University of Windsor Alumni Magazine

Continue to Learn. Continue to Lead. Continue to Grow. Continue at UWindsor.

Jennie Atkins, Continuing Education Executive Director

Continuing Education is UWindsor’s newest initiative – one with seemingly limitless potential for students, alumni and the community-at-large.

The program was borne of the need to provide flexible programming beyond existing academic degrees, and provides life-long learning opportunities to facilitate personal, professional and community growth.

By partnering with industry leaders and faculty experts, Continuing Education offers an array of personal interest workshops, certificates and professional certification, as well as skill-building courses presented in a variety of formats – including online, in-class, evenings, and on weekends. And while the concept is not an entirely new one, it is already proving to be a popular one here in Windsor-Essex. 

Officially launched earlier this year, Continuing Education has had a busy few months building the beginnings of a solid portfolio and implementing the necessary infrastructure to support it.

“It has been a whirlwind of growth and creating exciting opportunities and partnerships.” says Jennie Atkins, Continuing Education Executive Director.

“We have used this time to evaluate potential programming that truly meets the needs of our stakeholders and serves our community in terms of employment and skills development, while balancing individual and special interests.” 

She says this balance is evident in the current list of offerings, ranging from the Siemens Mechatronic Systems Certification – a highly technical global certification, to the more relaxed Introduction to Acrylics offered at the School of Creative Arts. 

Other fall offerings include the much-anticipated Project Management Certificate; a second session of the popular Mandarin 101 slated for the new year; and custom-tailored corporate training workshops in leadership and management developed specifically for local organizations. 

Reflecting on the start-up process, Atkins is enthusiastic about the entrepreneurial nature of the team’s progress.

“It has been a truly collective effort with a tremendous amount of support from our campus partners, particularly in the implementation of our new online enrolment management platform.” 

She says the new system is a dynamic, user-friendly portal designed to address the specific needs of non-traditional education. 

The system provides an Amazon-like online shopping experience that has been successfully used by such institutions as UCLA Extension, UC Berkley Extension, McGill, University of Calgary, U of T and Western.

“This marks a considerable investment by the University into the continuing education space and provides an important opportunity to develop and offer programs vital to the prosperity of the Windsor-Essex region,” says Jeff Berryman, Associate Vice-President Academic.

Previous Continuing Education students have said the program is a convenient and cost-effective way to improve skills and stay current at a career level. 

Atkins says UWindsor is taking an active lead in supporting the development of a professionally trained and skilled workforce. She says everyone – no matter where they are in their career – can benefit from the many choices offered through Continuing Education.

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