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Immigration

Immigration | Ashton College

Immigration law is a growing field and becoming an immigration consultant or immigration legal assistant is one of the best ways to become a part of the field. Immigration consultants help people navigate immigration laws and regulations. As an immigration consultant, you will be responsible for advising and representing individuals and groups during their immigration to Canada and ensuring that the process is as quick and efficient as possible. Immigration legal assistants help immigration consultants work cases and manage paperwork and form submissions.

Our Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate program is the most effective way to transition into a career in immigration law in Canada. The program helps legal assistants, internationally trained immigration consultants, and newcomers to the legal sector develop the skills they need to succeed in the Canadian job market.

To become a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC), you must pass the RCIC Entry-to-Practice Exam. We offer an RCIC Exam Prep course to help you challenge the exam with confidence.

At Ashton, we also provide Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants and Lawyers with a range of seminars and webinars to help them achieve the required number of CPD hours.

Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate

Our Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate provides newcomers to immigration law with the knowledge and skills they need to enter the immigration job market. The program also enables legal assistants to advance their career by specializing in immigration.

Immigration legal assistants are able to help immigration consultants expedite cases thanks to their knowledge of Canada’s immigration system, policies, and procedures. Apply for the Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate program if you are looking to start a career in the field of Canadian immigration law.

RCIC Entry-to-Practice Examination

The RCIC Entry-to-Practice Exam Prep course prepares students to write the RCIC Entry-to-Practice Examination administered by Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) to obtain their Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) designation.

Registering for our RCIC Entry-to-Practice Exam Prep Course will give you the additional support you need to enter your RCIC exam with confidence.

Career Opportunities

The ILAC program is designed to prepare students to enter the field of immigration law as a legal assistant, so they can begin gaining work experience immediately. The program does not qualify you to work as an immigration consultant. Separate courses and qualifications are required to practice as an immigration consultant.

Our RCIC Entry-to-Practice Exam Prep course prepares you to challenge the exam and become an RCIC. RCICs are eligible to work anywhere in Canada. As an RCIC, you can work as a sole practitioner, or find employment with law firms, immigration consulting firms and government agencies.

Immigration Courses

Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate (Live Online and In-Class)

Immigration Legal Assistant Certificate focuses on developing skills and knowledge required for an entry level position in an immigration office.

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The research skills I learnt through the IMCD program were really handy. Through the educational processes, I learnt a lot of tricks on how to find information through the government websites to quickly assess clients and I’m using them on a daily basis.

William Howie – Immigration Consultant Diploma Online, 2012

I still use the skills I learned on the IMCD program every day. When you’re taking the program, you get to know the obligations as an immigration consultant so you feel confident when you take over cases. I had wonderful instructors that gave us great tools to be able to practise in the real world. Sometimes I still use my notes and refer back to what I learned at Ashton.

Susana Santa Maria – Immigration Consultant Diploma Part-Time, 2009

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Faculty

  • Kozyrev, Larry
  • Kozyrev, Larry

    Larry Kozyrev is a Barrister and Solicitor with the Law Society of Ontario.He
    obtained his Masters of Laws from Osgoode Hall School and was called to Ontario
    Bar in January 2019. He currently is practicing Immigration Law and Family Law.
    Mr. Kozyrev has over 10 years of experience in Immigration industry as an
    Immigration Consultant.

    Mr. Kozyrev has represented clients in various immigration matters and has
    extensive knowledge and experience in difficult immigration proceedings
    concerning business investors and immigration appeals. Mr. Kozyrev’s practice
    was established in Winnipeg and later expanded to Toronto region.

  • Soden, Shakuntala
  • Soden, Shakuntala

    I am a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant. I work on Temporary Residence and Permanent Residence applications, including Express Entry and the Family Class. I am contracted to a Sponsorship Agreement Holder to coordinate their refugee applications under the PSR Program. I teach Canadian Immigration Law, Policy & Practice at a university on its Masters in Public Policy & Administration. I have a PhD in Textual Analysis from the University of Roehampton, UK.

  • Mohajer, Nazli
  • Mohajer, Nazli

    Nazli Mohajer holds a Masters of International Comparative Law degree from the USA and Human Resources Management certificate from BCIT. She graduated, with distinction, from Ashton College, Immigration Consultant diploma program in 2009.

    Her past experiences include working for international organizations and companies both in public and private sectors, that include United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and as an in-house legal counsel to a subsidiary of a fortune 500 company (Renault-Nissan), before starting her own immigration practice in Vancouver, BC.

    She has served as a National Director of CAPIC (Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants ) in the capacity of Vice President, serving as a member of executive committee and the chair of education and training as well as chair of membership services committee in the span of 4 years.

  • Benkhalti, Rita
  • Benkhalti, Rita

    Rita is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant with several years of experience working in different countries with people from all over the world. Her personal diverse cultural heritage provides her with a unique world view that led her to her current career – helping people from all over the world immigrate to Canada.

    Rita’s Canadian identity was shaped through living in Quebec, Toronto and Vancouver. She dedicates her business, volunteer hours, and personal life to serving immigrants who wish to contribute to the development of the Canadian economy and culture. Not surprisingly, Rita studied a Bachelor's in Global Political Science at York University in Toronto, a Master's of International Relations at the University Rey Juan Carlos in Madrid, and a Canadian Immigration diploma at Ashton College in Vancouver. She is fluent in Spanish, Arabic, French and English and has plans to keep learning more languages in the future. She is dedicated to creating peace, understanding and cooperation between different cultures.

  • Mashhour, Makan
  • Mashhour, Makan

    Makan Mashhour (“Maken”) is a US immigration attorney and a Canadian immigration consultant at Mashhour and Associates. He provides services in most areas of the Canadian and the U.S. immigration laws, with a focus on the business immigration side of the law. Maken understands the complexities of processing bureaucracy of Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC), and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which allows him to protect his clients’ legal rights while their immigration status is being processed through the immigration system.

    When he finds time, Maken works on his charity GoodKarma where he reaches out to the less fortunate residents of Vancouver. He also enjoys volunteering at the immigration clinics where he helps different applicants with their CIC applications.

    Maken completed his Bachelor's degree at University of British Columbia. Then he proceeded with completing his Immigration Consultant diploma at Ashton College. From there, to expand his immigration practice, he moved to the USA where he completed his Juris Doctor degree. While attending law school, Maken moved to the UK and attended Oxford University as a law student to complete part of his law degree there. Maken is now a member of the Washington State Bar Association, and the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council.

  • Therrien, Dominic
  • Therrien, Dominic

    Dominic Therrien (BA, MA, BCL, LLB) has been a lawyer since 2002 and has assisted hundreds of families to immigrate to Canada. He has a long and diversified international work history living in the US, France and China. Previously, Dominic pursued undergraduate studies in political science at the University of Montréal and graduate studies in international politics at the Université de la Sorbonne. He also has a Civil Law degree and a Certificate of Qualification in Common Law. He founded his own law firm in 2016 and is a member of the Law Society of Quebec, the Law Society of British Columbia, and the State Bar of California. As an educator, Dominic has a particular focus on business immigration, professional ethics and practice management. His law career followed several years of playing professional baseball in the Atlanta Braves organization.

  • Ramos, Divino Rex
  • Ramos, Divino Rex

    Divino holds a degree in Business. Before coming to Canada, he worked as a Regional Sales Director at DOLE International, and as an International Business Analyst at The Emirates Group. He also published and taught his research on Human Resources at the University of Saint Louis.

    Divino is also a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant with over five years of industry experience. He worked at JBS as an Employment Manager in Alberta, where he oversaw the Recruitment Department and the Temporary Foreign Worker Program. He also lived in Ontario where he pursued his degree in International Relations, while working as a Human Resources Manager and Senior Immigration Advisor at DVN.

    Currently, aside from being a Managing Partner at DVN, Divino works as a Career Coach, an International Recruiter, and a Global Immigration Advisor for various companies in North America and Southeast Asia. He also volunteers for the Canadian Red Cross and the United Nations, where he usually partakes in the resettlement and youth programs.

  • Han, Helen
  • Han, Helen

    Helen Han is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC) at a boutique consultancy firm in Burnaby, BC.  She provides a wide range of immigration advice and services to clients on various immigration issues.  Her practice mainly involves helping international students with their study permit affairs, as well as advising clients with a work permit, permanent residence & citizenship matters.

    Prior to starting her practice in the field of the immigration law, Helen was an instructor within the Faculty of Logistics at a prominent school in China.

    Helen obtained a Master’s degree in Global Business from the University of Victoria, and a Bachelor degree in Commerce from the University of British Columbia.

  • Megill, Rod
  • Megill, Rod

    Rod Megill is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC). Rod specializes in processing immigration applications of international skilled workers, professionals, temporary foreign workers, NAFTA exempt professionals and business persons wishing to work or live permanently in Canada via federal or provincial nominee programs.

    Rod holds degrees from Carleton University, Concordia University and the University of Oregon.

  • Le, Steven
  • Le, Steven

    Steven Le (BSc, RCIC, NP) obtained his Bachelor's degree from Simon Fraser University in 1996. In 2005, Steven was admitted into the Notary Public program run by the University of British Columbia and the Society of Notaries Public of British Columbia. Since 2007, Steven has been commissioned as a Notary Public for the province of British Columbia. He was a Chair for Notary Public Vancouver East Chapter from 2014–2016.

    With his professional work as a Notary Public, Steven has had an opportunity to meet and interact with clients from many different backgrounds and cultures. Steven recognized the need for a well-trained, qualified and honest immigration consultant to assist people in bringing their loved ones to Canada. In May 2011, Steven obtained his designation as a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC). He enjoys his work as an instructor and has assisted many clients in various immigration matters.

  • McKay, Ron
  • McKay, Ron

    Ron McKay has been employed in the Canadian immigration field for over thirty years. He was previously employed as a locally engaged Immigration Officer at the Canadian Embassy in Tokyo, Japan from 1986 to 1996. When he returned to Canada, he was employed as the in-house Immigration Consultant for the law firm of Clark Wilson LLP in Vancouver, British Columbia from 1996 to 2016.

    He holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science and Public Administration from Laurentian University and he is a graduate of the UBC-Seneca Immigration Practitioner Program.

    Ron was the First National President for the Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants (CAPIC) in 1999–2000. He subsequently served as a National Director for the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council (ICCRC) from 2011 to 2016. He was the National Chair of ICCRC from 2015 to 2016.

    Ron has over 20 years of experience in the education sector, having been an English as a Second Language Instructor in Tokyo, Japan; an instructor for the UBC-Seneca Immigration Practitioner Program; and the Director, Immigration Practitioner Programs and IMCD instructor for Ashton College from 2017 to present.

    Recreation-wise, Ron is a curler and a curling instructor, and he is the President of the Vancouver Curling Club for 2018-2019. He also has practiced Japanese martial arts and holds a Second Degree Black Belt in Aikido and a Brown Belt in Shorinji Kempo. He is presently studying Chinese martial arts. He also performs music for charitable events on drums and percussion.

  • Abonada, Manal
  • Abonada, Manal

    Manal Abonada has been an Immigration Consultant for six years. She founded her own immigration practice, Immigration Consultants Canada, and works in collaboration with many colleges and universities in Ontario as an authorized educational representative. She has also been a teacher for 17 years overseas. She is passionate about continuous learning and teaching. Manal has obtained a degree and three diplomas. Her latest – the Border Services Diploma – was in 2015. She is currently working on her French language, as well as a face reading and body language certification.

  • Parsai, Al
  • Parsai, Al

    Al Parsai is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant (RCIC). He runs his successful business in downtown Toronto, Ontario with many employees. Al is the author of “88 Tips on Immigration to Canada.” He is a member of ICCRC (Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council) and CAPIC (Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants). Al has represented hundreds of applicants from more than 35 countries to the Canadian immigration authorities.

    Al, who holds a Master's degree in Counselling Psychology, has extensive experience as an author, trainer, and public speaker. He has written ten books and hundreds of articles in the past 20 years. Al has also delivered many courses, workshops, and speeches in four different countries.

    Immigration to Canada is Al Parsai’s passion. He deals with the immigration process on a daily basis. He represents hundreds of applicants to the federal and provincial immigration authorities at the same time. Al is proud of his profession and recommends it to anyone who wants to help others build a better life.

    When it comes to training, Al truly believes in interactive education. He thinks a variety of training activities based on real-life events could help students explore issues from different angles and understand them thoroughly.

  • Shah, Rasik
  • Shah, Rasik

    Born in Kenya, Rasik Shah grew up in a multicultural society speaking several languages, and studied Law at Lincoln’s Inn, London, where he was called to the bar as a Barrister at Law in 1963. Returning to Kenya, he practised as an advocate of the High Court of Kenya, specializing as a criminal lawyer. In 1974, he immigrated to Canada, took the Common Law exam set by Osgoode Hall, and qualified as a barrister and solicitor, becoming a member of the Law Society of British Columbia.

    Rasik practised law for 15 years, then took a break from law by leading trekking trips to the Himalayas in India for the next 12 years, travelling widely among Buddhist communities in the north, including an overland trip from Nepal to Lhasa in Tibet. He has also done some travel writing and published some short fiction. He returned to practise as refugee counsel by qualifying as an immigration consultant in 2002, apart from doing a stint with CBSA as a hearing officer.

    In 2006, Rasik joined Ashton College and set up the refugee module program, and also started teaching the IMCD 04 refugee module. In 2008, he was appointed a member of the IRB by the Governor General in Council and functioned as a refugee claims adjudicator for a year at the Refugee Protection Division, Vancouver, resuming instruction at Ashton College thereafter and taking up his practice as refugee counsel again. His hobbies are creative writing, chess, and a passionate interest in literature; he is also committed to human rights causes. He is pleased to see indications of a new refugee-friendly environment in Canada.

  • Tayde, Cristie Lane
  • Tayde, Cristie Lane

    Cristie Lane Tayde attained her Bachelor's degree and Certificate in Immigration from the University of British Columbia. She has been a Regulated Canada Immigration Consultant with BC Happy Homes Immigration Services since 2009. Though their company caters for clients from across the globe, they have several offices set up in the Philippines, where Cristie often goes to conduct seminars and provide consultation services.

    Aside from her work as a consultant, Cristie is very involved in volunteer works within the local Filipino-Canadian community.

    She was a former Board Member and Secretary for the Philippines Canada Trade Council, and has also had a regular stint on a local radio station discussing immigration matters, and has provided her services by writing immigration columns in local newspapers. Cristie is a second-generation immigration consultant, which instilled in her a passion to help people as she was growing up.

  • Napal, Raj
  • Napal, Raj

    Raj Napal was called to the English Bar in 1981 and practised as a trial lawyer in criminal and civil litigation for 15 years prior to emigrating to Canada in the mid-90s. He was called to the Ontario Bar in 1996 when he established NLC lawyers in Peel, Ontario.

    Raj is highly skilled in judicial review proceedings and advocacy in all the divisions of the IRB. He is also an experienced criminal and civil litigation lawyer, having won a substantial number of trials in both England and Canada. He has a number of cases published in the law reports, some of which highlighted important principles of law in his areas of practice.

    In 2016, he decided to focus more on teaching and reduced his workload by restricting his practice to criminal and immigration law. He believes that his deep knowledge of the law and his three decades of litigation experience will assist students in the learning process. Raj feels privileged that he can contribute towards the mandate of Ashton College, their instructors and staff. That mandate is that our collaborative teaching environment is of a high standard so that our future licensed legal professionals are ready and fully equipped to meet the challenges of practice and excel in the work they do.

  • Pancotto, Rosanna
  • Pancotto, Rosanna

    A proud Canadian, Rosanna was born and raised on the Canadian Prairies, where she attended post-secondary education at the University of Winnipeg, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Politics. In 2001, soon after graduation and while pursuing her political career, she worked as an Immigration Assistant to a former Member of Parliament of the House of Commons for 5 years.

    In 2005, Rosanna was transferred to Ottawa, Ontario and held the position of Special Assistant to the Western Region for the former Minister of Citizenship & Immigration. Rosanna’s work in this position related strictly to immigration pertaining to Western Canada. Rosanna was also a part of the Fort Gary Community Network, an immigration network in Winnipeg, Manitoba dealing with settlement programs and assistance within the community.

    She graduated from Humber College, obtaining her Canadian Immigration Practitioner Certificate, in 2007. Rosanna is also an active and proud member of the Immigration Consultants of Canada Regulatory Council, a regulatory body that oversees and regulates the conduct and ethics of immigration consultants. Rosanna owns her own immigration practice, Prairie Sky Immigration.

  • Power, Gerry
  • Power, Gerry

    Gerry Power has extensive expertise in immigration and citizenship matters with over 35 years of experience in both public and private sectors. After earning a Bachelor of Arts degree in Political Science, Gerry started his career at the Citizenship Branch of the federal government in Ottawa. He then joined the Quebec Immigration Department, where he worked for 30 years as an Immigration Officer and Program Manager and Director, in charge of various Quebec Immigration Offices abroad.

    Gerry has lived in many countries and travelled extensively. He is familiar with numerous cross-cultural environments. Based in Hong Kong, from where he manages his Canadian immigration consulting firm, Gerry is a Regulated Immigration Consultant and is registered as a Quebec Immigration Consultant.

  • Desmond, Jane
  • Desmond, Jane

    Jane Desmond has been an immigration consultant and instructor for sixteen years. Jane has built a solid reputation amongst her peers. Her experience, coupled with her work in the community, have afforded her extensive legal exposure and understanding. Furthermore, her in-depth knowledge and insight have been sought by television networks – OMNI News, Globo (the largest television network in Brazil), and various local ethnic media outlets – to explain the implications of the changes in government policies and regulations in immigration.

    Jane has successfully managed a Toronto-based consulting company, which represents clients before Immigration Refugees and Citizenship Canada, the Immigration and Refugee Board throughout Canada, and in many of the Canadian visa posts abroad.  

  • Djuricic, Nevena
  • Djuricic, Nevena

    Nevena Djuricic earned her Bachelor of Law degree from the University of Sarajevo. Before immigrating to Canada, she practiced law in her home country and was appointed a municipal court judge for Sarajevo, Bosnia and Herzegovina in 1987.

    In 2002 Nevena graduated from the UBC-Seneca Immigration Practitioner Program.

    Nevena is a member of the Canadian Association of Professional Immigration Consultants (CAPIC) and a former CAPIC BC Chapter, Policy and Lobbying Committee member, who was working on promoting and protecting the integrity of the profession by communicating with federal and provincial government agencies and media. She was also a presenter at the CAPIC Continuous Education Seminars.

    Nevena taught on the Immigration Consultant Diploma Program at Ashton College for a period of 15 years. In 2012 Nevena received the Faculty Award, presented to an instructor that projects a positive, professional, and approachable attitude within the workplace and who possesses outstanding leadership abilities within the school community.

    Nevena is a Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultant, a member of ICCRC since its inception and has had many years of experience in the field of immigration.

    Nevena is an avid skier and, for many years, served as a parent co-coordinator for the Grouse Mt. Tyee Ski club and the Vancouver Ski Team.

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