Scholarships are easing the cost for students to earn a Bachelor of Disability Management (BDM) degree online through Pacific Coast University for Workplace Health Sciences (PCU-WHS).
June 15 is the deadline to apply for scholarships to the fall 2022 semester of the degree program.
PCU-WHS provides on-the-job experiential learning. Its online courses are designed for students who are working, usually full-time and in a related field.
Brett Smith was employed in government as a health and safety officer in the Human Resources Department. Part of his job was handling injury and disability management, but he wanted to learn more. “Disability management is an area where my knowledge had come through experience. I had been looking for some more formal education.”
He had some initial reservations about working and studying at the same time. “I wasn’t sure that taking on a degree full time as a working professional was the best idea, but it worked out well. The university staff and the faculty were all very supportive and that made the difference.”
Shanna Ramm had just started a new job as return to work coordinator when she decided to take her education and expertise a step further by earning the Bachelor of Disability Management degree. She stresses that the ability to complete the degree on her own schedule was key.
“I was a working mother with two kids and a full-time job, and there was a pandemic. I was working from home and working evenings; so, being able to access the content and have conversations with the instructors on my own timeline was what I needed. Without that access, I probably wouldn’t have been able to complete a degree.”
She advises, “The way the program is set up, I think that almost anyone can make it work within their time frames.”
As Accessibility Standards in Canada become more widely adopted in public and private organizations and spaces in the future, expertise in disability management will become even more relevant.
Employers across Canada are increasingly seeking to fill jobs with applicants who hold a degree or certification in the field.
Canada Post’s Ontario Human Resources Director Lorraine Evans is one such employer who advocates for advanced knowledge in disability management and encourages potential students. “If you are someone who enjoys working with people, someone who values equity, diversity, inclusion and acceptance then it’s going to be very meaningful for you to be in this field.”
As many as 600 jobs a day are posted on national job boards requiring education in the field of disability management and return to work.
Currently, there is federal government support for a scholarship under the Sectoral Initiatives Program that covers students in all provinces and territories outside of British Columbia. The federal scholarship program is limited to commencement in September 2022. The June 15, 2022 deadline for applications is quickly approaching.
Students in British Columbia can also apply for scholarships to the Bachelor of Disability Management program through funding provided by a provincial Workforce Development Agreement grant.
For more information, go to https://www.pcu-whs.ca