Community Worker (Fast-Track) is a dynamic social justice program grounded in the principles of and respect for human rights and anti-oppression practice. Students are prepared to work with largely urban-centred, diverse communities across a range of issues (i.e. poverty, housing, food-justice, immigration and settlement, etc.) in ways that are responsive to their multiple and changing needs.
If you are passionate about human rights and social justice, committed to working with diverse communities, bring a mature and professional approach to your education and field work, and are prepared to take on a course load of 20+ hours per week, this program is for you.
What can you expect from the Community Worker (Fast-Track) program?
The three-semester Community Worker (Fast-Track) program combines classroom instruction with supervised field placements. Theory, analysis and practice are presented through a variety of innovative instructional tools developed from popular education and learner-centred approaches to teaching and learning.
Highly participatory classes of dialogue, debate, activities, interactive lectures, guest speakers and panels, and group work provide students with a program of study that is current, exciting and critically engaging.
What key skills will you learn?
Throughout the program, students will have the opportunity to develop a variety of important and high-demand skills, including:
- anti-oppressive and intercultural practice in working with diverse populations (including youth, immigrant communities, Indigenous populations)
- critical analysis, research and writing
- group facilitation and leadership
- individual and group counselling
- conflict mediation and restorative justice
- community organizing, activism and advocacy
- community development, project design and proposal writing
- policy analysis and rights-based advocacy
Features of the Community Worker program include:
- Strong ties with over 350 agencies across the Greater Toronto Area (GTA).
- Founder and lead organizer of the annual Tommy Douglas Institute that brings communities, students, educators and activists together to explore higher education and social justice in the 21st century.
- The full-time Community Worker (C101) program has been graduating community workers for more than 40 years.
Program courses are organized into four core areas:
- community work theory and practice
- social and political analysis
- group skills and counselling
- field placement and seminar
Not only will you develop relationships with our community partners through field placements, you will also meet with sector professionals in your classrooms at networking events, guest panels and program electives taught by agencies and practitioners currently working in the field (i.e. Community Legal Issues, Urban Aboriginal Peoples’ Perspectives in Community Development, Housing and Homelessness).
Who are the Community Worker (Fast-Track) faculty?
The experienced educators that make up our faculty bring their passion for education and change to create a highly engaging and dynamic learning environment. Coming from backgrounds in local, national and global activism, they remain active on social issues and maintain close ties to communities, activists and organizations.
What kind of students enrol in the Community Worker (Fast-Track) program?
Graduates from other degrees and diploma programs interested in learning more about social justice and community development enrol in this program. Our students are a diverse group of students with broad social and community experiences.
Students have the opportunity to develop practical skills and gain valuable work experience by completing a 400-hour placement in the final two semesters of the program.
Through our strong ties to more than 350 field agencies across the GTA, students can find placements suited to their interests in a variety of settings, from immigration and settlement services to community food centres, and from cultural community services to governmental agencies.
Students also have the option to apply for one of our exciting international field experiences, in India or Jamaica.