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The Mitacs Step Experience

A look inside…

What makes Mitacs Step workshops such crowd pleasers? From professors to participants its rave reviews all around.  I sat in on a workshop to see, first-hand, what sets these workshops apart.

On the Mitacs website, the Step page has a listing of workshops offered throughout Canada covering a range of essential business skills sure to enhance future careers. Armed with some reviews and insights into the Mitacs Step program, I settled on Practice Your Presentation Skills I.

The instructor was an industry expert that share tried & tested skills and provided a level of personalized attention only available in small group sessions. The workshop began with everyone standing up, introducing themselves and relaying their particular areas of concern; this was the first in a number mock presentations. Individual feedback from both the instructor and fellow participants provided useable knowledge both about what worked well and also ways to enhance their own presentation style. It was interesting to see the noticeable in-class improvements the participants made. Afterwards, the students were abuzz with new insights and confidence in their abilities.

Said one participant, a postdoctoral fellow at the University of Toronto, “I learned a lot about mistakes I have been making that decrease the quality of my overall performance. I've always been considered a good presenter and even won an award for outstanding student presentation at a conference during my Ph.D. studies. However, I never thought about ways to further improve my presentation skills. I got a lot of valuable feedback from the instructor and the audience on how to eliminate my problems in future presentations.  I’m grateful to Mitacs in general for launching a series of important workshops that help young professionals communicate more effectively.”

Another participant added, “We learned by experience in a realistic setting. We were able to observe, discuss and practice how to eliminate almost every single common mistake a presenter can make. I’m sure my next presentation will be vastly improved… and I won’t be as nervous.”               

That’s the kind of learning that stays with you long after class adjourns.