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Local Education

Students See Positive Results With Empathy Program – Part 1 Of 2


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By Sheldon Spackman

Positive results have been released regarding a pilot project that previously ran in the Red Deer Public School District, promoting Mental Health Skills for students. The Empathy Program, a University of Alberta initiative, was implemented from 2013-2015 and was offered to more than 6,000 youth in Grades 6-12.

Officials say their findings from the project show the student’s involved experienced less depression, anxiety and suicidal thoughts thanks to their involvement in the program. We spoke with Red Deer Public Schools Superintendent Stu Henry to get the details locally. Here is Part 1 of 2:

Local Education

Red Deer high school students surprised by Olympic champion

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From Brian Findlay

A pair of Red Deer students captured Gold medals in the recent edition of Skills Alberta’s annual competition.

The victories earned them kudos from another medalist – Olympic Bobsleigh pilot Justin Kripps.


Jack Lerouge, a grade ten student at Lindsay Thurber Comprehensive High School, beat out 15 competitors from across the province in the Culinary Arts division by calmly preparing ginger lime roasted chicken with Thai red curry vegetables and black sesame rice cakes in front of a panel of judges including professional chefs.

Because the competition was virtual and a lot of the judging was based on presentation, I decided to make a dish that had lots of colours and contrasts,” said Lerouge, “I thought the idea of a virtual competition was cool, and it was great that Skills was able to get an event like this to happen, considering the current circumstances. I liked that I had the opportunity to choose what I wanted to make and I found myself more at ease cooking in my own kitchen.

Bryce Corrin, a grade twelve student at Hunting Hills high school, also won Gold. Corrin’s win came in the IT Office Software Applications division, where competitors were asked to use the full range of Microsoft Office applications to create promotional materials for a fictitious Drive-in theatre.“

I have been a big movie buff ever since I was little so I was naturally very pleased to see that the fictitious company scenario this year was a drive-in movie theatre,” said Corrin. “For over a year I worked at the regular movie theatre here in Red Deer so overall I had a really well rounded idea about what would appeal to the average customer on the poster.”

Big accomplishments, but things got even more exciting when they received some personalized congratulations from another Alberta Gold medalist – Olympic Bobsleigh champ Justin Kripps!  Thanks to program partner RBC, this week the two winners were welcomed into the Gold medal club by the 2018 Olympic Gold Medalist.

The bobsleigh pilot is an RBC Olympian, which involves helping the bank with local community partnerships.  When a handful of the winners’ projects were shown to Kripps, he earmarked a few for special congratulations.  In each personalized message Kripps encouraged the students to keep pursuing their passions, and to try to use pandemic-related downtime in a positive way.

The Skills Alberta Virtual Competition involved 300 students from 78 Alberta secondary schools.  The competition gives students the ability to showcase skills they’ve learned through their career and technology studies classes.  Competitions ranged from robotics to carpentry to animation to baking.  Lerouge and Corrin were the only Gold medal winners from Red Deer.


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Local Education

RDC’s Donald School of Business leaving downtown to return to main campus

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From RDC Communications

RDC announces changes to its downtown campus as it looks to the future

New opportunities will support students and businesses

As RDC plans for the future and grows learning opportunities for all students, the Donald School of Business will move from its current downtown location in the Millennium Centre back to RDC’s main campus. This move will take place in January 2021.

In 2011, Red Deer College’s downtown campus in the Millennium Centre first opened. RDC has achieved great success there, with faculty creating unique learning experiences for our students and valuable connections with our local business community. These same successes will continue to thrive as we move the Donald School of Business back to main campus. RDC’s Donald School of Business is expecting almost 900 students to attend classes in the School’s nine programs during the upcoming 2020/2021 academic year.

“The reputation we’ve grown, and the core principles we’ve created within the Donald School of Business are embedded in our everyday fabric as a post-secondary institution. As we consider our future as Red Deer University, we are excited to provide all our students with increasing opportunities to engage with our local business community and prepare for successful careers. We anticipate this will be one of the areas that we’ll continue to grow in creating a signature RDU student experience,” says Dr. Peter Nunoda, RDC President.

The relationships that the College has built through its downtown campus with business leaders and organizations, and the entrepreneurial spirit at the core of RDC’s Donald School of Business, will open doors to new experiences for all RDC students. The College’s main campus is uniquely situated in our city and region to serve its students, and to allow the ability to grow connections with members of the business community, wherever they are housed, whether it be downtown, industrial parks, or in surrounding communities.

Through practicum and work integrated learning opportunities, guest speakers, seminars and workshops, and other mentorship opportunities, these are meaningful learning experiences that will grow on RDC’s main campus for all students. Synergy between students, instructors and the business community will continue to grow in unique teaching and learning spaces such as RDC’s Centre for Innovation in Manufacturing and Alternative Energy Lab, achieving practical solutions to real-world problems that will positively impact our communities.

Red Deer College’s connection with, and support of, the heart of this city will remain strong. At our downtown campus, the College will leverage and grow the strong relationships we’ve already built as we continue our commitment to meet the needs of our diverse group of learners with an equally diverse range of programs and services.

Examples of serving these varied opportunities include providing customized corporate and executive training solutions and seminars, guest speakers, professional development opportunities, and more, for adult learners and businesses through RDC’s School of Continuing Education. Many of these individuals also provide meaningful mentorship and real-world experiences for students in the College’s other programs.

As another opportunity, RDC’s English as a Second Language (ESL) programs, offered through the School of Continuing Education, will now be centrally located close to organizations such as Central Alberta Refugee Effort (CARE) and Catholic Social Services, to better meet the needs of ESL learners as they access learning and essential community resources.

Housing these types of lifelong learning opportunities at a downtown campus is something that is often seen within the post-secondary sector, and so the College believes this will fit well as the institution continues to serve all central Albertans.

Students in all RDC programs will always be welcome at the downtown campus, using this space for seminars, mentorship engagement and other possibilities yet to be imagined, continuing to create robust connections between students and with community members.

“Through the shifts we are making in where our programming is housed now, we are building for an exciting future as a polytechnic university. We will continue to instill an entrepreneurial spirit within all of our students, create meaningful connections with our business community, and innovate to serve our region with practical solutions in a variety of sectors that contribute to the economic well-being of our region,” says Dr. Nunoda.

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august, 2020

fri07augAll Daymon17WALK TO BREATHE from Calgary to Edmonton(All Day)

thu27aug(aug 27)12:00 amsun30(aug 30)11:59 pmHUGE Garage Sale for Crime Prevention12:00 am - 11:59 pm (30) PIDHERNEY CURLING CENTRE, RED DEER, AB, 4725 43 St, Red Deer, AB T4N 6Z3 Event Organized By: The Central Alberta Crime Prevention Centre