By Maureen M. MacDonald, Former Dean, Continuing Studies

We often hear about the importance of lifelong learning - how we need to keep our skills current in this world of ever changing technology, demographics, social norms or political landscapes. Employers are seeking current, job-ready skills. Those of us already in the workplace know that it isn't the same environment as when we first entered. The challenge is to find a way to access the knowledge and skills you require in a format that meets your specific educational needs today.

We are all individuals. We want our education to reflect that. Some of us need a credential in a specific field, something that can be recognized in your industry or organization. Others have needs that cut across disciplines. Still others seek a foundation in a specific discipline. Some of us work best when we learn in a face-to-face environment, others need the flexibility of an online format. Having a program that reflects your needs, your career stage and your aspirations is important. I am here to tell you that just like the burger commercials - you can have it your way!

A recently approved program in Continuing Studies is the Certificate in General Studies. This program enables you to design your own certificate to respond to your individual learning needs. Students can select from a wide range of individual courses to bundle together a program that works for you. Perhaps you wear many hats in your organization and a single certificate doesn't reflect the broad range of your job responsibilities. By selecting from courses in a variety of programs you can develop a recognized UVic credential that meets your learning requirements.

Perhaps your job asks you to do some human resource functions that include a component of occupational health; perhaps you work in the museum sector and have responsibilities for developing some public relations strategies; perhaps you want to be your own boss in the environmental field but you need a few business or technology courses to help make that happen. By drawing from courses in a number of certificate and diploma programs you can have a program that responds to your unique circumstances. Our program staff can work with you to ensure you get what you need, when you need it.

Today’s work world requires us to be nimble. Isn’t it time your educational path provided that same flexibility? Consider the Certificate in General Studies. It puts you in the driver’s seat to define your learning goals and develop a program that reflects your set of distinct learning outcomes.

This article was first published in the Fall 2016 Calendar.

  • Posted July 28, 2016