OALA AGM 2013 in Ottawa, Ontario

Published On: 24 September 2013

Events

The culture of our firm is built on a team commitment to personal and professional growth through pursuit of continuous learning. We pride ourselves on actively maintaining awareness of the latest trends, innovations and techniques within the development and environmental industries. This mandate has kept me engaged and inspired for the present and future potential of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design and I strongly believe that all professionals can benefit from a similar adaptive approach to their professional selves.

The culture of our firm is built on a team commitment to personal and professional growth through pursuit of continuous learning. We pride ourselves on actively maintaining awareness of the latest trends, innovations and techniques within the development and environmental industries. This mandate has kept me engaged and inspired for the present and future potential of Landscape Architecture and Urban Design and I strongly believe that all professionals can benefit from a similar adaptive approach to their professional selves.

When (in 2011) the Ontario Association of Landscape Architects (OALA) issued a call for volunteers to participate on a task force to research the implications of, and provide a recommendation on implementation of a mandatory continuing education program for our association; I decided to jump onboard. One year of research and discussion lead to a Member’s vote in favour of implementing a mandatory program and my involvement on this issue continued on as the Chair of the then formed Mandatory Continuing Education Transition Committee (MCETC).

Over the past two years I have had the wonderful experience of participating as Chair of the MCETC in developing a mandatory continuing education (MCE) program specifically suited to the diverse professional practice areas of the OALA Membership. MCE Program development is now well under way, guided by investigations into successful precedent programs of ASLA Chapters and allied professions, and extensive input from the OALA Membership.

My role with the MCETC will continue until full program implementation beginning in 2015, with potential for ongoing involvement beyond that time. Participation in this Endeavour has been an enriching experience that, in itself has contributed immeasurably to my personal and professional development. I have had the good fortune to work with a wonderful team of volunteer OALA Members on program development and refinement; who bring a diversity of insight and direction of thought to our discussions each month.

At this year’s OALA 45th Annual General Meeting and Conference in Ottawa, on behalf of the MCETC I presented a working, draft version of the MCE Program to the Membership. Feedback on the program has been overwhelmingly positive with Members expressing excitement to begin acquiring credits and recognition for the activities that they are already completing of their own accord.

This has been an overwhelmingly positive experience for me, and I would like to encourage all professionals in our industry to please get involved with your professional associations in some way that is meaningful and important to you. Reinforcement and growth in the credibility of our professions is something that can only be achieved through Member awareness, effort and involvement.