Introduction to Global Connections and Postsecondary Career Paths

My name is Jordyn C., a senior at Rundle College. I am currently enrolled in Global Online Academy’s (GOA) Graphic Design course and have also completed their Architecture course. I want to bring focus to the most positive aspects of my education through GOA and how I feel they have made lifelong contributions to their students in the areas of finding your passion, real-world communications, and student-led learning. I will also share some personal experiences that I believe are essential to highlighting the competencies of GOA.

Finding Your Passion

For many high school students (like myself), determining your lifelong passion at the age of seventeen can be fairly daunting. What I believe to be one of the biggest benefits of GOA is that their courses allow students to explore what a postsecondary program may look like/entail before fully diving in. Students will get a sense of working with other students on big picture projects, learning the complexities of their area of study, and will be pushed to overcome any challenges they may encounter. If students like the course, they may pursue a related field after high school, being more prepared than the average student with the advantage of already having degree-related studies that will carry them far in their postsecondary careers. If students try a course and find it is not a fit for them, they skip the crisis of diving into a major and discovering it is not what they are passionate about.

I enrolled in GOA’s Architecture course to explore whether or not it would be as good a fit for me. Through the experience of having a wonderful teacher, Mr. Sarsfield, and a fantastic group of peers, my love for architecture grew even deeper. Due to this passion, I have started applying to architecture and design programs at postsecondary institutions in Canada, and am hoping to attend the University of Toronto this coming fall.

Preparing for Real-World Communication

Structure and organization are crucial for students on the cusp of entering the professional world to understand. GOA prepares students for this real-world communication through cooperative learning with students who share similar interests from around the globe, as well as challenging students to be responsible for their own calendars through the guidance of their teachers. Students will often be expected to create a personal calendar for the week, incorporating exams, extracurriculars, and GOA work. Through this personal structure and global connection, students learn the importance of time management, conducting themselves professionally to their peers, and how to set up meetings/manage calendars.

For example, the design process has been taught to me through both my GOA Architecture course and Graphic Design course. It has taught me the importance of following through on an idea and developing it to its full potential. The design process is enforced upon students enrolled in art-related courses to foster an understanding of the importance of structure and give and take, even in creative courses. Students will take their ideas through several stages of development, getting feedback from their peers each step of the way, leading to successful and meaningful projects that push students beyond their creative comfort zone.

Fostering Student-Led Learning

GOA gives students the opportunity to experience a different structure of learning through its online format. Through this, students can remain in contact with their teachers to resolve issues, meet over Zoom, and receive feedback and guidance. However, GOA provides a unique experience of supported learning while encouraging students to be responsible for their own school work outside of their assignment briefs and day-to-day learning, allowing students to learn the importance of problem-solving and communication. Students will also get more familiar with the teacher contact that is more present in postsecondary settings. Since students are not in direct contact with their teachers every day, they are encouraged to take initiative and problem-solve, preparing them for situations that parallel postsecondary class experiences. Students are, of course, able to contact their teachers at any time if they have concerns, and will also meet with their teachers during meeting weeks set by their teachers. All of these elements generate a strong foundation for student structure, equipping them with the tools of time management and communication in a teacher-supported environment.

I have had a positive experience with GOA’s Catalyst Projects, which are present through many of GOA’s Arts and Humanities-related courses. Catalyst Projects have introduced me to module-based planning/learning and creating a well-laid-out plan. Students required to complete a Catalyst Project as part of their course will spend the early weeks of the program learning the foundations of their course, before exploring their passions and developing meaningful projects for their Catalyst Project. Through my experience, I have been able to engage with other students and peek into what other courses entail and what they are learning about, expanding my knowledge and leading me to explore new passions. Check out my catalyst project:

Overall, GOA fosters meaningful learning for students in areas they are passionate about. Through engaged and interest-fueled learning and discussion, GOA courses prepare students for postsecondary and real-world engagement.

Jordyn C. is a GOA Ambassador and Student at Rundle College.

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This post is part of our Student Spotlight series, where we feature stories from students who take GOA courses. Are you a current or former GOA student who would like to contribute or be interviewed for a Student Spotlight article? Or, are you an educator who has a recommendation for a student for us to feature? Email us at with the subject title “Student Spotlight.”

GOA serves students, teachers, and leaders and is comprised of member schools from around the world, including independent, international, charter, and public schools. Learn more about Becoming a Member. Our professional learning opportunities are open to any educator or school team. Follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter. To stay up to date on GOA learning opportunities, sign up for our newsletter.

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