IEN of the Year

The finalists in the CARE Centre Joan Lesmond IEN of the Year Award have been selected, an outstanding representation of our member nurses and their remarkable dedication to their profession and their practice. The finalists have been asked to write an essay about their journey to certification as a Canadian nurse for the final jury process, with the winner announced November 17th, the second anniversary of the award. Last year November 17th was marked as Internationally Educated Nurses Day in Toronto by Mayor Rob Ford to commemorate CARE Centre’s 10th anniversary. To read a Q&A with last year’s inaugural winner, Loy Asheri, see Connector’s “On the Job” feature.

CNO Announces Regulatory Changes

In mid-July the College of Nurses of Ontario announced “sweeping changes to the rules governing who can become a nurse in Ontario, as well as to the conditions that all existing members must meet if they wish to remain members in good standing (that) will affect every College member and applicant wishing to practice nursing in the province.” (CNO press release, July, 2012) These changes will particularly affect internationally educated nurses pursuing registration in Canada, especially anyone who will not have completed the registration process by December 31st, 2012. IENs should examine the new regulations in detail on the CNO website at CARE Centre will keep members posted, and asks that you share updates with other non-member IENs as you receive them.

New Online Language Course Focus on Foundations

CARE Centre has been delivering customized Language and Communication courses for nurses at three comprehensive levels, addressing different nursing functions in each unit. Previously, the pre-requisite for Level 1 was a Canadian Language Benchmark Assessment of 6, but as of October 1st, IENs must now achieve a CBLA 7 before accessing CARE Centre membership and programs. CARE Centre has created a new online course that will aid pre-members in improving their language skills while learning Canadian nursing communication practices. Developed by language specialists in consultation with expert nurses, LCN Foundations will benefit IENs on their path to achieving CLBA 7 and nursing certification.

Making Ontario Home

CARE Centre is a member of OCASI, the Ontario Council of Agencies Serving Immigrants. OCASI recently released a major study called Making Ontario Home, a survey of over 2,500 newcomers to Ontario. It’s the first province-wide study to focus on immigrant and refugee use of settlement and integration services. It is also one of the largest surveys of this nature ever undertaken in Canada, and is the most comprehensive description to date of those who use settlement and integration services in Ontario. Its purpose is to develop a deeper understanding of which immigrants and refugee needs are being met and how; which groups are well served and why; and how the settlement needs of immigrants and refugees across the province may best be served. You can download the full report or summary at

IENs Should Heed Warning about Immigration Fraud

Recently, several job-seeking nurses in the Philippines were contacted by email from someone claiming to be from a small Ontario hospital. They were told the hospital was seeking immigrant nurses to fill an urgent shortage, and that they should send a recruiting fee of over 3,000 pesos or roughly $95 to the local representative and meet later at a specific location for more information. The trouble was, the Ontario hospital was not hiring. Radio Canada International journalist Marc Montgomery interviewed Executive Director Zubeida Ramji and others to shine a spotlight on this and other cases of immigration fraud. Listen to the whole story at:

Conference Board of Canada Publishes CARE Centre Profile

CARE Centre was pleased to be the subject of a Conference Board of Canada profile in their “Organizational Excellence” series, available at no cost through their e-library. The publication coincided with the release of CARE Centre’s first interactive annual report, “The release of these two publications marks both a decade of growth and success for CARE Centre as well as the start of a new era of leadership and advocacy in the education and integration of IENS in Ontario,” said Executive Director Zubeida Ramji. “We’ve been honoured to support IENs in their journey to licensing, serving clients across our six offices in southern Ontario, because they do represent the future of our multi-cultural health care system in Canada.” To view the interactive version of the 2011-2012 annual report, visit You can view the CARE Centre Conference Board of Canada Profile and other case studies and research at

Partnership with Course Park Delivers Online Learning

CARE Centre and Course Park Online Nurses Network have formed a partnership to offer a range of nursing courses to members and non-members alike. The courses include both regulatory and leadership programs, as well as an extensive variety of clinical titles. All courses are recognized by the Canadian Nurses Association (as well as l’OIIQ in Quebec and the American Nurses Credentialing Center) for elective and mandatory Continuing Education requirements. The learning materials integrate solid medical and technical information with insight and stories from real-world clinical experiences, complimented by medical animations, interactivities and 3D graphics. The revolutionary Course Park platform provides access to a lifelong learning record, formal and informal peer-to-peer engagement, links to Facebook and Twitter, and blogs and articles from experts in health care. Follow the link to CARE Centre’s website:

Winnipeg Conference Shares Best Approaches for IENs in Canada

Educators, provincial regulators and employers of IENs from across Canada gathered in Winnipeg this past April for the 6th National Conference of Partners in Education & Integration of Internationally Educated Nurses. The conference participants present best practices and the latest research in Internationally Educated Nurse (IEN) education, transition & integration into employment, clinical practice and policy. The keynote address was delivered by Dr. Josephine Etowa, BScN, MN, PhD, herself an IEN, as well as a midwife, a lactation consultant, a researcher and an educator. Conference materials can be viewed at