Creating Career Connections in Halifax

Posted: July 27, 2023

For many recent graduates, the transition from student to working professional can seem daunting. The same can be said for newcomers trying to build networks in a new city. Many are left unsure where to begin, often starting from scratch and without a foot in the door or helping hand. Halifax Partnership works to change that through its award-winning Connector Program, presented by RBC and funded by the Province of Nova Scotia.

The Connector Program is a simple and highly effective networking program that matches recent grads and newcomers, called Connectees, with local professionals in their field, called Connectors. Anyone can be a Connector, including business owners and operators, managers, civil servants, and community leaders. Valerie Caswell is one such Connector.

Valerie Caswell, Connector

“Whether you’re new to Halifax, a recent graduate, or looking to make a career change, the Connector Program is a great way to tap into the local business community and build not only new connections but also momentum,” says Caswell.

Originally from New Brunswick, Caswell moved to Halifax as a student attending Saint Mary’s University where she earned a Bachelor of Commerce Degree and a Master of Technology Entrepreneurship & Innovation.

“I’ve been on both sides of the program as a recent grad and now as a Connector meeting with Connectees. I know how critical professional connections are to career success, and I’d tell anyone considering joining the program to go for it!” she says.

Caswell currently works as a Regional Business Development Advisor at Invest Nova Scotia, the province’s business development agency, where she passionately works directly with companies to support their growth and success.

“Before I was a Connector, I was a recent graduate trying to build my network and learn about different career opportunities in my community,” she says. “I met wonderful Connectors who shared insights about their roles, provided career advice and introduced me to people in their network. Now, after settling into my career, I became a Connector to give back, offering the same guidance to others that I had once received.”

The Connector Program’s three-step Match. Connect. Refer. model helps Connectees build their professional network here while putting local businesses and leaders (Connectors) directly in touch with qualified talent looking to grow their career in Halifax. Once matched, Connectors and Connectees get to know each other, discuss career pursuits and interests, and then Connectors provide Connectees with a minimum of three referrals to people in their professional network.

“Valerie is a great example of someone who has come full circle through the program,” said Nathan Laird, Manager, Connector Program. “She’s experienced first-hand the power of the program during her time as a Connectee and is now helping others build their own local networks. Connectors like Valerie are key to the program’s ongoing success.”

The Connector Program helps to build a welcoming community, support business success, and help people succeed, making Halifax an even better place to live, work and thrive.

To become a Connector, or to learn more about how you can build your professional network and career in Halifax, visit

Halifax Partnership has supported Halifax’s economic and population growth for over 25 years through innovative programs like Connector and SmartBusiness and by attracting global business, talent, and investment to the city.



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