CaGBC offers new Sustainable Building Advisor program for first time in Ontario

Working professionals interested in sustainability and green building now have a valuable new learning tool at their disposal. The Canada Green Building Council (CaGBC) is launching the Sustainable Building Advisor (SBA) program beginning March 23 at Toronto’s Evergreen Brick Works.

The SBA is a comprehensive nine-month course with only two in-class sessions per month, making it ideal for professionals who want to expand their green building knowledge while working full time. This program, being offered for the first time in Ontario, is unique in that it requires no existing green building education or experience and is focused on practical, forward-thinking ways to design, construct and manage buildings that are resource efficient, environmentally responsible, cost effective, and healthy for all occupants.

“We are thrilled to deliver the SBA program as part of our roster of educational offerings,” says Cynthia Bland, Manager, Education and Delivery, CaGBC. “The SBA course’s unique structure and curriculum clearly speak for itself – our inaugural course in March is already over 60 percent full. Newly signed up participants are telling us that they are excited not just by the format, but by the new benefits the SBA course brings forward.”

“I’m hoping to gain skills that will add a dimension to my work both personally and for our company,” says new participant Paul Caverly who offers sustainable construction services to custom homes and major renovations. “It’s about gaining knowledge and credibility, and arming ourselves with new tools to promote sustainable construction.”

The SBA course provides an opportunity for students from a variety of disciplines and knowledge areas to learn together, not just about the basics of green building, but how to approach sustainability from a wider perspective. Former student Marsha Gentile says it is this multi-faceted approach that made it so unique. She took the course in Vancouver 2009, with 15 years experience in the construction industry under her belt, and credits this course with all of her success since.

“There were such a diverse group of people with different backgrounds and interests, all working together toward a common goal,” she says. “And hearing the local instructors speak with such passion was so encouraging. I had been teaching about sustainability with my own in-house company for a while, but after graduating it gave me the confidence to start teaching externally – and I actually won the Vancouver Regional Construction Association’s Educator of the Year Award in 2011.”

The CaGBC has selected Jeff Ranson as the Lead Instructor for the program in Toronto. Jeff brings with him a wealth of experience as both a project manager for several commercial building projects in downtown Toronto, and with various green building events in Canada. His work has included: managing the Green Building Festival; developing green building showcases for RBC’s Olympic Torch Relay and for CMHC’s EQuilibrium Zero Energy Homes pilot.  Jeff will be joined by other Canadian expert instructors and guest speakers to be announced at a later date.

Upon completion of the SBA course, graduates earn the designation of a Certified Sustainable Building Advisor (CSBA) and will achieve 100 CE hours toward their LEED Professional credential maintenance. Canadian architects are also awarded core Continuing Education Learning Units in many provinces.

The SBA course will also be offered by CaGBC in Quebec and Manitoba in the future.

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