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Training Abroad: VIPP Goes to Canada

Published: Thursday, 13 Jul 2017
Author: VIPP
Department: Visiting International Professional Program

This summer, the Visiting International Professional Program (VIPP) at Michigan State University (MSU) pioneered a new program that took place entirely outside the U.S. Dr. Mina Shin, VIPP's Assistant Director, developed a 10-day long workshop in Canada for the Seoul Metropolitan Government on the theme of Arts, Culture, Tourism, and Economic Development. Fifteen delegates visited Quebec City, Montreal, Ottawa, Niagara Falls, and Toronto, and met Canadian government officials and business executives. This year was a perfect time to visit Canada since Canada is celebrating its 150 years of Confederation.

Following are some highlights of the workshop that took place in Canada from June 13th to 22nd, 2017 for the Seoul Metropolitan Government in South Korea.

Day 1 Visit to Parcs Canada (Parks Canada) in Quebec City 

VIPP met with officials from Parcs Canada, a federal agency that protects Canada's natural and cultural heritage.

The first official visit was to Parcs Canada, a federal government agency that protects Canada's natural and cultural heritage. The Quebec field unit manages the national historic sites such as the fortifications of Québec. Quebec City is the only city in North America that is still surrounded by authentic fortified walls built three-centuries ago. UNESCO designated Old Quebec as a UNESCO world Heritage site for preserving its ancient defense system. 

Parcs Canada staff provided VIPP participants with a guided tour at Saint-Louis Forts and Châteaux.

The Seoul Metropolitan Government officials were excited to visit one of the sites that Parcs Canada Quebec field unit manage, Saint-Louis Forts and Châteaux. The staff provided a guided tour and helped the group discover the rich history of Quebec back in the 17th and 18th centuries. Delegates were impressed by Parcs Canada's effort and success in preserving and restoring historical and cultural heritage from the past. As a UNESCO World Heritage treasure, Quebec City offers a European charm, romantic vibe, natural beauty, and historical ambience. 

Go Green in Quebec City, Canada! Although the entire workshop took place in Canada, South Korean delegates did not forget that MSU was the proud organizer of the workshop. Delegates posed with Parcs Canada officials on Dufferin Terrace in front of the world-famous Chateau Frontenac, the most photographed hotel on the planet.  

Day 4 Visit to Parc Olympique de Montréal in Montreal 

VIPP participants learned about the history and development of Parc Olympique de Montréal.

Not only are sports central to human cultural life, but sports facilities also play a vital role in the economic development in the community by attracting both residents and tourists alike. The Parc Olympique de Montréal is a must-visit place to learn how innovative thinking is critical in managing sports facilities. Since 1976, the year it hosted the Summer Olympics, the complex has been renovating and revitalizing its facilities to offer events and activities in sports, culture, and recreation. The delegates were impressed by the Park's efforts to generate revenues while serving the needs of its city residents. The case of Montreal's Olympic Park is applicable to Seoul and South Korea, which hosted the 1988 Summer Olympic Games and will host the PyeongChang Winter Olympic Games. 

Standing tall at 165 meters, the Montreal Tower in the Olympic Park is the tallest inclined Tower in the world. Its space is currently under renovation to house office spaces for Desjardins Group, the largest association of credit unions in Canada.

Day 6 Visit to Toronto City Hall in Toronto

Major cities in Canada are celebrating 150 years of Confederation. You will see a similarly designed sculpture of different cities' names all across Canada.    

The last stop for the workshop was Toronto. Delegates met officials of the City of Toronto in the Entrepreneurship Division to learn about the city government's efforts and policies related to supporting start-ups and entrepreneurs. As the fourth largest city in North America, Toronto strives to boost local businesses as well as to bring in foreign investment to strengthen its regional and national economy. 

The Seoul Metropolitan government officials also met the President /CEO of Toronto Financial Services Alliance and CEO of Toronto Global at the Ontario Investment and Trade Centre (OITC). The leaders of these organizations explained the overview landscape of financial industry in Toronto region and why it is attractive for foreign investors.      

The success of the Seoul Metropolitan Government workshop in Canada demonstrates VIPP's unlimited capacity and expertise in programming and curriculum development for executive training. VIPP is very proud in expanding our horizon beyond the U.S. boundary. We aim to offer programs in any field all over the world. We will continue expanding our "training abroad" programs for any organization. Interested? Email us at vipp(at) We can customize the scope, length and location of programs depending on your needs. 

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