By Jensen, Randy on September 25, 2020.
Transitioning from an academic experience to a professional career is streamlined for University of Lethbridge students who take advantage of work-integrated learning (WIL), experiential learning and career services opportunities. The U of L’s new hub for these activities, Career Bridge: Centre for Work-Integrated Learning and Career Development, is now open.
Career Bridge consists of a powerhouse lineup featuring co-op, applied studies, career services and an experiential transcript adviser. Its mandate is to offer exceptional work-integrated learning, experiential learning and career services so every participating student can benefit from an outstanding academic and professional development experience.
“Career Bridge is available to all U of L students and opens the door to more collaboration with employers who are looking for top-quality graduates with 21st century skills who will help build the economy in Alberta and beyond,” says Erasmus Okine, the university’s provost and vice-president (academic), in a news release.
“We recognize that experience matters. Work-integrated learning and career development are critical to supporting and enhancing educational and professional outcomes,” says Stacey Gaudette-Sharp, program co-ordinator and instructor. “By housing WIL programs and service-based career development under one roof, we are better able to position students to integrate theory with practice and to work collaboratively with our industry partners, local business and not-for-profit organizations to achieve their goals while supporting a thriving community.”
The centre will focus on increasing opportunities for all students, including developing personal and professional competencies as well as providing tools and resources to support and track curricular and co-curricular accomplishments via an experiential transcript. The My Experience Transcript (MET) complements the academic transcript and is being designed to reflect a student’s curricular and co-curricular experiential learning opportunities, giving students a well-rounded summary of their university career as they transition to the professional world.
“We are so excited by the potential for our students via Career Bridge,” says Mark Slomp, executive director of Student Services. “The U of L is a leader in creating and capturing the value of WIL opportunities and advancing student career development and lifelong learning.”
The restructuring and grouping of activities and resources under Career Bridge will strengthen their profile and reputation on campus and in the community for delivering high-quality programs and services.
“Our mission is to build bridges between purpose, practice and possibility,” says Gaudette-Sharp. “With this philosophy in mind, I believe our community – our students, employers and civic partners, faculty and staff – can achieve anything we put our minds and hands to.”
Students can visit myexperience.uleth.ca or uleth.ca/career-bridge for more information on career-building options. From the myexperience.uleth.ca portal students can apply to the Co-op program, register for workshops and events like Career Fair (Sept. 28), and book appointments with career specialists and co-op co-ordinators. Employers can also access the Career Bridge webpage and create an account to post positions or inquire about hosting information sessions or professional development events.