Graduation Ceremony Workplace Essential Skills

Stephanie Kelley
Workplace Essential Skills (WES) training is aimed at helping adults who are employed or are seeking employment and who require additional essential skills in order to succeed. Courses are offered free of charge for adult residents of New Brunswick, and a class of 11 students have just graduated and received their diplomas in Perth-Andover.

The students enrolled in this course attended the classes five days a week, Monday through Friday, for 10 weeks.

Workplace essential skills are the foundational skills necessary for success in any job, and focus on 9 essential work skills including reading, writing, document use, numeracy, oral communication, working with others, thinking skills, computer use and continuous learning.

The classes were held in the canteen at the River Valley Civic Centre, and the graduation ceremony was in full swing as I popped in to take photos.

The room was filled with friends and family who’d come to celebrate the graduates’ accomplishments.
Before each student received their real diploma, they also got recognition for the unique contributions they had made to the group, and how they’d helped to inspire their fellow students.

These special and fun awards were presented to celebrate:

  • To the student with the most Perseverance
  • To the Philosopher who constantly challenged the group with insightful ideas and questions
  • The Spiffy Award to recognize the positive outward transformation that mirrored inner transformation
  • Overcoming Cyber Phobia! An award to the student who came terrified of computers and overcame her fear
  • Most Improved Confidence Award
  • Positive Attitude Award, for seeing the silver lining in every situation
  • Most Motivated Award
  • Taking Initiative Award, for the student who came truly motivated to make life better for himself and his family
  • Commitment Award, for sticking with it!
  • Risk Taker Award
  • Continuous Learning Award

Taking steps out of their comfort zone is, for many people, the most challenging part of seeking education or new employment opportunities. It can be so scary that many people stay stuck in a rut. But, we only grow by stepping out of our comfort zones!

WES classes and instructors work together to improve various skills so that each learner has more information, more training and more confidence to get them closer to their goals whether tha be more schooling, an apprenticeship or entering the workforce.

WES workshops make learning fun and build self confidence and provides opportunities to meet new people and embrace new ideas.

Students also job preparation skills such as how to present and conduct themselves during a job interview. They also, during this course, learned CPR.

Everyone agreed it had been a wonderful opportunity to learn, grow and to make new friends.

The instructors for this course were Melanie Dingee and Heidi Oxner. These courses are also available to employers who are experiencing skilled labour shortages and need recruitment support, and training is customized to meet specific needs.

The WES Students are all smiles at the graduation ceremony

The WES Students are all smiles at the graduation ceremony

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