deathpixie: (grr)
I have to get this out before I explode, so it's back to ye olde Live Journal. Duck and cover, folks.

As part of my paralegal course and required qualifications, I need to do 120 hours of internship (unpaid) in the area. Back in March 2013, when I started school, I spoke to my manager here at work about the possibility of doing it in the office. I also spoke to my careers person at the school and gave them each other's contact number so they could start sorting things out. I knew, since I work for the government, there'd be red tape.

Today, after weeks of being on tenterhooks, I find out that the only way I was ever going to be able to intern at a government ministry was if HR approached the school and arranged a program. No established program, no internship.

Now, perhaps I'm being a bit unreasonable, but isn't that something my manager should have checked before all of this? If there was never a possibility of me doing it here, then I could have used that information months ago and worked things out! But no. Because my manager didn't do her due diligence (or give me the information to be able to do it myself, like a contact at HR), I'm looking at finding an internship at the last minute. And to top it off, I'll have to take all of my three weeks of vacation, plus a week unpaid, to be able to go and do the internship if I can't find one that'll let me do it weekends/after business hours.

Son of a bitch. I am so pissed off right now, I can't even begin to describe it. I've been royally screwed over by both work and the school, and I'm going to find people to complain to, you can guarantee it.

Additional:

Just got an email from the guy I'm supposed to be meeting. CC-ing completely the wrong Herzing email, to some guy called James Howard. And careers guy has no idea of any of the previous stuff. So much for information being passed on. Here's the last paragraph of my response:

Finally, I am very unhappy with how the internship arrangements have been handled. I met with M and provided her with my manager's contact details as far back as May, 2013, explaining the situation and what I hoped to do and Margaret said she would be in touch. Apparently, my manager did not receive any type of communication directly from M, and it wasn't until November 2013 that I received the standard email regarding the PD 150 course (that's the careers module) and my resume from her, with no recollection of our previous meeting. My manager, because she had no information, did not approach HR until November (I'm not happy with her either!) and now, despite my best efforts, everything is a last minute scramble which is causing me a lot of stress.
deathpixie: (road)
So, I'm down to two months left of school (and then 4 weeks of fieldwork) and I'm starting to really struggle. My marks are fine - better than, mostly - but I'm really having trouble with the work/school balance, especially since during the hardest module (criminal law), work decided to go kablooey. We've got trials all over the place, and we're losing one of our prosecutors to a transfer - and as far as we know, he's not being replaced - and the dreaded Cash Store cash has raised its head, Hydra-like, so we're looking at another prosecutor only being half available. So, basically, from four lawyers to 2 and a half, and it's falling to me to make sure everything's covered and to all the necessary prep work for file transfers, on top of what I already have. And since the orders are coming from the Legal Director himself, they're top priority.

If only I could get everyone else needing my time to understand that. *wry*

Anyway, criminal law finished last night, barring the second assignment I have due on Tuesday evening and which I'll be writing like a mad thing this weekend. Luckily, it's been writing itself in my head already, so I have an idea of where to start.

My fieldwork placement is still majorly up in the air, which is distressing for She Who Organises - and none of it is fixable by me. I've done what I can - spoken to the LD and to the union rep, so there's no issues there - just need to wait for my manager to get back on vacation on Monday.

And now I have dictation, so off I go. I'll be so glad for the Family Day holiday on February 17!

Grr.

Nov. 20th, 2013 04:45 pm
deathpixie: (grr)
So after much back and forth, I finally arranged for the careers person at school, who I'm supposed to discuss my internship with, to call me at work. She emailed and said she'd call sometime today. Today being, actually today, you know, Wednesday. So I've been sticking close to my desk all day.

Guess what?

No call. No message, if I did actually miss the call. No email telling me why she hasn't been able to call.

Grrr, argh. I need to sort this out soon, and this is the person who is supposed to be giving me pointers on how to improve my career. You know what helps a person's career? BEING RELIABLE AND DOING WHAT YOU SAID YOU WOULD DO, OR LETTING THE PERSON KNOW IF YOU CAN'T!!!

I HATE being stood up like this. Come 5:00 p.m., I'm sending an email along the lines of "Uh, wtf?" Only polite.

It also doesn't help that I have a 30 minute powerpoint presentation today that I've been trying to polish, only to have all of the interruptions in the world. (Seriously, co-workers, learn how to do basic formatting. If you want to change the lines around boxes in Excel, it's easy.)
deathpixie: (so very tired)
So, I'm just over half-way through my paralegal course, and still going strong. Tired most of the time, but strong. *wry* We're ploughing through Small Claims Court (Civil, for the Aussies) and it's pretty much the same structure as I learned in the court job, just different terminology. Oh, and representing clients instead of swearing them in. But yeah, still chugging along.

I am finding I have very little free time. Classes have been finishing later than before, usually 9:30/10 pm, sometimes later, and then it takes me an hour to get home. So I usually only have about half an hour of downtime before I go to bed - I tend to toss and turn too much if I go straight to bed, planning my next day. It's kind of isolating, but to be honest, I'm too tired to even feel that lonely. I only see my roomies on the weekends or when they pop down. I kind of wish I had someone to fix me my evening snack and perhaps rub my shoulders, but I make do with microwaving leftovers ([Bad username or site: @ livejournal.com] has been awesome about stocking my fridge with tupperware) and having cats walk all over me and snuggle into my lower back when I go to bed.

Oh, and the Law Society website has the sign ups for the qualification exam! I'll probably do my electronic version on Monday, which is Canadian Thanksgiving public holiday and which I'm planning as my "relax and recharge after various social things" day.
deathpixie: (warrior woman)
Just got the results back for the first six modules of my paralegal class. Straight As, and a GPA of 4.00.

I feel rather clever. *beams* Makes the long days and the reduced free time completely worth it.

School

May. 22nd, 2013 06:25 pm
deathpixie: (cunning plan)
Results so far:

Legal Computer Applications - 100%

Introduction to the Legal System - 98%

Communication/Writing - 100%

Module 4 is Legal Research/Writing, and since I handed in my assignment on time, I'm pretty sure I'll get another 100% or so. Which means I'm on track for the Dean's List.

/bragging
deathpixie: (Emily)
I have another talk, this one without powerpoint and with a strict 3-4 minute time limit and with the requirement I do research/cite sources. So something a little less light-hearted and more social education-y, I think. Or at least something serious I can get animated about. Any way, I need a topic asap for the talk on Monday and I'm stuck. Those who know me and what I'm into, any suggestions?
deathpixie: (defying gravity)
Apologies for the multiple posting in various social network platforms, but I have people scattered all over the place. At least I'm going to the trouble of actually writing three different things? ;)

Any way, we started our third module - Communications in Law - tonight, which meant we finally got our results for Module 1 - Legal Computer Programs. That's the one where we did the Word and Powerpoint stuff, and the one where I did the talk on Deadly Australians for the Powerpoint evaluation. Any way, I got 100% for that module, even with the over-long Powerpoint talk.

So good start with the Dean's List aspirations. I'm feeling rather chuffed with myself, I have to admit. :)
deathpixie: (defying gravity)
So we're into the second week of April and spring is playing peek-a-boo with us in a big day. Some days have been lovely - sunny, warm (for values of 'warm' - I'm at the point where I consider 10-12 C 'warm'), and that particular earthy smell that tells you spring is coming. Then we get pouring rain, single-digit temperatures and everything goes into hiding again. Best of all, we still have one more winter storm to go - tomorrow's forecast is for freezing rain and ice pellets and a top of zero Celsius. My evening class teacher is considering cancelling tomorrow night for safe travelling's sake.

School is going well. I don't have the exact marks for my first module (Legal Computer Applications - basically Word and Powerpoint), but I'm fairly sure it's close to 100%. The only thing that might have knocked me back was going over my alloted time for my talk (by about double - curse you, Australia, for being full of things that are trying to kill us!), but I did show off appropriate Powerpoint skills, so, fingers crossed. The next module is "Introduction to Legal Studies", which is a look at what law is and how we got it. Fairly basic stuff, with a quiz, an assignment and an exam, whee! The work's pretty easy so far, although I'm noticing the hours this week - partly due to the fact that I'm still sick with the thing I caught before Easter. Hopefully I can shake it off soon so I can get some energy back!

Work is mostly okay, apart from a lovely bit of news yesterday. Because the government is cutting back public service workers (the OPESU) to the tune of 900-odd in Ontario, the various ministries are currently "surplussing" people. Which means you get told your job no longer exists and you have a couple of weeks to work out what you want to do before the official lay-off notice comes. We're losing J., the executive assistant to our director - the whole thing came totally out of the blue. And because her position is now 'surplus' to the Ministry, her work will be redistributed - technically to the director's other assistant in his other Ministry (he wears two hats), but considering a lot of it is specfic to what we do (various reports and such), I have a feeling it will end up bouncing back on us despite assurances.

This whole surplussing thing is discomforting. I mean, I'm pretty sure I'm safe - I've been there for almost 7 years now, I'm fairly indispensible, my lawyers would cause a riot if I was let go and we've already established my 'back-up' can't do the job when I'm on vacation, let alone take it over full-time. But it's just nerve-wracking any way. And this isn't the only round of lay-offs, either - it's just the first blood-letting.

Blargh.

Any way, things are generally okay. Just having a long, tired day so I'm a tad meh. But I really am enjoying school, so much. It's great to be learning again, and I'm already chummy with my desk mate, a woman around the same age who currently works as a probation officer.

Homework

Mar. 27th, 2013 10:31 pm
deathpixie: (drop bear)
So, I have to do a 5 minute Powerpoint presentation for school on Thursday and I need the help of my non-Aussie friends. Common perceptions/impressions/myths you have or have heard about Australia and Australians - GO!
deathpixie: (calvin and hobbes)
And it's news of the good sort, even. :)

As some of you might have noticed, a few weeks ago I mentioned I was scoping out potential night classes to get my paralegal qualification. Well, I found one that suited me and on Tuesday I signed up. Do, as of March next year, I'll be a student again!

The school is in the Eaton Centre, which is about 10 minutes away from work, and the classes run Monday to Thursday, 6:00 - 11:00 p.m. So yeah, I'll be a bit more scarce than I usually am, and certainly a bit more distracted, but it's all in a good cause. :) The course runs for a year, with two breaks, one in the summer and one next winter, and after that, I take the Law Society exam and qualify as a shiny new mini-lawyer. :)

I'm outrageously excited about all this. It's really the first big proactive, positive thing I've done since I made the decision to move to Canada, and I feel so good about it. It's me finally doing something constructive for my career, which has always taken a back seat to everything else, and I'm confident that I'll do well. And of course, none of this would be possible without [Bad username or site: @ livejournal.com] helping me out with a loan, which means I don't have the usual financial anxiety which usually squashes my mood when I make a big, expensive decision (like travelling). I'll never be able to thank her enough. <3

And an added perk is that since I'll technically be a full time student, I get the student discounts on metro passes and such. So the money I'm saving can go towards paying off my debt. :) And I'll be going out into the world more and meeting new people, which is something I've been needing to do for a while, but needed a framework within which to do it. School is perfect. :)

I'm so chuffed about all of this. And wildly excited. I never thought, with the depression and the meds, that I'd actually feel this good about something again, which is why the extended squeeing I've been doing. (Sorry!)

It's so great to have something to look forward to again!

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