The #3SkillsYEG Challenge, part 3: Lifelong learning

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The #3SkillsYEG Challenge, part 3: Lifelong learning

3SkillsYEG-3 - 1This week marked the close of the Edmonton Public Library’s #3SkillsYEG Challenge for 2016.

CompuVision was delighted to support this initiative by signing me up as a “Learning Champion.” This challenge encouraged Edmontonians to learn three new skills in three months, on the themes of:

  1. Personal growth and wellbeing
  2. Creativity and expression
  3. Making our city better

We met for a wrap up event on May 10, 2016, at the beautiful new Mill Woods branch of the EPL, and shared cake, stories and inspiration. Our congratulations to the EPL for a great program. It was an honour to be involved.

My past two posts on #3SkillsYEG covered me tackling circus skills through Edmonton’s very own Firefly Theatre and Circus for creativity and expression, and attempting to learn how to organize myself better for personal growth.

Skill number two — learning the trapeze and silks — I’ll count as a solid win, for me and CompuVision’s first corporate value, to Be Curious.

Skill number one — getting organized — was a bigger challenge for me to tackle, and is still a work in progress.

The third skill I was going to learn was how to recycle electronics as part of making our city better. I didn’t quite get to that. Admittedly, part of the reason was my ongoing work on skill number one. Learning better organizational skills really became a focus and priority. Yes, it is ironic how learning the skills to help make myself more productive ended up causing me to push something else out of the way. I have had a good chuckle with this part of my learning journey, as have my colleagues, and was happy, if a little sheepish, to share that story at our wrap up event.

But I am learning about focusing on the priorities, so really it’s okay that I didn’t get to my intended skill. Sometimes the plan we make for ourselves needs to shift to make room for higher learning occur.

On the other hand, what I also learned from the #3SkillsYEG Challenge is that ideally you’re always learning new things… maybe not the ones you planned on learning, but learning nonetheless.

So I took a look back and this is some of what I learned in April instead of learning how to recycle electronics:

  • How to upload a video into YouTube
  • How to deal with 404 errors and build 301 page redirects for websites
  • How to do link building for Search Engine Optimization
  • How to choose a construction manager for a large-scale building restoration project
  • How to upgrade memory in a Mac Mini
  • How to install a kitchen faucet
  • How to segment a home wifi network for the Internet of Things (IoT)
  • How to cook a roast in a slow cooker

In the end, for me the actual point of the #3SkillsYEG Challenge and the City of Learners Initiative was to become more aware of the learning I was encountering every day. Being a Lifelong Learner is a state of mind, a constant process, and a habit that is worth forming. Lesson learned.

Stay Curious!

Winston Pei
Winston Pei has made a career of telling stories and introducing people to new ideas and environments, which at CompuVision his children referred to as being a "nerd to non-nerd translator." When not in the field helping customers, he served as CompuVision’s inhouse design and communications specialist. He holds both a Bachelor of Arts and a Master of Arts degree from the University of Alberta, where he studied the intersection of design and technology in the history of the book.

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