VIU Child and Youth Care Alumni to Share Career Stories Jan. 27

Getting ready for the Jan. 27 information session are (l-r) VIU Child and Youth Care program alumna Samantha Brockman, fourth year student Sara Marshall, and Professor Teri Derksen.

January 21, 2016 - 1:15pm

As a fourth year student in the Child and Youth Care (CYC) degree program at Vancouver Island University (VIU), Sara Marshall has heard the same question more than a few times.

“A lot of people have asked me if I’m going to work in a daycare,” she says. And while that’s certainly one of the options for graduates, Marshall usually continues her answer with a long list of possible careers for child and youth care workers.

Marshall and her fellow CYC students are looking forward to learning even more about the future career possibilities in the field on Jan. 27, when VIU welcomes back 20 alumni of the program for a ‘meet and greet’ session from 6:30 to 8:30 pm in Building 180’s first floor lecture hall.

“We’re inviting all current CYC students and the public to come out to meet our alumni and hear about their careers since graduating at VIU,” said CYC professor Teri Derksen. “The evening will be set up in a ‘speed dating’ format, which will provide quick match-ups of alumni with students and anyone interested in the program. It’s a chance to ask questions and gain some insight from our alumni working in a variety of fields.”

Samantha Brockman is one recent alumna who will attend the meet and greet. She graduated in June and started a full-time role as a child and family support worker with School District 68.

Working in Gabriola and Fairview elementary schools, Brockman says she is a strong advocate for children, youth and their families in the school system. Among many duties in a varied and busy role, she runs group sessions with students on behavioural issues and social skills. Recently, she has been leading a program called “Rainbows” for children experiencing grief and loss.

“It’s been amazing,” says Brockman, who discovered a potential career for herself while in her fourth year CYC program practicum with BC’s Ministry of Child and Family Development.


“In the practicum I worked a lot with child, youth and family support workers. And I thought, that’s my job.”

After attaining her CYC degree at VIU in 2011, Rebecca Fairweather continued her education and earned a Master’s degree in counselling from Yorkville University, which was delivered online.

“I worked full time and went to school full time – it was a little bit crazy, but I juggled both,” Fairweather says.

Today she works as a counsellor at Edgewood Treatment Centre in Nanaimo, primarily working with outpatients in group and one-on-one counselling sessions.

“I liked that the Child and Youth Care program gave me a really good footing, and a framework for my own practice, and that it also opened up lots of options for careers,” Fairweather says.

Marshall said she and her fellow classmates in the CYC program are looking forward to welcoming alumni, and appreciate their taking the time to share stories about their career journeys.



Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University

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Tags: Our Alumni