Health & Safety Programs
Jacques Champagne, CRSP
Safety and Training Coordinator
For over 37-years Jacques Champagne has worked in mining, first in zinc and copper mines, then on to a gold mine. He began his career as a production miner, advancing into a supervisor role, and then moving onto mid-management levels.
After he had completed a 2-year distance education diploma as a Mining Engineering Technician, his focus shifted: “that is when I made a move to training because I felt I could better serve the workers in this capacity,” he said. At the 34-year mark, he retired but discovered after on a few months that he was not ready to slow down. Currently, he is a Safety and Training Coordinator at a gold mine.
Jacques learned of the Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) offered at the University of Fredericton (UFred) when his new employer recommended the program.
This certificate has introduced me to many new techniques that I can practice on a daily basis that helped me evolve as a better Safety and Training Coordinator resulting in improved interactions with the workforce.
With prior experience in online learning, Jacques “was quite comfortable with this medium.” He was pleased with the learning format and the support he received at UFred:
“The way the course is set up makes it quite easy to follow, and the technical support team at UFred are the best. As for Student Services, I have nothing but the highest praise for them. Their professionalism is reflected in everything they do, and they exemplify the meaning of courtesy and efficiency. Although I have never had the opportunity to meet any of these remarkable individuals in person, I remain confident that I have made new friends, especially Krystal Edwards, the one that was assigned the monumental task of answering all my questions.”
After completing his course, Jacques decided the next natural step in his career progression was to obtain a Canadian Registered Safety Professional (CRSP) designation. Jacques applied and was accepted. He sought opportunities that would best prepare him for the exam:
“I had noticed that UFred offered practice exams for the CRSP designation…and I signed up. After a few months of studying and doing the practice exams, I am proud to say that I wrote and passed my CRSP exam on the first try. I can attest that those practice exams really helped me focus on my areas of weakness while studying and also prepared me to write such a lengthy exam (3.5 hours).”
Jacques is confident that the education he received with UFred has enhanced his work experience and he is happy to share, “I would not hesitate to recommend UFred to others, and I’m glad to report that I’ve already done so on numerous occasions,” he said.
Jacques Champagne, CRSP
UFred Alumnus/UFred Student
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP)
Occupational Safety Worker, WorkSafeBC
After establishing years of experience in the construction field, warehouse operations, and manufacturing, Leelond Wettstein had worked his way up to production supervisor. He had extensive training in lean manufacturing and served 5-years as the employer representative co-chair on the joint health and safety committee.
A workplace injury left Leelond with a partial disability from a torn ligament and damaged cartilage in his right wrist. After a couple of surgeries and a year to recover, Leelond knew that he would need to make a difficult decision regarding his future. To succeed, Leelond knew he needed a program designed to educate and challenge a professional with his experience:
I had a hard time deciding what I wanted to do with my life at 43 years old. The thought of starting over was defeating, but at the same time exciting. The University of Fredericton was appealing, because the ‘Applied Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes’ was offered as a 10-month comprehensive online-only course. The fact that I could do my schoolwork and study on my own schedule and at my own pace was invaluable.
Having been involved in physically active work environments for most of his life, Leelond had to overcome some challenges to online coursework:
“Studying online was tough at first because I was so used to being on the go. To sit down and focus on a computer screen for many hours a day was definitely a challenge. I quickly learned that I had to break up my day into segments to be successful. I would take an hour in the morning to hit the gym and get some exercise, which would allow my mind to focus on my studies.”
Leelond’s online study with UFred helped him develop the skills he needed to learn a new way to work and even helped him gain the knowledge and courage to apply for his current job with the organization that supported him through his regrowth:
“The program was extremely beneficial as it opened up a whole new world of opportunity for me. I applied for a position with WorkSafeBC as an Occupational Safety Officer…The fact that I was injured on the job, and now have a rewarding career as a prevention officer, meant that I could help prevent or reduce workplace injuries in the Province of BC.”
Leelond saw the most beneficial part of his studies as the real-life application with the guided practicum course: “The experience allowed me to apply the use of risk assessments and job hazard analysis. Also, a look at the company’s injuries, near misses, and causal factors revealed unknown hazards for the employer to take into consideration,” he says.
Leelond confidently recommends UFred’s CHSEP program for “anyone looking to further their education while having the flexibility of studying from anywhere at any time.”
Alumnus, University of Fredericton
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes
Shawn Landry suffered a workplace accident while working as a lineman. He turned his misfortune into motivation and enrolled in UFred’s Certificate in Health and Environmental Safety Processes (CHSEP) program.
Shawn says the CHSEP program was the perfect way to get back into academics and was very non-threatening, especially for somebody who has worked frontline for so long. He wants to make a change to how health and safety is communicated to everyone from frontline workers to supervisors and managers. He believes health and safety departments shouldn’t exist, that it should be everyone’s responsibility to know how to operate safely in a work environment.
As a result of his CHSEP education, Shawn is an OHS consultant in Smithers, B.C. He has since moved on to the Diploma in Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHEM) program, which he feels is more all-inclusive. He also has an active role on the Animal Planet TV show Wild Bear Rescue, a documentary-style series based on his family’s Northern Lights Wildlife Shelter in Smithers, B.C., where he is also the shelter’s OHS consultant.
Shawn hopes that in the future he can work in an OHS position that helps organizations minimize their impact on the environment while continuing his work at the wildlife shelter.
Emily Kerr was working as a steel fabricator when, in the second year of her apprenticeship, she was involved in a workplace accident that rendered her unable to continue her career. This affected not only her career in fabrication, but also in dairy farming, where she had spent many years working.
But Emily kept a positive attitude.
“An accident that I thought crippled me ended up changing my life in the best way possible,” she said.
At the time, Emily was in her early 20s and at a crossroads. While she loved working in a trade, she knew she had to switch careers. While trying to figure out what to do next, she became interested in the field of health and safety. She did some research and found the University of Fredericton’s (UFred) Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP). She decided to register for the program and pursue a career in Occupational Health and Safety (OHS).
Emily found the material interesting and relevant, and much of the course material correlated to real-life working environments.
Emily now works for AgSafeBC, a non-profit health and safety association that serves farms and ranches throughout the province.
In the future, Emily intends to take the Diploma in Safety, Health, and Environmental Management program through UFred and then attaining her Certified Registered Safety Professional designation.
Melanie Powers, CHSEP, HSA
Discovering her Passion
Born and raised in Minto, a small coal mining community in rural New Brunswick, Melanie Powers is familiar with competition and job challenges. Her first big leap was a move to the nearby city of Fredericton to attend college. She enrolled in a local community college to take a French course, and then a Graphics Design course. After she graduated, she traveled, and her adventures led her to change her educational focus and assume a new and exciting career path in occupational health and safety.
Melanie’s passion for health and safety began while working on the small eastern Caribbean Island of Canouan in 2007. She was part of an airport expansion project for an international construction company, and it pained her deeply to see the local workers needlessly getting hurt for lack of basic health and safety education and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). She was left with a strong desire to help, but not the expertise.
The UFred Impact
Melanie began to research the possibilities for health and safety education and, after talking to alumni and doing personal research, Melanie decided on the University of Fredericton. The online format allowed her to manage her children, her education, and career all while completing the Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) in one year.
Melanie found that her training at UFred gave her a sense of confidence and the ability to be competitive in New Brunswick, where health and safety skills are in high-demand. She felt a sense of reassurance that the University of Fredericton is so near to her hometown, and as a self-described “smother and helicopter mom,” Melanie knew that she had an aptitude for seeing potential risks before they caused harm. UFred’s flexible online Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) program was the best choice to fit her ambitions and her busy life.
For her guided practicum, Melanie wrote a safety manual for a drilling and blasting company. This exercise allowed her the confidence needed to begin a new career in drilling and blasting. Her contract work with C&E Refractories and Reftech, where she states 90% of everything they do is high-hazard and high-risk, is providing the experience she will need to reach her future goals.
Making a Difference with her OHS Training
Going forward, Melanie hopes to achieve her CRSP designation. She will remain in Canada at first, but eventually, she hopes to return to the Caribbean. “My heart belongs in the Caribbean,” she says, “It’s a great place to live, and a great place to retire.”
Melanie’s UFred occupational health and safety education, combined with her working experience, have allowed her the opportunity to pursue her future goals. She hopes to significantly enhance the on-the-job conditions of workers first here in Canada, and then abroad. She is also confident that, no matter where in the world she is, UFred will be there for her continuing education needs.
Please note: Melanie’s testimonial is part of the larger campaign ‘UFred10’. To learn more about UFred10, click here.
EHS Lead Manager Canada, AFL
Health & Safety Beginnings, Trial by Fire
After 10-years in the Canadian forces as a firefighter, Steve Hall retired and made a move into the oil and gas sector as a civilian. He took a job at a safety company as a firefighter, but this did not go as planned:
“So, I showed up at the company, and they had no fire jobs, so, they said, ‘We have a safety job open today. Here’s a truck and here’s a map if you want to work, go ahead.’ So, I said, ‘sure, I just want to work,’ and I ended up on a sour site, and I was the safety guy, and I knew nothing about health and safety.”
With so much to learn, it can be difficult to break into the health and safety field. Steve recalled his first night shift while working for a security company:
“I remember the first day I (worked) night shift, and I was at the front entrance of the site. A consultant came up to me and said, ‘I’ve fired 19-guys in 19-days from your organization; however, I’ve been watching you tonight, and I like how you operate. I would like to keep you.’ I said, ‘Well, that’s good because I’d like to have a job as well.’ It was definitely ‘trial by fire,’ but I learned very quickly that safety is not a position that you’ll ever know 100%. It’s just a constant learning type of profession.”
Over the next few years, he moved through a few different safety companies, helped in different positions, and progressed quickly. He developed a wealth of experience in all sorts of safety roles. “I’ve done pretty much every aspect of safety, food safety even, a lot of ergonomics, oil, and gas, new construction, and drilling completions,” Steve said.
The UFred Impact
Pursuing his formal education, Steve quickly realized how much he did not know. “You need to be constantly educating yourself, or you’re never going to go anywhere.” Steve knew he would need the type of education that would provide immediate benefit and not require that he leave his job. He looked to UFred to help him to gain the credentials he needed to be successful in his chosen path; he knew experience alone would not suffice:
I’m a big proponent of experience; experience is huge. However, you need that academic training behind you. I believe it was the day after I was taking certain modules with UFred, I was applying that knowledge. I found it useful right away, not like a bachelor degree where you would use it in practice later on. 100% of the material, I was applying right away. So, it was probably one of the best formal education courses I’ve received.
A traditional classroom would have been a poor fit for Steve. He needed a flexible and innovative health and safety program:
“I am proud to be part of a progressive organization. All too often, these formal academic institutions are very slow to change. They are very bricks and mortar focused, and they’re behind by dozens of years with adult education. Adult learners are all over the globe, most executives travel constantly, and there are all these factors that prohibit us from attending their institutions. It’s great to have an institution that’s progressive, leading the market in health and safety education.”
Steve has been impressed with the user-friendly platform offered by UFred for his courses, and the system seems prepared to handle the special needs of professionals on the move:
“I was very hesitant at first about doing education online, due to technical issues. That user-friendly capability – I’ve attended classes in between flights at the airport, at hotels, you name it. I’ve streamed from my phone on the side of the road, and I’ve never had an IT issue. The platform is extremely easy to use.”
Bridging to Continued Education
In early 2015, Steve acquired an EHS Manager position with AFL. Fairly quickly, he moved into a national role, and now, he has international responsibilities. Around the same time, he took the next step in his educational path and started the Executive MBA degree program at the Sandermoen School of Business:
“I used the certificate to springboard into the EMBA. As I went through the training, I realized, ‘wow, this is extremely beneficial, so what will the next level look like?’ I find I’m now in a corporate position and I’m dealing with business leaders that all have MBAs or 20/30 years of business experience. So, I wasn’t talking the same language. That’s why I looked at an MBA.”
The best part for Steve was that he could combine learning about business with courses designed specifically for his skill set, by enrolling in the Executive MBA with a specialty stream in Health and Safety Leadership. “Everything you are doing is related to your current position in health and safety. You’re instantly able to apply that knowledge. You can learn it, and it was relevant, almost immediately,” he said, and added, “dealing with Economics, Finance, and the time value of money, those aren’t easy concepts to wrap your head around when you’re solely focused on health and safety. Wow! I’ve really stepped up my game now.”
Please note: Steve’s testimonial is part of the larger campaign ‘UFred10’. To learn more about UFred10, click here.
I have worked in the auto industry for the past 34 years and decided to prepare for a new career three or four years ago. I have always had an interest in health and safety and had some experience as a health & safety representative for a few years. The experience I had gained was helpful and influenced my decision to explore the OHS field further. As stated, my experience assisted me in my career path, but in no way was it a prerequisite nor an advantage.
The Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) program is delivered in a much more comprehensive way than anything I have ever been exposed to. Each course stands on its own as an essential part within the occupational health & safety field. I completed both the Level One and Level Two programs and armed with this knowledge, I have successfully started my own health & safety consulting business two years ago. I am convinced that I would not have had the confidence, or the knowledge to attempt this without the CHSEP. I also compared my pre CHSEP and post CHSEP inquiries that I had concerning employment in the OHS field. I can say with complete honesty that after completion of the CHSEP the opportunities were tenfold of those before my completion. CHSEP is a respected and valued certificate. I cannot speak for your region, but when I was testing the market for job opportunities, they came from every sector and province in Canada. I only tested the Canadian market, and within Canada there is an abundance of opportunities within the OHS field.
In conclusion, for me, the Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes program was a rewarding and beneficial venture. The program is straightforward and painless. The instructors are knowledgeable and very understanding to the needs of adult learners. Learners can register and begin at any time, and set their own study schedules based on your own personal schedule. During my enrollment, I had some personal issues with a family illness. The University and Don Sayers & Associates were extremely understanding and accommodating:
Their priority was always in my best interest in the learning process and achieving my goals.
CHSEP was the first on-line program I have ever attempted and I was a bit nervous when I first started. As I mentioned, you set up your own learning schedule. I dedicated myself to four hours a week, but there were weeks where adjustments were required, and the program allows for these variations. This self-discipline was a learning experience in itself and taught me to manage my time and needs.
UFred Alumnus/UFred Student
Diploma in Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHEM)
Brian R. Sumbot
Safety Supervisor, Northern Energy Resource Planning
I have been in the upstream oil & gas industry since the early 1970’s. As a rig hand and service technician during the first 15 years of my career, HSE implantation has personally played a big role in my successes. Since graduating from SAIT Petroleum Engineering Technology in 1992, I have been in management in the field. In this capacity I have been responsible personnel, habitat, and equipment while representing numerous oil & gas operators with in Canada and Internationally. In this capacity I have been responsible for implementing site specific HSE practices in accordance with corporate and regulatory standards. I have therefore focused on understanding what works best to manage people and influence them to champion safe working habits to avoid injury to personnel, damage to the environment, and loss of valuable equipment.
While I am still at the beginning of the Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes program, I have found it to be very applicable to my daily tasks in the field and it has assisted me in applying my HSE concerns in a manner that influences personnel from the board room to the field to adopt practices that make HSE a normal way of doing business.
Indeed, I see this course as a living tool that will arm me with the ability to embrace positive change for a more effective, efficient, and safe manner to conduct oil & gas operations to the end of my career.
Brian R. Sumbot
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP)
Kerim (Kerry) Alemdar
Health & Safety Training Manager, NS & NB Operations, The Municipal Group of Companies
I believe one of the most important aspects of the CHSEP program was the focus on the advanced process skills required to be a successful OH&S professional, rather than simply focusing on the regulatory, compliance and technical aspects of OH&S. The program offered a wide range of in-depth subjects which allowed me to expand my knowledge of OH&S and enhance my critical thinking skills. Often, it can be tempting to simply identify from a set of regulations, the bare minimum needed “to be legal” and then say, “We’ll deal with problems if/when they arise.”
Also, many aspects of financial health in the construction industry are tied to meeting deadlines, producing at high levels and minimizing costs. Progressing through the curriculum and researching and completing the Guided Practicum gave me an invaluable (for me and my place of employment) understanding of the cost-effectiveness of OH&S for an organization’s bottom line – a truly essential concept when communicating with management regards the importance taking a proactive approach to OH&S and gaining their support for new initiatives. During the completion of the CHSEP, and Practicum in particular, one statement seemed to stand out from the course-content – “It is not enough to speak the language of management. Effective interaction now demands that one is able to think like management.” Acquiring this skill will help in keeping with the ideal of continuous improvement of any OH&S program as it will always be necessary to have support from management – if management cannot see the financial benefit, they might look at it as, “a nice idea, but an unnecessary cost to be avoided.” One must be able to anticipate questions/doubts from management and have as many answers and supporting information as possible regards the costs/rewards when approaching management about improving the program.
CHSEP also helped to reinforce and expand on such concepts as:
- Involving workers in assessment and management of risks and hazards – not just to draw on their experience/knowledge of the work area/processes, but also to give them a sense of empowerment (a feeling that they too have an important role to play in OH&S). Workers will be more active, even interested in OH&S rather than thinking of it as just another task to slow down their work.
- Creating and maintaining a working environment where these employee-skills are consistently expected and appropriately rewarded.
- Identifying, prioritizing and managing risks to prevent losses (proactive) is more cost-effective than administering losses (reactive).
- “Systems-failure” models of accident causation are more progressive and yield more valuable insight regards the causes of incidents/accidents than looking to “assign blame” (fact-finding, not fault-finding).
- Providing a better appreciation for the variables in the lives of workers and at the workplace that can affect a worker’s wellness, for better or for worse, and being able to manage their impact – whether the source is at home or the workplace, worker-stress usually decreases productivity and can cause distractions and lead to poor decision-making.
- And just a general reminder that if a OH&S professional is continually performing crisis-management, or is “putting out a different fire every day”, then there may be some underlying issues with the OH&S program, and that the OH&S professional may begin to experience prolonged periods of stress and could also be adversely affected themselves.
While various provincial training programs and designations for OH&S certifications may vary from one jurisdiction to the next, they would all seem to have at least one thing in common; they all seem to focus on being able to correctly interpret, apply and enforce various rules, regulations and codes of practice. While these types of activities are of course an integral part of any OH&S program, they are not the “end-all and be-all” of OH&S. The CHSEP develops and hones invaluable critical-thinking skills and provides the learner with a full toolbox of process skills that can be applied in any industry or jurisdiction, which is more and more important in a world whose economy and workforce is becoming more and more globalized.
I would again like to express my extreme satisfaction with the entire CHSEP experience, and:
I am already giving consideration to enrolling in UFRED’s new Professional Diploma program.
Kerim (Kerry) Alemdar
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP)
Purchasing Administrator, De Beers Canada Victor Mine
A long-term employee of De Beers Canada Victor Mine, Carole Charbonneau began an extended sabbatical in June 2013 to accompany her fiancé, a Senior Mining Manager at the biggest and richest diamond mine in the world, to Botswana, Africa. They have a blended family; 2-teens each from previous relationships, and made a tough decision in the interest of the kids to leave them behind to complete their schooling.
Since leaving for Africa, she has dedicated her time to pursuing the Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) and the Diploma in Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHEM) online through the University of Fredericton.
Despite the distance, Carole chose the convenience of online studies here in Canada: “What drew me to the University of Fredericton is the reputation, the amazing service, and its quality of the online programs it offers”, she states, “…the whole set up of the online program was just amazing. We need more of that around the country.”
While on sabbatical, Carole is not working in the field but has found practical applications of her studies in other areas of her life:
“Personally, I have benefitted by all the knowledge, and I implement a lot of the safety measures at home,” she states. She knows that she will return to her job one day, and her online education has helped her prepare. “It made me feel more confident that I have lots of capability to bring to my work,” she said.
Carole commented that her interactions with staff and faculty from the School of Applied Occupational Health Specialties (SAOHS) exceeded her expectations, “… they were professional, timely, and always tried to help me.”
She was also most impressed with the superb and easy to understand delivery of course material by the expert instructors at UFred.
“I am extremely confident in recommending UFred to others as it has top notch education, programs, instructors, reputation, student services, technology, and is well recognized.”
Diploma in Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHEM)/
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP)
Senior Safety Coordinator, Porcupine Gold Mines – Goldcorp
A Senior Safety Coordinator with over 30-years of experience in the mining industry, Paul knows how to work hard. “I started as a labourer, worked up to mid-management with development, construction, maintenance, production, and capital development before joining the Safety, Security, and Training team.”
Not one to back down from a challenge, Paul left an operational role to transition to the safety department. He quickly found he needed to update his skills. “I chose to study at UFred as part of my development in my current role”, Paul said. He completed the Certificate in Health, Safety, and Environmental Processes (CHSEP) and recently enrolled in the Diploma in Safety, Health, and Environmental Management (SHEM).
The ability to complete his programs at an accelerated rate has given Paul an element of challenge that he enjoys while helping him gain the knowledge he needs to be successful in his role, stating:
It has kept me capable of functioning strategically at a corporate and regional level without feeling disorientated.
He found one of the most relevant takeaways from the program to be the reinforcing of the concept that risk assessment should be ongoing. Paul says he now actively things to ““Stop and ask yourself, ‘What risk is involved in what I am doing?’”
Paul recommends UFred without hesitation and adds that his whole department has joined him in advocating the OHS programs at UFred. What he says of his interactions with UFred staff: “Nothing short of excellent.”
UFred Alumnus/Current Student
Certificate in Health, Safety and Environmental Processes (CHSEP)/
Diploma in Safety, Health and Environmental Management (SHEM)
Disability Management Programs
Case Manager, Great West Life
Tegan Culley has a Bachelor of Science in Biological Sciences supplemented by courses in sports medicine and physiology. Temporary jobs she held while she studied helped her gain a wealth of diverse experience. One such job, a physiotherapy assistant at a military veteran long-term care facility, led her to discover her passion for the field of disability management.
Tegan’s well-rounded experience helped her to achieve her current role as a Disability Case Manager at Great West Life. She knew wanted to enhance her knowledge with specialized disability management training, however, she did not want to choose between her employment and education. That is when she found the Diploma in Integrated Disability Management at the University of Fredericton:
“The program has been beneficial to me professionally as the content relates directly to the practicalities of my employment and also has helped me to maintain the disciplines and resiliency of university level studies.”
She realized real value in her interactions with classmates, who also shared her passion for disability management. “My favorite part of my experience at UFred has been connecting with other knowledgeable professionals and obtaining practical knowledge for my career,” she said.
She felt confident studying under the expert, and innovative guidance of UFred instructor, Dianne Dyck:
The most beneficial part of my experience at UFred was learning from my very experienced instructor who presented the course material in a very interesting and relatable way to my area of interest.
Tegan is certain that the education she received from UFred will add to her career success, and she is confident to recommend the Diploma in Integrated Disability Management to others looking for a highly-specialized disability management program:
“It has provided me with a great learning experience and very practical knowledge which will help me to advance in my career.”
Tegan is an excellent example of the type of student for whom this program was designed.
Current Student, Diploma in Integrated Disability Management
Disability Management Advisor
Industry Leading Disability Management Education
Shortly after she accepted the position of Disability Management Advisor with the federal government, Mandy Abrahamsen learned that there was a change in the educational requirements for the post. Years had passed since the 25-year veteran of public service had attended formal post-secondary education and she was apprehensive. Although, she had remained active and engaged, attending training courses that were offered by the federal government, she had not completed other formalized learning.
Her primary responsibilities included managing employee disabilities or absences in the workplace due to illness or injury. She knew she would require a program that would provide industry-leading Disability Management education, and that would not require that she take a leave of absence from her job. This ultimately led her to the online Certificate in Integrated Disability Management (CIDM) at the University of Fredericton.
The UFred Impact
Mandy began her Certificate in Integrated Disability Management (CIDM) in mid-2015. Upon completion, she met the criteria for education in her new position, but she didn’t stop there: “I had such a positive experience attending UFred, I decided I was going to continue with further studies by obtaining a Diploma in Integrated Disability Management (DIDM),” she said.
Mandy found great value in the relationships she had developed and has maintained with her classmates. She remarked, “I’m so proud to be part of a team that demonstrates utmost professionalism in the work that they do.” Also, “the instructors, they deliver course material in such a professional manner, and they demonstrate that they have a good sound knowledge of the material that they are presenting and teaching,” she said.
Continued Post-Secondary Learning
Her education at UFred has given Mandy that extra boost of confidence she needed to be successful:
“It’s improved my communication skills when I engage with employees both verbally and in writing, and most of all it has announced my knowledge in the field of Disability Management, allowing me to feel confident in my role as a Disability Management Advisor.”
Mandy is applying the knowledge and information she is receiving from her current course of study, the Diploma in Integrated Disability Management (DIDM), to her role. “On a daily basis, I apply the concept and the information I’ve learned by attending the courses,” she said. Looking ahead, she may one day wish to complete a degree in Disability Management and remarked:
“If in the future I wish to continue my post-secondary education through distance learning and online, my first choice would be UFred because my experience has been extremely positive, and I would not have the sound knowledge I do today without UFred.”
Please note: Mandy’s testimonial is part of the larger campaign ‘UFred10’. To learn more about UFred10, click here.
Human Resources Professional
Sheryl Brown has amassed experience in accounting and office management while working in the service and wood products manufacturing sectors across Western Canada. Over the last 10-years, her primary focus has been Human Resources.
In her tenure working in Human Resources, Sheryl found she needed to perform disability management coordination tasks. She came to a realization that she was “lacking the required knowledge and competency to be useful…” in her organization. She had previously put her post-secondary education on hold to focus on her family and after some research and receiving a strong recommendation, Sheryl decided to resume her studies with UFred:
I completed a review and search of educational options and found the University of Fredericton to be the best method. My former immediate supervisor was a recent MBA grad and highly recommended UFred.
Sheryl credits her new level of confidence with her current studies in the Diploma in Integrated Disability Management program at UFred:
“The newly gained knowledge and past work experience will greatly enhance my ability to support my future employment opportunities as a partner in meeting the business needs in an evolving landscape.”
She was pleasantly surprised with the learning style and how quickly she could practice her new skills, “The instructors bring real world experience combined with academic rigor that can be applied immediately,” she said, “the most challenging aspect was learning to think critically.”
Sheryl is quick to recommend UFred, and has plans to continue her education here:
“I have tried other learning methods. The UFred site is easy to navigate, simple to use, and offers a very supportive learning environment. I would recommend anyone seeking to further their education, that they choose UFred. My diploma should be completed by June 2016. I am considering UFred to pursue and complete my degree.”
Diploma in Disability Management
Occupational Health Nurse
An extensive career in the Fitness world, including bodybuilding competitions and a successful Personal Training side-business, has formed the basis of an interest in health for mother of four, Louise Gerber. After completing nursing school, Louise began working in the field right away. She describes Occupational Health as her “true passion.”
Louise had a desire to excel in her career. After personally exploring her aptitudes, life experience, and goals, she realized what she wanted to do. “I have my ups and downs in life with my own health issues and know the value that a supportive, caring employer has when your health fails,” she said. She began researching opportunities to help her develop her skills, and she discovered the University of Fredericton (UFred).
“I came to UFred because of their amazing occupational health school. There was no other school that could match what they were offering in the capacity that I needed.”
Embarking on the Diploma in Integrated disability management has allowed Louise to build on her existing knowledge and experience by teaching her to take an active, informed part in ensuring healthy and safe workplaces:
“The program has benefited me professionally as it closed gaps [in my knowledge] and has allowed me to put into practice what I’ve learned, which has supported and enhanced what I already knew. It has reiterated the need to help people and make sure that employees and companies have the best of all that a Disability Management program can offer.”
Louise was pleased to find that the staff and faculty at UFred treated her as an individual, and as a traditional student, even in an online setting:
“Right out of the gate UFred Student Services was amazing. Highly supportive. It’s great that we have ONE person dedicated to us and our life at UFred. The interactive base of the classes is a new and exciting experience. I’ve had to take online courses before and the format, how the content is delivered, and the ease of use is all a plus in making the experience a good one.”
Louise has amassed an impressive level of experience working with some Fortune 500 companies in various manufacturing settings:
“I have done Disability Case Management, Collaborated with the Occupational Health Physician (OHP), guided team members in areas of Return to Work, Audits, Health and Safety Issues, Risk Management, and Cost Management. I have also been a part of the EH&S team that participated in the WSIB Workwell Audit. I am a Certified Audio Technician and Pulmonary Function Technician. I have been able to create policies, programs, and create health and safety initiatives.”
Louise is quick to recommend UFred’s Disability Management programs as beneficial to all her “nursing pals and coworkers in the industry,” and also adds,
What the school offers isn’t just for us Nurses, it’s for all OH&S personnel.
Current Student, School of Occupational Health and Safety
Diploma in Integrated Disability Management