I am sharing an update on the Strategic Plan deliverable I’m leading with our Agile Learning teams supporting BCIT’s commitment to delivering future-proof applied education with a focus on Agile microcredential development and prior learning assessment and recognition (PLAR). I should mention, that in the context of our Strategic Plan and department name, Agile refers to being quick, responsive, and adaptable to industry and learner needs.
Microcredential course and program offerings
Our Agile and Work Integrated Learning (WIL) department is working with program areas within all Schools to expand microcredential course and program offerings and expanded entry and educational pathways for applicants with non-traditionally recognised prior learning.
The Academic Grant Writing department has joined the Agile and WIL department to expand funding opportunities for microcredentialed programs. Through our partnership with Canadian Colleges for Resilient Recovery, we have achieved great success, securing full funding for 10 microcredentialed programs. These programs support reskilling and upskilling for low carbon economy jobs, providing students with free courses and access to paid support services.
Many of our approved BCIT microcredential courses/programs fall under this initiative, resulting in increased digital badge awards. In just seven months, we awarded our 2000th badge, a remarkable accomplishment compared to the two years it took to reach the 1000th badge milestone. Moreover, the BC Ministry of Post Secondary and Future Skills has announced the StrongerBC future skills grant, offering up to $3,500 per British Columbian for training.
As part of the Future Ready Action Plan, a new initiative called TradeUpBC will bring institutions across the province together to help provide tradespeople with the post-secondary training they need to further their skills. TradeUpBC is spearheaded by BCIT under the Agile and WIL department. As the first phase of the program development, BCIT has launched a webpage with short-term skill development offerings, including microcredentials, eligible under Future Skills and Canadian Colleges for Resilient Recovery (C2R2).
In reference to the information provided in the TradeUpBC website:
- All of the initial offerings you see listed on the website are currently fully funded by Future Skills and Canadian Colleges for Resilient Recovery; however, TradeUpBC is a marketing platform identifying pathways for tradespeople to advance their careers, full tuition is not provided by TradeUpBC and offerings do not need to be fully funded.
- As part of our 3-year delivery agreement with the Ministry of Post Secondary and Future Skills, we are configuring and launching an external website with a listing of offerings from institutions across BC by January 2024.
- Karime Kuri, PLAR Coordinator, will be coordinating the TradeUpBC Initiative. Please reach out if your area offers an Associate Certificate or smaller program/course that would benefit tradespeople in any or all of the sectors indicated on the website.
As a tradesperson myself, I am super excited to be part of this project. This resource will provide clear and achievable pathways for tradespeople to advance their careers. Please reach out to Karime Kuri or myself to come and discuss TradeUpBC with you and your department.
Our expanded funding opportunities, successful partnerships, and increased digital badge awards demonstrate our commitment to delivering future-proof applied education. Through TradeUpBC, we are dedicated to providing clear pathways for tradespeople to advance their careers.
Associate Dean, Agile and Work Integrated Learning
Commitment: Future-proof applied education
Initiative: Interdisciplinary and integrative learning
Deliverable: Agile Microcredential development, prior learning assessment and recognition (PLAR)
Deliverable lead: Eric Fry, Associate Dean, Agile and Work Integrated Learning