Posted by: Dawn Schell on February 21, 2013 10:59 am

A few weeks ago 750 delegates from Canada, Netherlands and Australia [hope I remembered correctly!] descended on Ottawa for Cannexus13  – Canada’s National Career Development Conference.   I was there to co-present a session with Lawrence Murphy titled “Taking Career Counselling Online”.  And I was also there to learn about research being done in the field, ways to connect that research to practice, share ideas, tips, techniques and tools and to connect with my career development colleagues.  My brain is still whirling as I continue to process all that I absorbed over those three days. 

What stands out for me?

One really cool thing happened before the conference.  Cannexus13 organizers set up an interactive online community prior to the conference and encouraged us all to participate.  I could put up a profile, view other attendees’ profiles, create an interest group, start discussion threads, and view session notes in advance. Brilliant! 

As I listened to one of keynote speakers I was reminded of ways to better support clients who are in the midst of transition and living through the unknowns.   I was also introduced to The Parable of the Trapeze by Danaan Parry. Have a listen!

In these uncertain economic times it is vital that we add to the evidence-base of our field and demonstrate that the work we do actually makes a difference for clients.  I was excited to learn about one of the Canadian Career Development Foundation’s current research projects.  “Assessing the impact of Career Development Resources and Counsellor Support across the Employability Dimensions” is being conducted in partnership with the Governments of Alberta and Manitoba.  The resources they created and are testing look fabulous.  I am looking forward to results.

There is so much more I could talk about.  I’ll save it for another time. 

Though I will say this –  it was a delight to spend time with so many amazing colleagues.  They inspired me with their passion for their work, their commitment and deep caring about assisting their clients to achieve their full potential, to realize their career dreams whether it’s a first job or a transition into retirement.   

Dawn Schell, MA, CCC, CCDP is an affiliate counsellor with Worldwide Therapy Online Inc.

*The views expressed by our authors are personal opinions and do not necessarily reflect the views of the CCPA

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