Overall reviews at Simon Fraser University
I've been with this organization for two years, and it has been a fulfilling journey. The workplace culture here is exceptional, fostering a sense of collaboration and innovation. The leadership team is supportive, approachable, and genuinely values employee input.
One of the standout features is the commitment to professional growth. There are ample opportunities for skill development and career advancement, which has allowed me to thrive in my role. Additionally, the company offers competitive compensation and benefits packages that demonstrate a genuine concern for employee well-being.
The workplace is inclusive, with a focus on diversity and equity. This creates a welcoming atmosphere where everyone feels valued and respected. Communication within the organization is transparent, and there's an open-door policy that encourages feedback.
One area for improvement could be streamlining certain processes to enhance efficiency further. However, this doesn't overshadow the overall positive experience I've had here. This workplace truly invests in its employees and provides an environment conducive to both personal and professional growth.
Research Assistant - Oral Testimonies
A typical day is contacting people via phone and email to ask their permission to film them for Simon Fraser University's Library Archives regarding Aboriginal issues.
My job is to build a relationship based on trust so that the atmosphere between myself and the interviewee is calm, and relaxed. Once that has been established and put in place, filming begins (by me) in allowing them to voice their opinions and/or concerns surrounding specific issues that affect First Nation people.
In the past I have interviewed Aboriginal people in regards to the Missing Women's Commission; Enbridge Pipeline Proposal, and Taseko Mining proposals in northern BC.
The hardest part of this job is making contact with a potential interviewee, but once the contact is made, and a relationship built on honesty and trust develops, friendships are made, and their stories are filmed and prepared digitally for the library's archives.
All interviewees receive copies of the film taken, and have the option to change what appears or to add something more should they choose to do so.
Conscontacting potential interviewees.
Bloomberg, Excel Analysis
Obtained statistics and data from Bloomberg to perform forecasting analysis by deploying econometrics models (VaR, Time-Series, Cross-sectional Panel regression, Garch)
Help the fixed income team to performed fixed income analysis based on results generated from the econometrics models.
Monitored financial and economic news on a daily basis to make sure the whole team can stay on top of most major financial events around the globe. The hardest part of the job is when team members disagree with the conclusions that we issued, and most of the time we can arrive on rational conclusions. Every quarter the whole team has to report and present the performance of the fund to a panel of market practitioners who sit on the SFU endowment fund board, and handled questions and objections from these market experts.
Prosable to learn a lot
Conssomtimes study and work clash with each other
friendly place to work
I worked in the computer lab providing data support for a biology project. After download the data from public website, I am responsible for transferring it into a proper form that we can compare the "ortholog" between different genomes. Several computer languages are used during this process, such as Perl and Linux. Another team member will take over the data by comparing and uploading them on website with Perl and SQL.
During my intern, I learned a number of computer languages and realized communication is very important in team work. It was a great experience to work with my team members and professor, who demonstrated a professional way of working in a team.
Even though programming is stressful, I am able to complete the assignments, and always looking for a more efficient way to compile data. I identify a public server “Westgrid”, which tripled calculation speed.
great experience, very self motivating
The only complaint I have about SFU's DDP program, which I'm apart of, is it's lack of babysitting. That may sound silly when a person should really be the only one responsible his or her own schooling and graduation progress However, DDP (Dual-Degree Program) is a very fresh and new program that collaborates with Zhejiang University located in Hangzhou, China. This program lets students, us, take part in both school's computing science studies and thus uses a complicated system to keep track of credits from both schools. In the end, the students are awarded with degrees from both schools, and a more enriched skill set which includes fluent in Mandarin and English.
What does this all mean? It means that, SFU kicked me off the cliff like parent eagles teaching their young to fly and I soared further than I could have imagined.
Supportive environment geared towards personal growth
• Provided superb services by managing aspects of day-to-day operations and following correct procedures as manager of SFU Recreational Intramural Leagues
• Supervise and mentor five to eight staff members every semester to provide excellent service evidenced by positive feedback from participants
• Contributed to maintaining great service by organizing and planning staff training sessions and performance evaluations
• Built an effective line of communication between participants and staff including introducing feedback procedures and changes implemented as a response to feedback
• Implemented several innovative changes to improve Recreation’s services such as introducing All-star games, creating promotion material and initiating new sport leagues
Depends on the Department
Depending on the department you work with the job as a TA can either be enjoyable or not. It also depends on the professor you are assigned to. I have had both wonderful and horrible experiences as a TA and that is in part due to professors I have worked with and the administration of my department. In some cases the administration did not work to help me in other cases it did. It really just depends.
There is a lot of work attached to being a TA and if you have a great professor and good administrative help You are happy to do it. If you don't? It is like you are living a nightmare that will never end. Also sometimes your department just works against you in terms of providing jobs. I am a graduate student and need an income, this was said to be for the most part guaranteed, it's not. That's something that should be said.
Enjoyable and helped develop my interpersonal skills
My position as a Recreation Manager for SFU Recreation required versatility, a team mentality and excellent interpersonal skills. I was a fitting representative for SFU Recreation, where they promote active living and personal health in student life. I have received the Recreational Promotion and Leadership Awards multiple times in my time with this organization. This position required multitasking through managing multiple sport leagues with diverse teams of students, who differ in majors and years of study. In every semester, I am responsible for upwards of 200 participants and 10 staff members, of which I am the main point of communication. In my evaluation meetings, I am praised for my ability to form positive relationships with many participants.
Office Politics and unions, few opportunities for growth in Student Services
Worked at SFU for over 6 years professionally, but needed to leave to keep my sanity. Just disappointed I stayed as long as I did. The opportunities within Student Services are lacking unless you are with the in crowd.
ProsPension (currently...but isn't doing so well), Free tuition for yourself, spouse and dependents
ConsThe culture within Student Services is toxic, various people just waiting to retire, while the young talent deal with restructuring and office politics, Little opportunity for meaningful advancement with CUPE structure, APSA professional roles have poor work/life balance being promoted by the management, with overtime being expected almost year round due to staffing issues, The main campus is up on a mountain which isn't great during the snow
Great atmosphere to work in, a bit difficult to deal with so many different departments
My position often varied from week to week due to the diverse amount of projects and the different requests from different departments. This really helped me get exposed to a lot of different jobs and skills.I did not like dealing with waiting for different people to e-mail me back through the processes of the projects. I was always quite busy and it slowed me down a lot when clients would take longer than a week to respond about projects they asked me to do. However, my coworkers made up for any annoyances I had. I worked with a lot of SFU students so we got along quite well. Since they were senior students, I learned a lot from them as well.
ProsGreat work culture
ConsA lot of busy clients to wait on