CCO Awards 2016: Outstanding Graduate in Business
Recipient: Natalia Kozimor, Trebas Institute.
Natalia had tried her hand at a number of professions before enrolling in the Event and Venue Management program at Trebas Institute. “I spent my 20s trying to figure out what I was going to do with my life. I kept trying my hand at a variety of roles—sports management, pharmaceutical sales—but none of them felt right… I knew that I enjoyed certain aspects of some of the job but not one fully,” Natalia said. When Natalia reflected upon what she enjoyed about each job she had worked, she recognized that event management would allow her to do what she loves.
The Event and Management program is intensive, and Natalia had to adapt quickly if she wanted to succeed. To truly immerse herself in the Events Industry, Natalia began to volunteer for events in her community. She started off with baby steps, but eventually became involved in some major projects—Arthritis Society, Reel World, FanExpo, and even Music Niagara, where she planned and executed a medium scale concert.
“By volunteering, students start to see events through a different lens; this allows them to bring their education to real life,” commented Marilyn Wasney, Department Head of the Event and Venue Management program at Trebas.
During her studies, Natalia gained an internship with the Toronto Metro Convention Centre and, on the final day of her internship, was given a full-time position and promoted from Exhibitor Services Representative to Supervisor, Docks Department. The MTCC encompasses 2.8 million square feet, and in 2015 held 45 major conventions, 332 meetings, 42 tradeshows and 71 banquets—all of which Natalia, as Supervisor, has a hand in.