A Travellerspoint blog

May 2013

Grenada Mission – In the Eyes of a Faculty Member

Grenada Project 2013

When I was selected to be part of a great adventure to Grenada with a team of great Ambassadors, my bags were mentally packed and ready to go.
The trip required assisting and working closely with T.A MARRY SHOW COMMUNITY COLLEGE (TAMCC) Staff, Faculty, Students and Shareholders at every level. Future possible NSCC candidates, take note, one day this may be for you.
To be part of such a dynamic team, you actively participate in promoting an international mandate. For example, TAMCC requests all involved to work together to achieve the mandate utilizing each area of expertise.

I, for one, brought my marketing speciality in entrepreneurship to the work group. My colleagues, Christine Jacobson our expert in the world of Curriculum; Katy Orr, NSCC International Director and Manager NSCC International Zoran Kondali, partnered as the backbone of the mission.
Both colleges were like one big family, always stepping up to the plate with 100% participation from each and every representative.

For me, such involvement with NSCC International provides a broader view on educational issues with diverse cultural richness. The open-mindedness leads to a broader perspective, more aware of the multi-facets of educational requirements. I also like to think that I can share that influence with my colleagues and motivate them to actively participate in our international activities.

For those that may be entertaining the possibility of engaging in these worthy events, to expand upon your continuous learning, I urge you to look at the NSCC International Website. It’s contagious....be careful, you may also catch the bug. It’s inspirational, and there’s plenty of support. If you love what you do, what are your waiting for? We work in an environment that is interactive, with many great role models.

Although CCEDP will always be a highlight in my professional life and the Great Teacher’s Seminar was second to none. Oh, then there was also Vietnam, and there I was in with our counterparts in Grenada. What a journey in my portfolio, both are instrumental in my learning development. I thought, I shared, I expanded my educational experience. I have a very large family within NSCC that expands globally. I start each morning with passion and anticipation of what the day will hold, knowing that I have an incredible employer that inspires me to reach further and share with our college.

Larry Bergeron
NSCC, Akerley Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 14:09 Archived in Grenada Tagged cultural nova_scotia grenada creative community_college Comments (0)

oil down, jab jab, patois, nutmeg and sugar cane...

Grenada Project 2013

jab jab, oil down, luni spark and electrify, nutmeg, carnival, sugar cane plantations, patois, wire bending, Carib, Arawak, French, English, Scottish, Indian, revolution, Ronald Reagan - i've been learning about culture, history, food, music, language, and creative industries in Grenada, and learning some new words in the process.

i am here with a team from NSCC working with our partner college T.A. Marryshow Community College to conduct several days of focus groups with 10 different groups of artists, cultural groups, industry reps, government reps, students, employees, alumni. Together we are trying to understand the challenges and opportunities in the cultural/creative industries sector to support the local college to develop a new entrepreneurship-oriented associate degree program for aspiring artists. To me as an outsider the potential to develop cultural industries is incredible, especially for such a small island of 100,000 people. However, we have heard many stories of the challenges facing artists here, and concerns about the influences from larger countries in the region, and some aspects of the culture that are fading fast, like the local patois.

I'm wondering if I'm just caught up in the idea of something that is new to me, and perhaps the project is more challenging than it seems. Debriefing the next day on the sessions with David Flemming, Marryshow's Dean of Continuing Education, and project manager on the Grenada side for this project - he tells us that the discussions with the focus groups gave him goosebumps, and he and his team are excited to move forward. Sounds good to me!

With a combination of funding from this Association of Canadian Community Colleges project, and potential funding for CARICOM scholarships, we plan to bring 7 TA Marryshow employees to NSCC in July for CCEDP courses, curriculum development work, and related training, mentoring and project planning. We also hope to receive funding for two TA Marryshow students to come to NSCC on a one year exchange in culinary arts at Akerley Campus. We had a chance to meet and plan with this group, and help prepare them for their time at NSCC.

We also brainstormed with our NSCC group and the TA Marryshow team some ideas for an exchange from NSCC to Grenada for a group of NSCC students and employees, for next May/June 2014, related to creative and cultural industries. This is really exciting and will be a fantastic opportunity for students and staff from both colleges!

It was great learning from our colleagues from TA Marryshow, and also from my NSCC colleagues Kris Jacobsen (curriculum consultant) Larry Bergeron (faculty member and entrepreneurship specialist), and Zoran Kondali (project manager, NSCC International).

ps check out Luni Spark and Electrify on Youtube!

Katie Orr
NSCC International

Posted by NSCC Intl 14:08 Archived in Grenada Tagged cultural nova_scotia grenada creative community_college Comments (0)

Kristie's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013

The trip kicked off with a great group of people excited to board our plane from Halifax to Newark. Upon arrival to the airport, we discovered our flight was cancelled due to weather conditions. Go figure, Nova Scotia weather is so predictable eh? That did not stop us from being positive as we embraced the change and ended up on our way to Houston Texas, yeehaw!

When we landed in Belize City of course, my luggage was nowhere to be found. Lost luggage did not get me down, I thought it would make a good story in the end so all I could do was laugh! We experienced an interesting 5 hour bus ride as we got to know each other pretty quickly while we were crammed into a van like a bunch of marshmallows, it was awesome. Once we got to PG we jumped into our work full force. Half of the group went to Hillside Health Centre to shadow professionals in their field of study, while the other half travelled to the local schools in the community to teach about health and hygiene. Each group spent a week in the community schools, as well as a week at the Hillside Health Centre. My experience in local schools was amazing. I was so excited to incorporate my field of study (Therapeutic Recreation) into the education sessions with the children. I was able to bring forward some recreation activities to help demonstrate proper hand washing techniques in a fun way. I facilitated activities involving paints, basketballs and games. I learned a lot about methods used in Belize in regards to hygiene, sanitation practices, as well as the education system. Working at Hillside Health Centre provided me the opportunity to shadow medical students, and work closely with Physiotherapy students and faculty. I gained exposure to a variety of populations across a range of settings. I was fortunate to experience visiting patients in their homes and I was able to assess the patient in their environment and use resources available to within their home.

As a student, I am thrilled that during this service learning experience, we worked in both clinical and community based settings. I feel this combination helped to expand our exposure and knowledge regarding the methods and systems used here in Belize. I feel that through this experience I have grown both personally and professionally. In doing so I have improved my ability to be adaptable, effective communication skills, as well as being culturally competent. This experience will last a lifetime, as I will apply what I have learned to future experiences throughout my life. I have met many amazing people here in Belize, and everyone is so friendly and inviting. There is a true sense of community here in Punta Gorda, and I recommend everyone to experience it for themselves. I love PG!

This experience has been unbelizable!

Kristie Greeno
Therapeutic Recreation Student
NSCC, Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 08:01 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia study_abroad service_learning Comments (0)

Amy's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013

After finally making it to Punta Gorda we were off at a fast pace as far as Belizean standards go! After arriving the previous evening we began work the following morning. My first week was to be at Hillside Health Care International.

I followed a wonderful doctor who volunteered her time at HHCI as a physical therapist. She had so much patience and truly provided me an educational experience. While working at HHCI did not fully relate to my field of study (Therapeutic Recreation) I did have a chance to put some of my skills to work by doing home visits to the PT clients and also facilitating bingo at a medication awareness program for seniors. I was also able to be resourceful and create some sensory bottles for mothers with developmentally delayed babies for HHCI to use.

While on the home visits I was truly able to appreciate what I have in my life in Canada. While I cannot say that the lacking material possessions or health caused the residents of PG to be less happy. Many of the houses I visited took great pride in their homes, and their possessions reflected the importance of family and community relationships. While visiting residents homes in the area I tried to “shut off” my Canadian lens and look at their lives with no bias; what I found is that material items do not have a correlation to one’s happiness.

During my time in the schools was very memorable. We visited local schools to provide education to the children regarding hand washing and oral hygiene. This definitely took me out of my comfort zone and ended up being such a great experience. The kids are very loving and respectful; always calling me “Miss”. Recess was a great time to interact with the children and we were lucky to have a few games of soccer with the children and I would be lying if I said I didn’t love being able to run faster than someone!

Another great learning moment for me was from the sense of community here. This town has a lot of much needed international help so it is common to see many different ethnic groups here. I felt completely welcomed to this town and the kindness of an east coaster has nothing on those who live in Punta Gorda. Every evening it was commonplace to have locals say goodnight to you as you walked home from supper-this doesn’t happen back home! Many cars honk their horn at pedestrians here which is for safety unlike the meaning it possesses home!

Amy Crowe
Therapeutic Recreation Student
NSCC, Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 08:01 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia study_abroad service_learning Comments (2)

Tony's Blog

International Service Learning Program in Belize 2013


This trip has really been an eye-opening experience for me. I haven't had many opportunities to travel like this, so seeing a new part of the world has been huge for me. The work I've done at the Hillside clinic has been some of the most rewarding I've done since I started in the field, and it really makes you realize what you take for granted at home. The cramped pharmacy at the clinic and their limited supply of medications and supplies forces you to push what you have to the absolute limit. It's clear that this area is in need of better quality health care, and I'm so glad to have been a part of their team.

Our work at the schools has been another great experience. Having the opportunity to go into the classrooms and spend some time with the students has given me a much greater understanding of the health resources they have. Many of the schools haven't been the nicest looking places, but everyone there loves it and they are all so thankful for what they have.

This trip has been a fantastic opportunity for me so far and I can't wait to see what the rest of it will bring.

Anthony Micallef
Pharmacy Technology Student
NSCC, Waterfront Campus

Posted by NSCC Intl 09:16 Archived in Belize Tagged education belize nova_scotia health pharmacy study_abroad service_learning Comments (0)

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