Jo Stewart – former OAAP Chair and current Associate Registrar at Yukon College shares some exciting news!
Hello to my Ontario colleagues from Whitehorse, Yukon Territory! As some of you know, I’ve moved from Ontario to a new position as Associate Registrar at Yukon College. I am loving my time here at the College, and in the Territory. For those who have never been up here, I strongly encourage you to be sure to put it on your bucket lists. There’s always something happening – for those who have an “outdoor” bent, hiking, snowshoeing, skiing (Nordic and downhill), dog sledding, kayaking, camping, hunting, fishing – lots of opportunities. For those who are not as excited about outdoor activities, there’s always something to do here too – music festivals, dances, art festivals, interesting shopping, museums, amazing coffee shops and bakeries, two coffee companies (yes, that amazed me too! Imagine choosing Whitehorse to roast coffee beans, and having enough of a market to float two beaneries!), and a beer brewery that uses local herbs and fruits foraged from the wild in their blends. If you have the time, it is worth the drive (at least from Edmonton – fly there, rent a car and drive up a couple of days through the mountains in Northern BC/southern Yukon. I’m sure that you’ve all heard the expression “It’s worth the drive”, but on this one, you will see wild animals (bison, caribou, lynx, bald eagles – all spotted on my drive up), and some breathtaking sights at every turn in the road!
For the last number of years, I’ve worked with the Centre for Higher Education Research and Development (CHERD) at the University of Manitoba, proposing that they offer professional development/certification for academic advisors in Canada. Taking advantage of the opportunities available through NACADA is wonderful if you have the chance, but the exchange rates and relatively high costs make that an unrealistic goal for many.
Kathleen Matheos, the Executive Director of CHERD, met with me last summer to put the finishing touches on a new opportunity here in Canada. They have agreed to offer a new “Letter of Accomplishment (LOA) in Academic Advising” upon completion of five courses there at CHERD. Courses are transferable from other CHERD programs, and from NACADA (e.g., if you have attended the Assessment Institute at NACADA, you can apply for advanced standing for the Assessment of Advising course at CHERD; if you have completed a LOA elective in another of the CHERD programs, that is transferable to the LOA). U Manitoba only offers certificates when participants have completed 8 courses. If there is demand shown for the LOA, Kathleen has agreed to expand the program at some point in the future with another three courses to allow for a certificate in advising. Courses are all offered online, each lasts 3 weeks (a heavy 3 weeks), and all are taught by Canadians and will have a Canadian focus where possible.
We have just recently finished the first term of courses for the new Letter of Accomplishment in Academic Advising. The courses were well-attended, and we have a number of people who are well on their way to completing the requirements for the LOA. I wanted to send this out today because I know that some of you will be planning your next budgets and may want to keep this in mind for professional development.
Each course is currently $495. Please get further information about the program, and feel free to let me know if you have any specific questions (firstname.lastname@example.org).