Concurrent Sessions: October 28, 2:45-3:30 pm

Learning Together: A innovative Maritime approach to supports for Internationally Educated Nurses

Ballroom A

English, Pillar 2-Assessment; Pillar 3-Bridging

Kate Mercer; Ruth Whelan, Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre (RN-PDC); Lynda Finley Nurses Association of New Brunswick (NANB).

For over a decade, faculty at the Registered Nurses Professional Development Centre (RN-PDC) have promoted successful integration of Internationally Educated Health Professionals (IEHPs) into the Canadian health care work force. Initial work centered on preparation of IEHPs to work in the Canadian health care system and to write the national licensure exam. With the success of these initial endeavours, faculty’s work evolved into competency-based assessment and bridging/re-entry education for Internationally Educated Nurses (IENs). As the demand for services grew, faculty welcomed the challenge to meet the needs of others in the Maritime region through innovative educational delivery and policy development. Faculty collaborated with government, professional nursing regulatory bodies and settlement agencies embracing a regional approach, with a vision to ensure that the programs meet the needs of IENs while maintaining fiscal responsibility. Together with the College of Registered Nurses of Nova Scotia, the Nurses Association of New Brunswick, and the Association of Registered Nurses of Prince Edward Island the principles of fair-access are upheld. These IEN educational offerings follow national standards, are offered in both official languages, evidence-informed, responsive to the needs of the IEN, regulatory body standards, as well as the ever-changing health care system. This level of commitment requires an ongoing collaboration, communication, and excellence in educational principles. Faculty from the RN-PDC are eager to share their achievements, lessons learned, and future goals in regards to the successful integration of IENs into the Canadian health care workforce.

What a Difference a SART Makes!


English, Pillar 1-Prearrival

Kelly McKnight, Nova Scotia Community College (NSCC); Jane Wojcik, Associate, PMA Workforce Development Solutions (PMA)

In 2016, the Self Assessment Readiness Tool project will conclude with the development and deployment of 21 bilingual SARTs™ for IEHPs.

In the early days of this work, the SARTs™ team could not have predicted the reach of these tools nor their potential impact.  Our initial vision was to provide a pre-arrival/ transparent/effective way for an IEHP to determine if they want to immigrate to and practice in Canada. A deceptively simple statement and, of course, not so easily achieved. Our journey has had unexpected outcomes including feedback from educators, guidance counsellors and career advisors who are finding the SARTs™ to be useful for Canadian students and the emerging need for alternative health career information. In many respects, the existence of these tools represents a legacy – what is the ripple effect of this resource? How many have used a SART™ or referred a colleague/friend/family member? We can answer some of those questions but more importantly we want to share our learning and insights – some from formal research and some gained from informal and serendipitous connections. This is a time for celebrating our deep investment in this work – please come and hear our story!

Thinking, and Acting, “Outside the Box” – Programming for IEHPs Pursuing Licensure


English, Pillar 3-Bridging

Amber, Clarke, Saskatoon Health Region, Saskatoon Saskatchewan

Objective:  From our beginnings, through lessons learned, we will share our journey with emphasis on what we have learned regarding the non-technical challenges of a pathway to licensure.

Partnerships:  Atlantic Connection, Ministry of Health and the Ministry of the Economy,  The Hope-Centered Research Team: Norman Amundson, University of British Columbia, Spencer Niles, College of William and Mary, Hyung Joon Yoon, Al Akhawayn University, Immigrant Services Society of BC (ISS of BC)

Design and Methods:  Our study explored the use of the Hope-Centered model with 18 IEHPs who were attempting to regain their professional status but who seemed to be showing signs of disengagement on their pathway to licensure.  Our research looks beyond the technical components of a pathway (language, educational bridging/assessments) to determine how to effect change for immigrants who become disengaged while pursuing licensure. 

Our use of the Hope Centered Career Inventory (HCCI) and a series of hope-based interventions led to significant results using behavioral indicators.  

  • Results:  Targeted, hope-based interventions can strengthen pathway, agency, and goal-directed thinking. 
  • Conclusions:  An increase in action-oriented hope, a catalyst for forward movement, is a key determinant of success on a pathway to licensure.
  • Implications for Practice or Policy: Findings support the use of holistic programming including the affective domain.  
  • Future Directions:  Incorporating the Hope-Centered Model into our work with MLTs.
  • Acknowledgements:  We would like to thank our participants for allowing us to learn and grow alongside them. We extend our gratitude to Health Canada for the opportunity to be part of the Internationally Educated Health Professional Initiative, and to our partners for their support on this incredible journey. 

The Action-Oriented, Hope-Centered Career Development model and the Hope Centered Career Inventory (HCCI) were developed by Spencer Niles, Norm Amundson and Hyung Joon Yoon; presented in the book Essential Elements of Career Counseling (Niles, Amundson & Neault, 2011).

Bridge to Medical Laboratory Technologist


English, Pillar 3: Bridging, Pillar 4: Workplace Integration

Janelle Bourgeois, Director of Human Resources and Organizational Performance/Directrice des ressources humaines et performance organisationelle, Oulton College, Moncton;  Paula Steeves, Executive Director , New Brunswick Society of Medical Laboratory Technologists (NBSMLT)

The New Brunswick Society of Medical Laboratory Technologist (NBSMLT) in partnership with College Communautaire du Nouveau-Brunswick (CCNB) developed a Bridging Program for internationally educated Medical Laboratory Technologist.  The development of this program started in 2011 and required support of various stakeholders.  The program offers online training, a simulated lab component and a clinical rotation in either French or English. It was among those funded by Health Canada under IEHP Atlantic Connection and also received funding support from the Province of New Brunswick.  Where are we now?  What have we learned?