Nov. 8, 2016

Alumni Spotlight: Alicia Clifford, BA’15 (Indigenous Studies and Law & Society)

Arts alumni are an accomplished crew. They have great advice for students and fellow graduates, and know that arts degrees teach skills that are sought-after in the professional environment.

Alicia Clifford graduated with a BA double-major in Indigenous Studies and Law and Society. She is currently the Aboriginal Relations Program Assistant at the University of Calgary.

What is your favourite University of Calgary memory?

My favourite UCalgary memory would be advocating for an Indigenous Studies law course to be offered and then two years later being able to sit in that inaugural class. What a feeling of accomplishment! 

What was your favourite campus hang out spot?

The Law Library for a quiet study space and the LDL for relaxation with friends.

If you could give one piece of advice to a student completing the same degree that you did, what would it be?

Don’t be afraid to tackle controversial topics that are of interest to you. You will bring more to the piece of work than you think. Also, talk to your profs! This helps them put a face to your name and you may be able to gain some great insights into your area of interest. Besides, if you are ever in trouble they will likely be willing to listen.

How has your career evolved?

My career has moved from a strict administrative role to content contribution and evaluation. I get to look for ways to enhance the experience of participants on their learning journey.

What is the best thing about your job?

I get to work in an area I am passionate about and help plant the seed of awareness about the issues that Canada’s Aboriginal population face today. 

How did your arts degree help you get to where you are now/your current career?

My arts degree not only provided me with a broad spectrum of knowledge but also great research skills. Without these skills I would not be able to effectively evaluate what we are doing with the program and make recommendations for improvement.

How can I steal your job?

Take the program, learn the history, become involved in community and then provide input to how it can be better. Be prepared to be challenged though.

Do you have any other thoughts or memories you would like to share?

Don’t underestimate the power of networking. Meeting people and getting to know them will help you gain an edge.