As University of Northern British Columbia graduate Shawn Hegan begins his career as a human resources professional, he will have a head start on achieving his professional designation.
Hegan graduated with a Bachelor of Commerce in Human Resources Management and General Business in May and is among the first cohort of students to benefit from a new accreditation agreement with the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources of British Columbia and Yukon (CPHR).
Prior to receiving this accreditation, UNBC graduates who wished to pursue a CPHR designation first had to write a comprehensive three-hour national knowledge examination and then complete three years of professional experience. Now students gain the necessary knowledge as part of their undergraduate studies and can jump straight into the on-the-job training.
“The designation is highly recognized across B.C. and Canada, and is something that many employers value when seeking human resources professionals to fill vacancies in their business,” Hegan says. “CPHR BC & Yukon has opened me up to a wide network of like-minded individuals and professionals through regular events and gatherings as well as mentoring opportunities.”
The accreditation means any UNBC Bachelor of Commerce in Human Resources Management graduate from 2017 onwards who has a cumulative average of 70 per cent or higher is qualified to bypass the exam.
“UNBC is fostering the next generation of business leaders by preparing graduates who can take on complex challenges and capitalize on new opportunities,” says UNBC Provost and Vice President Academic Dr. Dan Ryan. “This partnership with the Chartered Professionals in Human Resources of British Columbia and Yukon is beneficial for UNBC students learning about human resources, and our graduates who are beginning their careers.”
The accreditation is beneficial for students, their future employers and CPHR.
“CPHR BC & Yukon is pleased to work with UNBC and our accredited partners. We see significant value in accreditation as it provides students with a strong start to their careers in human resources while providing our association with new members,” says Anthony Ariganello, CPHR, President & CEO CPHR BC & Yukon. “Students and emerging professionals are the future of HR and we are excited to provide them with support in various forms such as our professional mentoring program, professional development and much more. We are looking forward to a long and lasting relationship with UNBC.”
Hegan began his post-secondary education in Quesnel at the College of New Caledonia, where he first became interested in studying human resources. Upon transferring to UNBC, Hegan was immediately drawn to the Human Resource Management major.
“My studies at UNBC opened my eyes to the various aspects and complexity of human resources that exist, such as compensation and benefits, change management, workplace health and safety, recruitment, and more,” Hegan says. “The exciting thing to me about the human resources field is that it is always changing, and there is always room to learn and grow within the profession.”
Hegan, who was hired by Canfor as a talent acquisition co-ordinator after completing a co-op term with the company, is already on the road to accruing the three years of professional experience he needs to complete the designation.
He credits his experience at UNBC for helping him prepare to enter the workforce.
“UNBC students are fortunate to learn from some of the best and brightest leaders in the human resources profession,” he says. “They have a wealth of knowledge and experience.”