2023 VRA Canada & CAVEWAS Conference

Date: May 30, 2023 to June 2, 2023



VRA Canada and CAVEWAS Training Day 2023 Conference
The Inn at Laurel Point, Victoria, BC
Tuesday, May 30 - Friday, June 2

Schedule: Cavewas Training day - may 30, 2023




7:30 – 8:30 am

Hot breakfast


8:30 – 8:45 am

Welcome and opening remark Land Recognition and reflection

Marg Smith, CAVEWAS President and Nadia Salmaniw

8:45 – 9:15 am

Keynote Speaker

Nadia Salmaniw, Director of Career and Employment Service, Victoria Native Friendship Center and Indigenous Truth and Reconciliation Consultant

9:15 – 10:30 am

Presentation 1 – EDSC NOC changes review panel

Lead by Marc Gendron, ESDC Manager of NOC

10:30 – 10:45 am



10:45 am – 12:00 pm

Presentation 2 – Data analysis and Triangulation

Dr. Steven Sligar, Ed.D, CVE, PVE. – Professor Emeritus, East Carolina University (ECU), Vocational Trainer and Consultant

12:00 - 12:30 pm



12:30 – 1:15 pm



1:30 – 2:45 pm

Presentation 3 - “How to Write Vocational Reports and Sleep at Night: Objectivity, Clarity and Defensibility”

Jennifer Griffiths, MS, RRP, RVP, CVRP, CCVE


Peter Campbell, RRP, CVRP, ICVE

2:45 – 3:00 pm



3:00 – 4:15 pm

Presentation 4 – “Practical Review of General Reasoning Assessments” with small group discussions/workshop.

Dr. Karp, Psy.D., C. Psych., Registered Psychologist

4:15 – 4:30 pm

Wrap up





7:00 – 9:00 pm (TBC)

Dinner and Social Event

Ithika Restaurant

Keynote Speaker

Presenter Nadia Salmaniw

S’ahn N’ahn Guu’as ~ the girl who sings

I am a proud, mixed heritage indigenous woman. I am Haida on my mother’s side and Ukrainian on my father’s side.

My identity comes alive where these two rich cultures converge.

I am an intergenerational residential school survivor, a land protector and a mother dedicated to healing intergenerational trauma within my family line. I carry a unique perspective and approach to “2 eyed seeing”–serving the urban indigenous community for the past decade in the field of Education, Business and Career Development, while also being grounded in traditional ways of knowing, doing and being. I come from a long line of bridge builders …my ancestors, including my great, great grandfather Chief Edward Edenshaw, were known for building good relationship with the non- indigenous community-fostering peace, positive regard and allyship. It is my purpose to carry on this family legacy and to continue the good work of my ancestors.

Remembering the Medicine of the Present Moment

My lens of reality and my perspective on life have been altered by returning to these ancient practices of “turning in, to turn outward” particularly in the realms of connection with myself, relationship with the Land and fostering connection with others. My wish today is to share some of my journey with you, by cultivating sacred space—deeper presence with one another. My vision is that you will be inspired and "lit up" to begin or deepen a mindfulness practice of your own, becoming more self-aware and aligned- body, mind and spirit. Together, we will experience a guided grounding practice, meant to help cultivate more ease, gratitude and a deep sense of connection to Spirit and to the Earth.

CAVEWAS Sessions

Session 1 - ESDC Presentation

Presenter: Marc Gendron - Manager of NOC

Following the completion of his master’s degree in economics, from Laval University, Marc Gendron joined the public service as a researcher. He quickly developed his interest in skills and labour mobility areas, which eventually led him to discover and use very detailed labour market products such as the Career Handbook and the O*NET. For the past five years, Marc’s interest has shifted from conducting research to enhancing and broaden the understanding and adoption of labour market information products such as the National Occupational Classification and the recent Occupational and Skills Information system, also known as the OaSIS. While he may come across as a daydreamer, as the current manager of the National Occupational Classification, he believes that improved and reliable labour market information is the result of quality research, ongoing stakeholder engagement and rich discussions!

Session 2 - Data Analysis & Triangulation

Presenter: Dr. Steven R. Sligar, Ed.D, CVE, PVE

How do I collect data?
Triangulation. Now, what do I do with all the data? Analysis! As a vocational evaluator, you are charged to answer referral questions. Your job is to collect data from a variety of sources such as on- the-job performance, interest inventory results, or work history. Next, you have to analyze the data in a way that makes sense to you and answers the referral questions.

How do you establish an efficient process to perform these functions?
This workshop will address the importance and how-to of collecting data from multiple sources and then analyzing data to support your conclusions and recommendations. Specifically, you will learn to

1) incorporate corroboration and triangulation into data collection and analysis;
2) identify three types of analysis and two types of data interpretation; and
3) apply four methods from the continuum of assessment.

Session 3 - “How to write vocational reports and still sleep at night: Objectivity, Clarity and Defensibility”

Presenter: Peter Campbell and Jennifer Griffiths

This session/module offers learning and perspectives on legal and other vocational report writing arenas for VR professionals.

Topics to be covered include:

  • Bias versus objectivity
  • File review guidelines
  • Behavioural observation documentation
  • Vocational Research and veracity of sources
  • Technical writing skills and writing style
  • Professional collaboration
  • What if I have to go to court? Form 53 in Ontario, other jurisdictions
  • Your vocational opinion, yes that matters!

Through exercises, presentations and interaction participants will learn and enhance their tools to produce vocational rehabilitation reports. These skills can provide the VR professional with confidence in themselves and with these strategies and tips to become more professional writers.

Session 4 - Practical review of general reasoning assessment with small group discussions/workshop.

Presenter: Dr. Jeffrey Karp, Psy. D., C. Psych. Registered Psychologist

Best practices in vocational evaluation identify that a fulsome vocational assessment should include psychometric testing and analysis of a person’s general reasoning/problem-solving skills, current academic achievement, and vocational aptitudes and interests, in addition to a comprehensive transferable skills analysis (transferable skills analysis considers the person’s work history, education, vocational aptitudes, physical abilities, and transferable skills gained through education, training, employment, and avocational activities). Many vocational evaluators struggle to find suitable and updated general reasoning testing to administer as part of their vocational evaluations. Measuring cognitive or intellectual functioning is not within the vocational evaluators scope of practice and certification, unless supervised by a psychologist. As well, referring parties of many vocational evaluations, especially for STD/LTD, and accident benefit, are not prepared to provide remuneration for the evaluation, sufficient to consider utilizing a psychologist for supervision.

In addition, many of the referring many of the general reasoning tests available have not been updated, provide minimal norms and have been developing using a small sample. There relevance of these scores are difficult to defend in many cases, with minimal direction from test developers (lack of technical or testing manuals). In addition, many of these tests are no longer supported or updated by the developers and are out of print.

The aim of this psychometric training session to help vocational evaluators choose the appropriate general reasoning test suitable for their client, based on

  • The validity of the testing, norms, and sample size
  • A review of test correlations, confidence intervals and normal curve equivalents – how do we explain the scores/level/range descriptors
  • Understand the strength/weakness of the test they are using
  • How the test compares/correlates to other normed and standardized testing



We are pleased to invite you to an evening of great food, laughter, and networking on May 30, 2023, at 7 pm at the Ithaka Greek Restaurant. Cost: $45 per person.

Includes: Starter and Main

  • Hors d'oeuvres will be provided by CAVEWAS.
  • Seats are limited to 60 guests. First come first serve. Please register to make your meal selection by May 1st.
  • Desserts and Beverages are not included.



We are pleased to hold this year’s conference at the beautiful Inn at Laurel Point in Victoria, B.C.

Room Rates

Guest room rates are based on single or double occupancy and are exclusive of applicable taxes and service fees. Room rates are $219.00 per night. A charge of $25.00 applies to each additional guest over the age of 18. There is limited availability for the preferred room rate before and after the conference.

100% Non-Smoking

Inn at Laurel Point is a 100% non-smoking property, this includes guestroom balconies and patios. A penalty fee will be charged should evidence be found of smoking. This penalty fee is currently $250.00.

Reservation Method

All reservations must be made individually through our Reservations Department by calling 1-800-663-7667 or 250-386-8721 or by e-mail at reservations@laurelpoint.comPlease quote VRA Canada to obtain our group rates.

Cut-Off Date

The “cut-off date” is Friday, April 21, 2023. After this date, Inn at Laurel Point reserves the right to release any unused rooms back to general inventory for resale. Reservation requests received after the cut-off date will be booked based on hotel availability at prevailing rates.


Conference Registration: