THE NOVA SCOTIA CAREER DEVELOPMENT PROFESSIONALS

YOUTH-FOCUSED COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE

A community of career development professionals from across Nova Scotia who regularly gather to discuss how to best support young adults entering the workforce.

One of the outcomes from the Nova Scotia Career Development Professionals Youth-Focused Community of Practice is the creation of webinars and online workshops relating to the employment of young adults. Check out one of our panel webinars above!

 

 

On September 1, 2021, Centre for Employment Innovation (CEI) and TEAM Work Cooperative (TWC) launched the Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice (YF-CoP) for career development professionals. The idea for the YF-CoP emerged out of conversations with individuals from various employment and career service organizations from across the province who emphasized a desire to engage with other career service professionals working directly with young people. These connections would support them to elevate their practices to better support young people close to or ready to enter the workforce.

With the ongoing impacts of COVID-19, the climate crisis, barriers in accessing education, workforce automation, the influence of technology, financial stress, unstable world economies, and increased workforce competitiveness, youth and those supporting them face a complex and dynamic reality.

The needs and challenges faced by youth differ from those of adults seeking employment support. The complexity of youth and young adulthood requires increased intentionality and creativity to best support individuals through employment services and interventions. As such, the needs and demands of career and employment service providers serving youth are as dynamic as the unique geographies, communities, and youth they are serving. Career and employment service professionals supporting youth may also experience isolation from their co-workers who are not working directly with youth and may struggle to adapt career service activities designed for adults to the changing needs of youth.

A space for career and employment service professionals (including those involved in youth-focused service delivery and interventions, research, policy development, program development, etc.) to come together and share their learnings, challenges, and brainstorming solutions benefits all of us, and helps us better support youth in our work.

What is a ‘Community of Practice’?

Community of Practice (CoP) can be defined as:

“A group of people who share a common concern, a set of problems, or an interest in a topic and who come together to fulfill both individual and group goals. Communities of practice often focus on sharing best practices and creating new knowledge to advance a domain of professional practice. Interaction on an ongoing basis is an important part of this.” 1

The benefits that come from Communities of Practice are clear in both research and practice. Over the past six years, the Centre for Employment Innovation has been researching, designing, and facilitating these types of collaborative spaces as part of our work with various career and employment practitioner groups.

Benefits of a youth-focused ‘Community of Practice’

A youth-focused Community of Practice in employment and career services would aim to:

  • Connect people: Help connect youth-focused career service professionals who might not otherwise interact, either as frequently or at all.
  • Provide a space for co-learning: Support youth-focused career service professionals to communicate and share information, stories, and personal experiences to help build understanding and insight.
  • Support dialogue & learning: Support dialogue between and learning among youth-focused career service professionals, coming together to explore new possibilities, address challenges, and create new opportunities.
  • Capture and share existing knowledge & resources: Support youth-focused career service professionals to improve their practice by providing a space to identify solutions to common problems and evaluate emerging best practices.
  • Encourage collaboration: Encourage collaboration between groups and organizations, and support the free flow of ideas and exchange of information.
  • Help people organize and mobilize: Support purposeful actions that deliver tangible results.
  • Generate innovation: Support youth-focused career service professionals to transform their practice, informed by community needs, emerging best practices, and new technologies.2

The Invitation:

Anyone involved in youth-focused career development and employment services (including those involved with service delivery and interventions, research, policy development, program development, etc.) are welcome to join the YF-CoP.

The YF-CoP will be facilitated by CEI and TWC staff, as well as a variety of guest facilitors, via Zoom and will occur on a monthly basis from September through to April.

To be added to the email list for information on future Youth-Focused Community of Practice gatherings, please visit: https://forms.office.com/r/CqKty7YRpy 

If you have questions regarding the Youth-Focused CoP, please contact Addy Strickland at astrickl@stfx.ca.

__________

1 http://www.communityofpractice.ca
2 Adapted from Cambridge and Suter (2005)

2023 - 2024 Learning Report | The Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice for Career Development Professionals

The intention of this Learning Report is to share key learning, themes, considerations, and processes related to the Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice (YF-CoP) for career development professionals. The learnings highlighted are drawn from monthly learning reports, reflections of facilitators, and an end-of-season survey sent to YF-CoP members.

2022 - 2023 Learning Report | The Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice for Career Development Professionals

The intention of this Learning Report is to share key learning, themes, considerations, and processes related to the Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice (YF-CoP) for career development professionals. The learnings highlighted are drawn from a review of meeting notes, reflections of report authors, and informal discussion with YF-CoP community members.

2021 - 2022 Learning Report | The Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice for Career Development Professionals

The intention of this Learning Report is to share key learning, themes, considerations, and processes related to the Nova Scotia Youth-Focused Community of Practice (YF-CoP) for career development professionals. The learnings highlighted are drawn from a review of meeting notes, reflections of report authors, and informal discussion with YF-CoP community members.

YOUTH-FOCUSED CAREER DEVELOPMENT

Webinars & Workshops

YOUTH-FOCUSED COMMUNITY OF PRACTICE

Community Member Testimonials

“CoP has helped re-energize my practice with youth! It’s offered me aunique opportunity to grow my own knowledge and share it with others ina supportive environment. It’s also helpful for practitioners looking to growtheir resource bank and network with colleagues across agencies.”

Janelle Duguay

Senior Employment Practitioner, Phoenix Youth

“CoP is a very good, low key, and inclusive space to develop relationships in other organizations and share knowledge.”

Maggie Morden

Employment Support Practitioner, TEAM Work Cooperative

20-40

individuals engaged in monthly YF-CoP gatherings.

140+

individuals subscribed to the YF-CoP Listserv.

50+

organizations subscribed to the YF-CoP Listserv.

10

organizations involved in leading or delivering YF-CoP activities.

Blog

Latest From The YF-CoP

Community Engagement Toolkit

The purpose of this document is to create a shared understanding of community engagement as an ongoing cycle and to provide a framework to guide your planning and implementation. As you use this tool to support your work keep in mind that although these phases are...

read more