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Lifelong learning lands Red River College a spot on Top Employer list for ninth straight year

November 28, 2018

What we’re doing is working; for students, industry and 2,300 dedicated employees

Winnipeg, MB – Today, RRC celebrates its commitment to creating personal and professional learning opportunities for employees – almost half of which are alumni and graduates themselves – an accomplishment that once again lands the College a spot on Manitoba’s Top Employer list for nine years running.

“When it comes to educating students, providing training and research opportunities, and meeting the needs of industry – what we’re doing is working,” said Melanie Gudmundson, Chief Human Resource Officer. “And it’s the dedicated efforts of our staff and faculty members who make this statement a reality everyday with their commitment to the College and our students.

“This is why we are continually striving to build a work environment that has programs and supports, including training and professional development opportunities that ensure staff and faculty success.”

Learning is a core value of Red River College, which is committed to providing an exceptional learning environment for employees as well as students. The College focuses on staff learning and development activities and events, led by industry experts – most of whom are all members of the Red River College community.

“Every week you will hear of a different department hosting an event. From research lunch and learns, to traditional Sweat Lodge ceremonies, to mental health speaker series, to daily fitness classes – there are many opportunities for staff to engage in new professional and personal development activities. This is something we encourage all employees to take advantage of,” said Gudmundson.

The College has also continued to introduce more formalized internal training opportunities to encourage continuous lifelong learning and professional growth. These include major initiatives like RED Forum, a day-long professional development event for all RRC employees from all campuses, and a new online training program,, which provides unlimited access to 6,000+ videos and courses at the click of a button.

Those interested in learning outside of office hours also have access to RRC’s School of Continuing Education, which delivers over 100 personal and professional development programs, including full and part-time certificate programs.  All College employees are eligible to enroll and tuition fees are waived if there is space available in the course.

“As a College we are committed to educating the community and we are proud that this includes our very own dedicated staff and faculty members,” said Gudmundson.

“As educators, leaders, researchers, and innovators committed to education, meeting the changing needs of industry, and contributing to the province’s economic growth, we are proud of the work we are doing, and to once again be named one of Manitoba’s Top Employers.

For more information please visit:

A Celebration of Trades and Technologies on Display at New Red River College Facility

November 15, 2018

Award-Winning Skilled Trades and Technology Centre Officially Opened by Red River College and Province of Manitoba

With a little help from its Robot-in-Residence – Baxter – Red River College (RRC) and the Province of Manitoba officially opened the Skilled Trades and Technology Centre (STTC) at the College’s Notre Dame Campus.

Education and Training Minister Kelvin Goertzen led the official ceremonies and assisted Baxter with his task of opening RRC’s newest addition to its Notre Dame Campus.

“Careers in the skilled trades are in high demand across the province and this building creates the opportunity for more Manitobans to receive top-level training that will keep our industries ahead of the curve and continue to grow our economy,” said Goertzen.

“We are pleased to have invested $61.6 million to help Red River College develop an inspired learning environment with state-of the-art equipment that takes post-secondary training to new heights.”

The new Skilled Trades and Technology Centre spanning 104,000 square-feet will boost RRC’s training capacity by 30 per cent, and provide training and education for up to 1,000 students a year in many high-demand trades, including:

  • Electrical
  • Carpentry
  • Mechanical Engineering Technology
  • Manufacturing Computer Aided Drafting (CAD)
  • Manufacturing Technician
  • Precision Metal Machining
  • Refrigeration and Air Conditioning, and,
  • Technology Management

“For 80 years we’ve created programs and innovative learning spaces that equip our grads with the right skills and experience to meet the needs of our province’s economy and its workforce. The STTC is part of the ongoing growth we’ve been experiencing at Red River College – and today, we’re not just celebrating the trades, we’re putting them at the forefront of what we do,” said Paul Vogt, President and CEO of RRC.

“We’ve had a reputation for being ‘just’ a trades college – yes, we are a trades college, and we’re proud of that. We’re also so much more than a trades college, and you can see that in the way the STTC was built. Every component was designed for the student experience, for applied-learning. The building itself displays the leading-edge construction techniques students will be putting into practice after they graduate from Red River.”

Students walked through its doors for the first time this August, experiencing what is designed to be a celebration of the trades and technologies. Each program’s unique laboratories and workshops are on display through floor-to-ceiling windows and are linked together by the sky lit Galleria, allowing for industry professionals, staff, and prospective students to see skills at work. Sensors in the walls, windows and ceilings will allow students to monitor how the building is interacting with the external environment. And the crawlspaces below the building are tall enough to allow students to study all aspects of the heating, electrical and water systems.

Faculty, staff and students had a large hand in the STTC’s design and building process. Number TEN Architectural Group designed the building after holding hundreds of consultations with the College community to determine needs for today and for the next 80 years.

Some examples of student and staff involvement include: student-built workbenches, tool cabinets, PLC and Motor Control instructional stations. The interior and exterior brickwork was designed in the College’s Masonry program and full-size curtainwall mock-ups were built and tested in the College’s BETAC (Building Envelope Technology Access Centre) program.

Akman Construction broke ground on the project in 2016 and are currently working to complete an addition to the building, the Smart Factory, which is scheduled to be complete in 2019. The building has already earned the Green Building Excellence in New Construction award from the Manitoba chapter of the Canada Green Building Council for its efforts in sustainability and LEED Gold target. Some key highlights of the building’s green efforts include a geothermal heating system, tubular skylights, a rainwater retention system and a green roof garden.

This project was made possible through the generous support of the Province of Manitoba, Bockstael Construction Ltd. and the Gene Haas Foundation.

Update: Off campus incident – EDC

October 19, 2018

It has been a very difficult few days for members of the Red River College community as we heard the frightening news that one of our instructors was assaulted off campus in the Exchange District while walking to catch a bus on Tuesday evening.

Many of you have been asking for an update on our instructor’s condition and I’m thankful to report that he has been discharged from the hospital and is now recovering at home. We are continuing to stay in touch with him and will provide any support he and his family need. He gave us permission to provide this update about his condition. Thanks for all of your expressions of concern and well wishes, which I was able to pass along to our instructor during our visit yesterday afternoon.

A counsellor from LifeWorks, the College’s Employee and Family Assistance provider (EFAP) will be on site at Roblin Centre tomorrow, Friday, October 19, 2018 to meet with any staff who require support. The counsellor will be in W306 from 12 p.m. to 3 p.m. Please don’t hesitate to drop in and talk with our counsellor.

I also had the opportunity to talk with many of you yesterday about your security concerns – thank you for taking the time to share your views and also your ideas on how we can improve safety for our staff and students. The safety of our RRC community is our top priority and it is why we took several immediate measures to increase security including adding a dedicated mobile street patrol unit from 4 p.m. to midnight daily for our facilities in the Exchange District. We have also extended the hours of security coverage until 11 p.m. at ACE Space on McDermot (in addition to the 24/7 coverage provided at the Roblin Centre and PGI).

During our conversations yesterday at EDC, a number of people expressed concern about the specific area where the assault occurred – under the covered walkway next to the former Public Safety Building. We know this vacant block is of concern and will continue to push for measures, such as improved lighting, that could help enhance pedestrian safety. We will also ensure that our mobile street patrol unit prioritizes this particular area during their daily security duties.

RRC Security and the College’s Safety and Health Services (SHS) units have also begun an in-depth review of the incident and our security procedures to determine if additional measures are needed. We welcome your suggestions so please don’t hesitate to reach out to members of our Security and SHS teams with your ideas.

I also understand that we have seen an increase in the use of our Safe Walk Program since the incident and I’m pleased that staff and students are using this service. I know that people are sometimes reluctant to ask for help when they are leaving campus and walking to their car or the bus, but our security folks are anxious to be of service. As you know, there are Safe Walk phones available for use on campus, or you can call the following security numbers:

  • EDC – 204-949-8305
  • PGI – 204-631-3381
  • NDC – 204-632-2323

The Winnipeg Police Service is continuing to investigate the incident and we will provide updates as they are available. The police are also asking for the public’s help and if you or anyone you know have information that may assist them, please contact them at 204.986.6219 or Crime Stoppers at 204.786.TIPS (8477).


Paul Vogt  | President & CEO

Red River College of Applied Arts, Science and Technology

Off campus incident – EDC

October 17, 2018

The College is immediately undertaking measures to increase security at our Exchange District Campus (EDC) after an incident last night where one of our faculty members was hurt during an assault off campus in the area.

We are grateful our instructor is recovering in hospital and we have been in regular contact with his family during this time. We will continue to focus on his well-being and offer all the support we can to our instructor and his family. We are also working with Winnipeg Police Services, who are investigating the incident.

The safety of our staff, faculty and students is our top priority. As a result, the College is taking several immediate measures to increase security.

Effective today, we are extending the hours of security to ensure coverage until 11 p.m. at ACE Space on McDermot (in addition to the 24/7 coverage provided at the Roblin Centre and PGI), and adding a dedicated mobile street patrol unit from 4 p.m. to midnight daily for our facilities in the Exchange District.

These increased security measures will take effect this afternoon. RRC Security and the College’s Safety and Health Services units will also undertake an in-depth review of the incident and our security procedures to determine if additional measures are needed.

I appreciate many of you are anxious for more details about the well-being of one of our friends and colleagues and we will provide an update when more information is available. I can share with you that the incident happened last night when our instructor was walking off-campus on his way to catch the bus after his evening classes.

This is why it is extremely important for us to increase our mobile security presence around EDC and make sure our staff and students are using our Safe Walk Program when they are leaving campus and walking to their transportation. There are Safe Walk phones on campus available for use, or please call the following security numbers for mobile security services:

  • EDC – 204-949-8305
  • PGI – 204-631-3381
  • NDC – 204-632-2323

I would also encourage all staff and students to download our mobile safety app, which includes a direct link to our Safe Walk services. Please visit for more information.

This is an extremely upsetting incident and if you require counselling services, please don’t hesitate to access our employee support program (EFAP) at 1-877-207-8833 or RRC Counselling Services who can provide further resources and support.

Paul Vogt

Paul Vogt
President & CEO, Red River College


October 1, 2018

For immediate release: October 1, 2018

WINNIPEG, MB – Due to a Manitoba Hydro power outage, Red River College’s Notre Dame Campus is closed and all daytime classes at the Notre Dame Campus will be cancelled. This outage is affecting more than 6,000 customers across Winnipeg and Hydro will need an extended period of time to resolve the issue.

Manitoba Hydro expects to have the issue resolved later this afternoon, therefore Continuing Education courses and evening classes at NDC will continue as scheduled.

Regular operations are expected to resume on Tuesday, October 2, 2018. All other campuses remain open today.

Red River College hits a home run with new beer flavoured pretzel seasoning

June 13, 2018

RRC Culinary Research and Innovation program steps up to the plate for the Pretzel Place.

Winnipeg, MB – Forget the peanuts and Cracker Jacks – today, Red River College and local business, The Pretzel Place, will launch a new beer flavoured pretzel seasoning before the Winnipeg Goldeyes’ game at Shaw Park.

The seasoning was created by RRC’s dynamic Culinary Research and Innovation (CR&I) program, which over the last few years has seen substantial growth in the areas of new food products and ingredient applications.

“The demand for culinary research and innovation in our province is increasing, and our CR&I program continues to ‘step up to the plate,’ to develop new and advanced uses for locally grown food while supporting Manitoba’s agricultural and food industry through applied research,” said Paul Vogt, President and CEO of Red River College.

“This partnership with The Pretzel Place is just one of many delicious examples of new product creation and culinary creativity at work in our community.”

The CR&I program is located within RRC’s School of Hospitality and Culinary Arts, allowing researchers to tap in to the knowledge of accomplished chef instructors, and recruit students to work on applied research projects with industry.

The program was first launched in 2014, and has been increasing its activities with help of Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC). To date, the program has been involved in over 40 industry projects with organizations such as the Manitoba Pulse and Soy Growers, Granny’s Poultry, Piccola Cucina, MSPrebiotic Inc., and The Pretzel Place.  The program actively works with others in the food innovation community including the University of Manitoba and Food Development Centre.

Sue Leclair is a graduate of the RRC Business Administration program and owner of The Pretzel Place’s two locations at Shaw Park and Investors Group Field. Leclair’s idea for the seasoning came from Winnipeg Goldeyes and Blue Bomber fans, who inspired her to come up with a way to marry the flavours of a refreshing game day beer, and her popular twisted snack.

“I first came up with this idea nearly three years ago, so to have it go from idea, to concept, to reality is a really exciting feeling, and it would not have been possible without the support and work of RRC’s dedicated Culinary Research team,” said Leclair.

“Through this partnership, I was able to work with industry leading chefs, and gain access to the latest information on food trends, science and innovation. I am thrilled to share this Manitoba inspired, locally developed beer flavoured seasoning with the entire community.”

RRC’s Culinary Research and Innovation team and The Pretzel Place will be offering free bite-sized samples of the new beer-flavoured pretzel seasoning at 6:00pm on the Promenade of Shaw Park before the Winnipeg Goldeyes’ game this evening. The seasoning will be available at both Pretzel Place locations and for catering events moving forward.

Media is invited to attend this event. RRC President and CEO, Paul Vogt, the Culinary Research and Innovation team, and Sue Leclair will be available for interviews.

Winnipeg’s Elvis to Receive Honorary Diploma from Red River College

June 5, 2018

Local icon Ray St. Germain to receive Creative Communications diploma for lifetime achievements in broadcasting, storytelling and educating Canadians about Metis people and culture.

WINNIPEG, MB June 5, 2018 – A household name across the prairies, Ray St. Germain was honoured last night as Red River College’s (RRC) 2018 Honorary Diploma recipient.

Ray St. Germain is an award winning producer, host, entertainer and voice actor on more than 600 television programs over the last four decades – including Big Sky Country, Rhythms of the Métis, and the 1969 Canadian variety series Time for Living, and NCI-fm radio host of the Manitoba Metis Federation’s “Metis Hour X 2” – his engaging, creative and passionate storytelling style serves to shine a spotlight on the history of Manitoba, and to build an understanding and appreciation of Métis culture.

“Ray is someone who embodies the values of Red River College and serves as an inspiration to many of the creative young people who are receiving their diplomas alongside him today,” said Paul Vogt, President and CEO of RRC. “This is the highest honour given by Red River College, and is reserved for individuals who have achieved considerable success in their lives. We have tremendous respect for Ray, who has dedicated his life to sharing the stories of Métis people, and opened the door for others to do the same.”

St. Germain is the 25th person to receive the award since 1995, joining notable Manitobans such as Senator Murray Sinclair, Stella Blackbird and Ace Burpee in being recognized.

“Storytelling has always been a part of who I am. There are so many ways to tell stories and I’m proud to have been able to share mine in so many different ways and with so many different audiences. Even more so, I’m happy to have been able to pass these gifts along to my children, and encourage them to speak their truth through song,” said Ray St. Germain. “I am extremely honoured to receive an honorary diploma for such a highly regarded program, and from an institution that is making strides in the advancement of Indigenous education.”

Honorary Diploma Recipients are selected based on their personal and professional achievements, as they pertain to one or more of the criteria outlined below. The individual:

  • Has made significant contributions to either: (1) Red River College; (2) a particular field of post-secondary study; and/or (3) post-secondary education on a local, national or international level;
  • Has accomplished great success in either a paid or volunteer position that reflects the values of Red River College;
  • Enhances or promotes the College’s image/reputation in Manitoba or elsewhere; and/or
  • Serves as an inspirational example to the College community due to significant accomplishment or achievement.

For his contributions to Canadian culture, Mr. St. Germain has received numerous awards, including the Aboriginal Order of Canada, the Order of Manitoba, and the Order of the Sash – Saskatoon and Prince Albert. He has also been inducted into the Manitoba Aboriginal Music Hall of Fame (2005), and the Canadian Country Music Hall of Fame (2010).

For using his voice, music and the mediums of TV and radio to shine a light on Indigenous and Métis culture – to share with Canadians and cultures around the world, Red River College found St. Germain to be highly worthy of this year’s honorary diploma in Creative Communications.

To learn more about Creative Communications, click here.

Red River College and Indspire announce new bursaries to support Indigenous Students

May 31, 2018

New bursaries will be available for new Indigenous programs at RRC and students are encouraged to attend today’s open house to learn more and apply.

Today, as part of Red River College’s (RRC) first Indigenous Education Open House, RRC and Indspire, announced “The Red River College School of Indigenous Education Award,” that will provide financial support for up to 85 Indigenous students enrolled in one of RRC’s newest Indigenous academic programs that are being launched this fall.

“Red River College is working to create a seamless flow of wrap-around supports for aspiring Indigenous students that will help increase enrolment and graduation rates across the College, and these bursaries will help remove the existing financial barriers that many of our learners’ face,” said Rebecca Chartrand, RRC Executive Director, Indigenous Strategy

“We are proud to partner with Indspire, a leading national Indigenous charity, who recognizes the important work we are doing as a College and has made an investment in a bright future for Indigenous students in our community.”

This, first-of-its-kind Building Brighter Futures: Bursaries, Scholarships and Awards partnership between RRC and Indspire will cover the full cost of tuition, books and supplies for students enrolled in one of the following new academic programs being delivered by RRC’s School of Indigenous Education:

  • ACCESS Health Pathway Program
  • ACCESS Engineering Pathway Program
  • Social Enterprise Diploma Program
  • Indigenous Languages Certificate Program
  • Indigenous Culinary Skills Certificate

A key pillar of RRC’s five-year strategic plan is to continue to support Indigenous student success and through this initiative, led by RRC’s School of Indigenous Education, the College believes these bursaries will help continue to remove the barriers of access to post-secondary education for Indigenous learners in Manitoba.

“This partnership is another step in the direction of transforming education for our youth so they can in turn transform their families, communities, and Canada,” said Roberta Jamieson, President and CEO of Indspire. “We are grateful for the support of Red River College and for the work they are doing to advance Indigenous achievement and education.”

Indigenous students who are interested in learning more about the new programs and bursaries available are invited to attend the Indigenous Education Open House today, May 31, 2018 from 1:00pm – 7:00pm at the Notre Dame Campus.

The Open House will provide future students with an opportunity to meet Support Staff and Instructors who can answer questions and help with filling out application forms for any of the featured programs. Students are asked to bring their Social Insurance Number, official high school transcripts and proof of Indigenous Ancestry to help complete the applications.

This new award is the result of a one-year pilot agreement between RRC and Indspire with RRC’s School of Indigenous Education investing a net total of over $210,000 towards the award. In return Indspire will match the College’s contributions dollar-for-dollar through the Government of Canada’s matching funds, for a total of over $420,000 to support Indigenous learners.


The ACCESS programs provide learners with preparatory, exploratory and transitional experience, while the remaining three programs aim to grow Indigenous representation within these sectors. The culinary program for example, will provide courses aimed at developing fundamental culinary skills, knowledge and basic business skills. It will also include a cultural component and land based curriculum. The Indigenous Social Enterprise Diploma will focus on the principles of economic reconciliation and how this relates to the Canadian social economy. It will give students the tools they need to solve programs and address challenges in our urban and rural communities.


Indspire is a national Indigenous-led registered charity that invests in the education of Indigenous people for the long-term benefit of these individuals, their families and communities, and Canada. Indspire’s vision is to enrich Canada through Indigenous education and by inspiring achievement. In partnership with Indigenous, private and public sector stakeholders, Indspire educates, connects and invests in Indigenous people so they will achieve their highest potential.

Indspire is led by Indigenous people for Indigenous people. We serve First Nation, Inuit, and Métis students in remote communities, rural areas and urban centres across Canada. With the support of our funding partners, we disburse financial awards, deliver programs, and share resources with the goal of closing the gap in Indigenous education.

Learn more at

Red River College Portage Campus Recognized as Swift Champion

May 30, 2018

Red River College’s (RRC) Portage la Prairie Campus has a vacancy for some feathered friends.

For efforts in restoring an old chimney to create a hospitable habitat, RRC has been presented with the Swift Champion award from the Manitoba Chimney Swift Initiative (MCSI). Over the summer of 2017 two swifts were spotted using the chimney a number of times, indicating the restoration was a success.

“We’re honoured to accept the Swift Champion award and to continue our role in protecting the Chimney Swifts,” said Guy Moffat, Regional Campus Manager for the Portage Campus. “It’s been amazing to see the work our facilities team have put in to restoring the chimney, and to be able to witness the swifts flying in and out of their summer home. Part of RRC’s Strategic Plan includes fostering sustainable growth – not just for the College, but for the entire province. This is just one way we contribute to that.”

This Chimney Swift is a small brown bird, often described as a ‘cigar with wings’ that enjoy roosting and breeding in brick chimneys. The species has declined by a large amount in Canada since the 1970s and are now listed under both the Manitoban and Federal Government Species at Risk Acts.

When an MCSI volunteer noticed upgrades being made to the chimney, which sits atop the 100-year-old building, they notified RRC to bring awareness that it had been identified as a designated chimney swift habitat. That awareness resulted in a shift to the original repair plans, which would have closed off the chimney with a metal cap. Now the top part of the brick chimney remains intact, with an opening that allows Chimney Swifts to enter for roosting. The College’s efforts also ensure that toxic gases won’t collect in the nesting area.

“We’re proud to present Red River College with this award. The College is a very deserving recipient of this award thanks to the initiative taken to preserve the chimney and create a suitable habitat for the swifts,” said Tim Poole, Outreach Coordinator for MCSI. “It’s important for more organizations and individuals across the province to follow suite and recognize they can make an impact, either through the restoration of existing habitat, the building of new habitats or simply growing awareness.”

The College joins sites like the Merchant Hotel (Selkirk), The Parish Church (St. Jean-Baptiste), St. Avila School, Good News Fellowship Church and St. Ann’s Catholic Church (Winnipeg) in the effort to help the Swifts.

The MSCI has also erected swift towers in Starbuck, St. Adolphe, Portage la Prairie, and Winnipeg, including a new tower in Assiniboine Park Zoo, and has partnered with volunteers across the province in their monitoring and conservation efforts.

RRC will soon be adding signage that identifies the chimney as an endangered species habitat.

The Manitoba Chimney Swift Initiative (MCSI) is a volunteer-run arm of Nature Manitoba with a mandate to coordinate all volunteer monitoring, outreach and stewardship for this threatened species in Manitoba.

Province provides free online access to resources for professionals and students in early years fields

May 17, 2018

Living Textbooks will be Updated Regularly, Accessible Anywhere in Manitoba: Fielding

The province is providing free access for students and professionals across Manitoba to online learning resources on prenatal and child development, Families Minister Scott Fielding announced today. The Science of Early Child Development (SECD) includes regularly updated living textbooks and modules that offer current research and links to practice through a convenient online platform, accessible via computer, tablet and smartphone.

“We are making a first-of-its-kind investment in the early years fields in Manitoba to increase professional development opportunities, encourage independent study, strengthen the sectors that work with children and families, and improve the quality of services for Manitoba families,” Fielding announced at Red River College. “Living textbooks are a cost-effective way to continually expand knowledge, provide educational opportunities and relay the latest research for everyone involved in the early learning and child-care sector.”

The province will provide $365,000 to Red River College (RRC) through the Canada-Manitoba Early Learning and Child Care Agreement with the federal government to open up provincewide access for two living textbooks and three additional modules. This will eliminate the license fee currently required to register, which will benefit hundreds of students and teaching staff as well as early learning and child-care professionals, family child-care providers, teachers, public health staff, community organizations and any Manitobans interested in the impact of early experience on lifelong health and well-being. RRC will oversee the initiative and report to government on annual usage.

“The Government of Canada is very pleased that investments from the Canada–Manitoba early learning and child care bilateral agreement are being used to develop innovative projects such as the living textbook,” said Robert-Falcon Ouellette, member of Parliament for Winnipeg Centre. “Flexible access to quality training for educators and students is a major step forward in supporting a quality early learning environment for Manitoba’s children.”

RRC researched and developed the SECD initiative in partnership with the University of Toronto and the Aga Khan Development Network. These resources are currently used in other jurisdictions but this is the first time they are being made openly available in Manitoba. The site is updated regularly and includes readings, videos of children’s programs around the world, interviews with experts, links to reports and websites, reflection questions and interactive activities. The information supports courses in the Child Care Assistant and Early Childhood Educator training programs.

“Red River College is proud to be a leader in social innovation in Manitoba,” said Paul Vogt, president and CEO of RRC. “The SECD resource is a globally recognized, successful research and resource tool that is elevating the success of our early childhood educators within the classroom. We are pleased that this Manitoba-made, award-winning research and educational resource, created right here at Red River College by our knowledgeable staff and faculty, will now continue to provide all front-line child-care workers in the province with the tools, skills and training necessary to shape young minds and build a strong foundation for bright futures.”

Manitobans can access SECD at Available resources include the living textbook, Child Development Primer / Introduction au développement de l’enfant modules and Prenatal Development, geared to the public health sector.