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At Vancouver Community College (VCC), most of our Continuing Studies instructors spend their days working and their evenings teaching. This means instructors from early childhood education to medical device reprocessing bring real-world examples and case studies into the classroom.
“When we have instructors who work in the industry, students gain a deeper understanding of how they will experience the workplace. The result is more practical, work-ready assignments and projects,” says Janet Chee, VCC office administration and paralegal program coordinator.
Being entrenched in industry also means our instructors bring valuable connections to the classroom. They engage guest speakers that provide unique perspectives and a deeper dive into topics, and offer support beyond the classroom such as providing tips on associations to join, places to volunteer, and job opportunities.
Before a student even ends up in a classroom, VCC Continuing Studies engages with experts to help identify industry needs and what skills are essential for program graduates to start working immediately.
“Subject matter experts bring a wealth of knowledge and industry experience to the program discussion. As they engage with each other, the ideas start to fly. That’s when I start to get excited and feel confident in knowing that we are going to create an amazing program,” says Sid Khullar, VCC trades and technology program coordinator.
Finally, as students near the end of their programs, many find themselves connecting directly with their industries during a practicum. These work placement opportunities allow students to see first-hand how the workplace operates, and to activate their classroom learning in an industry setting.
“Practicums are great for furthering developing a student’s industry network,” says Sarah Murray, program coordinator for VCC’s fashion and counselling skills programs. “By the end of their programs, students’ networks will include not only instructors, but also guest speakers and practicum supervisors. Knowing people in the industry is so important to finding a job.”
Set yourself up for success this spring. See the VCC Continuing Studies courses now open for registration.