CBU’s Purdy Crawford Chair Wraps up National Mentorship Program with Closing Conferences in Nanaimo & Whitehorse

Cape Breton University’s Purdy Crawford Chair in Aboriginal Business Studies will bring this academic year’s mentorship program to a close for the Pacific and Northern Regions of In.Business this week. Each region will have a two-day closing conference. The Pacific Region’s conference will take place in Nanaimo, British Columbia at the beginning of the week, facilitated in partnership with Vancouver Island University; and the Northern Region’s conference will take place in Whitehorse, Yukon at the end of the week, facilitated in partnership with Yukon College.

These two-day closing conferences of In.Business include students, mentors from British Columbia and Alberta in the Pacific Region and Yukon, Northwest Territories, and Northern British Columbia in the Northern Region. These conference are the last two in a series of five regional face-to-face conferences where In.Business participants will celebrate a year of networking and learning focused on Aboriginal business.

“This is the first year that the In.Business Program was hosted in the Pacific and Northern Regions and I can already see the impact that it is having on our youth,” says Blair Hogan, In.Business Northern Regional Manager, CBU.  “The students are getting excited talking about their future educational prospects with their mentors, and the more they succeed in the In.Business program, the more confidence they build. These kids all have a bright future; they just need a few positive mentors giving them nudges in the right direction.”

From Sunday May 29 – June 4, students and mentors will come together in their respective areas to celebrate and reflect upon their experiences during this year’s program. In.Business: A National Mentorship Program for Indigenous Youth teams Indigenous high school students in grades 10, 11, and 12 with Indigenous business mentors. These mentors are educated, working professionals who use their experience and background in business to lead students through a series of online “business challenges” throughout the year. The challenges are done using social media tools such as Twitter, Facebook and Instagram, since students are in different locations throughout their various regions. These activities help students explore the various facets of business so they may make informed decisions about their future education and career plans.

In each region the format of the conferences is the same. The closing conference will include one final team building activity that has students working together to understand the concepts of collaboration and negotiation, as well as presentations by guest speakers. The second day will include the presentation of the Annual Purdy Awards, which are voted on during the conference and recognize students for things like best Tweet, outstanding leadership and most enthusiastic participant in addition to group activities facilitated by the mentors.
These events will mark the official closing of the national In.Business program in Canada for the 2015-2016 year. Closing conferences have already taken place in North Bay, Ontario for the Eastern Region; Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for the Central Region; and Millbrook, Nova Scotia for the Atlantic Region, throughout the month of May. A new group of students and mentors will be chosen for the 2016-2017 year of the national In.Business program this coming fall.