Supporting the Ongoing Learning Needs of UBC Employees
Whether we know it or not, each of us is steering the ship of experience in the direction of our prevailing beliefs about who we are and what’s real.
- Philip Golabuk, Director, The Field Center
The MOST program was started in 1993 to support the ongoing learning needs of UBC employees, providing a range of UBC specific, job related, personal and professional skills training. We have consistently adapted the program to meet the emerging needs of both individual and organizational learning.
Our program offerings are all about learning instead of training, which reflects a fundamental shift in perspective and approach. Instead of being trained to emulate the expert, learning is more a process of exploration and discovery, where the learner engages the power of self to learn. The focus of MOST is also all about relationships, which direct our learning; learning about ourselves, how we interact with others, our role, the culture within which we work, or new skills and technologies.
These relationships are fundamental to our growth and learning. The ways we interact with others, or our culture, or the tools we use to perform our role are the aspects we can act upon as we seek to bring about change in ourselves and the world around us.
Travelers, there is no path, paths are made by walking.
- Antonio Machado
The inherent assumptions that we have made in developing the MOST program are that self awareness and self responsibility are desirable states of being, providing the foundation for deep learning; that the relationships we build and the conversations we hold are essential in giving us the courage to discover the human experience and engaging the passion to risk being exceptional; and that a coaching culture at UBC will support our efforts to achieve these.
We believe that a critical requirement for any learning to occur is to have the space and capacity to reflect on one’s actions, decisions, and policies, and so, MOST for TREK is intended as a container that will hold that space. MOST has been designed to provide opportunities for reflective learning.
This assumes that learning, to be reflective, cannot occur as an isolated training event in a classroom, and then the workshop materials are filed away both literally and figuratively, but that we need to make a conscious effort to continue to apply whatever learning has occurred and challenge our practices in light of these new experiences and theories.
Taking a workshop introduces us to new skills, but doesn’t guarantee that we can perform them on demand. That takes lots of practice, and so we have introduced the concept of follow up coaching and studios. Studios are designed to be practical sessions where participants come together to practice the skills they have learned in a workshop.
Classes are small to facilitate a supportive environment in which participants can give themselves permission to make mistakes, are able to learn from one another, and practice, practice, practice. Participants are expected to have a basic understanding of the topic(s) covered.
Don’t be surprised if you get a phone call before your workshop – we are trying to determine specific learning goals prior to delivering many of our sessions. This provides you, the participant, with the opportunity to think about what you want from the program ahead of time which can accelerate transformation and application of the learning, and secondly we have the opportunity to modify some aspects of the program to align more closely with your specific learning goals.
The ODL team is proud of the quality of the Organizational Development & Learning opportunities that we offer and hope to see you soon!