Excuse me while I go back to school…(just kidding) AKA Things from the Mail

There are good mail days (when you get cool stuff like photos or cheques) and bad mail days (bills, bills, bills). Maybe I’m just old fashioned, but e-mail doesn’t seem to spark the same sort of emotions. Most days are ho-hum.

Today, however, was a pretty good e-mail day. I mean, it wasn’t really exciting, but there were a few things in there that I wanted to share. That, my friends, is a marker of a pretty good e-mail day.

First, there was an e-mail about Culture Days. Here’s a snippet from the e-mail:

During three days in September, participating artists, writers, businesses, and cultural groups will offer opportunities for the community to learn more about the artistic and cultural activities in our communities and neighbourhoods. Our writers, actors, directors, producers, musicians, architects, singers, dancers, visual artists, publishers, production crews and all those in leading or supportive roles help create the cultural landscape of Newfoundland and Labrador. Without them there would be a great deal less for us to enjoy and to celebrate. So let’s throw open the doors – literally and figuratively – and invite everyone in!

Oooh!! Exciting! I want Them Days to be a part of this. I’m not sure exactly how at this moment, but we will have something!

Then I got an e-mail newsletter about various things related to tourism in Labrador. There was information about satellite phones on the Trans-Labrador Highway (good to know, because I’m hoping to go over the road soon) and information about tour packages up to the Torngats. (Torngat Safari and Lure of the Labrador Wild) That’s interesting, beautiful, etc., but all it does it make me want to go, and I can’t. I would fall over and have a heart attack if I could ever go on one of those trips. Heck, I would fall over and have a heart attack if I simply had the money to go on one of those trips. So that’s not really relevant to my own life and not the most interesting part of the e-mail day, but I thought that someone out there reading this blog might be interested in such trips, hence the links.

Then I had an e-mail that mentioned the Public History Program at Carleton University. The name intrigued me, so I checked it out. Neat-o! I think it sounds pretty awesome. I’m definitely telling our summer students about it in case they are interested in grad school. If you like Them Days style stuff, you might be interested too.

Speaking of summer students, I then got another interesting e-mail. This one didn’t seem like it had potential (it’s a press release), but I was curious and read it. And I thought it was cool, so onto Aimee’s List of Cool E-mails of April 14, 2010 it goes. Normally I don’t like to be in the habit of posting press releases, but I don’t feel like summarizing the entire thing. It’s kinda got a Labrador connection, so I might as well just paste it all.

Gatineau, Québec, April 14, 2010 – As part of the 125th anniversary celebrations for its national parks, Parks Canada held an open job competition from March 19 – 27 to recruit 32 university or college students in the areas of videography, journalism, communications or visual arts to work in summer jobs across the country.

During the first phase of the recruitment process, students were invited to submit their applications and take a quiz designed to demonstrate their knowledge of technical video production and Canadian history. The historical knowledge section of the quiz was developed in conjunction with the Historica Dominion Institute, an independent organization dedicated to Canadian history. The applications have been gathered and results show that the first phase was a resounding success. Over a period of less than 10 days, almost 900 students applied for Canada’s Greatest Summer Job.

Following the initial screening of applications, more than 200 students were still in the running for the 32 available positions. To complete the second phase of screening, each student had to produce, before Friday, April 9, a one-minute video showing why he or she would be the best candidate for the job. When the deadline closed, 135 students had submitted videos. A selection committee will now grade each video on its technical merit, originality and its fit. The videos from the final 32 chosen candidates will be available for viewing on the Parks Canada website in May.

Once selected, the 32 students will be placed in the 32 Parks Canada field units across the country. Their objective is to produce a series of videos portraying their experiences in national parks, national historic sites and national marine conservation areas.

As part of their job, the students will first meet in May in Banff, the site of Canada’s first national park, to participate in a week-long training session which will focus on video editing. In August, the group will meet again, this time in Canada’s newest National Park, the Torngat Mountains, to share their experiences. During the weeks between their two meetings, the students will work in their respective field units as video reporters for Parks Canada, where they will produce a final video.

In November, selected members of this group will be given the opportunity to gather at the Banff Film Festival to attend workshops and seminars. During this time, the award for the best student video will be presented. Each of the 32 final videos will be available for viewing on the Parks Canada website.

Parks Canada manages one of the finest and most extensive systems of protected areas in the world. There are 167 national historic sites, 42 national parks and 3 national marine conservation areas located throughout Canada. All these unique and exceptional places represent the very essence of Canada. They tell its story and offer an unforgettable and unique experience for visitors who are looking to discover the real Canada.

I’d be lying if I said it didn’t make me want to be a student again. In fact, I’m convinced that if I were a student again, I’d be there. If they didn’t hire me, I’d still be there, weeping about it. That is one of the coolest summer jobs I have ever heard of – really. (Besides being a summer student at Them Days, of course!) These people are getting paid to see all the amazing sights of Canada. They are being paid to visit the Torngats. I am jealous. I can’t wait to see the videos, especially the one from the Torngats. I wish I could go too!

Hope your day was filled with exciting e-mail too.
– (A really very envious) Aimee

P.S. Since we’re speaking of videos, check out this one from nfb.ca (one of my most favourite sites…I feel like I’m constantly streaming their videos at home). It’s about scientists doing research in northern Quebec back in the 1940s. They make a stop in Goose Bay at the very beginning! It won’t embed on this page, so you’re going to have to click this link to see it.

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