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Continuing Studies

newsletter fall 2010 y

You’re invited Continuing studies courses, events and info sessions

(V) Vancouver. (S) Surrey. (B) Burnaby. (O) Online. (D) Distance. More information at

Degree Completion Oct 16: SFU NOW info session (V) Nov 17: SFU NOW info session (V)

Writing and Publishing

Oct 18: Getting Published (V); Writing the Prose Poem (V) Oct 19: Creative Magazine Writing: Stories That Live (V) Oct 22: Giving Effective Speeches and Presentations (V) Oct 23: Basic Proofreading (V) Oct 24: emerge Book Launch (Vancouver International Writers and Readers Festival) Oct 30: Basic Copy Editing (V); Editing Fiction (V); InDesign (V) Nov 1: Technical Writing and Editing (O); Writing and Editing for the Web (V) Nov 5: Effective Business Letters (V) Nov 8: Indexing: An Essential Art and Science (O) Nov 12: The Writer’s Studio Reading Series (Take 5 Café) Nov 15: Editors and Editing: An Introduction (D) Nov 17: Strategic Communications for Organizations (V) Nov 22: The Poem’s Story and Silence (V) Nov 24: Effective PowerPoint Presentations (V) Nov 27: The Complete Critic (V); Publication Design and Print Production (V)

Degree Completion for Working Adults

Business and Management

Career and life planning

Nov 1: Personality Dimensions Level 1 Training (S) Nov 3: Career Development Practitioner Certificate info session (S); Diploma in Rehabilitation Management info session (S) Nov 18: Mental Health Issues in Rehabilitation Management (S) Dec 9: Career Development Practitioner Certificate info session (S); Diploma in Rehabilitation Management info session (S); Job Finding Club Training (S)

Jean Wong, who has a busy career and a family, is finally finding time to complete a Bachelor of General Studies degree thanks to SFU NOW (Nights or Weekends), which offers flexible degreecompletion options for working adults. Now in its third year, the program continues to exceed its enrolment expectations and is adding more courses each semester to keep up with demand. Courses are available at both the Vancouver and Surrey campuses on nights and

weekends. And, in response to overwhelming student appeal, there will soon be courses available on Friday evenings and Sunday afternoons. “Choosing an education opportunity that complements my full-time career and family schedule is essential to my learning success,” says Wong. “I appreciate the opportunity to work towards my university degree on a more flexible schedule.”

Jean Wong, SFU NOW student

US Mission Canada

Oct 25: Project Management—A Team Approach (S) Oct 27: Comprehensive Business Analysis Seminar II (V); Certificate in Management info session (V) Oct 28: Certificate in Business Analysis info session (V); Public Companies: Financing, Governance, Compliance (V) Oct 29: Project Communication Management (S) Oct 30: Project Risk Management (S) Nov 9: Certificate in Management info session (S) Nov 10: Diploma in Applied Project Management info session (S) Nov 19: Project Procurement Management (S) Dec 2: Enterprise and Strategic Analysis (V) Dec 3: BMO public lecture (V); Project Leadership, ProblemSolving and Decision-Making (S)

Communit y and Urban Planning Oct 22: Visual Communication (V) Nov 5: Sustainable Economies for the Real World (V) Nov 19: Economic Fundamentals (V) Nov 26: Leading Edge Solutions to House Everyone (V)


public relations experts teach career skills

Communit y Education

Instructors in Continuing Studies’ new Public Relations Program have exceptional experience in their field. Media relations trainer Jayne Akizuki, for example, is a freelance television producer and communications specialist who has written scripts for Michael Bublé and Michael J. Fox. Market research specialist Daniel Savas is a former senior vice-president at Ipsos Reid, while public relations professional Fawn Mulcahy, who is on the Canadian Public Relations Society’s board of directors, spent the last four years serving on the Vancouver organizing committee for the 2010 Olympics. The nine-week full-time PR program commences at the end of September and covers all aspects of public relations, from industry basics through crisis and special events management. It also includes a three-week full-time industry practicum where students can practice their new skills in communications and media relations. “We’re thrilled with the program’s popularity and by the high calibre of students in our inaugural class,” says program lead Peter Walton, who notes that the fall cohort is now full with a waiting list. The PR program is one of a number of programs and courses that Continuing Studies’ Writing and Publishing Program offers at SFU Vancouver. The next cohort begins in April 2011.

Oct 26: The Practice of Engagement (V) Oct 29: Large-Scale Public Involvement Methods (V) Nov 23: Citizens Engaging Citizens: Issues and Practices (V); Online Engagement (V) Oct 16: Women’s Leadership Forum conference (V) Nov 9: Municipal Campaign School for Women (V) Nov 23: Advanced English for the Workplace info session (S) Dec 9: Advanced English for the Workplace info session (S)


Nov 1: Biodiversity in the 21st Century public lecture (B) Nov 2: Deep-sea Exploration public lecture (V) Dec 6: Adapting to Change: Managing Fraser Sockeye in the Face of Increasing Uncertainty public lecture (V)


Oct 19: Machiavelli and Thucydides (V) Oct 20: Childhood in Autobiography (V) Oct 21: Private Space, Public Space (V); Aesthetics of Love (V) Oct 22: The Jazz Singers (V); Twelve Great Conductors (V) Oct 23: Lessons from Latin America seniors forum (V); Johann Sebastian Bach (V) Nov 1: The Pop-Art Phenomenon (V); Society and Socialization: Understanding Human Nature (V); Biomedical Ethics (V) Nov 6: Exploring the Continuum Between Evolution and Creationism seniors forum (V) Dec 4: The History of Human Desire seniors forum (V)

New Mentors in Creative Writing The Writer’s Studio (TWS), a part-time certificate program in creative writing, welcomes three distinguished mentors this year. Shaena Lambert (left), fiction mentor, brings not only her experience as a writer but also her experience as a mentor through the Humber School for Writers and the Vancouver Manuscript Intensive. Her first book, The Falling Woman, was a Globe and Mail Best Book and was shortlisted for the Danuta Gleed Award. Brian Payton (centre), narrative and creative non-fiction mentor, wrote Hail Mary Corner, a debut novel The Globe and Mail declared “packs a cathartic wallop.” His latest book, The Ice Passage, was a finalist for the Hubert Evans Non-fiction Prize. Jen Currin (right), poetry and lyric prose mentor, is a former poetry editor for Hayden’s Ferry Review and Nightboat Books. She holds an MFA in Creative Writing (ASU) and an MA in English (SFU), and has published three collections of poetry: The Sleep of Four Cities, Hagiography, and The Inquisition Yours. Since the program’s inception in 2000, many TWS graduates have gone on to become published authors as well as winners of a variety of awards.

simon fraser university news y continuing studies y fall 2010


Judith Marcuse Projects

new programs

Career and Life Planning Program wins award, adds new courses

Exploring arts for social change “Exploring Arts for Social Change: Communities in Action,” a new course, was full with a waiting list just days after registration opened. The course is the first to be offered out of the new International Centre of Art for Social Change (ICASC), which operates through the Faculty of Education and Continuing Studies’ Community Education Program. The waitlist is no surprise to Judith Marcuse, founder and codirector of ICASC. “This course is one of several initiatives we are launching this year in response to burgeoning interest in the field of arts for social change,” she says. ICASC has plans to offer a master’s program that builds on this introductory course. and

A Continuing Studies program that helps students find jobs as case managers, employment counselors and career centre coordinators has won a top Program Award from the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education. In the last two years more than 100 students have completed the Career Development Practitioner Certificate program, offered through the Management and Professional Programs’ (MPP) Career and Life Planning area. “The certificate is particularly effective for career transitioners and immigrant professionals who have related backgrounds,” says program director Kon Li.

Academic Sampler for all ages Interested in university courses without the pressure of deadlines and exams? Try out Continuing Studies’ new Academic Sampler. It lets you audit a wide selection of undergraduate classes for only half the cost. Alumna Cheryl Suzuki is taking one course this fall. She says, “I already have a degree in accounting but I have become interested in the Humanities and would like to take courses to explore a field I’ve always enjoyed but know little about. The Academic Sampler allows me to take intellectually rigorous courses without pressure of exams.” The program is also helpful to those who want to experience university courses before formally applying to university. fboudville

A tale of two cities—and transportation The new Surrey Transportation Lecture Program is a groundbreaking experiment in community involvement and continuing education. It is a joint creation from Continuing Studies’ City Program and the City of Surrey. The idea came from a program initiated two decades ago in Portland, Oregon, where city commissioner Earl Blumenauer found that citizens were too often at war with the city’s department of transportation. Would it not be possible, Blumenauer asked his staff, to ‘train the enemy’ with a class on how decisions are actually made, what trade-offs are involved and how City Hall really works? A year later, the city and Portland State University’s urban studies program put the idea into practice. The academic setting leveled the discussion and allowed for all points of view. “It’s one of the best things we’ve ever done,” says one Portland city bureaucrat today. Rather than attacking city staff, course participants engaged in discussion with the city’s top talent, who no longer seem isolated from the community. The city has even implemented some of the students’ course projects. It’s a model that Gordon Price, director of Continuing Studies’ City Program, and Vince Lalonde, manager of engineering for the City of Surrey, have been entertaining for a while. And now, with assistance from City of Surrey staff, Continuing Studies will offer the fully subscribed 10-week course beginning in October 2010.

Acting locally to reduce greenhouse gases In 2008, the B.C. government introduced climate change legislation requiring local governments to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Local governments throughout the province are now seeking knowledge and practical examples to help them proceed with this mandate. To help local governments move from talk to action, Continuing Studies in Science and SFU’s Faculty of the Environment have partnered with the District of West Vancouver to host a one-day invitational think tank this December. To build awareness of the options available and to encourage action at the local level, the event will also feature a free public lecture in December.

In November, MPP offers a Diploma Program in Rehabilitation Management for professionals interested in enhancing their performance in this growing field. Li says the courses will be of interest to rehabilitation counselors, occupational therapists, vocational counselors and disability coordinators. And next spring, MPP will begin offering career-assessment services for people who require confirmation and advice as they seek a new career. The service includes a career-assessment session to develop a comprehensive vocational profile, as well as one-on-one sessions for counseling and career planning.

Responding to Racism in the Comox Valley A restorative justice leader who recently completed Continuing Studies’ Certificate in Dialogue and Civic Engagement is now busy planning a public dialogue on racism for Central Vancouver Island. Bruce Curtis, who works for the Comox Valley Community Justice Centre, is planning the dialogue in response to a highly publicized racist assault in Courtenay last summer. The incident involved a black man who was attacked by three white men in a parking lot. The crime led to an international outcry and caused many in the Comox Valley to come together and stand up to racism in their community. Curtis says the seeds for this upcoming dialogue were planted during his recent practicum at SFU. “My final project focused on hosting an Interfaith Dialogue in Comox, which was an initial response to the hate crime that rocked our community,” he says. He brought together members of eight different faith groups to share their views on racism. “We left the dialogue with a commitment to stand up to injustice, but also to publicly identify ourselves as people of faith,” he says. “That event went so well, I decided to continue the momentum.” The dialogue, tentatively titled “When We Hurt Our Neighbours— A Dialogue on Racism,” is slated for early 2011. It will explain the chronology of the assault and then trace the community’s follow-

up response, the trial’s progression and finally, the verdict. Curtis’ mission is to foster and promote daily interactions in the Comox Valley that will create a stronger sense of belonging for residents. “The skills I honed at SFU have really influenced the way I’m approaching my latest projects,” he says. “I am now even more aware of what elements are vital for conducting a constructive dialogue.” He also recognizes that it takes a great deal of time and effort to produce an event that will have resonance and meaning for people. “This incident has really touched our community. I’m confident this dialogue will enable us to address our concerns in a constructive way.” The next Certificate in Dialogue and Civic Engagement begins in spring 2011.

Online tools to face down depression For the thousands of British Columbians currently suffering from depression, life can be a daily struggle, particularly for those living in remote and rural areas where specialized medical help and support are difficult to find. Yet research reveals that learning self-help skills can improve people’s ability to cope with this disease. That’s why Continuing Studies’ 7th Floor Media and SFU’s Centre for Applied Research in Mental Health and Addiction (CARMHA) are working together to create an interactive online toolkit of best strategies for dealing with chronic depression. The site’s multimedia interface will engage patients as well as concerned partners, family members and friends. Following the steps laid out on the site, users will create a personalized action plan that can be revised at any time. Video introductions and clips of stories from people who have used these skills will help to give the site a warmer presence. The Inukshuk Foundation is funding the project, which is supported by B.C. health authorities. Doctors from across the province are expected to refer patients to the site when it is completed this November.


simon fraser university news y continuing studies y fall 2010

A New Director for Distance

Something to Sing About Emerging technologies are bringing a deeper and more enriching learning experience to two new courses developed at Continuing Studies’ Centre for Online and Distance Education. FPA 104: Music Fundamentals is an intensive introduction to musical literacy. It takes advantage of a recording tool that captures students’ ability to sing chords and tap out rhythms. Students can replay the results and also submit them to the instructor. Course author Janet Danielson says that singing into the recording tool and then receiving encouraging feedback has given some timid students their voice. “By the end of the course their singing is generally impressive.” The course includes a creative component that requires students to write a melody and then prepare a harmonized arrangement. The course gives them access to musical examples from a wide range of cultures, all on CDs and iTunes. “Many similar courses are confined to 18th and 19th century Western music,” says Danielson. “But when our students come to do their creative assignment, they can approach it from any number of traditions and styles. It‘s always fun to see the diversity

of expression in their submissions.” GEOG 264: Canadian Cities explores the growth, development and governance of cities and the contemporary challenges they face. Through readings, electronic media, a mix of traditional and high-tech assignments, and active discussion, students learn about all aspects of Canada’s urbanization, including local and regional governance, differences and diversity, housing and homelessness, transportation, and suburban livability. “The goal is for students to leave the virtual classroom better able to interpret and question the urban environment,” says course author Terri Evans. Students like the new technology and say it’s fun to use. “l loved the virtual field trip,” says one student from the fall 2009 semester. “I have lived in Greater Vancouver all of my life, yet I have never been to many of the intersections or buildings exhibited in the panoramas. The distinctions between poorer and richer neighbourhoods were perplexing.” CODE is experimenting with a number of emerging technologies as it builds on its tradition of innovation in course delivery.

Brian Naicker is the new director of the Centre for Online and Distance Education (CODE). He comes to SFU from the University of South Africa (UNISA) in Pretoria where he was most recently director of the Centre for Business Management. In just six years, Naicker grew the centre’s enrolment in distance and online programs in management education and training from 4,000 to 32,000. Naicker previously held a tenured senior lectureship in finance at UNISA and taught undergraduate and graduate courses in managerial finance, international business and business management. “I am delighted to join CODE at SFU,” says Naicker, “and I look forward to working with a dynamic team of talented individuals.”

language program news

sfu’s digital media students improve english skills

Stepping Stones collaborates to develop Aboriginal learning “Aboriginal communities are on the cusp of regaining ownership of their education,” says Georgina Martin, a member of both the Secwepemc Nation near Williams Lake, B.C. and the Lake Babine Nation. “We will no longer be told what to learn and how to learn it.” Martin is the curriculum developer for Stepping Stones, an online mixed-model course being developed through Continuing Studies’ Community Education Program. The course aims to deliver academic literacy and essential skills to Aboriginal people living in remote and rural communities. Judy Smith, acting director of the Community Education Program, says her team has held several community consultations to learn about the Aboriginal community’s ideas and expectations. “We aren’t there as experts,” says Smith. “We wanted to hear what the participants thought would work in their communities—an approach they greatly appreciate.” Smith says many community members commented on the

importance they place on education and the barriers they encounter in mainstream institutions and their approaches to education. Stepping Stones, she says, intends to overcome those barriers. “Designing and developing this program is a collective and iterative process, and we’re all learning together,” says Noni Maté, director of 7th Floor Media, which is developing the learning management system and associated online tools. “The team is trying to capture the layers and tapestry of Aboriginal experiences in order to deliver a truly holistic program.” Ernest Armann, from the N’Quatqua First Nation, is the first to admit he’s not a fan of the current education system. He sees Stepping Stones as more than an academic opportunity, however. “It is also to help support our development as individuals,” he says, “and that is the key to creating strong communities.”

There are good career prospects in the digital media industry, but it’s hard to break into the field without excellent English language skills. That’s why SFU’s Centre for Digital Media at Great Northern Way is collaborating with Continuing Studies’ English Language and Culture Program to offer a new Pre-Masters of Digital Media course. Its purpose is to better prepare international students accepted into the Digital Media master’s program. They improve their English language skills while learning more about Canadian culture and digital media, including new software applications and game design. Two classes opened this fall and more are planned for the future.

International TA course proves invaluable Hudson Moura, a Brazilian-Canadian film scholar who earned his PhD in literature and film from the University of Montreal, arrived at SFU in 2006 to complete his postdoctoral research in intercultural cinema. He credits the International Teaching Assistants Program (ITA) for helping him integrate into the North American academic culture. “It was valuable to learn new teaching strategies and share intercultural experiences among participants, students, teaching assistants and instructors,” he says. Since completing ITA training and finishing his postdoctoral studies, Hudson has taught courses at SFU and UBC, presented papers at several film and media conferences and has regularly published his work, written in English, French, and Portuguese. He is currently writing a book on subtitles.

simon fraser university news y continuing studies y fall 2010


Philosophers’ Cafés Build Connections There is little that philosophers will accept as fact. But they’d find it difficult to deny the growing popularity of Continuing Studies’ Philosophers’ Cafés, which saw a 35-per-cent growth in spring 2009 attendance over spring 2008. Café moderator John Dixon speculates that the recent economic turmoil might be a reason for the increased interest. “Economic stress tends to concentrate our minds,” he says, “and although we may not be aware of it every second, there is an undertow of growing anxiety.” Moderator Zahid Makhdoom concurs. “People need outlets in which to express themselves as the state becomes increasingly strong, with more control and regulation of its citizens.” “At Philosophers’ Cafés people very often get a sympathetic ear,” adds Richard Clark, moderator at Café Mitra. “This is crucial for our sense of belonging in our world.” Whether economic uncertainty, demographics or social media are encouraging more people to speak their minds, SFU is responding to the demand. There are now more than 20 café venues around metro Vancouver, including libraries, churches, beaches, coffee shops, restaurants and community centres. The newest location is SFU’s Harbour Centre campus, which is hosting cafés on the second Thursday of every month in fall 2010. For a complete list of café dates, topics and locations around the province, visit

upcoming philosophers’ Cafés For additional times and venues: Oct 13: Wealth or happiness: What is the purpose of an economy? (White Rock) Oct 14: Education (Downtown); Guilt and Shame as Cultural Constructions (Maple Ridge) Oct 15: Coincidence and synchronicity (Oakridge); Seniors in transition (West Van) Oct 17: Eat, love, pray (Burnaby) Oct 18: The rise of participatory democracy (Burnaby); Useful fictions (Port Coquitlam) Oct 20: Justice and equality (North Van); Intuitions (New Westminster) Oct 21: The history and archaeological excavation of Biblical cities (in Russian) (Richmond) Oct 25: Colonialism and language (Commercial Drive) Oct 27: Can science be trusted? (North Van) Oct 28: Equal rights? (West End) Oct 30: Spirituality: Is it sufficient by itself? (New Westminster) Nov 1: Qui est au pouvoir dans nos sociétés? (Kitsilano) Nov 3: Religion vs. spirituality (Main Street); Is it ever cogent or ethical to take one’s life? (Surrey) Nov 4: Mom said to tell the truth—was she right? (False Creek)

Enrolment grows in Management and Professional Programs The Fraser Valley’s population is growing quickly and Continuing Studies’ Management and Professional Programs (MPP) are growing along with it, says Raveen Sanghera, program director. “In 2009, MPP ran 80 courses at the Surrey campus, with a total course enrolment of 1,640 students. That’s a remarkable 64-per-cent increase over the previous year.” She says there are now more MPP courses offered at Surrey than at the Vancouver campus. “Many young professionals are choosing to live in Surrey and are finding that our professional development courses at SFU Surrey are more convenient.” Students can enrol in a variety of certificate and diploma programs ranging from the Certificate in Management to the Diploma in Applied Project Management, as well as individual business and management courses.

HIV/AIDS Stigma Reduction in Ghana

Seniors Ready for More For well over three decades, Continuing Studies’ Seniors Program has pioneered top-quality education for students 55 years or better. But in the last few years enrolment has surged significantly. “Whether it’s the start of a tsunami of baby boomers returning to the world of higher education or just increased demand for consistently exciting courses, the statistics speak for themselves,” says David Gordon Duke, the program’s associate director. Classes of interest this fall cover topics such as Private Space, Public Space: The Making of Human Identity, and One Nation, Two Worlds: The History of South Africa in the 20th Century. In addition, the Certificate in the Liberal Arts offers an educational path that encourages seniors to earn an SFU credential. “The certificate’s a target, a destination point,” explains certificate student Geoff Mynett. “It provides the focus to get beneath the topic and spur further independent research.”

The certificate is awarded to students who complete eight non-credit courses from the Seniors Program. There are no time limits, and students select courses relevant to their own particular interests. There are no grades or exams, but students reflect on their learning experiences in short essays. Marcel Prefontaine has had several careers and currently works as a bilingual editor. For him, the certificate program essays are a significant part of the educational experience. “If I’m going to take something, I want to write a paper, not just sit in a lecture and ask a few questions.” A keen advocate of lifelong learning, Prefontaine has already completed his certificate but continues to take courses. “People really need to realize that the world that we know today won’t exist in 10 years,” he says. “You need to open your mind to what’s coming.”

A six-year CIDA-funded project coordinated by Continuing Studies’ Office of International Development has educated tens of thousands of Ghanaians about the negative implications of stigmatizing people who live with HIV and AIDS. The Reducing HIV Stigma by Education—Ghana project ends this fall when SFU will co-host a conference in Ghana entitled Challenging Stigma: Research and Action Against HIV and AIDS Stigma and Discrimination. Conference attendees will discuss the role of media in stigma reduction, health communication around HIV and AIDS, cultural dimensions in reducing HIV and AIDS stigma, and community-based strategies and actions against stigma. Continuing Studies and SFU’s School of Communication have worked closely with the University of Ghana, University of Cape Coast and University of Education, Winneba to give teachers and youth workers informed and accurate information about HIV and AIDS. Continuing Studies also funded research projects related to reducing stigma surrounding HIV/AIDS, including examining the effectiveness of theatre for social change in rural locations and the differences between educating rural and urban populations. This research included hosting a delegation of Ghanaian partners at SFU earlier this year as part of a research series and symposium.

continuing studies dean Helen Wussow 778.782.5100 y editor Diane Luckow

SFU Continuing Studies newsletter Fall 2010  

SFU Continuing Studies newsletter Fall 2010

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