SCWEA Award of Excellence
Every year the Award of Excellence is presented to the SCWEA member who has made the most outstanding contribution to the development and promotion of Career and Work Education in Saskatchewan. This year’s recipient, Bill Birns, has worked as a teacher for 21 years and as a Career Counsellor in the field of career development for 16 years. Bill made his debut in the world of career development teaching Career/Work Exploration courses to grade 10s at Robert Southey School. He advocated for the course to be mandatory for all grade 10 students in his school and worked diligently to find meaningful work placements for them.
Bill transitioned to an itinerant career counsellor in 2014 and has served in over ten schools in Prairie Valley School Division. Currently, Bill is the career counsellor at Greenall High School in Balgonie, engaging his students in various levels of career development. He is eager to help students, parents, and staff alike and is very knowledgeable about everything career-related. No task is too small or too big for Bill. If he does not know the answer he will find it. Bill’s favourite message to students is: “You all have futures!” Bill can often be heard telling students that he doesn’t want them living out of the backseat of their cars, eating cheese doodles. Bill artfully helps students research and explore what is possible for their futures!
Bill provides leadership in all facets of his work as a career counsellor. He leads a Community of Practice each year for the Career Education teachers and career counsellors in Prairie Valley. Bill recently served on the Secondary Practical and Applied Arts Curriculum Reference Committee with the Ministry of Education, revitalizing 40+ PAA curricula in a few short years. On the career team in Prairie Valley, Bill makes everyone’s lives more joyful. Bill shares his quick wit and humour, answers queries from other career counsellors, mentors new team members, and shares his coveted weekly career announcement document each Friday.
Bill is an extremely hard working career counsellor who genuinely cares about helping students plan for their futures, and promoting career development and exploration in Saskatchewan. Congratulations Bill!
SCWEA Recognition of Service Award
The SCWEA Recognition of Service Award is presented to a member who has made recent and present contributions in support of Career and Work Education in our province. This year, we are honoured to present the Recognition of Service Award to a long-time SCWEA member and Career Development Teacher for the Sun West School Division – Char Dansereau.
Char has a passion for career development and supports the life/career explorations of students as an Itinerant Career Development Teacher in 4 Sun West Schools. She serves students through her many roles as a Career Counsellor, Career Education Teacher, and Work-based Learning Facilitator.
Char is always looking for new ways to reach students, to show them the connections between what they learn in school and the paths before them. She is innovative, trying new activities and creating resources where she finds a lack. Her passion not only benefits the students and communities she works with, but every other career educator she crosses paths with. Char serves as a mentor. She is always willing to share what she finds, what she tries, and what she creates. She consistently reflects on her practices and guides the team through this process as well, sharing both her successes and challenges.
Char truly understands that “Career” encompasses all of one’s self. She is not afraid to be real with people about her own journey and to encourage you to learn from your own.
Char believes in the development of 21st century skills as an integral part of helping her students become future-ready. In relation to work-based learning courses, Char has built positive local partnerships to support real-world learning and skill development of her students. The relationships Char forms with the businesses and industries in her communities are an immense benefit to all. She is committed to finding placements for her students that help them reach their learning goals while also supporting local economies.
Char Dansereau is a true champion of career development within our province and is a deserving recipient of this Recognition of Service Award. Congratulations Char!
Friends of SCWEA Award 2021
The Friends of SCWEA Award is presented to non-educators who assist in the development and promotion of Career and Work Education in Saskatchewan. I would like to nominate DynaIndustrial for the 2021 Friends of SCWEA Award. DynaIndustrial is a fully integrated machining and Fabrication Company established in 1976 with offices in Regina, Saskatoon, and the United States. Although their business has global reach, they are very community focused and are always looking for ways to support young people. They have held a board position on the Regina District Industry Education Council since 2013 and are always open to taking on a work experience student through the Summer Apprenticeship or the Career Connections programs. They also generously provide bursaries every year to assist students to access the UR Accelerated program. Thank you to DynaIndustrial for all their support of Career and Work Education in Saskatchewan. You are making a real difference for students across Saskatchewan.