What Is The Emergency Management & Disaster Recovery Program?

Responding and managing an emergency event is, arguably, straightforward. The focus is on life safety and the protection of infrastructure. It is a well-established profession and with lots of formal & informal education opportunities.

But the long-term recovery of people & families and communities following a disaster requires a host of actions to restore the physical, economic and social functions of individuals & families and communities, including the restoration of critical infrastructure; re-establishment of educational, civic and commercial services; and re-establishment of the homes & communities of displaced persons.

It is the least formal phase of emergency response and there are few if any opportunities in Canada to learn the practical and applied aspects of Recovery.

To our understanding & research, this program will be the first of its kind in Canada.

There are several post-grad programs but few outside of non-governmental organizations that provide practical hands-on & applied education to the people who will be and are delivering recovery programs to those affected by disaster

The damage done by post-tropical storm Fiona.FRANK GUNN AND DARREN CALABRESE/THE CANADIAN PRESS

How will this help you in your careers?

Flooded farmland in Abbotsford. DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

In Alberta & British Columbia alone, we have had four of the largest and most complex Recovery Operations in Canada, with the 2121 BC Atmospheric Rivers Floods, the 2016 Fort MacMurray Fires and the 2013 Southern Alberta floods. What these events have shown is that once the emergency phase is over, there are precious few people who have the education and experience to manage the long hard work that goes into recovery.

There will be recovery work taking place in the Bow River Basin for 2 to 3 more years and trained people will be required to do that work.

The frequency and complexity of these large disasters at home & abroad continue to increase giving people exciting & challenging career and volunteer opportunities.

Why should you choose us for this training?

The course has been developed by some of the most experienced recovery experts in Canada.

To our knowledge, it is the only post-secondary institution to develop a program of this nature.

July 2021 Mountain wildfire south of Merritt. DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS

What You Will Learn

Who Are Your Instructors

Sharon Bak

Bak Emergency Mangement

Having been a responder for over 25 years, Sharon now focuses a considerable amount of my business and volunteer time towards training, education, and advocacy on the unique mental health needs of public safety personnel and their loved ones.

Currently, Sharon is the President of a local family network and is trained as an Independent Facilitator, a role that assists in the building of social support networks.

As a person who has lived experience with trauma and mental illness, Sharon speaks publicly about mental health and wellness, sit on several provincial and national working groups, and does her best to recover “out loud”. All this is to bring education, awareness, and hope to others who may be struggling.

Steve Armstrong


Steven Armstrong worked worldwide as a Canadian Armed Forces and the Red Cross member for over three decades.

On the literal frontlines of many of the globe’s most notable humanitarian crises during that time – ranging from the shores of Sri Lanka after the 2004 tsunami to the aftermath of 9/11 in New York to fighting wildfires in Fort McMurray in 2016 – Steve has proven, over and over again, what authentic Leadership means.

Interested In the course? Help us make it work for you by sharing your thoughts.

Lytton's charred remains. DARRYL DYCK/THE CANADIAN PRESS
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