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Showcasing our Programs and Building Connections in Brazil

Three representatives from the Applied Computer Education (ACE) department made the journey to Brazil this spring to participate in a series of meetings and events. The trip comes after a successful visit from the ACE department along with RRC’s International Education office in September 2018.

Stops in Fortaleza, Brasília, São Paulo, and Rio de Janeiro

Cristy Kubara, Marnie-Leigh Boulet and Stephen Jay went on the follow-up trip in March 2019, stopping in Fortaleza (Northeast), Brasília (Brazil’s capital city, Centre-West), São Paulo and Rio de Janeiro (Southeast).

The goal for the ACE department during their trips was to position RRC as the institution of choice for Brazilian students who want to further their studies, specifically in the Information Technology (IT) sector in Winnipeg. On the most recent trip; RRC ACE staff visited four post-secondary institutions, presented their custom designed technology camps to high school students and participated in one of the most popular educational trade shows in Brazil.

They visited the Higher Education Institute of Brasília, the Pan American Christian Academy, Metodista and the Federal Institute of Education, Science and Technology in Ceará. They explored various collaboration ideas, including joint programs, partnership on applied research activities, academic exchanges, along with special projects and internships for Canadian students.

Another important aspect of the trip was meeting with the Canadian Trade Commissioners to first thank them for the great job they are doing representing Canada in Brazil, and to also learn more about how RRC can enhance the ACE department’s brand in Brazil.

“As this was my first time in Brazil, it was imperative for me to understand what Brazilians want to know when it comes to choosing Canadian institutions for their higher education” said Marnie-Leigh Boulet. “We discovered that the main reason why international students from Brazil choose Canada for higher education is to increase chances of receiving gainful employment upon graduation.”

Raising awareness about ACE programs in Winnipeg

International recruitment fairs in Brazil tend to be very well attended, but most potential students are only familiar with the major cities in Canada, specifically Vancouver and Toronto. “One thing we did find was that while we were promoting our programs and the college, we also had to promote Winnipeg and Manitoba,” said Boulet.

“One of the first things they asked was how cold it was,” added Kubara. Winnipeg is much smaller in comparison to Sao Paulo (population of 19 million people), so many of them liked the idea of Winnipeg.”

The recruitment fairs ended up being a great success, with over 350 connections made with people who are interested in Red River College programs.

Although the trip is over, the work isn’t finished, RRC is currently focused on formalizing a partnership with several Brazilian post-secondary institutions.

ACE Department Brings Technology Camps to Brazil

Each spring, RRC’s Applied Computer Education Department runs Technology Camps for high-school students of all genders and to middle-school girls out of the Exchange District Campus. The camps allow young people to explore different technologies through diverse hands-on activities.

Building connections and bringing learning opportunities

In spring 2019, Red River College staff members, Stephen Jay, Cristy Kubara and Marnie-Leigh Boulet, brought the highly successful Technology Camps to three different schools in Brazil.

This unique opportunity came about after the Chair of ACE, Haider Al-Saidi, went with a delegation to Brazil in the fall of 2018. While there, he made connections with several schools that were interested in bringing the RRC Technology Camps to their students. After some follow-up communication, the camps were scheduled at the Pan American Christian Academy, Metodista Bertioga school and the Metodista school in Sao Paulo.

Similar to the Technology Camps in Winnipeg, the objective of the camps in Brazil was to show students what the Information Technology industry is all about and to potentially get them interested in a career in I.T. The camps also provided students with new material and experiences they may not have otherwise encountered.

The students who attended were a mix of male and female high school students (grade 10-12) and each camp had approximately 25 attendees. The day involved four different sessions that were one hour each, topics included, web development, database development, networking and web security. Stephen Jay taught each camp, while Cristy Kubara and Marnie-Leigh Boulet acted as E.A.’s.

A positive experience for the students

Not only were the camps a positive experience for the students, but the instructors also came away with success stories that made it all worth it for everyone involved. “One of the schools we went to didn’t have a data projector, which meant we had to improvise. I was writing security injections on a whiteboard. Even though the technology was sub-par, the students were helping each other, they were learning and getting it,” recalls Jay. “At another school, there were a group of kids in the back row that were ‘too cool’ to engage. As the day went on, we were able to get their attention through technology.”

“Going to Brazil and meeting all the people was such a wonderful experience,” adds Kubara. “They are so warm and welcoming. The students were so excited and willing to learn. The first thing they would talk about was wondering about how cold it is in Canada, and ‘is it really cold?’ We showed them pictures of the snow and told them how we embrace the winters rather than hide away from it. Most of them said they weren’t afraid of the cold, because it would be a better life for them in Canada.”

At the moment there are no set dates for another round of Technology Camps in Brazil, but the schools and RRC instructors are both hoping to organize something as soon as next spring.

View photos of the Brazil Technology Camps 

ACE Project Space Tour

Find out how education and innovation collide

Members of the community are invited for a tour of Red River College’s ACE Project Space on Wednesday, June 12 at 12:30 PM to 1:30 PM.

What can you do on the tour?

  • Meet our students, faculty, and staff
  • Learn about our Entrepreneur-in-Residence opportunities
  • See how our facility can accommodate your projects, workshops, and events
  • Investigate opportunities to become an ACE Project Space partner

Register on Eventbrite

Help send RRC ACE students to Geneva, Switzerland!

The Applied Computer Education (ACE) department at Red River College has arranged a trip for students within the Business Information Technology, Business Technology Management, and Information Security programs to experience the cultural mecca of Geneva, Switzerland. The trip will take place between July 31st to August 7.  Students have been asked to provide their deposits by May 3rd to guarantee their spot on the trip. To ensure we meet our goal of 20 students, we are asking for your support to sponsor a student for this trip. We estimate the cost for each student at $2,500.

We have prepared a Sponsorship Package that includes details on sponsorship benefits, who to contact, as  well as the proposed trip itinerary. Your support will go a long way to providing students with valuable international experience.

Download the Sponsorship Package

ACE Met Students Win First Place in 2019 Ken Spencer Awards

The ACE Project Space is proud to congratulate our resident Met students from Maples Collegiate for winning the top prize for the prestigious Ken Spencer Awards!  The first place prize winners will share in the $7,000 award for their work with entrepreneurs in residence at the North Forge Technology Enterprise and ACE Project Space as well as Maples Collegiate.

Learning While Building Real-World Solutions

One key project the students are working on is an exhibition management system for Maples Collegiate. Using BubbleApps, a low-code application development solution, the students are creating an application that families, students, and advisors can use to schedule student exhibitions happening within the Met program. Students learn important skills such as working in an Agile project management environment, object-oriented design, UX/UI patterns and best practices, testing and quality assurance, problem solving, logical thinking, as well as teamwork.

2019 Winners

See the 2019 Winners of the Ken Spencer Award.

Summer 2019: ACE traveling to Geneva

Geneva, Switzerland, at night. Photo by Christophe Schindler via Pixabay.

When: July 31, 2019 to August 7, 2019

Many employers love graduates that have international experience, and we want to give you that opportunity. Geneva is the best place to start! Long known for its watches, chocolate, and banks, Geneva is a postcard-perfect city with a rich history. Geneva is the city of 1001 delights, and promises you an original and enriching stay.

Costs

Estimated Cost: $2,500 (possibility of sponsorship to lower the cost)
Deposit Cost: $500 (due May 3, 2019 to Cristy Kubara)

Contact Cristy Kubara at ckubara@rrc.ca or P414 if you are interested in going to Geneva and want to give your deposit!

Tentative Itinerary

July 31 Travel Day
August 1 Geneva City tour and Boat cruise
August 2 CERN Hadron Collider Tour
August 3 Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum Tour
August 4 Swiss Chocolate Train Tour
August 5 Free Day
August 6 UN tour
August 7 Travel Day

Geneva City Tour and Boat Cruise

Photo by Mady Fierz via Pixabay

Enjoy an alternative sightseeing experience in Geneva, the city hailed as Switzerland’s cultural capital, on a 3.5-hour tour by coach, tram and boat. See the city’s most spectacular attractions from a variety of vantage points and delve into Geneva’s rich history with commentary from a professional guide. Cruise on a coach and see natural landmarks like Lake Geneva and the Geneva Water Fountain; stroll the Old Town and listen to intriguing commentary as you take a tram tour down winding backstreets.

CERN Large Hadron Collider Tour

ATLAS calorimeter at CERN (© CERN)

We are booked on a guided tour of CERN to learn about the world’s largest and most powerful particle accelerator. It first started up on September 10 2008, and remains the latest addition to CERN’s accelerator complex. The LHC consists of a 27-kilometre ring of superconducting magnets with a number of accelerating structures to boost the energy of the particles along the way.

Visit https://home.cern/ to learn more.

Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum

International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum Geneva. 2010. Photo by Henry Mühlpfordt

The museum focuses on three major challenges in today’s “Humanitarian Adventure” defending human dignity, restoring family links, and reducing natural risks. The exhibits are accompanied by a life-size videos of 12 witnesses sharing their personal stories that include surviving a landmine in Kabul and identifying tsunami victims in Japan.

The Swiss Chocolate Train

Chocolate Train Swiss Montreux Gruyère. 2015. Photo by
Norio Nakayama

The Chocolate Train is a first class trip that will take you to the Maison du Gruyère where the mysteries of the production of this famous Swiss cheese will be revealed to you. Then you visit the charming medieval town of Gruyères, with the possibility to visit its magnificent castle. Finally, you reach the legendary Maison Cailler in Broc. There, you will discover the secrets of the creation of Swiss chocolate and enjoy a high flavoured tasting.

United Nations Tour at Palais des Nations

Palais des Nations, Genève. 2005. Photo by Yann Forget 

Be one of the 120,000 visitors who take the tour of the Palais des Nations each year and learn about the United Nations and the United Nations in Geneva. Our tours are available in 12 languages and last for 45 minutes to one hour. Please check with us for languages other than English and French.

What you will see, depending on our daily schedule of meetings

  • The Human Rights and Alliance of Civilizations Room, decorated by famous artist Miquel Barcelò.
  • The Salle des Pas Perdus, from which you can see the Armillary Sphere and the monument commemorating the conquest of outer space.
  • The Assembly Hall, the largest room in the Palais des Nations.
  • The Council Chamber, where many important historical negotiations have taken place, with murals by José Maria Sert.(available irregularly)
  • Gifts presented by various countries to the United Nations Office at Geneva.
  • During the tour, our tour Guides will inform about the current activities of the United Nations.

They will also talk about the history of the Palais des Nations, formerly the headquarters of the League of Nations.

Reflection on DisruptED 2019

Two Maples Met Students at the DisruptEd Conference 2019

This past January 31, 2019 and February 1, 2019, ICTAM held their annual DisruptED Conference. The topics focused on Technology, Education, and how to prepare learners for their future careers in a landscape full of technological disruption. Here at the Department of Applied Computer Education (ACE), we were delighted to invite some Maples Met High School students, who have been spending time with us at the ACE Project Space, to join us in attending the DisruptEd Conference.

Since September 2018, we have been thrilled to mentor a group of Maples Met School students as they have been working on developing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) – a scheduling application for their school to manage end-of-term exhibitions and evaluations. It has been a wonderful opportunity for ACE and the Maples Met School to cross-pollinate ideas and philosophies in our approaches and navigating constraints in each of our systems. This initiative has been mutually beneficial as we are each making our own discoveries in project-based learning and student-led learning.

On day 2 of the DisruptED Conference, there was an unstructured segment called “Coffee with Strangers”. I joined one of the Metsters, pictured above on the right, in a table discussion on Work-Integrated Learning. He had this wonderful reflection to share with his advisors and mentors. This Metster wrote to Matt Henderson, the vice-superintendent of the Seven Oaks School Division and former Principal of the Maples Met School:

Hi Matt,

How are you? Actually, in the DisruptEd conference there was a section today where we had to get up and move to different tables which had moderators at them. I went to one that was being run by the CEO of ICTAM and the topic that we were discussing at this table was something like Integrating Work in Education. So this session was 1 hour long and I’d say out of that time I spoke for about 35 minutes of it. Because when we were introducing ourselves I said well “I’m in grade 9 and I go to a project-based learning school.”

So we went around the circle which probably contained about 20 adults and one teenager (moi). Right after introductions, we began the informal discussion about experiential learning. When it was my turn I let them know of our internships. Right when those words came out of my mouth at least 10 people had questions about me.

Thus began my educating part of the session. Questions like “How do you evaluate a narrative that you were talking about instead of just giving them a report card with a number on it?” or “How do you even pass through high school in this program?” these kinds of questions were being thrown at me. I tried my best to explain in front of the crowd. The figures at my table were like deans at universities, directors of organizations and many other “powerful” people whose titles were so specific they are hard to remember. While spreading the philosophy I talked about the reason and benefit of feedback, what the 3 Rs are (relationships, relevance, rigour) and value of learning by doing.

One comment I received was that this school is a wonderland.

They asked me, well who do we ask because this is what we should have in each school. So I just mentioned your name. Then they took an ahh moment and said oh I think I’ve heard of this Matt guy.

The last 2 days were really memorable. Thanks to you, MICE and RRC for offering such an authentic experience. I really enjoyed myself there, I hope to attend next year too.

I was fortunate to accompany this student at this roundtable discussion, whereupon Kathy Knight, CEO of ICTAM, mentioned: “We should have a student at every table!” She praised him for his well-spoken nature and was sincerely curious to know more about the Maples Met School, Matt Henderson, and the collaboration the ACE Project Space has with their group of interning students.

We all had some great takeaways from the DisruptED conference this year and feel like we, at the ACE Project Space, are in the midst of living the shared hopes and dreams that a tech-ed conference like this strives for: collaboration, relationship building, personalized learning, and project-based learning. It is not perfect, but we feel that we are on the right path and we have relished the opportunities to learn from our friends at the Maples Met School and fellow attendees from the DisruptED conference.

Learn more about the Maples Met School here:

To learn more about the DisruptED conference and stay tuned for highlights, please visit:

http://www.educationdisrupted.ca/

All the best, and thank you for visiting myace.ca
– Andrea 

Join us at DisruptED – Jan 31 & Feb 1

Colleagues, Students, and Industry professionals, I do encourage you to consider joining us at the DisruptED19 conference that is coming up on January 31st. We together can design a better future.

At DisruptED19, work and education are brought together in a technology conference, unlike any other. As we race towards an unknown future and the world becomes increasingly tech driven, what changes are in store for industry, educators and students? What skills will be valued? How will we work together to adapt?

This conference engages a diverse group of disruptive thinkers including movers, shakers and policy makers. Together, we’ll explore the future of work. This ground breaking two-day conference will spark meaningful conversations about how to create a stronger, more successful future for youth, employees and employers, one that embraces technology as a tool for improvement.

Last year, over 700 industry leaders, educators and youth participated in the DisruptED conference. Exit surveys showed that over 90% of attendees would return to this informative and influential event.

Stay tuned and visit www.disruptedfuture.ca for conference updates! #DisruptedFuture, #Fiona Robinson