Director- Post Secondary Education
PhD, Professor, Telfer School of Management, University of Ottawa
A recent CNN feature story reported that in the United States, of the 11.5 million full time jobs created since 2010, only 50,000 went to people with only a high school diploma. At the same time, the Ottawa Citizen reported that the bachelor’s degree (University or College) is the new high school degree. Education is important to your future and I am proud to say that it is also very important to the Central Canada Hockey League (CCHL). In 2015/2016 alone, 52 of our players had offers to play University or college hockey – an average of 4.3 per team, one of the best in Canadian Junior A hockey. Some of these were for American Universities, some for Canadian Universities and for the first time, one was for a Canadian college.
The league takes great pride in the academic accomplishments of their players and the opportunities for further education and hockey opportunities that come from them. The leagues commitment to education can be seen in our award programs (annual academic all-star team, monthly academic all-stars, academic player of the year), as well several teams have established a requirement that players must be enrolled in school to play. Others have mandatory tutorial/study sessions and SAT preparation courses.
Why is the CCHL so successful in getting their players to University and College? It starts with the players themselves. All are required to maintain academic profiles online, the kind that attract the attention of University and College scouts. Next, each team is committed to the academic success of their players through a range of educational programs and an academic advisor. Players and academic advisors work together to ensure that courses are chosen appropriately at the high school level and the University and college level while playing in the CCHL to maximize future opportunities. It is a partnership that starts with the player and is enhanced through the commitment of a team of academic advisors.
A personal greetings to all those interested in the academic side of Central Junior Hockey. First an introduction, I am a professor at the University of Ottawa, a former coach (hockey and soccer), and a parent of a CCHL graduate who went on to play hockey in the NCAA and another son who played soccer in the CIS (Canadian University) so I have been through it all and seen it all both at the sport and the academic level.
My role as academic director is to liase with teams, players, and parents in helping our players make the most of their Central Hockey League opportunity from an educational perspective. While the coaches do their best to help the players improve on the ice, it is the responsibility of me and each team’s academic advisor to assist the player academically. What does this involve?
· Discussing University and College options
· Assisting in course selections for High School, University or College to make sure they remain eligible to continue playing hockey in University and college.
· Helping to enrol the player in appropriate classes
· Monitoring player academic progress
· Moving players through the maze of rules and regulations at post-secondary educational institutions to help them develop an appropriate course schedule
As I say to each player at the beginning of the year, the CCHL provides the opportunity but it is up to them to take advantage of it to prepare them to move to the next level. Me and my team of academic advisors who are all volunteers are there to provide the support they need to make the most of educational opportunities.