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Intercultural Competencies for Leaders Program

  • Intercultural Competencies for Leaders Program

The following blog post was written by Laurel Madro, Program Coordinator of the Centre's Corporate Readiness Training Program.

"We need more Canada," said former President Obama on his visit to Canada in 2016. His comment makes many of us think we are doing something right!

Charles Foran, the CEO of the Institute for Canadian Citizenship, recently asked the question “Is Canada the worlds’ first ‘post-national’ country?”(Foran, 2017).

Obama's statement and Foran's question make us wonder what the next step is on this journey towards an inclusive society where we truly do get the full diversity advantage working to everyone’s best interest.

Can we really do this without being intentional in the development of the intercultural communication skills we would need to do this effectively? What supports can we build into our communities, workplaces, and education systems that can help us to better accept differences in others and understand the value of differing viewpoints and approaches?

At Bow Valley College, we have kept these questions at the forefront of our awareness. We have developed and piloted an online certificate program called Intercultural Competencies for Leaders to help people identify and build the skills they need to work and live in a diverse, inclusive community. 

Feedback on the pilot has been very positive: 

  • “The Intercultural Competencies for Leaders Certificate Program taught me how to reflect upon my own cultural assumptions and how recognizing unconscious bias can improve workplace communication and collaboration.”  David Harvey, Director, Business Development, Bow Valley College
  • “What I got the most from this training was surely to take the time to reflect on things we can very easily ignore but are part of who we are and how we interact with others. Being able to let our brain accept that my reality is not the same as yours, even looking at the same thing, is a very big step towards mutual understanding and acceptance of others. I believe this training does a very good job at helping us realize that!” Erwan Goasdoué, Coordinateur de Programme/Program Coordinator, Connexion Carriére

The official launch of the program is on March 7, 2017. 

For more information, visit: Intercultural Competencies for Leaders Certificate Program 


Smith, M.D. (2016, June 29). 'We need more Canada,' says Obama as he lauds 'extradordinary alliance with U.S. National Post. Retrieved from

Foran, C. (2017, January 4). The Canada Experiment: Is this the world's first postnational country. The Guardian. Retrieved from