News Release Archive

In April, Tina Thibeau approached Le Comite provincial des Jeux
de l'Acadie with an offer the Nova Scotia organization could not
refuse. The 21-year-old history graduate from St. Francis Xavier
University would work as communications co-ordinator, free.

Ms. Thibeau was able to make this offer thanks to the Student
Loan Employment Program, an initiative of Nova Scotia Economic
Development and Tourism.

"I found out about the program last year in a small ad in the
newspaper, but it was too late for me to apply," said Ms.
Thibeau. "So I said this year I was really going to apply."

The program is open to undergraduate students who received a
student loan in the current academic year and who plan to return
to school full-time. Under the program, students apply to
Economic Development and Tourism for funding by mid-February.
Those approved must find an employer who will provide job
experience related to their field of study. The unique element of
the program is that at least 60 per cent of a student's pay is
held back and applied directly to his or her tuition in the fall.

Ms. Thibeau will be attending Mount St. Vincent University in the
fall to study public relations. She feels that working with Les
Jeux, a sporting event for young Acadian and francophone athletes
in the Maritimes, will give her considerable experience in public

"I hope to gain experience in news writing, how to develop press
kits, and how to make contacts and develop relationships with the
media," she said of her summer job at Petit-de-Grat.

The fact that her employer, Josette Marchand, provincial
co-ordinator for Les Jeux, is a graduate of the Mount's public
relations program is an added bonus, said Ms. Thibeau. "It's an
advantage because she can teach me things, or give me things to
do that are going to be beneficial to me in the fall."

The Student Loan Employment Program benefits both the employer
and the employee. "Because we are a government-sponsored,
non-profit organization, it gave us another human resource and
every little bit helps," said Ms. Marchand. "It also gives her
experience to take with her in the fall."

Ms. Thibeau considers the length of the program to be an
advantage -- she's working for 16 weeks, instead of the
traditional eight-week term. "I wanted something where I could
gain work experience throughout the whole summer," she said.
"I've been working here since the day after exams were over."

With Les Jeux, Thibeau has already gained experience by
increasing awareness of the games, and fund-raising. Ms. Marchand
said Ms. Thibeau will have a wide cross-section of experience to
take with her.

"She's done very well with media relations, writing press
releases, and she's helped with research, which I really needed,"
said Ms. Marchand.

She also credits the program with making the process easy for the
employer, as wages are covered by Economic Development and
Tourism. "It's wonderful because I didn't have to sit down and
figure out her pay or anything. You just fill something out every
two weeks."

Ms. Thibeau said she wants to set the record straight about the
pay aspect of the program: "You get paid. But when I think of the
money going toward my tuition, it amazes me."


Contact: Angela Campbell
         Economic Development and Tourism

NOTE TO EDITORS: Colour photos are available on request.

trp                   July 29, 1997 - 1:10 p.m.