As senior vice-president, infrastructure investments, at a leading North American construction company, Ledcor Group of Companies, Candice Alderson oversees major infrastructure and public-private partnership projects like the B.C. Children’s Hospital Teck Acute Care Centre. She also served as a hospital governor between 2012 and 2016.
The first woman in the company’s history in charge of a profit-and-loss division, Alderson is a lawyer by training who double-majored in international politics and human/environmental relations while at Concordia. She calls her undergraduate education “extremely satisfying.” The lessons she learned outside the classroom, however, were as instructive as the ones she learned in it.
“Just attending Concordia required me to move from Vancouver to Montreal at a young age. I did not know anyone in Montreal and had to find a place to live, register for courses and look after myself without a parental safety net. That’s a big step for any young person,” she says.
“I stepped into a very complex transaction late in the game and couldn’t give it my typical due diligence. I learned it’s important to set reasonable expectations when you are given stretch opportunities with demanding deadlines. If you don’t or can’t get the necessary support for a project, figure out where your efforts are most necessary instead of trying to do it all or even part of it.“
Best career advice
“Some rejections are blessings in disguise and if opportunities don’t come your way — create them!”
Biggest undergraduate hurdle
“I paid for my own education. I worked two jobs while maintaining a full course load. Suffice it to say, the work-life balance test started early for me and it took many years for me to figure out how to get a passing grade!”
“I took a class with political science professor Henry Habib and became involved in Concordia’s Model United Nations. Aside from learning how to debate, my fellow classmates and I also had to fundraise for these competitions that required travel. When you’re in these types of situations, you learn a lot about people.”
“That I push for the right results across all ethical, legal and moral lines, that I place importance on developing positive relationships and that I genuinely care about those I work with.”