Career & University Guidance

Career & University Guidance At Armbrae

Teachers at Armbrae Academy create an environment that fosters life-long learning, critical thinking and engaged citizenship. Armbrae provides students with a comprehensive and individualized career education and post-secondary counselling program infused with these same values. We provide an intentional, structured model for supporting students as they become engaged and productive citizens capable of leading self-sustaining and satisfying lives. This requires learning decision-making and other skills necessary to plan and select from the array of options available both during and after high school.

We work closely with students to help them refine their post-secondary plans and determine what steps should be taken to prepare them to earn a place at their university of choice. This journey begins in Grade 9 with guidance infused into the academic program across disciplines. As students progress through Grades 10 through 12, personalized guidance expands to include course selection advice based on the goals that students have set for themselves. Our academic and other programming is designed to ensure Armbrae graduates are well prepared for the expectations and rigour of university.

Career Education

Our unique Career Education program provides students with a foundation that begins in Grade 9 and continues through three half-credits in Career Education in Grades 10-12. In these courses, students start to recognize their strengths and needs, and build work experiences and refine the skills and abilities that will be needed in future careers. By developing a deeper awareness of themselves, students can create a course of study to pursue through post-secondary education or training.

Central concepts in the Career Education curriculum include personal development, career awareness, workplace readiness, financial awareness, and portfolio development. These topics are covered progressively rather than sequentially, meaning that students will continue to build their skills in each area over the course of the three year program. Students are equipped to make informed course selections that will keep open a range of post-secondary options. Members of our guidance team also help students access resources related to career planning, mentorship and external learning opportunities.

Post-Secondary Guidance

A broad range of information on post-secondary institutions, programs and the admissions process are available to students through the guidance team. Representatives from a wide selection of post-secondary institutions visit Armbrae Academy and speak to students each year. We closely assist students in the university selection and application process, meeting with them regularly throughout the year. Students are encouraged to meet regularly with their guidance counsellor to explore resources and discuss their goals and future plans.

Meet the Team

Michael Maki, Head of Career & University Guidance

Email Michael Maki

Education: Education: College Counseling from the University of California Los Angeles, Conflict Resolution through Justice Institute of British Columbia, Bachelor in Criminology with an extended minor in Psychology from Simon Fraser University.

Michael has over 20 years of experience in university advising. He has worked at private international schools in Chile, Canada and most recently, China. Michael’s passion is to encourage learners to strive for balance between academic expectations, navigate the unknown futures in the pursuit of individual growth and success for career and educational interests. A committed life-long learner, Michael has visited more than 500 university campuses in 5 continents. An active member of IACAC (International Association of College Admission and Counseling), NACAC (National Association of College Admission and Counseling), CISC (Canadian Independent School Counsellors), and has served on the advisory board for Naviance as well as The Ohio State University. Michael undertakes frequent professional development in the field of post-secondary career development and university admissions, including attending and presenting at conferences locally, nationally and internationally.

Ryan Shaw, Career Education Teacher & Academic Advisor

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Education: Master of Fine Arts (Creative Nonfiction), University of King’s College Secondary English Teachable, University of Toronto (OISE) Bachelor of Education (Secondary Science), University of Wollongong Bachelor of Science (Science & Business), University of Waterloo

Ryan has taught Grade 12 Advanced English for over a decade, giving him regular contact with every Armbrae Academy graduating class. He is passionate about helping students become deep thinkers and effective communicators. His MFA experience allows him to be an impactful writing coach, pushing students to take their writing seriously. As a practicing writer himself, he knows how crucial a well-written cover letter or scholarship application can be in opening career doors. Ryan is the author of Louisbourg or Bust: A Surfer’s Wild Ride Down Nova Scotia’s Drowned Coast, which earned him a nomination for the 2019 Margaret and John Savage First Book Award.

Information for Post-Secondary Institutions

Armbrae welcomes university visits during the academic school day either during the scheduled lunch (11:30am - 12:15pm) or during Career 11 or 12 classes. Career 11 as an audience are the current grade 11 students and Career 12 are members of the graduating class. The use of Career Education class time permits visitors to share the general university admission content and any topic of interest or unique to your institution. Some suggestions include: delve into specific academic topics such as STEM, types of engineering, what is liberal arts, careers within the visual or performing arts, developing a portfolio, understanding co-op education, new or future career considerations. The possibilities are endless. To arrange a visit or to continue the discussion on a focused presentation please contact Michael Maki

Information for Students, Parents & Alumni