Academic News


Department of Nursing Awards 2023

December 5, 2023

Congratulations to this year’s Award Winners, and we gratefully acknowledge all the donors who made these awards possible!

Jean Burrows Scholarship Sarah Wilding

Jean Burrows was chair of the Nursing Department from 1974 to 1998. Created upon her retirement, this award recognizes outstanding academic achievement for students at the end of the first year of the BN program.

Bernice Parrott Award – Tara Garrioch, Madi Harder, Natali Domozhyro, Carl Calaje, Al Estoesta, Madison Towle, Amber D’Aoust, Rafael Marante, Tessa Martin

The Bernice Parrott Award was established to provide financial assistance to a deserving
student after term six of the BN program. This award recognizes the hard work and effort
that all students put forth as they complete the requirements of the program.

Nursing Students Endowment Scholarship – Ciara Tutkaluk and Nicole Bonenfant.

These awards were established because of the foresight of students who in 1997 established
an endowment fund. Each student, as part of their tuition fees, contributes to this
endowment fund. In 2001, a portion of this money was dedicated to the creation of these
awards. Since then, the class of 2002 made a sizeable contribution from their own
fundraising efforts.

Nursing Legacy Award – Clinical Practice Year 1 – Holly Ling

– Clinical Practice Long term care – Nicole Hammersley

– Clinical Practice Medicine – Shannon Pickell

– Clinical Practice Surgery – Tiana Wyryha

– Clinical Practice Pediatrics – Riley Dodds

– Clinical Practice Mental Health – Riley Dodds

– Clinical Practice Palliative – Karren Ballantyne

– Community Clinical Nursing Practice 1 and 2 – Emily Giesbrecht

– Skills and Techniques 3 – Hannah Szeryk

– Health Assessment 1 and 2 – Maybhelle Santos

This award was established by combining donations from a number of sources.
The Stanton family, the Duncan family, and Phyllis Aaron along with the Nursing faculty have
made substantial contributions. The award recognizes outstanding clinical performance of
students from year one to year three of the nursing program. The Nursing Techniques 3
award recognizes a year one student who excels both in the academic course work and the
performance of Nursing Skills.

Thorey Johnson Nursing Award – Jonadave Arceta and Jordan Wurtz

In honour of their mother, Mrs. Johnson’s daughters have established this scholarship to be
presented to a nursing student who has expressed a special interest in rural nursing
practice. The recipient has demonstrated an interest in front line nursing work in a hospital
environment; a high level of skill in the clinical setting, sound academic achievement, and a
caring and compassionate attitude with patients.

Nursing Leadership Award – Joshua Salisi and Tiana Wyryha

This award is for deserving students who have gone above and beyond in support
and leadership of their peers. It was established by the Awards Committee, with
nominations from faculty and peers.

Discipline of Professional Nursing Award – Navreet Chahill, Ciara Tutkaluk and Trishia Malabuyoc

This award is presented to students for their outstanding achievement in the courses of Discipline of Professional Nursing 1-5.

Mary Langhan Nursing Award – Yonathan Mohamed

This award is presented to a 3rd year student who has demonstrated a high level
of skill in the clinical setting and has expressed a special interest in obstetrics and

Karla Ferens Memorial Entrance Award for Health Care AideCandace Mercredi, Jathniele Manucduc and Gursimran Kaur

The Karla Ferens Memorial Entrance Award for Health Care Aide was established
by family and friends in memory of Karla Ferens, a 2011 Red River College
graduate of the Health Care Aide program. The award recipient has displayed the
same accomplishments exhibited by Karla Ferens: Involvement in sports and
leadership qualities.

Community Service Award – Clarence San Jose and Gabrielle Verspeek

This award is presented to a second and a third year student who has volunteered
for a community agency while maintaining sound academic achievement.

Karen Wall Indigenous Nursing Student Award – Rachelle Fehr

This award is presented to a 3rd year student of Canadian Indigenous heritage
who has achieved academic success in the BN program, and has demonstrated
leadership and community service.

Elizabeth Scaife Memorial Award – Ana Beltran

This award is presented to a BPIEN (Bridging Program for Internationally
Educated Nurses) student who has demonstrated outstanding academic
achievement and demonstrated exceptional clinical performance.

Christiane Gabrielle Bonin Memorial Award – Yvonne Datzkiw

Jaime Manness: Hike Manitoba Nursing Award Jade Friesen

This award is present to a second year student who exemplifies a love for hiking
and the outdoors with good academic standing. The award was established to
honor a RRC alumna and instructor who wanted to share her passion for
Manitoba’s wilderness.

Shannon Gray Memorial Award – Kaye Jeremie Aguilar

Kim Kotelo Memorial Award – Katie Laberge

Portage Mutal Insurance Award for Indigenous Nursing Student – Sophie Walker

Shirley (Perret) Loewen Indigenous Nursing Student Award – Rhonda Paoletti, Rachelle Fehr, Kiara Carpenter, Chelsea Wotton, Lexi Green-Monkman, Desiree Turner and Cassidy Webb

Shirley (Perret) Loewen Indigenous Graduation Bursary – Shania Dunn, Taylor Parker and Jessica White

RRC Polytech Students’ Association Be the Change you want to see Award – Karren Ballantyne

Eliza Cummings Machan and Helen Machan Memorial Nursing Award – Ryan Delaine

Written by Jennifer Johnson – Nursing Lab Manager
with descriptions of awards courtesy of the Nursing Awards Committee

Explore IT Employment at Red River College Polytechnic

October 25, 2023

Instructor Recruitment Event

Would you like to work at a place where you can make a positive, direct impact on the next generation of professionals in your field?

Learn about exciting employment opportunities for instruction and curriculum development in Information Technology at Red River College Polytechnic. Join senior academic leaders and faculty:

Date: Thursday, November 2
Time: 4:00 pm to 6:00 pm
Location: Manitou a bi Bii daziigae, Roundhouse, at 319 Elgin Avenue (view on Google Maps)

This event is free to attend. Resume is not required.

We have full-time, part-time, or contract employment opportunities.

Learn about the many benefits of being an RRC Polytech employee. We are looking for people with experience in information technology, application development, data science, machine learning, and security experience for the following programs:

  • Application Development and Delivery (NEW Program)
  • IT Operations
  • Information Security
  • Data Science and Machine Learning
  • Game Development
  • Digital Media Design


4:00 pmTour of Manitou a bi Bii daziigae
4:30 pmPresentation on RRC Polytech employment
5:00 pmBreakout sessions for specific types of employment
(full-time, part-time, contract)
5:30 pmRefreshments and networking

Benefits of Employment at RRC Polytech

We offer competitive salaries, extensive benefits, and the opportunity for personal and professional growth in a rewarding career. We’re also one of Manitoba’s Top Employers, one of Canada’s Best Diversity Employers, and one of Canada’s Greenest Employers.

Please share information about this event with people in your network who may be interested in attending. Register to let us know you are attending this in-person event.

Inspire Conference – Networking Opportunity

October 20, 2023

RRC Polytech Invites You!

Attention RRC Polytech Information Technology and Creative Arts Alumni and Industry Friends! Our current students would love your help. The Inspire Conference is November 7th, and our Networking Lounge needs industry friends and alums from BIT, CA/P, IST, BTM, DSML, InfoSec, Game Dev, Digital Media, Graphic Design and Film Production to answer questions from our current students. You likely remember the value of these interactions when you were a student, and recall how beneficial they were to you.

If you have an hour or two to spare, please let Alan Simpson ( or Connor Gilhuly ( know by email as soon as you’re able to. Let us know if you prefer the morning or the afternoon. We will have tables open from 9am to 3pm.

 We hope to see you there!

Second Annual Applied Commerce Education High School Competition

October 17, 2023

RRC Polytech Applied Commerce Education proudly presents the second annual Commerce Competition tailored for all passionate Manitoba High School Commerce students. Join as a team of ambitious high school students ready to plunge into the world of commerce, explore innovative challenges, and showcase your brilliance in alignment with the Manitoba Applied Commerce Education (ACE) Curriculum.

Join the competition and chart your path to a promising, successful tomorrow.

Note: Teachers are required to be present for the duration of the competition. Lunch is provided for all attendees

Competition Categories

Accounting Amazing Race (Groups of 2)

Step into a dynamic race around the Notre Dame Campus, where mastering every phase of the accounting cycle propels you forward, and every space of the college holds a new opportunity. If accounting is your forte, team up for a fast-paced duel where precision and swiftness rule. Await the bonus lifelines to slice your completion time, but caution – each tick of the clock and each response is pivotal!

Retail Store Design (Groups of 3-4)

It’s not just a store – it’s a masterpiece waiting to be brought to life. A theme is unveiled on competition day, driving the students’ designs. Those well-versed in consumer trends, product and traffic flow, accessibility, and loss prevention will thrive. Students will use tools like Minecraft, Planner 3D, or Roomstyler to craft designs that balance aesthetic appeal with the functional needs of a modern retail space. Industry professionals judge students by assessing their designs and listening to explanations during the presentations. Participants are expected to dive into their reservoir of knowledge from Retailing Perspectives, Entrepreneurship, or Venture Development courses.

Social Responsibility (Groups of 3-4)

Amidst Canada’s global prestige, pressing issues lurk. Step up, aspiring change-makers! In this challenge, groups of 3-4 will confront a real Canadian issue unveiled on competition day. Your mission: devise an innovative yet realistic solution, identify key stakeholders, and strategize an actionable plan. Pitch your masterstroke in a 7-8 minute presentation, showcasing your problem-solving finesse. Grade 12 students who are taking or have taken Topics and Trends in Business and/or Business Management, but any student armed with creativity and articulate expression can strategize and offer sustainable solutions!

Business Management: Under Cover Boss (Groups of 3-4)

Assume the role of an undercover boss steering a fictional company. Teams of 3-4 dive into the roles of top executives tasked with mending the cracks in a booming, fictional company. Navigate its intricate operations, culture, and real-life challenges. Armed with insider insights, craft an innovative strategic plan to transform weaknesses into strengths. Present your master strategy to a panel, showcasing your leadership and problem-solving prowess. Equipped with insights from the ACE curriculum Entrepreneurship Strand and Business Management courses, yet open to other keen minds, students are set to navigate through real-world business trials.

Join us as a Sponsor

Fuel the aspirations of young commerce enthusiasts by becoming a sponsor. Your support not only empowers students to explore the vast landscapes of commerce but also assures the continuation of this enriching experience, a junction where academics and practical challenges meet.

Your brand will appear at our event’s virtual and physical spaces and receive an acknowledgement amidst the celebrated awards ceremony.

To extend your support, contact Justin Pasosky at before February 28, 2024.

Showcase as a Vendor

Elevate your engagement with the future of commerce and education by establishing your presence as a vendor at the 2nd Annual Commerce Competition. As a vendor, you’ll be fostering connections with RRC Polytech students, staff, and the next generation of business leaders. Leaders that could someday be making an impact with your organization.

Lend your expertise and products to enrich the atmosphere, allowing the RRC Polytech community, staff and high school students to explore, learn, and grow.

To participate, contact Justin Pasosky at by February 28, 2024.

About Applied Commerce Education Program at RRC Polytech

The Applied Commerce Education degree is a joint program offered by Red River College Polytechnic and the University of Winnipeg. Graduates will be eligible to certify as a K-12 teacher with the Province of Manitoba. Choose between the comprehensive five-year integrated program, or the focused three-year after-degree path, or the fast-track with the 1-year accelerated program, each crafted to augment teaching capabilities and align with Manitoba’s high school curriculum.

Learn more >

About Applied Commerce Education

Applied Commerce Education (ACE) consists of an optional cluster of courses for high school students interested in pursuing a future career in a commerce-related field such as economics, entrepreneurship, business, marketing, technology and finance. Each of the individual courses is also an excellent option for any student wanting to understand more about their role in our global economy. The fourteen-course offerings in the Applied Commerce area allow students to develop the skills needed to be effective business leaders, innovators, citizens, consumers, and employees.

Exchange District Campus Fall Showcase and Market

September 7, 2023

The Fall Showcase and Market is on Wednesday, October 11 at

Market – 10:00 am to 3:00 pm.

Showcase – 10:00 am to 6:00 pm

Exchange District Campus.

We are thrilled to invite you to the first Annual Fall Showcase and Market, showcasing a variety of programs that we offer, and a market offering a range of handcrafted items, artwork, crafts and innovative products. All created or curated by our talented RRC Polytech students, staff and alumni.

In addition to shopping, there will also be creative workshops, and various activities, ensuring a day of fun and festivity.

Entry is free for visitors, and all are welcome.

Mark your calendars for October 11th, bring your friends and family, and enjoy the bounty and creativity of the season at our Fall Showcase and Market. We look forward to seeing you there!

Vendors Confirmed

We have a variety of vendors confirmed selling everything from cookies, books, artwork, honey, candles, jewelry, crochet, hats and scarves, Christmas decor, Indigenous art, and more!

  • Starz Align
  • Yarnedndanderous.xo
  • Gibson’s Goodies
  • GMB Chomichuk
  • Bamboo Worldwide Products
  • Earthy3DPrints
  • Just Bee Honey co.
  • AgnostosMasterCo
  • Bear and Beans Design
  • Operon Trinkets
  • Vale’s Delights
  • OtakuCorp
  • iHooked
  • Electric Impression
  • Marceleria
  • Crafty Anastasiia
  • Cree Indigenuity Art & Design
  • Bites of Bliss
  • Da-Zired Keepsakes
  • Krafts by Kandi
  • Channy’s Custom Cookies
  • Royal Bee
  • Pixie Design
  • Art Soap Life
  • Professional Baking and Culinary Arts Department
  • The Sergin’ Mary
  • Anishinaa-Bakes
  • Little Cedar Designs
  • OH Collection
  • AADA Naturals
  • Bond Invention House Inc
  • Senor Fletcher’s Galeria
  • Rue de l’Amour
  • L.o.v.creationsbyjj
  • Art of Jackie Traverse
  • Warm & Cozy
  • Anishinaabe Girl Designs
  • Red Thunder Cloud Beads
  • SICD
  • Annastacia Creations
  • Angela’s Native Creations
  • World Financial Group
  • Student Association


Program areas from the following areas will have a table in Manitou a bi Bii daziigae to showcase their programs. Find their table to learn more about the programs offered.

  • School of Continuing Education
  • Hospitality, Tourism, Culinary and Baking
  • Computer and Information Systems Technology
  • Applied Commerce & Management Education
  • Automotive Trades
  • Teacher Education
  • Global Access
  • Recruitment and Alumni

Pumpkin Carving Contest

Participate in the Pumpkin Carving Contest in the Elgin Plaza for the chance to win an RRC Polytech prize pack!

Time: 10:00 am – 2:30 pm

Criteria: Carve the Funniest, Scariest, or Most Unique/Creative pumpkin for a chance to win!

Judging: 2:30 pm – 3:00 pm (winners will be contacted after the event)

Pumpkin Carving Contest Rules

Eligibility: The contest is open to everyone.

Pumpkin Submission: Each participant can only submit one pumpkin into the contest.

Carving Tools: Only the tools provided are allowed.

Safety: Participants must follow all safety College guidelines.

Time Limit: If the carving is being done on campus and take no longer than 30 minutes.

Prize Categories:

  • Most Unique/ Creative
  • Scariest
  • Funniest

Originality: Designs must be original.

Judging: A panel of judges will evaluate the pumpkins based on creativity, craftsmanship, and originality. The decisions of the judges are final.

Display: All completed pumpkins should be displayed with a number on them corresponding to the sign-in sheet, without revealing the carver’s identity, to ensure impartial judging.

Prizes: Prizes can be awarded for each category.

Cleanup: Participants are responsible for cleaning up their workspace and disposing of pumpkin remnants properly.

Participants: can pick up their pumpkins at 3:00 that day.

Photos: By participating, carvers agree that photos of their pumpkins may be used for promotional purposes. If minors are participating, parental consent may be needed.

Disqualification: Any pumpkin that does not adhere to the rules may be disqualified.

Pumpkin Carving Rubric

Visual Impact4 Points Each “In Awe!” “Fabulous”  3 Points Each “That’s a job well done”2 Points Each “Okay, I see where they were going with that”1 Point each “What?” “I don’t get it!”
Craftsmanship and Quality4 Points Each The pumpkin is exceptionally attractive and well-constructed3 Points Each The pumpkin is attractive and has good construction.2 Points Each The pumpkin is acceptably attractive though it may be a bit messy1 Point Each The pumpkin is distractingly messy and/or the craftsmanship and skills are poor
Originality4 Points Each Exceptional use of new ideas and originality of pumpkin design3 Points Each Good use of new ideas and originality of pumpkin design2 Points Each Average use of new ideas and originality of pumpkin design1 Point Each No use of new ideas and originality of pumpkin design

Attend a Workshop

Join us in the Roundhouse for a variety of workshops from making your own wooden spoon, candle making, and designing your own puzzle.

Spoon Carving Workshop

Wednesday, October 11

Session 1- 10:00am – 12:00pm

Session 2 – 1:00pm – 3:00pm

(drop-ins are welcome)

Registration fee: $10.00


-beginner instruction

-spoon cut-out

-all materials required

-use of tools

Russ Kubara has been wood carving since 2008 and has been instructing beginner workshops for over ten years. An emphasis will be on safety.

This spoon project will introduce participants to several techniques of using a woodcarving knife that will enable them to get started on the road to a very therapeutic pastime.

Sushi Candle Making

Join us to make beeswax Sushi Candles! Sushi Beeswax Candles are artisanal candles crafted to resemble popular sushi pieces, using pure, natural beeswax as the primary ingredient. These candles not only offer the gentle, honey-like aroma of beeswax when burned but also serve as a decorative centerpiece. Ideal for sushi lovers and those looking for a special touch to their decor.

Additional Activities

  • Draw your own puzzle
  • Make a wooden circle ornament
  • Make a yarn doll
  • Design and make your own mask

Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge Powered by Canada Life

July 24, 2023

REGISTRATION – We have reached our registration capacity. Thank you for your interest.

Sprint to Innovate, powered by Canada Life, brings together post-secondary students from varied disciplines such as technology, business, entrepreneurship, and more. Sprint to Innovate is brought to you by University of Manitoba – Faculty of Science, Red River College Polytechnic, and Tech Manitoba. All Winnipeg Post Secondary Students are invited to participate. Students will learn about innovation while collaborating in a fun and exciting challenge to build a minimum viable prototype in two days.

We are pleased to announce that our next Sprint to Innovate: The Innovation Challenge is the weekend of February 1 to 4, 2024! This year we will be starting the event with a Networking session on Thursday, February 1 with a keynote speaker at University of Manitoba.

We invite all companies to review our sponsorship and mentorship opportunities, and to consider submitting a business challenge; and for post-secondary students to consider participating.


Teams of 4 to 6 students will choose from available business challenges provided by industry. Students will then work together with support from mentors to create a solution, including developing a prototype to be presented to judges on the final day. Thanks to our sponsors there is $11,000 in prize money!

A prototype is a simple experimental model of the proposed product used to learn from. Prototypes range from low-fidelity (paper-based) prototypes that are used to explain concepts all the way to high-fidelity prototypes that have functional elements with more detail.  Teams may consist of technology and business students.


As an Organization

  1. Sponsor the event.
  2. Volunteer your time as a mentor.
  3. Provide us with a Business Challenge that your organization has by emailing or

As a Student

Students from any Manitoba post-secondary student may participate in a team at Sprint to Innovate.

Students may register a team of 4 to 6 students. Register by Friday, January 19, 2024. REGISTRATION has reached capacity and is now closed.

Title Sponsor

Thank you to our Title Sponsor Canada Life!

Refreshment Sponsor

Thank you to our Refreshment Sponsor Access Credit Union.

Networking Event Sponsor

Thank you to our Networking Event Sponsor Bioscience Association Manitoba

Event Sponsors

Thank you to our Event Sponsors.


CHALLENGE #1 How might we raise cybersecurity awareness and preparedness among SMEs and small and medium-sized non-profits? – Popp3r Cybersecurity

CHALLENGE #2 How might we create a safer and more secure Winnipeg, significantly improving the well-being of its citizens in their daily lives and places of work? – City of Winnipeg

CHALLENGE #3 How can we create opportunities for post-secondary students to connect with their peers and give students the best chance at developing new friendships and connections? – My Student Wellbeing

CHALLENGE #4 How can we use technology to help improve the mental well-being of Canadians? – Canada Life

CHALLENGE #5 How can we revamp Riipen’s user experience, leveraging innovative strategies and potentially AI, to empower learners in discovering, registering for, and engaging in meaningful work-integrated learning projects? – Riipen

CHALLENGE #6 How might the Canadian Information Processing Society (CIPS) develop a program focused on enhancing and supporting the careers of students and early-stage IT professionals? – CIPS

Sponsorship Opportunities


We are looking for a sponsor to provide $3500 for
our student participants on Sunday, February 4.
Your $3,500 sponsorship would earn you:

  • Recognition on Sunday, February 4 at our
    refreshment table at breakfast, snack, and
  • Recognition on event materials, website and
  • Social media recognition
  • The opportunity to be a mentor to a team
    throughout the weekend.


We are looking for sponsors to provide $1000
towards prize money to the winning teams.
Your $1,000 sponsorship would earn you:

  • Recognition throughout the event
  • Recognition on event materials
  • Social media recognition
  • The opportunity to be a mentor to a team
    throughout the weekend.

Be a Mentor

We are looking for professionals to mentor one team throughout the Sprint to Innovate event weekend.

Mentors are asked to provide well-rounded support to their student team in the following area.

  • Help the team establish and foster a positive
    team environment
  • Provide ideation tips and tricks
  • Advise on prototype development
  • Advise on pitch preparation
  • Review final pitch presentation and provide
  • Be available for support throughout the weekend

Provide a Business Challenge

Student teams will be provided with a list of business challenges that they will have a choice between to work on. This is where you come in! We are asking a few different companies to provide a general business challenge and students would create a solution.
Do you have a general business challenge that our student teams can help solve?

  • Prepare your Challenge Information document with Challenge Context and background, a description, challenge statement, and relevant resources.
  • Prepare a 2-3 minute video pitching your business challenge outlining what the problem is, and why you need it.
  • Assign at least one person to speak about the problem and be prepared to answer questions about it from a student team on Friday, February 2 (Around 4:00/5:00 PM).
  • Available to answer questions from the teams on Saturday
  • Attend and judge the final presentations for your Challenge on Sunday to see what solutions the teams came up with; select one team to advance to the finals.

Applied Computer Education and Creative Arts Inspire Conference

July 20, 2023

Tuesday, November 7, 2023 – RRC Polytech – Exchange District Campus

Red River College Polytechnic’s Applied Computer Education and Creative Arts departments will host the Inspire Conference on Tuesday, November 7, 2023, from 8 am to 4 pm at the Exchange District Campus. The Inspire Conference is for over 1000 students in the following programs:

  • Business Information Technology
  • Business Technology Management
  • Data Science and Machine Learning
  • Information Security
  • IT Operations
  • Game Development
  • Full Stack Web Development
  • Graphic Design and Film
  • Pathways to IT (Indigenous)

Our talented students will be the audience during a virtual keynote, breakout sessions, an exhibitor area, and an industry networking lounge available throughout the day.

Be inspired!

Inspire skills – career development does not happen overnight, be inspired, and continue to learn and grow in your chosen field or explore other areas.

Inspire connections – get inspired by others, build your contact inventory, and network where you will talk and gain insights from their experience; you are not alone in your journey.

Inspire yourself – find your passion, take a personal inventory of where you are, and then look at the skills you will need to succeed.


We are looking for professionals to lead Breakout Sessions to inspire our students.


Join us for an opportunity to meet our talented, enthusiastic students and let them be inspired in our networking lounge.


A variety of sponsorship options are available, including exhibitor booths.

How to get involved

Contact to learn more about the Inspire Conference and participation opportunities.

Engaging in Work-Integrated Learning for the Changing Workplace

February 27, 2023

Processes. Resources. Supports.

Engaging in Work-Integrated Learning For the Changing Workplace brings together business and industry from varied disciplines such as information technology, creative arts, and business. Potential employers for our co-op students are invited to join us at this conference to learn about how they can be effective term employers for our students who are required to have a work-integrated learning experience as part of their diploma program.

During this conference, we will cover important topics including the student onboarding process, how to set up a meaningful WIL student placement, how to mentor your student employees, promoting your company to students, and accessibility topics for potential student employees.

This conference will take place at our beautiful downtown RRC Polytechnic Campus on Wednesday, May 10th, 2023, for an informative and impactful full-day conference, to be held within the brand-new Manitou a bi Bii daziigae building. Please take the opportunity to join us at this conference to tour our new building and innovative learning spaces, including the ACE Project Space, where our students collaborate with entrepreneurs, non-profit organizations, and corporations to bring unique ideas to life.

Funding for Engaging in WIL for the Changing Workplace was administered by BHER (Business + Higher Education Roundtable) and supplied by the Minister. Thanks to BHER, registration is free for attendees.

The conference will include a morning workshop on managing cultural differences in Canadian Organizations, lunch and networking, followed by the option of various sessions such as onboarding and mentoring students, accessibility for WIL, supporting students in WIL with ASD, creating safe work spaces, and WIL success stories at RRC Polytech.

Wednesday, May 10, 2023 at 8:00 AM CDT 319 Elgin Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 1K9


Registration is now closed for the Engaging in Work Integrated Learning for the Changing Workplace Conference.

Wednesday, May 10, 2023 at 8:00 AM CDT RRC Polytech – Manitou a bi Bii daziigae 319 Elgin Avenue, Winnipeg, MB R3B 1K9 Free to Participate


8:00 AM to 8:30 AMRegistration – RefreshmentsAgora
8:30 AM to 9:00 AMWelcome Roundhouse
9:00 AM to 12:00 PMSupporting Students in WIL: Managing Cultural Differences in Canadian Organizations with Lionel Laroche, Multicultural Business Solutions
*Capacity is limited in main room
12:00 PM to 1:30 PMLunch and Networking 
12:30 PM to 1:20 PMFocus Group Discussion *Limit of 80 participants.Roundhouse
1:30 PM to 2:15 PM
Theme: Supports and Resources
Breakout Session: Accessibility for WIL
Presenters: RRC Polytech Student Accessibility Services
Breakout Session: The Autism Advantage: supporting students in WIL
Presenter: Anne Cresta, CEO – Level IT Up
Breakout Session: Maximizing Your Talent Pipeline through WIL Partnerships (Panel)
Host: Brian Rochat, RRC Polytech WIL Coordinator
2:15 PM  to 2:30 PMBreak
2:30 PM to 3:15 PM
Theme: What’s Working and Success Stories
Breakout Session: Safe Spaces Cultural Competencies Training
Presenter: Denise Tardiff, University of Manitoba
Breakout Session: How Employers and Students Can Benefit from WIL

Host: Ralph Dueck and Shane Grusko, Applied Computer Education
Breakout Session: Using Career Bridge to engage students in Work Integrated Learning

Host: Jennifer Gaulin, Work Integrated Learning and Career Services
3:15 PM to 3:30 PMClosing Remarks

Session Descriptions

Supporting Students in WIL: Managing Cultural Differences in Canadian Organizations Workshop

by Lionel Laroche, Multicultural Business Solutions

*The first 80 registrants will be assigned to the main room, with the remaining accommodated in an alternative room with a live stream of the workshop.

Manitoba, Winnipeg, and RRC Polytech is made up of a diverse community with unique backgrounds. Part of this rich tapestry are students that have grown up in different countries and cultures who have been taught to think and act in ways that are different from the education and professional systems in Canada. 

When they join Canadian organizations, these differences are a source of both challenges and opportunities. In many cases, the challenges come first; they are the result of misunderstanding and lead to frustration and rework. When they are recognized, understood and respected, the same differences become the source of growth for everyone involved at the individual level and of development for the organization.

By combining effective diagrams, insightful anecdotes and experiential exercises, this workshop helps participants realize that cultural differences go much deeper than they realized and impact many everyday interactions in the workplace. It also provides concrete, practical suggestions on how to effectively and appropriately interact with diverse cultural backgrounds so that organizations can get the benefits of diversity by rethinking some of the things they do.

Lionel Laroche, Ph.D., P.Eng.

Lionel Laroche, Ph.D., P.Eng. Over the past 25 years, Lionel has provided cross-cultural training and coaching services to over 200,000 people in 20+ countries. Lionel specializes in helping professionals and organizations identify the impact of cultural differences in their work and operations so that they can overcome the challenges that usually come with these differences and turn them into opportunities for growth and development. Lionel works with a wide range of clients in many sectors – from finance to manufacturing, from oil & gas to education. He has presented at over 200 conferences and has written three books on the topic. Born in France, he holds a Diplôme d’Ingénieur Polytechnicien de l’Ecole Polytechnique de Paris and a Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering from the California Institute of Technology.

Accessibility for Work-Integrated Learning

Presented by RRC Polytech Student Accessibility Services and Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services

RRC Polytech is committed to Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (EDI). RRC Polytech’s Student Accessibility Services and Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services play a key role in this commitment by working in partnership with College programs, departments and Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) employers to ensure all students have equal opportunities for success. In this session you will learn about various accommodations for WIL placements and how you can work collaboratively with the College to ensure access to an inclusive educational experience for Deaf students and students with disabilities in workplace learning.

Jill Patterson, Manager Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services

Jill Patterson, BA, ASL-English Interpreter Dip, is the manager of Deaf and Hard of Hearing Services at RRC Polytech. Jill is committed to Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access (IDEA), provides leadership to her team, coordination, and support to advance the College’s duty to accommodate and is an advocate to those she serves in the Winnipeg Deaf community. She has over 24 years’ of experience in higher education, assisting Deaf and Hard of Hearing students transitioning to post-secondary, determining accommodations, arranging interpreting and transcription services for students and the College community and providing consultation on accessibility requirements at the College. Prior to this role, Jill worked as an ASL-English interpreter at Dawson College and McGill University in Montreal as well as the University of Manitoba.

Lori Walkow, Manager Student Accessibility Services

Lori Walkow is the manager of Student Accessibility Services at RRC Polytech.  With a M.Sc. in Clinical Psychology, Lori has dedicated her career to working with youth and adults with disabilities.  She has almost 20 years’ experience working in Accessibility Services in higher education developing accommodation plans for students with disabilities and leading and supporting Accessibility Services teams.  Prior to her employment at RRC Polytech, Lori worked as a Learning Specialist at Douglas College as well as an Instructor where she developed and taught a career exploration/work readiness program for students with disabilities.  Lori is passionate about removing barriers for post-secondary students with disabilities and is a strong proponent of Universal and Inclusive Design for Learning to enhance access for all students.  

The Autism Advantage: supporting students in WIL

Presented by Anne Cresta, CEO – Level IT Up

Session Description: The Autistic Advantage: Autism in the Workplace, how employers can work with their present and future employees who identify as autistic to optimize the work environment and benefit from the “autistic advantage.”  

Anne Cresta, CEO – Level IT Up

Anne Kresta has over 30 years of both personal and professional experience working with individuals on the autism spectrum, especially those who present with an autistic profile similar to what was previously known as Asperger Syndrome.  In addition to heading up Level It Up, a non-profit that supports and promotes greater employment of skilled autistic adults in STEAM, She has experience working with systems and services that support children, youth and adults with disabilities in Manitoba through her past work as Project Manager at Community Living Manitoba, service on the board of Asperger Manitoba Inc., and Project Co-ordinator role on the Building Independence Project with St.Amant.  

Maximizing Your Talent Pipeline Through Work-Integrated Learning Partnerships

Hosted by Brian Rochat, RRC Polytech WIL Coordinator

Brian Rochat, RRC Polytech WIL Coordinator

Session Description: Many organizations now recognize the value of Work-Integrated Learning (WIL) initiatives, such as co-op programs, as a way to gain an edge in hiring top talent. These programs benefit employers, students, and academic institutions by offering mentorship, engagement, and improved learning outcomes. In this panel, a co-op employer, a WIL alumni, and a WIL Coordinator will discuss how WIL initiatives support recruitment, career pathways, and the development of a future-ready workforce. You’ll hear from business leaders on why they participate in co-op programs and partner with RRC Polytech to recruit students, support an engaged workforce, and help students build the confidence and skills required for successful careers. The program will also cover government support for student and internship hiring, as well as how WIL recruitment can help businesses fill both short-term and long-term job openings.


Georgette Rochon, RRC Polytech

Georgette Rochon, RRC Polytech Work-Integrated Learning Coordinator

Georgette Rochon is a graduate of Red River College Polytechnics Hotel & Restaurant Management Program. After working for over 15 years in different leadership roles in the hospitality industry, Georgette transitioned into post-secondary education as an instructor. During this time, she found her calling in working with students individually as they progress their careers through Work Integrated Learning. Since joining RRCP in 2019, Georgette has worked with different programs as a Work Integrated Learning Coordinator. Her experience with the Community Services programs and the School of Hospitality & Culinary Arts programs has allowed her to approach each student and employer partner with a holistic lens that encourages success for each stakeholder involved in WIL. Georgette is part of RRCP’s Diversity Champions and is pursuing further studies in Sociology.

Criz Delacruz, Bison Transport

Criz Delacruz, Bison Transport

With over 15 years of customer service experience and 10 years in management, Crizelle joined Bison Transport in October of 2021 as the Carrier Experience Manager. She has a BA in Psychology through the University of Winnipeg and most recently received a certification in Human Management through Red River College. In addition to working with partner carriers in Logistics, Crizelle has also worked towards the constant improvement and development of Bison’s New Grad Program, inviting New Graduates into the business, and partnering with them on the development of their career. She is passionate about the growth and development of her team members that lend to sustainable and high-impact performance.

Ricel Gelera, Alt Hotel

Ricel Gelera, Sales Coordinator – Alt Hotel

Ricel graduated from RRC Polytech in 2017 and works as a Sales Coordinator at Alt Hotel in Winnipeg, Manitoba. From being an intern to a full-time employee, I was able to find a great space to work, thanks to RRC Polytech!

Using Career Bridge to engage students in Work Integrated Learning

Hosted by Jennifer Gaulin and Angeline Boekweit, Work Integrated Learning and Career Services

Jennifer Gaulin, RRC Polytech Business Analyst

Workshop Description: Career Bridge is RRC Polytech’s new co-op and career portal for students and alumni! Join us to learn about features of this new platform, including promoting opportunities to specific WIL programs and scheduling interviews with candidates. We will also be sharing suggestions on what and when to post to attract the right students for your organization. 

Angeline Boekweit, RRC Polytech Manager of Work-Integrated Learning

Angeline Boekweit, Manager of Work Integrated Learning at RRC Polytech.  Angeline has worked in Work Integrated Learning at RRC Polytech since 2014, beginning in the role of co-op coordinator moving to management of the new WIL team in September 2022. Angeline evolved her passion for teaching and learning as a high school teacher and adult instructor into managing a team of passionate and dedicated WIL coordinators. Developing the WIL team further to ensure partnerships with your organization are successful while ensuring WIL students have a quality learning experiences while applying the skills and knowledge acquired in the classroom to a real work setting within the workplace.   

How Employers and Students Can Benefit from WIL

Hosted by Ralph Dueck and Shane Grusko, Applied Computer Education

Session Description: Red River College Polytechnic is In Front of What’s Ahead. At RRC Polytech we blend deep, knowledge-based learning with applied, hands-on experience, through Work Integrated Learning. WIL formally integrates a student’s academic studies with quality experiences within a workplace or practice setting. WIL is more than a co-op, join us for this session and you will learn more about the WIL options we offer. You will also hear directly from both organizations and students on their experiences with WIL and the benefits they have received from their participation in the program. Whether a long-time WIL provider or thinking of becoming one, this session will provide greater insight into WIL partnerships.

Safe Spaces Cultural Competency Training

Presented by Denise Tardiff, University of Manitoba

Session Description: Safe Spaces Cultural Competency Training is a learning program rooted in Indigenous pedagogies that not only raises awareness of simplicity bias and Indigenous context for Canadian employers, but that leads to transformative behavioural change. The primary goal of this program is to enable employers to create culturally safe workplaces for all of their employees, with a focus on IBPOC and other marginalized employees. In this presentation, Denise Tardiff will provide an overview of the principles of cultural competency and how to move towards it as an organization.

Denise Tardiff, University of Manitoba

Denise Tardiff is a Franco-Métis woman from the Red River Valley who is deeply invested in promoting inclusivity, diversity, and cross-cultural understanding as the means of building a vibrant, prosperous Manitoban landscape.

In the classroom, Denise uses her lived experience to address the impact of intergenerational trauma on soft skill development and to equip Indigenous students/employees with practical tools to navigate the North American business world. In tandem with this training, she works with Manitoba’s business community to create safe and welcoming workplace cultures by moving beyond cultural awareness to cultural competency.

Denise is passionate about working with industry partners in a spirit of reconciliation, imparting the importance of understanding how the historical context of colonial and assimilationist policies and attitudes is directly related to contemporary barriers and the current Canadian climate of Indigenous-industry labour relations.

This provides employers with the knowledge required to implement initiatives that truly create substantive equality for Indigenous students/employees whilst meeting the organization’s strategic engagement, recruitment, and retention goals.

A highly effective and dynamic speaker/facilitator, Denise has had the opportunity to be the keynote speaker to crowds of up to 1000 people at numerous conferences across Canada and the US and excels at delivering workshops and group training sessions about difficult topics with sensitivity, compassion, and humour.

Nursing Community Health Promotion at the Pros Know Expo

January 5, 2023

Back on Sept 22 and Oct 12, three 2811 Community and Older Adult clinical groups from the BN Program had the opportunity to apply theory and experience community health promotion in older adults at the Pros Knows Expo!

The Pros Knows Expos are coordinated by Rick Roschuk and facilitated by Older Adult serving agencies and businesses with interactive booths in Senior Active Living Centres throughout Winnipeg over the past year. These two featured were held at the Transcona Citizens Org and Good Neighbours Active Living Centre in River East.

Students interacted with more than 200 individuals, checking blood pressure and offering healthy heart information, honing their entry-level competency skills in assessment, communication, and education.

The event provides information and connection to services that older adults may not otherwise be aware of.  The students gained valuable insight: ‘it was so interesting as a young adult to see all of the resources available to older adults’ – Cameryn J.  Information was gathered from agencies and resources to build their community knowledge bases and were shared in the group.

Rick had a particular impact with the students at the end of the day, sharing his appreciation for RRC Polytech Nursing students. ‘Don’t get caught up on the negativity, because there is a larger majority rooting for you, who appreciate your commitment, dedication, and all the work you do at this stressful time in health care’.

Blog post written by Karen Janzen and Tracey McCulloch – Nursing Instructors

Photos by Teresa Lopata – Photographer for Good Neighbours Active Living Centre


December 22, 2022



WRITTEN BY: Jennifer Johnson – Nursing Lab Manager

PHOTO BY: Monica Nash – Nursing Instructor

RRC Polytech campuses are located on the lands of Anishinaabe, Ininiwak, Anishininew, Dakota, and Dené, and the National Homeland of the Red River Métis.

We recognize and honour Treaty 3 Territory Shoal Lake 40 First Nation, the source of Winnipeg’s clean drinking water. In addition, we acknowledge Treaty Territories which provide us with access to electricity we use in both our personal and professional lives.

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