Continuing education filling void around the globe

Posted: August 22, 2011 1:00 p.m.

Harvey King, director of the Centre for Continuing Education, is the new president of the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education.
Harvey King, director of the Centre for Continuing Education, is the new president of the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education. U of R Photograhy Dep't

Continuing education is becoming increasingly popular in Canada. Everything from pottery to professional leadership is being taught at universities across the country, and an associate professor of economics at the University of Regina is the president of the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education (CAUCE).

Harvey King, who also serves as the director of the Centre for Continuing Education at the University, was appointed to the national position earlier this summer. In a recent interview, King said that continuing education fills a void for students around the globe.

"I'd say the common measure of them all is they are very non-traditional students. We're sort of outside that norm of age 18 to 25 taking classes from nine to five."

"For example in Regina, we have continuing educations students who are young as one and as old as 92," he said

"I taught an online course in economics last year, and had one student in Taiwan, another in Switzerland and one up in La Ronge, and a whole bunch who were in Regina," said King, who has taught at the University for 24 years. "Typically we will have programs for ESL students, we will have distance and online programs, we will have non-credit programs in things like project management leadership, public relations, etc."

King views his role as president of the CAUCE as being an advocate for his close to 45 institutional members across Canada. The association will hold its annual meeting in Saskatoon next May.

The majority of the University of Regina's continuing education courses are taught at the College Avenue Campus.  Built in 1911, the campus is in need of a facelift.  King says an ongoing $67-million College Avenue revitalization project would provide a huge boost to the Centre for Continuing Education.

"We could certainly increase the capabilities that we have in terms of delivering more programs to more people. Right now, we are at our outer edge for usable space."

In operation since 1954, the Canadian Association for University Continuing Education "seeks to foster professionalism in program development, management and administration; to stimulate and disseminate creative ways to provide programs that continue to meet with the ever changing cultural and vocational needs of adults; and to help strengthen the position of its members within their institutional settings and in society at large."