The much-anticipated 10th Pan-Commonwealth Forum on Open Learning (PCF10) has launched.
The PCF conference, a triennial event, brings ministers of education, university vice-chancellors, senior officials, plus a range of educators and open and distance learning (ODL) practitioners from around the Commonwealth and beyond.
And, for the first time, this major international open, distance and technology-enabled learning event is being held in Canada from September 14th to 16th, 2022 at the TELUS Convention Centre in Calgary – the gateway to Canada’s breath-taking Rockies.
The convention’s Opening Ceremony kicked off with old-fashioned Calgary hospitality – the symbolic White Hat ceremony presented by City of Calgary Executive Director, Meetings + Conventions, David Woodward. Signature white Stetson hats are presented to visitors, who are granted the status of honorary Calgarians. Woodward led Commonwealth of Learning Prof. President Asha Kanwar and other dignitaries in making a pledge,
“I, Asha Kanwar, having experienced exceptional amounts of heart-warming western spirit from the citizens of Calgary, Alberta, do solemnly pledge to extend this tradition of white hat hospitality to all the people I meet wherever our paths cross from this day forward.”
Just prior to the donning of the Stetsons, traditional First Nations blessings were given by Tsuu’tina Elder Bruce Starlight followed with aboriginal hoop dancing performed by the Labelle Sisters – accomplished Pow Wow dancers and Métis jiggers.
PCF10 is co-hosted by the Commonwealth of Learning (COL) and Athabasca University (AU) Canada’s Open University. The triennial event is considered one of the world’s leading conferences on ODL collectively bringing hundreds together to learn, share and innovate on the application of open and distance learning towards increasing access to quality education and training to provide relevant skills for better employment and entrepreneurship.
Other Day 1 highlights included the Canada Country Showcase with Ms Claudette McGowan, Global Executive Officer, TD Bank and chaired by Professor Peter Scott, President, AU. This inspiring keynote address focussed on educational opportunities for youth, particularly young women, in transformational technologies with a spotlight on cybersecurity.
PCF10 concluded Day 1 with the conferment of the Commonwealth of Learning Honorary Fellows and Excellence in Distance Education Awards, Award of Excellence in Innovations in Distance and Online Learning and Award of Excellence for Institutional Achievement to the Open Polytechnic of New Zealand (OPNZ) presented by President and CEO, Asha Kanwar. Honorary fellows included:
- Dr Tony Bates;
- The Honourable (Mrs) Leela Devi Dookun-Luchoomun G.C.S.K;
- Mr Maxim Jean-Louis;
- The Honourable Ambassador Mariam Y. Katagum;
- The Honourable Ms Priya Manickchand;
- Professor Alan W. Tait;
- Mr Mohammed Rezwan; and
- Professor Ami Upadhyay
- Open Polytechnic New Zealand – Award of Excellence for Institutional accepted by Dr Mark Nichols on behalf OPNZ; and
- Dr. Kaushal Kumar Bhagat – Award of Excellence for Innovations in Distance and Online Learning (individual category)
The spirited awards ceremony highlighted the tremendous achievements and accomplishments of educators, community builders, and institution of higher learning from all four corners of the globe. COL and Athabasca University offer congratulations to all of the deserving recipients of these prestigious awards.
Stay tuned. More to follow on Day 2 of PCF10.
#pcf10 #Commonwealth #conference #education @COL4D
For additional event details, visit pcf10.org.