Talatu Shokpeka

216Talatu was born and raised in Nigeria where she attended all her elementary and secondary schools. In 1986, she obtained a Bachelor’s degree in French from Ahmadu Bello University in Zaria, Nigeria and in 2005 she completed her Master’s degree in Public Administration from the University of Benin in Benin City, Nigeria. She is currently enrolled in the Applied Counseling Certificate program at the University of Manitoba.

She has over 15 years of experience in program coordination, service delivery and teaching. She taught French to Junior High School students for six years, after which she joined the National Youth Service Corps program in Nigeria and worked for 12 years as a field officer (Zonal Inspector – coordinating the activities of participants in their communities) and as the Mobilization Officer (involved with mobilizing, documenting and placing participants with employers) for 3 years. She has coordinated the activities of youths (under 30) on national service to engage them in community development efforts to under-served and rural populations through workplace internships, various community service groups and initiatives. She enjoys working with the newcomer/immigrant community in Winnipeg first as an employment counselor/facilitator at Success Skills Centre and as the community programs manager at IRCOM.

She loves reading (practically anything!), meeting new people, listening to music and dancing. Talatu is a toastmaster and participates in church activities and programs as needed. She also speaks the French and Hausa languages. She is married with four children.