Take Your Kid to Work Day: IBM Canada hosts over 130 Grade 9 Students

By November 25, 2022

From east to west on November 2nd, IBM Canada hosted over 130 Grade 9 students for Take Your Kid to Work Day (TYKTWD).

Not familiar with TYKTWD? It is a day dedicated to experiential learning where grade 9 students across Canada join their parents/guardians/friends at their workplace for a day filled with activities where they are exposed to different career paths and options.

It takes a village…

In order to deliver a fun and memorable TYKTWD, IBMers within each local office carefully planned and facilitated a day full of activities related to technology.

Here are some highlights from each city: in Ottawa @Lily Ho-Lamoureux @Mike Keillor @Corey Gray @Thomas Schubert @Elizabeth Barrett @Paul Latulippe @Analeeze Mendonsa @Ima Ekanem and @Lee McCallum facilitated ‘Build Your Own Chatbot’ that leveraged Watson Assistant. Students had the opportunity build their very own chatbot and learn about virtual assistants and Artificial Intelligence (AI).

In Markham, @MichealAntongnanaratnam and @Tanmay Bakshi presented on AI and robotics, students even had the chance to interact with Pepper the Robot!

In Toronto, @Kenric Li, @Asif Sharif, @Kayleigh McNeil @Bruce Hsueh @Samir Khaki @Ti Guo @Grace Deng @Sienna Wishart @Sean Wu @Geetika Luchun ran a session that included drones, Watson Natural Language Understanding (NLU) and a robot. Students learned about the technical concepts behind automation and NLU.

In Bedford, @Meg Hiltz led a session on the topic of Growth Mindset which was focused on educating students about the importance of operating with a growth mindset (HBR: What Having a “Growth Mindset” Actually Means) through open discussions and thought provoking questions.

In Calgary, @ShannonWilson, @GarryRasko and @AnaMariaPiedrahita hosted an IBMer Panel Discussion. The panel permitted students the opportunity to hear first hand from local IBMers on history of the company and insight to IBMs position in the marketplace today, IBM: Let’s lead in a changing world.

In Vancouver, students learned from @NickBoyko, @JonEllis and @EricJohnson about IBM’s rich history in tech and local client stories.


Staying curious about Tech after TYKTWD…

During the IBM Canada TYKTWD Kick Off, students heard about IBM’s commitment to closing the skills gap through accessible initiatives like IBM SkillsBuild: Launching Your Next Career.


What is Skills Build for Students?

A free digital learning platform which takes essential, professional and technical skill-building online and makes it accessible to all students in secondary and higher education to help them prepare for the future of work. Using the platform, students, including those preparing for internships and new collar jobs, can earn the same badges as professionals in the field.

Learn more here.


Word on the street…

Feedback we received from IBMers whose student attended TYKTWD following this day was extremely positive. The below testimonials speak for themselves:

“My son thoroughly enjoyed all of it, especially the chatbot session, as well as the executive welcome messages, history of IBM and some of the “cool” things we’re doing for Canadian clients”

“We do cool stuff here at IBM”

“Thank you to the team for being patient and answering all the questions the students had”

“He did like all the activities, but his favorite activity was coding for the chatbot”

“I heard takeaways from every session from my son, but if he had to pick a favorite activity it was the chatbot!”

“She really enjoyed the Design Thinking Workshop learning about the work that went into the Air Canada app as well as the work around the Raptors. She also enjoyed the Drone segment.”


That’s a wrap!

Thank you to the 130 students who chose to spend their TYKTWD at IBM! We look forward to hosting another awesome group in 2023.