The Natural Resources and Environmental Specialist program aims to offer students a general understanding of Canada’s natural resources sector. This sector is an important part of Canada’s economy and supports many Canadian jobs directly and indirectly. This program takes a wholistic approach and not only examines the extraction of natural resources, but also surrounding issues that include, but are not limited to: laws and policies, ethics, indigenous issues, sustainability, and environmental impacts. This program would offer students a college-level diploma which would enable them to work in the natural resources and environmental sector, or pursue further higher education should any of the specific topics interest them.

December 6th, 2021

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Fundamental Skills and Knowledge

This module introduces you to an overview of Canadian natural resources definitions, descriptions, and an understanding of fundamental knowledge. You will also learn and develop application skills that will help you in later modules.

Environmental Laws, Policies, Ethics & Indigenous Issues

This module covers legal information and issues relating to Canadian natural resources. The student will learn how laws, and in particular environmental laws, have been developed and put into place. They will learn how policy shapes law and how law shapes policy, they will have an introduction to ethics in natural resources and conservation and to professional ethics, and finally will have a very brief introduction to Indigenous issues in Canada. Successful completion of this module will give the learner knowledge of how laws and policies affect Canadian natural resources.


Introduction to Ecology

Ecology is the study of organisms and how they interact with the environment around them.  This module will cover the fundamental concepts of ecology including: individuals and organisms, populations, communities and ecosystems.  It will also touch on ecological restoration and the processes involved in recovering an ecosystem that has been disturbed or damaged.  Students will come away from this course with a good understanding of the interconnections among the major concepts of ecology and an appreciation of the linkages between ecology and natural resources management and conservation.

Biodiversity and Habitats

Biodiversity is defined as the variety of life on earth that includes not only the variety of different animals (species diversity), it includes the difference between animals of the same species (genetic diversity) and between ecosystems.  This module explains how biodiversity is quantified as well as historical and current global patterns.  It will also examine threats to biodiversity and the legislative framework for its protection.  Habitat management practices aiming to conserve biodiversity will also be explored.  Upon completion of this module, students will understand the complexities of biodiversity and its relationship to the natural world and to humans.


Environmental Sampling and Surveying

Sampling and Surveying are tools used by many professionals in the natural resources and
environmental industries to understand the environment or resource they are managing or harvesting. This module will introduce the many varieties of sampling and surveying methods, along with the technology and tools that are used to facilitate them. These would involve sampling and surveying wildlife, vegetation, soil, water, and geomatics.

Natural Resources I (Forestry, Water & Wetlands)

This module is intended to provide a broad overview of forests in Canada, including the different methods of assessing and managing forests for a wide range of values and benefits.  The Water and Wetland Sections are intended to provide an overview of jurisdiction and water/wetland management at the provincial level.  The overall intent of the Module is to provide participants with sufficient information to generate personal interest in the range of environmental topics that are covered for general knowledge purposes or ideally to contemplate further education and training for a professional career in environmental science.


Natural Resources II (Non-renewable Resources & Renewable Energy)

This module aims to equip students with a base-level understanding of important sectors of Canada’s economy, including oil & gas, mining, and renewable energy. This module offers a review of how Canada extracts and produces minerals and energy as a natural resource. We will examine the environmental impacts and possible mitigation strategies of these natural resource extractions, to ensure that these processes are sustainable and future generations will be able to enjoy these resources.

Natural Resources III (Fishery & Wildlife)

Throughout this module, learners will gain valuable information related to wildlife (aquatic, marine and terrestrial) species of significance in Canada.  Information related to each species, their habitat and historical/current/future impacts to them will be reviewed.  The module will also provide learners with the opportunity to understand what controls and/or practices are used to manage and protect wildlife species in Canada; as well as the cultural and traditional values we have related to each of these significant species.

Sustainable Planning and Development

Throughout this module, learners will develop an understanding of how Canada and organizations are moving towards being a more sustainable nation. Information related to Canada’s strategic goals, as these relate to sustainability, will be reviewed in detail and examples on how we have been successful (or not) in how we manage environmental aspects will be discussed. How the environment is managed, through the completion of assessments, planning and measuring compliance, will be described as these items are of the utmost importance when we work towards conducting our activities and operations in a sustainable manner.

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