Career & Life Connections: Parent Speaker Series 2018-19

On December 14, 2018, York House School held the first of its 2018-2019 Parent Speaker Series panels, developed around the theme of ‘Innovative Careers and Career Pathways’. This initiative was developed as part of our new Career & Life Connections program at the Senior School.  

A person’s career is considered part of one’s ‘journey’ through life, and YHS’s Career & Life Connections curriculum, in partnership with the BC Ministry of Education Career Education redesign, offers our students the opportunity to pursue this journey in personally meaningful and goal-oriented ways. Career-life development with intent is the ongoing process of self-discovery, growth in competence, and learning from experience in educational, work-related, and personal life contexts.

One of the goals of this year’s Career & Life Connections Parent Speaker Series is to connect our girls even more with the broad range of wonderful mentors we have within our community. Education and the world of work is changing, in part due to the rapid advancement of technology and its impact. As such, this year’s series invites students to learn about careers and career pathways they might not usually consider or even know about, under the theme of innovation.

Our series and the curriculum of Career & Life Connections encourages students to consider the skills and dispositions they need to develop in order to be ‘future-ready’. Our parent panelists are sharing their learning around critical and creative thinking, collaboration, and communication, as well as the importance of adaptability and resilience, with examples from their own lives and careers.

We would like to thank Jamie Houssian, Principal/Owner of Elemental Energy; Betsabeh Madani, venture capitalist at Borealis Ventures / Entrepreneur in Residence at Innovation Boulevard; Alice Virani, Genetic Counselor and Ethicist; and Rich Gannon, Westjet Pilot, for volunteering their time to come and speak with our girls on December 14, 2018. During the Question & Answer period after the presentations, our students had many very good questions for our panelists!

The next panel takes place on February 1, 2019, and there are additional initiatives underway to connect students more widely with the many YHS parents who have volunteered to provide mentorship through this program and beyond.

Category: Senior School
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Grade 7s Participate in Nationwide “Hackathon”

Hack•a•thon: An event, typically lasting several days/hours, in which a number of people meet to engage in collaborative computer programming.

On December 13, our Grade 7 students participated in a nationwide “hackathon”!

Schools across Canada participated in this event put on by Hackergal, a not-for-profit organization that helps introduce girls to coding. We were very excited to work with them to provide this opportunity for our students.

In preparation for the hackathon, students participated in lessons using the “Codesters” coding platform. During these sessions, students were introduced to the Python coding language and learned the skills needed for the full day hackathon.

Our hackathon started with a video call with several other schools across Canada who were also participating in local Hackergal events in their area and Kumiko Imai, the Program Manager for Hackergal, at York House, to host the call.

After introducing our group and meeting all the other schools, students began work on their projects. Students were given the theme for this year’s hackathon; “The Environment”. Though this was a very broad topic, we were very fortunate that it tied in directly with the work students have been doing with Ms. Chevreau in Social studies where they have been researching the impact of the environment on the development of early humans.

Working with their partner, students generated potential ideas and developed a guiding question. Next, students began work on designing the user experience and gathering the research they needed to answer their question. The girls then began the process of coding and debugging their program using the Codesters platform.

Our day ended with time for students to share their projects with the rest of the group and receive feedback from the judges. Programs were evaluated based on design, coding, and gameplay. We congratulate all the girls for their hard work and thank them for making it a fun and productive day.

Mr. Nathan Reimer
Junior School Educational Technology Coordinator

Category: Junior School
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