Tell us a little bit about yourself.
I was born in Kampala, Uganda, and grew up in Pretoria, South Africa. After completing high school, I pursued a Bachelor of Arts with a major in Visual Communications at the University of Pretoria. Following that, I earned a Bachelor of Arts Honors in Alternative Communication and proceeded to obtain a Master of Philosophy in Human Rights Law. Upon relocating to Canada, I arrived as an international student and enrolled in the Master of Arts in International and Intercultural Communications at Royal Roads University, in Victoria B.C.
My career has predominantly been in the higher education sector with a strong focus on student support and international education. (I briefly shifted my focus to social housing after experiencing housing instability during my student years in Victoria, but that's a story I'll save for another occasion…). I am a strong advocate for student success and well-being. In my sophomore year of undergraduate studies, I became actively involved in the University of Pretoria's student mentorship program. In this capacity, I was appointed as a mentor for first-year students, a role that encompassed offering guidance and support to ensure their smooth transition and adjustment to university life. Subsequently, I transitioned into the position of Program Coordinator at the University of Pretoria. Following this, I advanced to the role of Manager of Recruitment, Admissions, and Awards within the Faculty of Law at the same institution.
In Canada, I have held various positions in student services at institutions such as Royal Roads University, Great Plains College, and most recently, University of British Columbia - Okanagan. I developed a fondness for the clear blue skies of the prairies while living in Saskatchewan and when I noticed this position advertised, I felt compelled to apply because Kelowna had frequent overcast skies in the winter and extremely hot summers, which prompted my desire for a change.
ULethbridge, known for its strong positive reputation among international students, was another significant draw for me.
Lastly, the affordability of Lethbridge played a pivotal role in my decision, as affordability is a crucial factor when selecting a city to reside in.
How long have you been at ULethbridge and what do you do here?
I assumed this role on July 4, 2023, so it's been just a few months at ULethbridge. My responsibilities encompass the development and implementation of comprehensive recruitment strategies, overseeing a team of recruitment professionals, and representing ULethbridge at various international events and forums. The primary goal is to boost the enrolment of qualified international students and actively contribute to ULethbridge's global engagement efforts.
Among my key responsibilities are:
- Formulating and executing a strategic plan for international student recruitment that aligns with ULethbridge's objectives.
- Collaborating closely with the admissions team to ensure a smooth transition for admitted international students, providing support throughout the enrolment process.
- Analyzing recruitment data and enrolment trends to assess the effectiveness of our strategies and make informed, data-driven enhancements.
- Cultivating and maintaining strong relationships with international partners, agencies and educational institutions to facilitate student recruitment efforts.
I'm excited to be part of ULethbridge's internationalization initiatives and look forward to contributing to our continued success in this area.
What's the best part of your job?
In my humble opinion, few things compare to the satisfaction of recruiting a student, guiding and advocating for them through their entire academic journey, and finally, sharing in their joy and achievement as they confidently walk across the stage during graduation. Additionally, I derive great fulfilment from the awareness that I am actively advancing global education and cultural exchange. By bringing together students from various cultural backgrounds, I contribute to international understanding and encourage cross-cultural cooperation. As someone who relishes travel and cherishes the experience of diverse cultures, this role is a perfect fit for me.
What do you enjoy doing outside of work?
Outside of work hours, you'll often find me in my kitchen, passionately preparing a variety of dishes from across Africa.
I have a deep appreciation of how diverse African cuisine is, and I enjoy experimenting with recipes from West, East, South, North and Central Africa.
Additionally, my love for brunch often leads me to explore Lethbridge in search of great brunch spots. If I can't find what I'm looking for locally, I'll make the occasional trip to Calgary. During these outings to Calgary, I take pleasure in experiencing the wide range of brunch restaurants, and, naturally, I can't resist indulging in a bit of shopping at Holt Renfrew, Chinook, or Cross Iron Mills!
Since Taseera has a passion for cooking dishes from Africa, he agreed to share one of his favourite recipes — Blue Cheese, Mogodu, Lamb Knuckles, Samp and Butternut
"As you can discern from the ingredients, in our culture we don't rely on precise measurements; instead we cook in generous portions, always enough to serve at least six people."
Mogodu (cow tripe)
Samp beans (dried corn kernels)
Step by step guide
Place Butternut slices on casserole dish
Drizzle cinnamon spice and rub olive oil on butternut
Put butternut into the oven for 20 minutes until brown and crispy
Switch on stove and put pot on stove
Boil lamb knuckles in the pot and add water
Put Samp into boil and add water until soft. Takes up to 3 hours
When Samp is soft, add butter cubes and cream cheese into Samp mix and mix it All ingredients will melt into hot Samp
Add butter into pot
Add onions and garlic cloves into pot for pre-cooked mogodu
Make mogodu - 3 - 5 hours before by adding water and onion, and allowing to boil
Chop and add mushrooms into onion and garlic mixture for mogodu dish
Add cooked mogodu into onion and garlic mix
Sprinkle blue cheese into mogodu mix and allow to simmer
Chop garlic cloves for lamb knuckles dish
Add lamb knuckles into small pot
Add chopped onions, olive oil and butter, beef stock, mix dry herbs, thyme herb and water
Put stove and simmer for thirty minutes
Allow all dishes to simmer and serve!