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Edan Smith profile

Edan Smith

Edan Smith’s early successes with online learning motivated him to keep doing more. Now, he’s on his way to a rewarding career in early childhood education.

“Becoming a client of Contact North made me feel like the impossible is possible.”

Online Learning Centre
Brantford, Ontario

Area of Study
Early Childhood Education

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Finding success in a female-dominated field

Edan Smith was keenly aware that early childhood education is a competitive, female-dominated field, and that he’d need to work very hard to stand a chance of standing out among his fellow applicants.

Referred to Contact North in mid-2020, Edan was unemployed and looking to build a very particular skillset to get his career off the ground.

“Encouragement goes a long way. I didn’t think I would be able to get such easy access to university certificates from renowned universities but I went out of my comfort zone and tried. Then this magical moment just started happening.”

“I came to Contact North to explore additional certificate courses and other educational pursuits that might give my resume a leg up,” he says.

“When I started, I worked with Sam Fisher (at Contact North’s Brantford online learning centre). My first certificate was from Stanford University, an introductory breastfeeding course. From there I did two other certificates specializing in infant care studies from the University of Colorado. The success I had motivated me to continue to exceed the qualifications needed to work in the child care sector.

“I continued to keep doing courses, then Sam came across some that really hit the deal — they were specialty mini-courses from Lambton College around diversity and equity and feminism. In the field of ECE, if we want to be an inclusive environment we have to live up to that philosophy. These courses that Lambton College offered support that idea.”

In all, Edan has completed more 60 courses from various providers, and credits Contact North with being instrumental to his success in landing a job in a child care centre.

Edan, who lives in Ayr, Ontario, says he was thrilled to be able to build on the momentum from his early successes with online learning.

“I had to take a lot of time to stop, look and listen,” he says. “You have to be self-motivated to do the certificate courses and I think that with me having success with three it really made my heart glow. It motivated me to continue and propelled me to want to have more success.”

“Becoming a client of Contact North made me feel like the impossible is possible. Encouragement goes a long way. I didn’t think I would be able to get such easy access to university certificates from renowned universities but I went out of my comfort zone and tried. Then this magical moment just started happening.”