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Get Schooled at Info Night on November 26

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Have you been considering taking a continuing education course but don’t know where to start? Maybe your employer has suggested some additional training, you’ve decided to upgrade your skills, or you just want to learn something new. Our free Information Night on November 26 in the Roderick Mah Centre for Continuous Learning is designed to help you.

Drop in and stay as long as you like between 5 and 8 p.m. Some programs are hosting information sessions with in-depth details on programs and career prospects. For programs that are not holding a session, visit their table in the Ross Glen Hall and get the information you’re looking for.

  • Have your questions answered in person.
  • Meet industry experts and instructors.
  • Enter to win one of 4 door prizes of a $250 Gift of Registration toward a Continuing Education course.
  • Free parking in Open Lots 7 & 8 only.

More information on the website or call 403.440.6875.

Update: Winners of the Door Prizes at the September 11 Event

Steven Schell
Steven Schell

RSVP Prize Winner of iPad Mini
Steven Schell attended the Info Night and the Project Management info session to find out about the program. Steve just started a new job with project management responsibilities.

Elizabeth Werner
Elizabeth Werner

Grand Prize Winner of Gift of Registration
Elizabeth Werner attended to talk to Technical Writing program staff and instructors. She has already taken the introductory course and is excited to use the prize toward the next courses in the certificate. Liz has been a high school science teacher for 25 years and is considering a career change to technical writing.

Next time it could be you!

by Karen McCarthy

 

 

 

Student Spotlight: Becky and Liam

Artist Becky McMaster
Artist Becky McMaster

What do art shows, dog walking and men’s clothing have in common? On the surface, not much, but these are Calgary businesses owned by recent graduates of our Entrepreneurship program.

Becky McMaster has her BFA from the Alberta College of Art and Design and has been working at her own art practice for several years, showing and selling her work.

“The commercial galleries in Calgary aren’t really looking to show emerging artists, and they take 60% of your sales,” says Becky. She and three artist friends have been doing successful pop-up art shows in empty spaces that they renovate themselves. The most recent was the Open Concept Art Show at the Inglewood brewery site on October 5.

Brewery site after renos
Brewery site after renos
Open Concept Art Show

“ACAD had some excellent courses on grant writing but they don’t set you up for a business mentality,” Becky says. She wants to develop the business acumen to take her art practice to the next level. “I needed a well-rounded skill set in business.”

Becky also has ambitious plans with her sister Kathryn to develop a multi-faceted project on land they inherited. She knew she needed help to develop a business plan, so she turned to the Mount Royal Entrepreneurship program last spring.

“I could see the timeline for our project was vast and we needed help to get ready,” Becky says. “It was pretty fantastic. I came out of the program with a business plan and got excellent feedback from Judy [McMillan-Evans, instructor]. She put me in touch with one of her contacts who works with Community Futures. He reviewed the plan again and gave us direction on the next steps to take.”

Bluedogwalks
Blue Dog Walks

To supplement her art income — and while she’s waiting for her big project to come to fruition — Becky started a dog walking and pet sitting service, Blue Dog Walks. “It happened pretty organically. I get to to hang out with dogs during the day and work on my art at night,” she says. She soon had 17 clients and had to give up her server job.

“The class has been really invaluable to me,” says Becky. “It has given me the tools and the confidence to pursue ambitious projects.”

Liam Rogers
Liam Rogers

Becky’s partner Liam Rogers already had a thriving business, Understudy menswear boutique, when he decided to take the Mount Royal Entrepreneurship program alongside Becky in order to fill in some gaps in his business plan.

Liam held his fall Customer Appreciation event on October 24 at Understudy, located at 13th Avenue and 1st Street SW.

“My two business partners and I jumped into the business in 2011 when we had the opportunity to take over a character space,” Liam says. “There was a niche market in Calgary that wasn’t being served. We offer brands that you can’t get at the mall.”

Understudy
Understudy

Understudy carries quality casual men’s clothing from companies such as cult Japanese denim label The Flat Head, Vancouver’s Reigning Champ and London style mavens YMC.

Liam’s marketing centres around social media (Facebook and Twitter). “Our customers do the marketing for us,” he says. “We were voted best men’s clothing store in 2012 and 2013 by FFWD.”

“At the time I signed up for the MRU program we had been open for 8 months and I realized there was a lot I didn’t know, like legal and government stuff. I wanted to get a business plan underway and came away with a pretty good one,” Liam says. “One of the best things was getting in contact with a really good accountant that I probably never would have found.”

Understudy will soon be launching a web store. “Online is the best way to grow, rather than bricks and mortar,” says Liam.

In August Becky and Liam travelled to Copenhagen, where they went to trade shows, toured architecture and art studios, and met with designers.

by Karen McCarthy

Small Business Week Tips

We are happy to share these entrepreneurship tips from our instructor Judy McMillan-Evans in celebration of Small Business Week.

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ce_bio_judy_evans_S13Judy McMillan-Evans
Judy is the lead instructor and designer for the Mount Royal University certificate in Entrepreneurship; a project she has led for 20 years. In 2006, Mount Royal University awarded Judy with their Distinguished Faculty/Teaching Award for instructors, based upon her excellent student engagement and program results.

Judy is a generalist in the field of business with over 30 years of business ownership. She loves to teach about entrepreneurship, business planning, human resource management, marketing, financial management and business operations. She is also a specialist in not-for-profit management and community economic development.

Holiday Party Planning Tips

IMG_0984By Kristen Ferguson, Catering Logistics Coordinator, Events and Conference Services

We’ve all done it! Lying in bed wide awake thinking “I never should have had that coffee at 3 p.m. today” and suddenly this amazing idea comes to you! “I’m going to throw a party. A great big cocktail party!” and before you know it you have pressed send on the invitation list. Most of us then realize that short and sweet initial list has turned into a great big organizational nightmare and sometimes as the day gets closer, we wonder “what the heck were we thinking!!!”

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Here are some tips that will keep the planning fun and leave you actually enjoying the party instead of running around like a crazed party hating grinch.

 

 

Make very specific and easy RSVP requirements.
There will always be the last-minute responders, the no responders, the ones that say they’re coming then don’t show and the ones that show up with 10 of their closest friends. Sending out a reminder is also a great idea.

Keep it simple.
You don’t need 16 different kinds of beer or 4 vegan/gluten free/lactose free dishes “just in case”. If your guests have requirements, I promise you, they will tell you or they will come prepared. If you are having a buffet-style dinner, keep the protein options to 2 max. If you are having a cocktail party, 3-5 pieces per person is standard if your guests have already had dinner, 5-8 pieces per person if this party is considered “dinner”. Include trays of food in this average as well. Running out of food is a fear, but you will not run out using these guidelines

Keep in mind your fridge and oven space.
Sometimes the food and beverage that you would like to serve do not meet the fridge and stove space requirements. Try preparing a clean and organized space in your garage, if it’s cool.

Ask for help!
Request a dessert pot luck from your guests or delegate (bribe) your family members to pitch in.

Make a list.
Lists are great. The first item on your list should be to write a list so you have something to cross off right away. It feels good

This one is the MOST important………

HIRE A SERVER
Seriously. Let me break it down for you. You hire a server, they are generally $20 per hour. They serve the food, keep the house tidy, pour the drinks AND DO THE DISHES. This is standard practice, in fact the credo is to leave the place cleaner than when you found it. 3 hour minimum is $60. For less than $100 you get to participate in the fun of your own party and wake up the next day to a clean house *cue angels singing*!

Have fun out there party planners!

MRU Events and Conference Services host over 80,000 guests per year and would be happy to help you with your corporate holiday party.

Thanksgiving Centrepiece Fundraiser

Our wide range of Continuing Education programs rarely have much in common with each other, so it’s exciting when there’s a unique collaboration between programs.

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Instructor Yvette Nekuda

This Thanksgiving was one of those times. Floral Design instructor Yvette Nekuda and five recent graduates of the Floral Design program created gorgeous autumn-themed table centrepieces on October 10 for sale to the Mount Royal community, with proceeds to the Transitional Vocational Program for adults with developmental disabilities.

Over $500 was raised and 51 people, including MRU President David Docherty, took home a centrepiece on October 11 to brighten their Thanksgiving table.

 

Volunteers from the Floral Design program with completed centrepieces

by Karen McCarthy

Our Instructors Make Us Proud

In the Faculty of Continuing Education, we are fond of saying that our greatest asset is our instructors and their willingness to share their expertise in the classroom (real or virtual).

Our inbox has been filling up lately with information about instructors’ accomplishments – in their personal lives as well as their professional lives. We want to share a few of them with you.

dinnerLynn Fletcher is an instructor in the Event Management program and owns Lynn Fletcher Weddings Inc. She won the Esprit Award for Best Wedding (Budget over $200,000) and at the International Special Events Society (ISES) awards held in the Bahamas on August 24. The wedding in question is featured on Lynn’s website – wow! It was also profiled in the publication Luxe by Calgary Bride.

 

Kathy Felice is also an instructor in our Event Management program – and a master puppet maker. She crafted two child-size puppets this summer for Brock University professors to take to Ikegang, South Africa, where they held workshops for local elementary school teachers. The puppets now reside in South Africa where the local teachers use them to create rapport in the classroom and enhance lessons. Read more.

 

Projects for Profit-180x225Robin Hornby has taught in the Project Management program for over 10 years. He recently published Projects for Profit, about the business of commercial project management. The book explores the best practices in business: the most effective processes and techniques, essential roles and responsibilities, and professional advice on methods of organization and management. Robin previously authored The Ten Commandments of Project Management: A brief guide to the art of righteous project management in 2004. Read more.

 

Gail_PurdyGail Purdy has taught in the Canadian Payroll Association’s certification programs at Mount Royal for several years. She is the Human Resources Director at NOV Wilson Canada ULC and was profiled as the CPA’s VIPP (Very Important Payroll Professional) in their March/April issue of Dialogue. “The most interesting aspect in doing payroll is the satisfaction of knowing you produced a pay that is accurate, on time, and in compliance with all regulatory requirements. As well as maintaining the trust of all your company stakeholders in processing this mission critical task,” Gail says. Read more.

 

lea_floral_infonightLea Romanowski, a Floral Design instructor at Mount Royal for more than 10 years, was profiled in the May issue of Floriology magazine, a floral industry publication of BloomNet Inc. in the US and Canada, talking about designing floral arrangements for high-end corporate events. Lea is also a four-time top 10 finalist in Flowers magazine’s design contest and winner of the Canadian Academy of Floral Art Cup in 2009. Read more.

 

 

childrens-writer-simon-rose-ebookSimon Rose teaches the Creative Writing course Writing for Children and Young Adults  for Mount Royal University. In addition to his children’s books, he recently published a e-book, The Children’s Writer’s Guide which examines how to get started as a writer, create time and space to pursue your craft, and deal with lack of motivation and writers block. Read more.

 

 

 

by Karen McCarthy

 

Massage Therapy Students Care for Breast Cancer Survivors

Mayor Nenshi visiting with students and survivors.
Mayor Nenshi visited with students and survivors.

Thirty Massage Therapy students volunteered to give foot massages at the Survivors Tent at the CIBC Run for the Cure for the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation at Southcentre Mall on Sunday, October 6.

Check out our event photo album on Facebook. One of our students even dressed up as a character named Hope, in a gorilla costume.

The students were supervised by instructor Jeanette Stamp. Jeanette teaches in the Relaxation Massage Techniques, Clinical Practicum I courses and supervises outreaches. In addition to giving foot massages and listening to survivors’ stories, the students helped to set up and take down the tent.

First-year Massage Therapy students do 20 hours of outreach service in the community and the CIBC Run for the Cure is a rewarding way to get in some of those hours.

Massage Therapy student Christina and breast cancer survivor Anne.
Massage Therapy student Christina and breast cancer survivor Anne. “This is a great way to start the day,” Anne said.

After her relaxing foot massage, survivor Anne ran the 5K route. She finished her last chemo treatment two months ago, after being diagnosed last November.

Anne is no stranger to running races. She completed the Calgary Marathon in May, two days after a chemo treatment.

“I’ve met so many fantastic people over the past year,” Anne said, citing organizations such as the Thrive Centre health and wellness facility at U of C and Wellspring Calgary support centre.

She is already planning to book an appointment for a full hour massage treatment at MRU’s Practicum Clinic. Anne is an alumnus of Mount Royal. She completed an accounting program “many years ago,” she laughed.

MRU students have given treatments at the Run for the Cure since 2008.

Roxanne, a 6-year survivor, and Sharon, a 32-year survivor.
Roxanne, a 6-year survivor, and Sharon, a 32-year survivor.

“When I started managing the Survivors Tent in 2009 we had 18 students. Now there are 30,” said Roxanne, a volunteer with the Canadian Breast Cancer Foundation. “That was the first year I did the race. I took the Running Room program for cancer patients and had a goal time of one hour. When I came in at 57 minutes, I bawled my eyes out,” she said. “It’s overwhelming that there are so many runners trying to make it so we don’t have to do this in the future. It means the world to me.”

Roxanne did the 1K route with her team, The Bad Boobs. She works as a shuttle driver for Calgary Transit.

Over 8,000 people participated in the CIBC Run for the Cure and raised over $1.3 million for breast cancer research this year.

by Karen McCarthy

Meet Our New Dean

Charles F. Webber, PhD
Charles F. Webber, PhD

We were pleased to welcome our new Dean on August 15 as he took the reins from retiring Dean Norma MacIntosh, who had led the Faculty since 2006.

Here’s some background on our new Dean, who has been a leader in education for his entire career.

Dr. Webber is a respected teacher, a distinguished senior administrator and an internationally published researcher. He was Dean of Human, Social and Educational Development at Thompson Rivers University in Kamloops from 2010-2013. His most recent book explores the area of student assessment. He has written, edited and contributed to dozens of books, book chapters, journal articles and editorials.

Dr. Webber is a leading expert in educational administration and frequently presents at universities, professional organizations and conferences around the world.

Prior to joining Thompson Rivers University in 2010, Dr. Webber held a full professorship at the University of Calgary, where he also served as Associate Dean, Graduate Division of Educational Research, from 1999-2007.

During his early career, Charles Webber taught in Medicine Hat and Lacombe, and served as a school principal in Nipawin, Saskatchewan, from 1985-90.

Charles Webber is originally from the Calgary area and is delighted to be in the same city as his family and friends.