Kashish is a 2018 alum of Pathways Rexdale. After graduating from high school, Kashish went on to study Health Informatics at York University. She worked and volunteered at Pathways Rexdale, Pathways to Education Canada and many other community organizations during her studies. Kashish is currently in the final rotation of the Emerging Leaders program at Canada Life. 

When we last caught up with Kashish, a 2018 alum of Pathways Rexdale, she was balancing her goal of becoming a physiotherapist with a passion for community service.  

Even though Kashish was a full-time student at York University, she made time to tutor math and sciences at Pathways Rexdale, where she helped students who experienced learning loss during the pandemic. On top of that, Kashish interned at the Women’s College Hospital and took on a leadership role with her university’s Health Informatics Peer Group, a role that led her to find new ways to step up for her community. “Many of my classmates didn’t know about the day-to-day of the career they were studying for, so I pitched a “Day in the Life” series created in collaboration with staff at the hospital I worked at,” Kashish recalls. “My peers said it really helped and the hospital was happy to see increased online engagement. It felt great to identify a need and connect different groups to address it.”  

Then, as Kashish was about to graduate from university, she came across a Canada Life job posting for the Emerging Leaders program on the Pathways alumni job board. One word stood out: leader. Kashish realized that one of her favourite parts of working at Pathways and the Women’s College Hospital was the opportunity to be a changemaker. “I was so focused on the science that I hadn’t thought much about the leadership aspect of my professional experiences,” Kashish explains. “I realized that it meant a lot to me and that I should pursue it in my career.” 

With that in mind, Kashish decided to apply for the Emerging Leaders program. During the interview process, she had the chance to connect her experience at Pathways, in university and at other community organizations to her desire to continue growing professionally as a leader. “As a Pathways student and staff member, I saw the struggles people face in Canada, and I believed in the value of helping others,” Kashish explains. “I felt like the team at Canada Life understood that too, and it’s why they believed in me.” 

Kashish is now in the third rotation of the Emerging Leaders program which accepts six students a year, and only two in Toronto, where she resides. She recently gained valuable professional experience by completing many large projects involving multiple stakeholders. Her next professional goal is to acquire a professional certification in the financial services space, and her next leadership goal connects to a cause that’s still close to her heart. “I really want to get out there in the Pathways community and talk about job opportunities like the one I got,” Kashish explains. “I keep talking about Pathways to my colleagues, and they’re all very excited to help me get the word out.”