Joy Brathwaite is a 20-year-old hospitality student from Humber College who moved here from Bridgetown, Barbados in August of this year. Along with being a hospitality student, she also dabbles in photography. She wants to be an event manager for cruise ships as entrepreneurism runs in family.
Brathwaite is a natural, nothing about her field has been surprising yet as she already knew most things in advance because she has grown up seeing her family work on movie and TV platforms, particularly a TV show called Revenge.
She chose Humber College because it seemed like there were “better opportunities for co-op in Canada than what had at schools in Barbados” and a way to get out of home and see other countries.
“I don’t think a lot of Barbados schools are setting you up to do what you want to do in the future.”
When Brathwaite arrived in Canada, she was well-prepared as her parents have lived in Canada before so they give advice about the weather mostly and how to dress and prepare for it. Her biggest problem is not having her friends and family back home around to talk to. She occasionally talks with friends and my family back home.
When talking about cool places in Canada, she didn’t expect that the malls and movie theatres would be “much bigger and grander” than the ones she was used to back in Barbados. In her spare time, she likes to visit her friends in other areas, go to the movies, and spend time with her boyfriend. She lives in residence and while she likes it but as she says a lot of the people who live there are “dramatic” and can cause drama “in a second”, which can be annoying for her.
The Humber Arboretum – One of Joy’s favourite places to hang around.
With assignments published every week, lots of group work and a lot of discussions this is a typical school week for Brathwaite. She has hybrid classes as she says, “I prefer a good mix of them. I don’t feel like some classes should be in person.” While college life can be pretty stressful, what calms her down is to get up and walk away for a bit, maybe hang out with friends or walk around the residence for a bit to clear her mind. She found it easy to make friends in her program as she found them “really great to work with”, but has found it hard to separate work and friends and try to have a healthy balance.
“Joy’s work ethic is top-tier, she always gives it everything she’s got and always ends up on top. Her personality is joyous no pun intended, I really mean that” says Hunter Amos, Joy’s boyfriend.
What Brathwaite loves about event planning is “the execution of the event itself”. But even with her knowledge she still struggles with tasks such as budgeting and planning ahead. But what keeps her motivated is the thought of making herself, her teachers and her parents proud.
“Joy is a joy! She’s a dedicated student- always on time, engaged and hard-working. She is interested and interesting, modest, kind and friendly. I love having her in my class!” said Graidhne Lelieveld-Amiro, an instructor at Humber College.
Hopes for the Future
After she graduates from Humber College, she wants to further her education and go for her Bachelor’s degree afterwards. She wants to go back to Barbados next year in the summer and live in Canada or Barbados, as she says she would know the area better and what people are in demand for in her career. She hopes to get a scholarship so it will help pay for her tuition.
Brathwaite’s advice she has for someone who is studying in another country like her is to keep up with in-town and outside trends to “keep your events fresh”. She believes that working hard and staying consistent is the key to leading a successful career.
As the Fall 2022 season closes, this is what Brathwaite has to say about her first semester at Humber College.