May 19, 2024

Close to Home – The Benefits of Having a Local Post-Secondary Option

By on September 29, 2018 0 1205 Views

“Cherish this time with your little ones – it flies by too soon.”

Like most mothers with young children, I still remember hearing those words when I had a preschooler and a newborn. I didn’t believe them. I was tired. No, I was exhausted. They were lying. Time wasn’t flying, and they weren’t growing up fast enough. And, then they did.

This summer my older one, Sheheryar, that precocious preschooler, graduated from Westwood Community High School, the newborn, Shahzaib, with an ever-present smile, starts Ecole McTavish High School. It did fly by, and they grew up too fast. They weren’t lying. And, I cherished every moment.

As you read these lines, Sheheryar has started his first year of post-secondary at Keyano College. A pre-engineering student, he wanted to stay one year at home before transferring out to the U of A. It’s a decision he made knowing full well about the small class size advantage, which means more attention from his instructors.

Jan Bourassa, Keyano’s Student Advisor in the Office of the Registrar explains more on why Keyano is a good first-year option for local students.

“While many people in our region know Keyano College -in partnership with other institutions- offers four collaborative degrees: BSc in Nursing, BSc in Environmental Science, Bachelor of Business Administration Management and Bachelor of Education (Elementary), students can also begin their university degree in other areas at Keyano,” said Bourassa.

“Our university courses can be used to transfer to other university programs in Alberta and other provinces and students can begin their path to becoming a dentist, doctor, engineer, lawyer, pharmacist, a veterinarian at Keyano by taking up to two years of university transfer courses, depending on the program.”

And, when it comes to Engineering specifically, here’s what you may not know, added Jan, who has been with the college for over 20 years:

“Keyano offers year one of the Bachelor of Science in Engineering offered by the University of Alberta. Students are offered the same courses as they would be at the University of Alberta. Lectures and labs are taught by qualified instructors; all engineering courses are taught by professional engineers. Keyano also offers a unique mentoring program where each student is paired with a Faculty member; students meet their mentors regularly throughout the term to discuss progress in their courses, career plans, and the process of transferring to the University of Alberta. Local students who qualify for admission to engineering often also qualify for free tuition, provided they meet all requirements for the Keyano Excellence Scholarship,” Bourassa explained.

“Besides this, I think it’s important to note that Keyano offers a friendly atmosphere in a great social setting. Do your homework by the fire in our cozy student common area, read a book in our beautifully maintained grounds on a summer day, or unwind over a game of pool with friends in King’s Lounge. Throughout, we offer an inclusive and safe environment to study and enjoy student life.”

So, enjoy your time with the little ones, and if you are lucky enough to have a teenager, who is not overzealous about the idea of leaving home, Keyano is a great first-year option. I highly recommend it.

Fort McMurray resident of 17 years, Kiran Malik-Khan is a local freelance journalist and communications manager for the Fort McMurray Public School District. As a community leader, she actively volunteers in the community with NorthWord Magazine, World Hijab Day YMM. and the Northern Lights Regional Health Foundation. Most important, she’s wife to Mohammad and mother to her two sons; 18-year-old Sheheryar and 14-year-old Shahzaib.

About the author

Freelance Journalist

Kiran is a national award-winning communications specialist, freelance journalist, and social media consultant. She loves telling community stories, and is a strong advocate for inclusion, diversity, women’s rights, and multiculturalism. Got story ideas? Contact her via Twitter: @KiranMK0822.