Iona Santos-Fresnoza

Iona Santos-Fresnoza

Program Manager, FAST, Immigrant Employment Council of BC

Iona leads and manages IEC-BC’s Facilitating Access to Skilled Talent (FAST), an online platform supporting immigrants in launching their career launch in Canada. Piloted as pre-arrival program, FAST has demonstrated promising results in helping 67% of its participants land jobs in their field – faster.

With over a decade of work in communications, government, tourism, IT, academia, non-profits in the Philippines, and social media agencies in Singapore and the US, Iona brings to her role not only extensive experience in project coordination, program development, and community outreach, but also a strong advocacy for social justice, diversity, and inclusion.

In her program development work at IEC-BC, she engages with industry stakeholders, community partners, and employers, and connects skilled immigrants to tools and resources that can help them succeed in Canada’s dynamic labour market. From initially being a trades-focused program, FAST has expanded and scaled to in-demand industries like Accounting, Information and Communications Technology, Biotechnology & Life Sciences, Culinary Arts, and this year to Seniors’ Care.

Believing in putting her values to work, Iona is also a social entrepreneur advocating for sustainable coffee livelihoods in partnership with Philippine Indigenous and women coffee farmers and is completing a Social Innovation Certificate from Simon Fraser University.