Hello forum members! I've been following this thread for a while and learnt a lot of stuff and now it's time for me to share my interview experience with everyone. I had my interview in Hong Kong on 17th May 2012 at 1330hrs. First of all, here's some background info about myself: I'm a Registered Nurse, completed by Bachelor of Nursing in Australia, and have about 3.5 years' nursing experience in total. I'm the principal applicant and applied with my husband who is now an apprentice plumber.
We applied in March 2011, got the AOR after about 2 weeks and then in June 2011 got the ‘intention to refuse' letter as I completed my 3 year degree in less than 3 years (waaaay earlier than 3 years as I had managed to complete it quickly). The IO wasn't satisfied and wanted proof that it is a genuine degree from a genuine university as it sort of appeared a bit dodgy that I managed to complete my degree within a short period of time. So I gathered and sent supporting documents in August to refute this claim (was given 60 days to do this) and then in November 2011 got a letter saying that we were in the interview waiting list and finally in February 2012 was told that the interview will be in May 2012.
I prepared for the interview by having a file with details about various stuff like rent, housing market, different neighbourhoods and where to stay, labour market (outlook for nurses, RN job profile, salary, employment rates, etc.), hospitals that I can work in Montreal and other regions in Quebec, process and application forms for obtaining registration from OIIQ, climate, cost of living (Montreal compared with Toronto and Vancouver), quality of living, society, economy, health, education, common values, political and legal systems, learning French, obtaining drivers licence, public transport, etc. The portfolio consisted of a 37 page MS Word document, with about another 30-40 pages of printouts from the internet. We also had printouts of job ads from Emploi Quebec.
On the day of the interview we arrived about 30mins prior to the interview to discover that my husband and I were the only ones there! There weren't any applicants except for the two of us! Got called in by the IO to his office later on; the IO was a middle aged man and had a friendly attitude and greeted us pleasantly. Asked for our passports, and then went through my application and asked a few questions in French, such as the number of hours that I work, where I live, if we've been to Montreal (no to this), family in Quebec (no to this), if we have any kids (no to this), my job duties, if I liked my job, etc. He asked to see only a few of my education certificates, work certificates and French language documents (selected 3/12 in the form - I just went for classes at AF, so I got a letter from my teacher).
Then in English he asked me to name some cities in Quebec, to briefly describe the process of obtaining registration from OIIQ and what a nurse's salary is. He was surprised at the salary and asked how I knew this, so I grabbed this opportunity to show him my portfolio and showed him the printout with nurse's salary, outlook by region, employment rate, etc. He was impressed with this and went through a few more pages (maybe about 1/10 of the whole portfolio) and said ‘bon bon, you can use this for later'. He explained about the importance of French and stated that French was like a religion in Quebec and that I had to convince him of my French skills otherwise I would not get the certificate that day! He also explained how difficult it can be for doctors and nurses in Quebec having to work overtime as there weren't enough staff and the budget being spread thin. He then asked, ‘so do you still want to go to Quebec?' and I was like ‘of course!'.
He then asked for my husband's education and work certificates and French language documents (selected 1/12 in the form - letter from AF again), and asked him a few questions in French such as what's your name, how are you, what's your occupation, do you like your job, etc.
He then said OK, I've entered your details into the grid. I just know that we got 4/6 for adaptability and in the end or at some point our total was 69 points (well the last time I saw while doing the calculations together). And then he asked, do you know what this means? To this my husband replied, “Welcome to Quebec!!”
The IO then said, “go ahead hug each other and give your wife a kiss!!” The IO continued explaining a bit more about starting a new life in Montreal, and how we have to learn to walk again (as in walking on ice) and we'll fall down a couple of times, but we'll get up again. He also said to take the time to adapt to your new life and gave us the printout of the CSQ (with priority treatment and valid for 36 months), and other info about Quebec.
Well that's it really... the whole interview took about 45 mins. Just make sure that you brush up on your French, take all the required original documents, research about Quebec and keep your hopes up because it was a very long and excruciating wait for the interview, but it was all worth it in the end!!