In response to the ever-increasing demand for international education, Red River College has launched a new pilot program to provide staff with the tools and intercultural skills required to teach students from around the world.
“We’re truly a global college now,” says Eddy Lau, acting director of International Education at RRC. “We’re attracting more international learners every year, and our classrooms continue to become more diverse. As the College evolves, we have a responsibility to make sure our staff are prepared and have the right tools to facilitate learning for our international students.”
Launched over the summer, RRC’s new International Educator Certificate program helps instructors and staff develop their skills through a blend of workshops, practicums and online modules.
“We didn’t want to merely develop a seminar to help educators who are teaching international students,” says project manager Claudius Soodeen. “We wanted to create a program that would over time become a model in post-secondary education across Canada.”
The program was delivered in partnership with Niagara College, who signed on last fall after learning about it at the Canadian Bureau for International Education Conference.
Phase Two is set to begin shortly, offering front-line staff the skills and experience to meet the programming and educational needs of international students. Upon successful completion, the program will be made available to all interested staff at RRC.
“Our long-term goal is to have the capacity to make both courses available to all post-secondary institutions across Canada — and with a blended approach to the delivery, I believe that it’s very achievable,” says Soodeen.
Currently, 16 per cent of RRC students are immigrant and international learners. The College’s international student enrolment increases by 20 per cent each year.