Twinkle and Siddharth Bhartia live in Kitsilano and work as Software and Project engineers, respectively.
Why did you decide to migrate to Canada?
I (Sid) am a Chemical Engineering graduate from IIT Kharagpur in India. I first came to Canada for a three-month exchange program with the University of Saskatchewan in my third year of undergrad at IIT with Mitacs Globalink Canada Scholarship, fully covering the expenses. During my exchange program, I enjoyed seeing Canada. After that, I applied to the University of British Columbia for my master's and got a full scholarship. All these opportunities eventually led to my immigration to Canada.
Which year did you immigrate?
I came for the exchange program in 2014, and my master's at UBC in 2015. I got married in November 2020, and Twinkle, my wife, came to Canada a year after, in 2021, after getting her permanent residency.
What were your first impressions of Canada?
I enjoyed my time as an exchange student in Saskatchewan. My water treatment project involved research on finding optimal treatment solutions for emerging contaminants in drinking water. It led me to my master's at UBC to pursue a career in the same field in environmental engineering. Apart from my studies, I travelled extensively, going on road trips to Alberta and British Columbia from Saskatoon. I was amazed by Canada's natural beauty.
Where did you stay when you reached Canada? Hotel, relative or friend's place?
I stayed at the university residence when I first came for my exchange program. But, the second time I arrived here for my master's, I moved into a rented place in Kitsilano, Vancouver, where I met my amazing landlords - Uncle Hari and Aunty DJ, who made me feel at home away from home and were always around to help.
What difficulties/challenges did you face when you and your family moved here?
Moving to another county, away from family, is always challenging. But I was fortunate to meet the right people who guided and supported me, making the transition easier.
How long did it take to get used to the people, weather, or surroundings?
It took very little time to get use to the people as everyone is so friendly! We loved the weather. Summers are lovely, with plenty of outdoor activities like biking, hiking, and camping. When it's raining, we go to the recreation centre.
How was your experience getting a job here? Was it easy or troublesome?
During my master's at UBC, I was involved in different projects and even field work. I did academic and industrial internships, presented my work at national and international conferences, and co-authored research publications in academic journals. All these experiences enabled me to develop the skills required to establish myself in the core engineering field, which is otherwise very difficult for an international student or an immigrant.
Twinkle had software engineering experience with an MNC in India. She started networking with professionals in her field in Canada while waiting for her visa in India. Leveraging her experience and network, Twinkle got a job in her field within a month of her arrival.
What do you like and dislike most about this country?
We appreciate the diversity in this country, though we wish it were a little closer to India. Miss our family back home.
Goals & Aspirations
At this point, we would like to grow in our respective fields professionally.
Experience so far
Our overall journey has been excellent in Canada, and enjoying every moment together.
Advice for immigrants
We believe in hard work, and there are always opportunities for focused and disciplined people. If you work hard, things will happen for you. It's just a matter of time.