Frontier College - Every place is a learning place!
My journey with Frontier College started June of 2000; little did I know that my time with the College would span over 15 years. What drew me to apply to the organization in the first place was multi-faceted: Program development and implementation was the first thing I noticed about the job - I love planning and organizing programs, camps and events for people that are rooted in having fun while learning at the same time. As a side note, the focus of my post-secondary education is Recreation Therapy from Mount Royal University. I spent a lot time with children and youth with disabilities in programs that promoted inclusion, were recreation focused, and created opportunities for learning on a variety of levels. Second was the work with volunteers to support people who were experiencing challenges; challenges that were getting in the way of them reaching their full potential...especially children. Third, there was the opportunity for learning to take place outside the classroom. Finally, the basis of the programming was determined by the interests, strengths and needs of the learner. As I got to know the organization more and understood what it wanted to achieve, one of my favourite things about the work was that you truly could, and still can, make every place a learning place
At Frontier College I was extremely fortunate to be supported and mentored by many people who I still call friends today - colleagues, volunteers, learners and community partners. The people of Frontier College, the organization itself and what it stands for has played an important role in who I am today, what I believe and what I will fight for.
As I began my work in the area of literacy I soon realized that literacy - the basics of reading, writing and using numbers - is connected to everything we do; without the basics how can we make sense of the world around us from being able to shop at the grocery store, take the bus, look and apply for a job, contribute to our community and so on. Many of us take for granted that when we are out in our communities or at the grocery store or ordering off a menu or filling out medical forms we can make sense of the print around us and in front of us. Imagine not being able to do that and what it might feel like. I can’t even imagine. Frontier College taught me that literacy and having the skills to participate in the world around you is a right, a right that still today eludes many - more than you think and this is not ok.
I carry with me, everyday, what I’ve learned from Frontier College, the values and principles that were instilled in me, the stories, the laughter, the tears, the relationships and most importantly a way of working that supports and empowers others to be who they want to be. I am extremely grateful for the experiences and opportunities I was involved in at Frontier College. While the time came for me to experience something new, Frontier College is not far from my thoughts as I read the news, go about my day and work in new spaces and places across the country. Thank you Frontier College! Keep up the good work!