Opening up the Conversation with Trades Faculty in the North

Recently, BCcampus’ own Carolee Clyne and Tim Carson facilitated and hosted a series of conversations for the various trades faculties in the North. Specific trade instructors at Coast Mountain College, College of New Caledonia, Northern Lights College, and Yukon University were invited to participate and discuss some of the unique challenges they have been facing and their approaches to them. When asked about their experiences, the facilitators had this to say:

“Trades in the North conversations started to help reduce the sense of isolation during the initial stages of COVID-19 among instructors. The goal was to enable the trades programs within the North to develop a connection amongst themselves to share their challenges and the uniquely northern solutions. Dealing with issues of internet connectivity, community isolation plans, taking hands-on and making it virtual, and how to get there with peer stories were the aspirations behind these sessions. As I listened in each of the sessions, great ideas and solutions emerged. The spirit of innovative approaches and looking outside the box to improvise is part of what I so enjoy about being in the North.”

Carolee Clyne, open education advisor and regional representative, BCcampus

“Conducting the Trades in the North conversations was designed to bring vocational educators together from different institutions. The main connection point for these conversations was specific trades disciplines, as we had a desire to create a space where faculty could share what they were doing, what went well, and what did not work. Being a part of these conversations has highlighted once again some of the glaring disparities between regions with regard to the execution of vocational education, the most salient being connectivity, closely followed by device availability. These two challenges have had a minimal impact in the southern regions of the province, yet prove to be a significant issue facing faculty in the North.”

—Tim Carson, open education advisor, trades representative, BCcampus

The following is a list of the sessions that took place in the Trades in the North series, all done on the platforms desired by the hosting institution:

  • April 5 – Carpentry 
  • May 1 – Carpentry (follow-up) 
  • May 22 – Welding 
  • May 25 – Professional Cooks

If you wish to bring an Open 101 conversation to your institution, campus, or department, please contact Carolee Clyne for the North and Ross McKerlich for the Interior. For trades-specific conversations within B.C., please contact Tim Carson.

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