The focus of Faculty Fridays is teaching for learning.
I'm delighted to share an impressive example of teaching for learning within my department, Business Administration.
I'd like to introduce you to Instructors George Allen, Ilija Dragojevic, Harv Mock and Jeff McMaster.
Several years ago, George and Ilija, who both teach at EDC, were keen to provide their students with more real world, applied learning opportunities.
So, they tapped their contacts in business and found some business problems that could be solved by students. Then they found students who were interested in working on these projects outside of class.
It was the start of what is now known informally as the Business Solutions Team.
Business Solutions Teams are short-term student projects aimed at meeting the needs of real clients, guided and mentored by Instructors.
For example, together with students in Business Information Technology, one BST developed an interview-based app to allow users to complete basic family law documents. They have completed market analyses. They have developed marketing plans, and so on. In total, there have been nine BSTs over the past two years.
This year, Harv Mock and Jeff McMaster are adding their leadership and expertise. They are currently leading a BST at NDC. They are mentoring students working on a comprehensive business plan for a Manitoba start up – including industry and competition research, target market analyses, administration and operations plan, financial plan, etc.
George, Ilija, Jeff and Harv have never received any hours for the work they do. This has been on top of their normal teaching duties, and it's driven by teaching for learning.
Guys, thank you for raising the bar of real world, applied opportunities for our Business Administration students.
Felipe Matoso was part of the first ever BST. He now has a term position at the college as a Marketing Officer and is adding his leadership to the current BST too. He adds, “the Business Solutions Team provided me with the hands-on experience that I needed to start a new career in a new country. I was able to develop the equivalent of at least another year of experience with the BST, which was a huge differential to get interviews and job offers right after graduation. I think work-integrated learning is the future of the polytechnic model, and the BSTs offer that reality."
First: Ilija (second row, far left), George (rear row, second from right) with the first Business Solutions Team of which Felipe was a member (rear row, far left).
Second: Harv Mock
Third: Jeff McMaster