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University Continuing Education Webinars

Lifelong Learning: Putting ideas into practice

May 7, 14 and June 11, 18, 2021
#TalkLifelongLearning

Friday webinars on university continuing education

UM Extended Education presents four free webinars exploring the state of lifelong learning at Canadian universities and the future of continuing education including the introduction of micro-credentials to support the upskilling and reskilling of professionals. Join experts from across Canada as they explain how university continuing education continues to support businesses and professionals as they prepare for the future. Registration is required and seats are limited.

Webinar 1

Friday, May 7
12:00 to 1:15 p.m. EDT

Registrations are now closed.

The state of university continuing education across Canada

A conversation with director of Continuing Education at the University of Calgary Sheila LeBlanc, executive director of the College of Extended Learning at the University of New Brunswick Ian Allen, and editor in chief of The EvoLLution and director of content for Modern Campus Amrit Ahluwalia.

Meeting notes

Webinar 2

Friday, May 14
12:00 to 1:15 p.m. EDT

Registrations are now closed.

After the COVID pandemic:  The role of universities and colleges in building a stronger Canadian economy

A conversation with UM President, Michael Benarroch, director, economic thought leadership at RBC Cynthia Leach, president and CEO of Red River College Fred Meier and dean of the School of Continuing Education at MacEwan University, Heather McRae.

Webinar 3

Friday, June 11
12:00 to 1:15 p.m. EDT

Deciphering the meaning of micro-credentials

Featuring:

Jessica Butts Scott

Jessica Butts Scott

Jessica Butts Scott is the director of award-winning PowerEDTM by Athabasca University-Canada’s Online University. PowerEDTM is an entrepreneurial unit that provides power for businesses who need custom-fit skills to lift-up their people and results. It is pushing the boundaries of digital learning through enriched, on-demand micro-credentials with experiential elements including: immersive experiences, interactive 3D simulated learning, podcasts, docuseries, AI-NLP simulations and more.

At Athabasca University, Jessica has held many roles including director, partnerships and student recruitment and manager, corporate partnerships. Previously, Jessica worked for the Edmonton Oilers where she pioneered a strategic position focused on developing the organization’s digital media strategy to drive revenue and partnerships. Prior to that, Jessica worked for Viacom/MTV networks in Chicago, Illinois where she led cable and digital media distribution partnerships and negotiations with Comcast, Time Warner Cable, Verizon Fios, and was responsible for a 15-state territory and led a winning sales team.

A dual citizen of Canada and the USA, Jessica earned her MBA from Athabasca University and a bachelor of science in business administration and Spanish from the University of Wisconsin-Platteville. Jessica is currently earning her doctorate in distance and digital education (EdD) from Athabasca University. Jessica is passionate about women having access to and achieving an education.

Rod Lastra

Rod Lastra

Rod Lastra has been associate dean (academic) and chair of the program review committee in the Division of Extended Education at the University of Manitoba since 2017. As associate dean, he oversees academic functions related to continuing education course/program delivery, student appeals and disciplinary policies/procedures. Since 2020, he is also associate area director of the UM Access Program. Previously, within Extended Education, he was program director, and math/science academic specialist. He was also an instructor in the UM Faculty of Science and a researcher with Parks Canada.

Rod has worked with program development teams to ensure new continuing education program proposals adhere to governance requirements as determined by the university as well as external accrediting bodies. He has led team efforts to better understand processes related to prior learning (PLAR) models and the creation and implementation of alternative credentials. He was involved in the development of the University of Manitoba’s certificate and diploma framework and has led efforts to update non-degree academic admission and progression policies within Extended Education. Research interests include quantitative modelling of student academic progression, development and, implementation of alternative credentialing as well as university policy frameworks. Rod holds the following degrees: BSc 96, MSc 2001, PhD 2011.

Webinar 4

Friday, June 18
12:00 to 1:15 p.m. EDT

Recognition of alternative digital credentials

Featuring:

Julia Denholm

Julia Denholm

Julia Denholm is the dean of lifelong learning at Simon Fraser University (SFU) and has extensive experience in teaching and higher education leadership. Before joining SFU, she was dean, faculty of arts and sciences, and dean of kálax-ay, the Sunshine Coast campus at Capilano University. She previously held roles at Langara College and the University of British Columbia.

Julia has a PhD in educational studies and a BA (Hons) and MA in English literature from the University of British Columbia.

Daniel Piedra

Daniel Piedra

Dan Piedra currently serves as an assistant director at McMaster University Continuing Education. He oversees online course design and development including all certificate and diploma programs offered within the centre. Previously, he has served in similar positions at Sheridan College and as Director of Conestoga College’s Continuing Education department. He has also served as an instructor of online and in-person programs at several institutions of higher education including Brock University.

Dan completed his bachelor of education and master of science at Brigham Young University in Provo, Utah and is currently working on a PhD in Education from Brock University. His research interests lie in exploring quality of online learning in areas of instructor training, instructional design, humanization of online courses, the use of non-traditional assessments, alternate digital credentials, and student empowerment.

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