Off the beaten curriculum

Students examine everything from crime scenes to sout travel at Metro College

There’s a body on the floor of WP Wagner High School. Various bits of
detritus—broken bottles, overturned chairs, splatters of
blood—show that a serious crime has been committed.

Or has it? Is it murder? An accident? Or a strange case of suicide?

It’s up to you to find out—that is, if you enrolled in one of
more unique continuing education courses offered by Metro Community College.
It’s a final exam of sorts after learning the basic of crime forensics
in Scene of the Crime.

“Scene of the Crime has been running for years and is always sold out.
It’s just something that people are interested it,” says Carol
Suddards, Director of Metro Community College. “We’ve been doing
long before your TV Guide was filled with CSI-this and CSI-that.”

Scene of the Crime 1 and 2 are just two of the forensic-style courses offered
by Metro. There is Dealing with the Aftermath of Catastrophe, a course the
shows how forensics engineers deal with large-scale events; Fire Scene
forensics; and Sudden Death, a course that familiarizes people with
procedures and techniques in the Medical Examiners offices and also includes
a tour of the facilities.

“The whole crime scene investigation thing has been a very popular
topic for a very long time and our challenge is to provide enough room for
the people that want to take these course,” says Suddards.

But these forensics course are just a few of the more interesting, maybe even
oddball courses offered in continuing education. In the early days of
Continuing Ed, there were plenty of courses for business, arts and crafts,
languages and for those looking to upgrade various skills and work
techniques. Nowadays, though, many people aren’t just looking for an
education experience that looks good on their résumé or will
help them run various programs on their computer; they are looking to expand
their more unique areas of interests. And for a little bit of fun.

The Metro Community College calendar runs a gamut of courses from How to
Create a Fringe Play and Not Lose Your Shirt to Druidism, from Angelic
Guidance to Medieval and Renaissance Swordsmanship.

New ideas from courses come from everywhere, says Suddards. “We could
have an existing instructor who comes in and says, ‘Hey, I have a new
course idea,’” she says. “Or we might have someone who
fancies himself an adult educator and would like to teach something, so we
send them on their way so they can think about what they know and figure
something out.

“It may be our staff becomes aware of something that’s a hot new
trend. That often happens in crafts, we find out from the people who are
immersed in crafts what’s new and hot and exciting. And we find someone
who can teach. So the actual ideas themselves come from no specific
So if you’re thinking of trying something new and different, here are a
few samples of the strange yet interesting courses offered by Metro Community

Medieval and Renaissance Swordsmanship for Beginners introduces students to
historically valid and martially sound techniques and skills from medieval
and renaissance times. (Bring your own stick!) Related courses included
Fencing for Adults.

Angelic Guidance looks at strategies for recognizing angelic presences and
listening to and following angelic guidance. You should have recognized some
level of angelic presence in your life prior to taking this course. Related
courses include Angels, Angels Angels.

Developing your Intuitive/Psychic Abilities helps you access your own energy
and that of others and to learn how to feel and move that energy to balance
health. Related courses include An Introduction to Past Life Regression and
Past Lives, Dreams and Soul Travel.

Clean, Freeze and Smoke Fish is a highly practical course that pretty much
explains itself in its name. Related courses include Fishing Alberta Lakes
and Innovative Ice-Fishing Techniques. V

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