Bits of French phrases such as “pour que nous soyons au diapason” and “ton appui indefectible” are pasted all around Susan Cameron’s Farm Credit Canada (FCC) office.
For a Community Investment Consultant, this may seem like an odd choice…that is, until you find out Susan’s previous career paths include translation and teaching. In fact, she attributes the variety in her career to her French studies.
A former core French student at Sheldon-Williams Collegiate in Regina, Susan now holds three French degrees from the University of Regina: a Bachelor of Arts in French, a Bachelor of French Education and a Master of Arts in French Literature.
Her passion for French was ignited during one of her initial experiences in Ottawa, during her grade 12 year, at a forum for Canadian youth. It was then that she discovered the significance of bilingualism.
My new friends were passionate, involved, and…bilingual! I told myself that I was only half a Canadian and I decided to do something about it.
She subsequently attended a recruitment presentation for the University of Regina’s new French Education program, Le Bac, and the rest is history.
But, her travels had just begun: in addition to the year in Québec for second year Le Bac students, Susan also participated in the five-week Explore program in both Jonquière, QC and Canmore, AB.
Her travels and studies in French opened doors to help her land sought-after summer jobs as a guide in the Canadian Parliament in Ottawa and at Vimy Ridge in France.
Throughout these experiences, her love for French deepened. This led to the start of a her teaching career as a school teacher and an instructor at the University of Regina and FCC.
Though her educational background and career path may, at first glance, not make her the obvious candidate for her current role in the community investment sector, Susan agrees that being fluently bilingual has allowed her to excel in the role where she is the French resource for many national projects.
Though she is no longer involved in teaching, her advice for those who want to study in French is simple:
If you commit to enjoying the process of learning a language, you will be rewarded by its beauty and (hopefully) by its usefulness.