Migrant Systems Change Leadership Certificate

Announcing the new Migrant Systems Change Leadership Certificate!

Applications are now closed for the 2021 cohort.

What is the Migrant Systems Change Leadership Certificate?

The Migrant Systems Change Leadership (MSCL) program is the first certificate of its kind offered by the Refugee Livelihood Lab. The program is designed for people who have lived a refugee or immigrant experience. Through a collaborative process taking place over eight months in an online setting, you will gain an understanding of foundational concepts related to equity, racial justice, Indigenous rights, and decolonization.

You will work alongside a group of other leaders and advisors to develop, test, and share initiatives that address social, political, or economic issues specific to refugee and immigrant communities.

We aim to amplify your projects, ground your impact in the communities you serve, and invest in you as a person.

Why Systems Change? Learn more here.

Program Information

We offer a welcoming and safe environment to help you grow your confidence, leadership, and to access tailored coaching support. A critical part of our work is in exploring the tensions and relationships of being newcomers/immigrants on unceded Indigenous lands, and our ties to Indigenous communities.

Together, we will embark on an enriching journey of growth and awareness with open hearts and minds. 

The certificate consists of nine modules. You will share a virtual classroom with 20-25 other learners in bi-weekly sessions for eight months. 

  • MSCL 110 Voices from the Field
  • MSCL 120 Locating Ourselves, Mapping Our Systems
  • MSCL 210 Practicing Equity Centered Design
  • MSCL 220 Reflection & Generative Dialogue
  • MSCL 310 Co-Creating the Future
  • MSCL 320 Feedback, Iteration & Failure
  • MSCL 410 Co-Evolving: Influence, Engagement & Partnership
  • MSCL 420 Integration and Next Steps
  • MSCL 510 Practicum, Coaching and Integration

The certificate cost is $1,000 (CAD). Scholarships are available.

We recognize that inequitable structures have created many barriers that might prevent some from accessing this certificate.  We are committed to removing any access barriers to this program (to the best of our ability).  As such, scholarships, income replacement, ELL support, transportation subsidy, dependent care support (childcare or elders), and more are available. If you are undocumented or don’t have a SIN number, or having difficulty applying, please reach out to us and we would be happy to assist you.

If you require any specific support, please do not hesitate to contact us.

Location: Online via Zoom

Schedule: Please ensure you are available for the following dates and times. All sessions listed are in Pacific Standard Time (PST).

Special Dates:

  • April 17 (9:00am – 12:30pm):  Meet & Greet
  • April 20 (5:30pm – 8:30pm): Advisor Meet & Greet
  • April 24  (10:00am – 12:00pm): Photo Session
Regular Program Schedule:

All sessions are from 9:00am—12:30pm on Fridays & Saturdays (bi-monthly) starting April 30, ending October 16, 2021.

All sessions listed are in Pacific Standard Time (PST).

  • April 30, May 1: Locating Ourselves, Mapping Our Systems I
  • May 14-15: Locating Ourselves, Mapping Our Systems II
  • May 28-29: Locating Ourselves, Mapping Our Systems III
  • June 11-12: Practicing Equity Centered Design I
  • June 25-26: Practicing Equity Centered Design II
  • July 9-10: Reflection & Generative Dialogue I
  • July 23-24: Reflection & Generative Dialogue II 
  • August 6-7: Co-creating the Future I
  • August 20-21: Co-creating the Future II
  • September 3-4: Feedback, Iteration & Failure
  • September 17-18 Feedback, Iteration & Failure
  • October 1-2: Co-evolving: Influence, Engagement, & Partnership
  • October 15-16: Co-evolving: Influence, Engagement, & Partnership II
  • October 28, 30: Integration and Next Steps

Closing Celebration:

  • October 28th (5:30pm – 9:20pm)
Final Debrief:
  • November 12 (9:30am – 12:00pm)Integration and Next StepsIntegration and Next Steps

We welcome everyone who identifies with the refugee or immigrant experience, including new and experienced leaders, settlement workers & managers, artists, activists, funders, employers, entrepreneurs, parents, community members and more.

Successful applicants will be required to have demonstrated some prior commitment to addressing the issues faced by migrant communities either through paid or unpaid work experiences, community leadership, or other means. We will recognize foreign-earned credentials and experience. 

If you answer YES to any of these questions, then this program is for you. 

  • Do you have a passion to address challenges such as credential recognition, language barriers, racism, poverty, homophobia, anti-Blackness, Islamophobia, detention policies, access to health care, social and economic exclusion of refugee communities or other issues? 
  • Do you have ideas for your community you want to put into action but have not yet found a way?
  • Do you believe in the value of collaboration with people most affected by the issues AND people with access to institutional power? 
  • Are you willing to invest in your personal leadership and growth? 
  • Do you want to contribute to building diverse communities that can create and lead together? 
  • Do you identify with the refugee or newcomer experience?

Applications for the 2021 cohort are now closed.

We will be offering info sessions to offer further guidance on the application process and to answer any questions you might have about the program. 

  • If you require further support in filling out the application, please contact us at mscl_rll@sfu.ca or call 778-512-9097
  • If you have any access needs (i.e. language, computer, wifi), please do not hesitate to contact us. 

Although this program is for racialized migrants, we are in solidarity with the elderly, newcomers, refugees, undocumented people, Indigenous people, Black people, people of all religious faiths, racialized people, English language learners, drug users, sex workers, the LGBTQIA2+ community, young people, low income people, parents, caretakers, people who live with mental illness, physical illness, accessibility needs, or trauma. If an identity you hold is unseen, please let us know so that we can learn and hopefully welcome you into this community of leaders.

If you’re not sure if this is the right program for you, please contact us at mscl_rll@sfu.ca or call Yara at 778-512-9097 to learn more.

The Program Team

About the Refugee Livelihood Lab

The Refugee Livelihood Lab (RLL) is a social innovation lab housed within RADIUS at the Beedie School of Business at Simon Fraser University. A core part of our work is collaborating with diverse communities and partners to co-create. We strive to center the voices and leadership of communities directly impacted by the issues of forced migration and displacement.

This certificate is largely based on the RLL’s Beyond Borders program. To learn more about previous participants and their projects, click here.

Nada El Masry

Manager, Refugee Livelihood Lab
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Laura Gaaysiigad Cuthbert

Curriculum Contributor
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Yara Younis

Project Manager, Refugee Livelihood Lab
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Jorge Salazar

Curriculum Contributor
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Camille Dumond

Advisor, Refugee Livelihood Lab
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Paola Ardiles

Curriculum Contributor
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