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Adult learners bring diverse experiences and backgrounds to their studies

By University Advancement and Communications Posted: June 10, 2021 2:25 p.m.

Photo: Kinesiology student Jenna Trider returned to university after working as a paramedic for several years.
Photo: Kinesiology student Jenna Trider returned to university after working as a paramedic for several years. Credit: Provided by Jenna Trider

Many people contemplate going to university for the first time at a later stage in their life or returning to university after taking some time off. With courses offered in the evenings, on weekends, and online, a university education is more achievable than ever. So why not now?

U of R student Jenna Trider is going into the third year of her Bachelor’s degree in Kinesiology, with a major in Human Kinetics and a minor in Psychology. When Trider finished high school, she initially attended college and became a licensed paramedic. After a few years of working as a paramedic and exclusively dealing with patients in emergency situations, she had a desire to be able to help patients with their diseases or disorders before they were facing an emergency. She also saw many of her co-workers coping with the physical and mental stresses of being a first responder.

Trider decided to apply to the University of Regina, and she’s felt confident about her decision ever since.

“Just trust yourself. If you have that desire to continue your education, trust your instincts. You’re stronger than you know!” says Trider. “Going outside of your comfort zone can be scary, but if you always take the easy road you’re not always fulfilling your desires. I don’t regret my decision to come back in the slightest – I’m so happy I took the plunge.”

When Trider completes her degree, she would like to open a joint clinic and gym, mainly targeted at first responders. She wants it to be a safe space for them to come to and open during hours that work best for first responders’ work schedules.

Enrolment Services has partnered with the Centre for Continuing Education to organize an Adult Learner Event for those who are interested in returning to university, or attending for the first time. Attendees will have the chance to speak one-on-one with University of Regina team members to have all of their questions answered.

Many times, adult learners have rich, diverse experiences and backgrounds, and their paths to post-secondary are usually very individualized. This event will give adult learners an opportunity to connect with staff from different units and faculties on campus, which will allow them to ask any questions they may have and learn about their future academic journey.

Naomi Deren is the Director of Enrolment Services at the University of Regina, and she says that the Fall 2021 semester is a great time for adults to go back to university. With several remote course options being offered, students can take advantage of the flexibility and take one or two classes, while still managing all of their other commitments.

“The benefits are different for everyone. Some people are looking for a career change, some are looking for career advancement or additional career options, and some take a class just for fun!” says Deren. “Whatever the reason, we can help event attendees decide on the best path possible for their future.”

The Adult Learner Event is on Wednesday, June 16. Attendees can book an appointment from 3 to 6:30 p.m.

Anyone interested in attending can register online and will receive more information about the event, including the Zoom invite by email. Everyone who attends the event will also be entered to win one of two University of Regina $50 gift cards!

Student success is part of the Discovery area of focus in the University of Regina’s 2020-2025 Strategic Plan kahkiyaw kiwȃhkomȃkȃninawak – All Our Relations. The U of R aims to help all students achieve their goals and strengthen their ability to connect with learning opportunities in ways that ensure they develop the independence and agency to pursue their life and career goals.