Upcoming MPLAN Webinar: Recognizing Human Capital in Rural Small and Medium-sized Enterprises through RPL – Opportunities and Challenges

Recognizing Human Capital in Rural Small and Medium-sized Enterprises through RPL – Opportunities and Challenges

Panel Presentation with a group activity and Question and Answer Session

Date: January 31, 2019

Time: 2:00 – 5:00 CST


In-person: Louis Riel Room, McMaster Hall, Brandon University


Via Live-Streaming Webinar: Once your registration fees have been received and confirmed, we will email your live-streaming link prior to the event for testing and viewing purposes.

Registration Fees:

On or before January 21, 2019

Early Bird Flat Rate: $35

After January 21, 2019

MPLAN / CAPLA Members: $40

Non-MPLAN Members: $45

* No invoicing available. For this event, early bird and live-streaming registrations will be accepted by electronic payment (eTransfer, PayPal, or Credit Card over the phone). Cash or cheques accepted at the door if you are attending in person.

To register for this event please visit the MPLAN website: http://www.mbplar.ca/


2:00 – 2:30        Registration and Networking

2:30 – 2:45        Introductions: from Brandon University and from MPLAN

2:45 – 3:30        Panel presentations

Hospitality Break

3:45 – 4:30        Group Workshop Session

4:30 – 4:45        Question & Answer Session

4:45 – 5:00        Event wrap-up



The Rural Development Institute at Brandon University is commencing a research project, Motivation of SMEs in Hiring Newcomers. It aims to understand employer perspectives and motivations in hiring newcomers in Canada, specifically rural businesses in the three Prairie Provinces. This issue is important since the growth and economic success of rural communities will increasingly depend on immigration, given these communities’ aging population and Canada’s declining natural population growth. Since Small and Medium-sized Enterprises (SMEs) are the predominant businesses and job creators in rural Canada, their receptiveness to hiring newcomers is critical to successful settlement, business prosperity, and community development. Their receptiveness serves to recognize and enhance the human capital of their workforce.

In this context of filling rural labour needs, this workshop will explain Recognizing Prior Learning (RPL) principles and practices and how they can be used by SMEs to recognize their employees’ human capital, that is, their knowledge, skills, and attitudes. This RPL toolkit may help to motivate SMEs to hire immigrants. Immigration Service Providers will have an opportunity to showcase their services offered to SMEs and immigrants as well as to discuss the applicability of RPL in their immigration and settlement programming. The workshop will close with a Q & A session.


Gary McNeely, PLAR Coordinator, Brandon University; MPLAN Board Member

  • Introduction to RPL principles and Practices
    • Applying RPL in SMEs


Don Walmsley, Executive Director, Neepawa and Area Immigrant Settlement Services, Inc.

  • Outline of Services for Immigrants and Refugees, and Services for Rural Employers
    • Developing a Skills Inventory for employees


For more information contact: Gary McNeely, PLAR Coordinator, Brandon University / MPLAN Board member| T. 204-727-7300 | Email. mcneelyg@brandonu.ca



Don Walmsley

Don has worked in social services for 27 years. He started working in the immigrant settlement services in 2013. Currently, he serves as the Executive Director of the Neepawa Settlement Services, which provides a full range of programming and services for immigrants, including Language training, Health and Social Supports, and Employment-related services.


Gary McNeely

Gary McNeely is the Prior Learning Assessment and Recognition Coordinator at Brandon University. He has worked in the Prior Learning field for the past 20 years. His current research focuses on essential skills development and qualification recognition, as well as competency-based education as it pertains to training and professional development opportunities for rural policy analysts. He is also a strong advocate for applying prior learning assessment principles in the work-place both in employee training and in professional development programming.


Posted in CAPLA News.