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Grow with the Growing Economy: New Year a Great Time for Mental Health Practitioners, Counsellors and Lay Persons to Improve Skills

Last week’s RBC Economics report predicts a national economic recovery period for 2010 resulting in positive growth for Canada’s GDP. With the growth of the economy, many Canadians should prepare for the new opportunities about to come.

“During a slowing economy and growth, pursuing a master’s degree in your sphere of specialization or a job oriented professional training program may provide a boost to your job role and thereby your compensation,” says “Consider doing an MBA, PMP (project management program) or similar professional courses for a definite scale in your career move.”

Providence Theological Seminary is offering some unique courses in January 2010 to help mental health workers, counsellors and others improve their skills. The school’s winter semester is offering Integration of Psychology and Theology, Program Planning, and Administration and Leadership, to name a few.

“January 2010 is a good time for mental health practictioners, pastors, counsellors, and other types of care givers and lay persons to expand their skill sets,” says Rob MacDonald, interim senior pastor at the EFC of Meadow Lake, SK and professor for the Integration of Psychology and Theology course at Providence in January.

“This course is for those interested in the intersection of different disciplines such as theology, spirituality, philosophy, and psychology. For example, are the helping approaches based in the Christian church compatible or at odds with more secular psychological approaches?” says Rob. "Taking a course like this might be helpful to those who want to or need to be able to move seamlessly in and out of other disciplines as they seek to expand their skill sets."

Improving skills that can transition to many different jobs can help a professional improve their marketability; it is beneficial to “learn about other departments in your company, their functionality, goals and steps they take to achieve them,” says

A project management course like Program Planning can help you prepare for taking on more responsibility at your place of work. “Providence’s Program Planning course is designed to develop an ability to plan effectively in both short and long range planning,” says Dr. Chuck Nichols, professor of Education Emeritus at Providence. “You will be encouraged to devolve a list of your own values, a mission statement for your life, and your own planning model, so you can do the same in whatever area you are involved.”

Administration and Leadership is also a key skill to develop to firm up your position and what you can offer your company. “This course is designed to study theories of leadership,” says Nichols. “The course will also discuss problem areas in leadership, such as stress and burnout, communication, conflict resolution, motivation and time management.”

Integration of Psychology and Theology and Program Planning are being offered at Providence’s Jan. 4 – 10 seminary intrasession, while Administration and Leadership is being held at the Eastman Education Centre in Steinbach on Monday nights starting in January.

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