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Tourism Educators Conference 2012:A Wild Ride!Back To News May 24th, 2012
TEC 2012, billed as an organic experience in Nelson, was a success on all fronts: great meetings, informative presentations, and fun activities.
Selkirk College did a grand job of organizing the program, hosting the conference, and accommodating guests at their new Tenth Street Residence. The conference started with articulation meetings for BC Tourism and Hospitality programs. With a day-and-a-half of meetings, the sessions were productive with a pace that facilitated increased discussion and sharing of best practice.
An official opening welcome from college president Angus Graeme was followed by the first-ever "Industry Case Competition" where Kootenay Rockies Tourism, LinkBC, the CTHRC, and go2 were challenged to present their contributions to the tourism landscape in less than 8 minutes.
Following the welcome was a beautifully-catered reception at Scholar's Dining Room in Mary Hall. After breakfast the next morning, keynote speaker Geoff Bird shared results of surveys with students and instructors on "Great Teaching". The session began with an interpretive dance session where breakout stars Chris Bottrill, Jonelle Knowles, and Rebecca Wilson-Mah demonstrated signature moves the "featherduster", "bedmaker", and "windowcleaner". Unfortunately all footage of the dance was destroyed!
The presentation that followed highlighted survey results and allowed working groups of instructors to pull common themes from the surveys. These included soft teaching skills such as vulnerability, as well as tips on staying motivated and engaged.
Concurrent sessions included an introduction to sustainability from Zoe Caron (World Wildlife Fund), an overview of the Shambhala Music Festival story, an inside look at the BC Seniors Games with Dr Bill Reid (addressing the conference theme of baby boomers and the tourism industry) and a panel of Stewart Spooner, Martin Keyserlingk, and Deanne Steven speaking to Planning, Risks and Liability.
The afternoon was filled with educational fun as delegates took part in their choice of river rafting, beanery and brewery tours, walking historical tours, mountain biking and other Kootenays tourism fam trips.
Friday morning played host to TED talks from Audry Lochrie (Ministry of Jobs, Tourism, and Innovation) on welcoming new Canadians to the tourism workforce, Ken Bellemare (Vancouver Community College) on how to use message-based learning activities to add to training, Steve Bareham (Selkirk College ) on how to teach critical thinking skills, Theresa Southam (Selkirk College) on best practices from their Teaching and Learning Centre, Gilles Valade (Thompson Rivers University) on Risk!, and Dennis Green (go2 ) on the new Tourism Labour Market Strategy .
Feedback from delegates has been very positive, citing "wonderful hospitality", great lessons, and fun networking.
The entire group looks forward to attending TEC 2013 in early May at Royal Roads University in Victoria.
Mark your calendars! TEC 2013 is May 8, 9 and 10 in Victoria.
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