Shauna Smalldon discovered the certificate program in Change Management as she was flipping though the Continuing Education course guide, and thought, "I am going to do this!"
The timing couldn't have been better. She has since graduated with her certificate and is applying her new learning in her work on a daily basis. She completed the program in one and a half years.
"I started the program thinking it would help me manage some of the minor changes in our department," she says.
"But little did I know that two years down the road my department would be undergoing a significant re-organization ... so a lot of the information I need now is familiar to me already, thanks to my continuing education courses."
The courses in this 200-hour program can be taken online or in-class, evenings or weekends, at the UCalgary Downtown Campus.
"I have a high-pressure job and usually work 10-hour days, so rushing to class after work wasn't ideal for me," says Shauna. "I preferred taking the Saturday and block courses."
Shauna says she was pleased with the quality of instruction in all of her courses and especially appreciated her "instructors' genuine willingness to answer questions, even after a class was over."
Seeing herself as one of the more mature students in the classroom posed a challenge for Shauna at first. However, her confidence quickly increased. She surprised herself by taking the lead on a group assignment that wasn't coming together.
"I've always known I could step up when I need to and I did. And we got an A on that project."
Gaining confidence and new knowledge weren't Shauna's only rewards for taking courses. She explained how her husband had always offered their kids $20 for every 'A' they earned in high school. "So," she says. "When I got my first 'A' in this program, I put my hand out and he paid me too!"