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From New Zealand to Belgium: Designs for a global career

March 06, 2024

Seizing opportunity from an initial 12-month contract in New Zealand, Jewelia Podmore secures a role with our Centre of Excellence in Belgium

When visual communications designer Jewelia Podmore signed a 12-month parental leave contract to join our Wellington, New Zealand office in February 2023, she never thought that 15 months later, she'd be moving to our La Hulpe office in Belgium.

Jewelia’s looking to swap her desk overlooking Wellington’s harbour to a workstation at Stantec’s Centre of Excellence in La Hulpe, Belgium.

After completing a Bachelor of Arts at Canterbury University and a Bachelor of Visual Communication at Ara Institute, Jewelia worked in various communication-focused roles, editing, advising, and designing for public and private organisations and NGOs. Joining Stantec expanded her knowledge of infrastructure and community-oriented projects as she worked with corporate marketing teams and water, transport, and community development teams, adding her flair to presentations, videos, bid proposals, and marketing event campaigns.

With the end of her contract approaching, Jewelia felt she wasn't ready to leave Stantec. 'Over the last year, I've worked with incredible people on some very cool projects. I've yet to find someone who works here who isn't passionate about what they do and how it affects their community—and it shows in the organisation's welcoming, friendly, and vibrant culture,’ she says.

So, although Jewelia and her husband had already organised their quintessential Kiwi overseas experience to Europe, she started looking for other jobs at Stantec. It wasn’t long before Jewelia found a position for a graphic designer with our Centre of Expertise in La Hulpe, Belgium, via our internal career opportunities portal. 

Realising the opportunity before her, Jewelia liaised with her manager, the Australia and New Zealand and Europe HR teams, and the team lead in La Hulpe. She interviewed, signed a contract to start work in early May 2024, and is now looking forward to learning new cultures and languages, meeting new colleagues, making new friends, travelling around Europe, and further advancing her visual design career.

Jewelia beside the Rakaia River, Windwhistle, Canterbury, New Zealand.

When asked what advice she'd give someone hoping to expand their career in creative ways, Jewelia says, 'Talk openly about your goals and intentions with your colleagues and managers—anyone who may be able to connect you with others in the organisation who can let you know of any opportunities. Embrace chances to connect with colleagues, for example, Stantec’s Developing Professionals Group (DPG) has a global Coffee Connections programme that assigns you a new connection each month. It’s a great way to expand your global network.’

From internal initiatives such as the DPG and our employee resource groups to opportunities to collaborate with international colleagues on exciting projects, Stantec is dedicated to providing the most fulfilling, inclusive, and exciting employment experience for each of our people. We’re excited that Jewelia found an opportunity to keep working with Stantec.

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