FITT, Partners Support International Business Program
On Wednesday, November 11, 2009, Scott Ferris, CITP and Director, Business Development for the Forum for International Trade Training (FITT) visited the International Business Management (ITB) class at Fanshawe's Lawrence Kinlin School of Business. Mr. Ferris discussed the Certified International Trade Professional (CITP) designation, the benefits of membership in FITT and FITT's collaborative partnerships with I.E.Canada, EDC and other export-oriented organizations.
Fanshawe students Gagan Dhanjal (far left) and Oscar Guisandes (second from right) with students from Niagara and Georgian Colleges.
FITT provides important external certifications. Students who graduate from the ITB
program earn an Ontario College Certificate in International Business and a FITT Diploma in
International Trade. If successful on the educational criteria, students can subsequently
earn the CITP designation by working for one year in international trade, be it in the
private, public or non-profit sector. The CITP designation also requires a commitment to
ethical behaviour, professional development and membership fees.
Scott arrived in London after attending the annual conference for the Canadian Bureau for International Education (CBIE) in Toronto from November 8 to 10. ITB program coordinator Murray Morgan made a presentation at CBIE entitled "Innovating Locally to Win Globally: A Model for Partnering SMEs and the Education Sector to Internationalize Canada's Regional and National Economies." The presentation described the collaboration between the Fanshawe ITB students, FITT and local SMEs including Jones Packaging Inc., Lac-Mac and CTAR. Colleagues from colleges and universities across Canada and several international markets (including Barbados, Egypt and Chile) expressed interest to explore collaborative partnerships.
After sitting in on Morgan's presentation at CBIE, Mr. Ferris invited Professor Morgan to deliver the same presentation at FITT's annual conference and indicated a willingness to provide cooperative marketing funds to continue to build the ITB program.
Prior to Scott's presentation, the students gave brief introductions, their 30-second elevator pitch. Scott Ferris and Dee Morrissey, Program Manager for the Lawrence Kinlin School of Business both commented on the exceptional diversity within the class and how fortunate the students were to be able to learn from each other's experiences. Dee Morrissey wrote "I was quite moved by the students' elevator intros. What a privilege to be a student or teacher in ITB!"
After the presentation, Scott spoke with several students to answer individual questions. Scott
recognized two of the students, Gagandeep Dhanjal and Oscar Guisandes as they were among six
students from FITT educational partners who recently attended the IE Canada Inaugural CATIE
Awards Dinner at the Delta Meadowvale Conference Centre. Gagan and Oscar had been invited as
guests of Export Development Canada (EDC). The Fanshawe students met Anne-Elisabeth Piché, an
Advisor, Community Investment and Education, Corporate Responsibility Team, EDC, other EDC
representatives, Scott from FITT and IE Canada delegates.
Scott commented that both students were particularly well-prepared with professional business
attire, business cards and questions for the business representatives at their table. The
Fanshawe students mentioned that the EDC staff, Scott and other guests were extremely
hospitable and made a point of introducing themselves to all student attendees. Oscar
commented, "the Dining for Professional Success course has been such a valuable learning
experience and prepared the ITB students perfectly for this type of function." This positive
feedback reflects highly on the Tourism and Hospitality Division and this year's professor,
The collaboration with exporting SMEs and the synergistic partnerships with FITT, EDC and I.E.Canada have been beneficial to ITB students. The concept of supporting Canadian SMEs is consistent with the Compete to Win report and recent policy work from the Institute for Competitiveness and Prosperity (ICP). ICP's Report on Canada 2009, 'Opportunity in the Turmoil' concludes, "Despite public concerns about the current economic slowdown, Canadians have an opportunity to build our future prosperity by ensuring we keep a balanced perspective on short-term and long-term challenges...this is the time for attitudes of openness and expansion. While other countries seem to be taking a more insular and protectionist approach, Canada has to be open to foreign investment, global trade, and talented immigrants so that we can approach the eventual economic recovery in a relatively stronger position."