Amy Watt, Career Development Practitioner (CDP)
By Cathy Milton.
This is a significant achievement that required a lot of hard work and focus. In CPC’s record book, Amy will always hold the distinction of being the first CDP graduate of this widely endorsed Canadian online program for career practitioners.
Amy kindly agreed to be interviewed, sharing her thoughts and reflections on her achievement. Get to know Amy better by reading on.
For the benefit of our readers, can you please tell us a bit about your background and your company, “Police Test Tutor?”
I’m passionate about the education of police officers and helping others achieve career success. I have 12 years of experience with the Toronto Police Service, and three years of experience as a Canada Border Services Officer. I hold a Bachelor of Applied Arts Degree (with distinction) in Justice Studies from the University of Guelph, and a diploma in Behavioural Science Technology from St. Lawrence College in Kingston, Ontario.
After my child was born, I left policing as I had a desire to pursue other interests. I have always been interested in entrepreneurial avenues and enjoy helping others succeed, so I started teaching college (Police Foundations). As a college instructor, I observed that many of my students would make excellent police officers, however, they struggled to pass the aptitude tests.
As a result of those observations, I developed material and started tutoring people. My clients were passing the aptitude tests, so I decided to expand my business by moving the tutoring to an e-learning format via a website, Police Test Tutor.
Currently, the website has tutoring material and practice tests to assist people with the Canadian Forces Aptitude Test (CFAT), Ontario Association of Chiefs of Police constable selection aptitude tests, and the federal government’s General Competency Test Level 2 (GCT2) and Written Communication Proficiency Test (WCPT) aptitude tests.
I was pleasantly surprised to discover that once my clients had passed their aptitude tests, they reached out to me again, looking for assistance with their cover letters, resumes, and interview preparation. I decided that completing formal training and certification in these areas would be beneficial for me personally, and for my growing client base.
I am really excited to announce that I have hired a new team member who is developing tutoring material and practice aptitude tests for emergency dispatchers. As an added-value feature, my website also hosts a law enforcement specific job board.
What motivated you to pursue all five of the courses in CPC’s Career Development Practitioner Program?
I initially completed the Advanced Résumé Development (CDP-05) course and found it to have great value. Based on my great experience with this first course, it was an easy decision to pursue the remaining four courses so that I could further assist my college students and my clients in achieving their career goals.
How will your new CDP Certification impact your private practice? For example, will you be offering new services to your clients?
I assist people with career decision-making and this certification will enhance what I already offer my clients. I am always looking for new ways to expand, so this may lead to new services and I am exploring possibilities.
Now that you’ve successfully completed all of the courses, what stands out for you as most memorable about the learning experience?
When I initially started the program, I thought that I would simply complete the work. I was not expecting the sharing of resources and the forging of professional relationships that occurred. The participants in my courses were willing to share resources and offer advice when unique client situations arose via our online discussion forums. The courses are designed in a way to allow the learner to delve into the topic deeper and to probe for new solutions, ideas, and more.
What other professional development plans would you like to pursue in the future?
I love to learn and am constantly taking courses, and attending conferences and symposiums. I am currently completing a post-graduate certificate in Teaching and Training Adults at Durham College and regularly attend Osgoode Professional Development courses. This summer I will be in Summerside, P.E.I. at the Canadian Association of Police Educators conference and am really excited to learn new developments and trends so that I can further support my clients and students in their pursuit of career success.
What would you say to other CPC members who are considering registering for the courses in the CDP program?
My recommendation is to take the courses; not only are you learning, but you have the opportunity to exchange resources and to broaden your professional network.
Any last words of wisdom from CPC’s “CDP Trailblazer?”
Forming networks and collaborative relationships are part of the recipe for success. As you move through life and work towards your goals, take time to reflect on how your actions and words may affect others.