Our alumni are really amazing and we want to share their achievements with the world! In the SPOTLIGHT this month is Alumni Ambassador Denys Volkov (Business and Politics, 2003).
Can you tell me about your time at City?
I completed a B.A. (Hons.) degree accredited by City, University of London through Witan International College in Reading. It was an amazing experience studying in the U.K. after moving from Ukraine where I grew up. I had amazing professors, instructors and staff. I stayed at Mansfield Hall where I met a lot of British and international students. I am thankful for this opportunity which prepared me for my life today. A special thank you to Professor James Algie for his mentorship during my studies.
What happened after you graduated?
I moved to Canada to complete my Master of Public Administration Degree at the Universities of Manitoba and Winnipeg.
After I graduated, I was offered a job at the City Clerk’s Office at the City of Winnipeg. I am thankful for the opportunity to start my career with some great people in that office before moving on to the Mayor’s Office where I worked for over 6 years.
What is a typical day at your current workplace like?
As Director of Advocacy and Communications for the Association of Manitoba Municipalities, I work with Mayors and Council members from across the province to advance interests of municipalities. I regularly meet with Ministers and departmental staff to negotiate best deals possible for municipalities – from funding arrangements to changes in various acts and legislation.
What was it like to move to Canada?
Canada has a great reputation around the world. I knew about hockey and cold weather in Canada before I moved; however, I didn’t know how wonderful people are. I live in the province which is known as “Friendly Manitoba”. I’ve met some of the friendliest people in the world here!
Is that why you stayed?
Canada and Manitoba offer one of the best immigration and settlement programs in the world, so combined with a great job offer from The City of Winnipeg I couldn’t think of a better opportunity to live and work anywhere else.
You were recently nominated for CBC Manitoba’s Future 40 under 40 – how did it feel to be nominated?
I felt honoured to be nominated! I appreciate the support and trust put in me by my nominator, my close friend and former boss Sherwood Armbruster who inspires me every day. It’s a privilege to be nominated and share a small part of my story.
What has been the biggest challenge for you?
After moving from Britain to Canada I had to establish my life, complete my studies, find a career. I feel I have overcome my challenge, but not without some amazing friends I met along the way.
What has been the most rewarding experience?
Meeting amazing people in my line of work.
Do you have any advice for anyone looking to follow in your footsteps?
Believe in yourself. I couldn’t have ever imagined while living in Ukraine that I’d one day be working in government relations in Canada. Life is full of surprises!
Finally, it’s the quick-fire question round!
What is your favourite place in London: Notting Hill Gate. It’s central, beautiful and unique.
What is your favourite holiday destination: Japan!
Which website do you check every day: I check multiple websites every day – from checking my email to staying on top of domestic and international news.
What is your dream travel destination: I’d love to go back to Japan.
Do you prefer cheese or chocolate: Chocolate for sure.