LEARN MORE ABOUT THE IMMIGRATION CASE MANAGER PROGRAM
The immigration case manager program from Herzing takes nine months to complete and is delivered entirely online. The training includes a five-week internship for real work experience.
Click below to get full program details and chat live with an admissions advisor. We’re here to help!