John Thompson

Career Development Portfolio

Interpersonal Competence

The Standards and Guidelines identify "Communicate Effectively" as an important component of the Interpersonal Competence. Under this heading, they list behaviours such as writing, listening, providing feedback, and developing collaborative work relationships.

 

My studies in Conestoga College's Career Development Practitioner program gave me the opportunity to develop my skills by doing career development assignments with classmates and volunteer clients. To the right is a statement by Melissa Parker, a classmate with whom I worked on a variety of assignments.

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Prior to entering the Career Development Practitioner Program at Conestoga College, I was a freelance researcher, writer, and editor. Starting in 2014, I wrote a series of stories for the Alexandra Marine and General Hospital Foundation, including a history of the hospital which was published in the local newspaper. I also helped redesign the Foundation's newsletter, and wrote all the stories in the first few issues. These stories were designed to inform donors about the difference that their contributions were making to the lives of people in our community.

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In my work as a writing tutor, I always stressed to my students the need to show "consideration for the reader". This continues to be an important value for me. One area where consideration for the reader is often lacking is in quantitative and statistical communication. Because I have an ability to both work with numbers and communicate them effectively, I have often been hired to prepare statistical and financial reports. One example of such work was the study I did on temperatures for the Huron County's Viticulture project.

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In the summer of 2000, I was working at the University of Waterloo's Centre for Learning and Teaching Through Technology. Tom Carey was my supervisor. We submitted an article to the International Association of Human Resource Information Management for inclusion in a book about the use of technology in workplace learning. The article was accepted. The book was titled E-Learning: Expanding the Training Classroom through Technology.

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For my PhD research, I interviewed 45 people (undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty) about significant learning experiences. By effectively employing my listening and clarifying skills, I was able to identify similarities in their experiences which confirmed my hypothesis about the impact of social concerns on learning. My written and oral presentation of these findings was so well received by my committee that my dissertation was accepted "without corrections".

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