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Life and Employment Skills for Independence

Life and Employment Skills for Independence

The Life and Employment Skills for Independence (LESI) certificate at Red Deer Polytechnic is a non-credit program developed to support learners with developmental disabilities to obtain employment and establish and maintain independence. Learners will participate in classroom instruction and experiential learning opportunities, including work experience. The LESI has been divided into three terms: Social skills and Personal Development, Independent Living Skills, and Employment Readiness. Throughout the program learners will earn ProServe, First Aid and WHIMS certifications that will allow them to gain practical skills while increasing their employability. The emphasis of this program is to provide a more inclusive approach to support learners in career discovery, employment readiness, work-integrated learning, and exploration of post-secondary training. 

Program Length:

Full-time program over 12 months 



September 2024


Delivery Method:

On Campus 



Funding Options:

For Funding Options Please Click Here

Admission Requirements: 

  • Must be 18 years of age or older 
  • Complete the application package and psychological assessment 
  • Natural Support Assessment 
  • Completion of high school and transcripts 
  • Letter of reference (teacher or employer)  

Courses and Descriptions: 

LESI 8000: Introduction to Health and Wellness 

Focus on healthy living including relationship building, healthy eating and exercise practices. Identify support services provided by local community agencies and government.   

LESI 8001: Introduction to Life Skills   

Increase self-awareness about feelings, thoughts and actions. Develop strategies to manage and communicate emotions with others. Explore different ways to minimize and manage stress through self-care, natural supports, goal setting and self-advocacy. 

LESI 8002: Healthy Relationships and Interpersonal Communication   

Develop strategies for effective communication with others in personal and workplace relationships. Examine non-verbal communication, conversation skills, conflict resolution, and assertiveness.   

LESI 8003: Study Skills for Success

Apply strategies for learning to promote success, including effective listening, comprehension and note-taking. Explore personal learning styles and the behaviours necessary for academic success. 

LESI 8004: Volunteer Experience

Gain practical experience through a work experience opportunity in a setting suited to individual interests and abilities.

LESI 8005: Living Independently   

Gain practical experience to apply knowledge and skills to prepare for independent living. Learn how to search for suitable housing, prepare meals, manage home responsibilities and enhance personal safety skills. 

LESI 8006: Introduction to Technical Proficiency and Digital Literacy  

Gain experience using Microsoft programs including Word and Outlook. Create basic documents including a resume and cover letter. Use email, the internet/world wide web and social media safely.   

LESI 8007: Financial Literacy and Numeracy  

Explore financial and consumer strategies to manage personal banking including creating monthly budgets, understanding bank statements, and strategies for financial decision-making. 

LESI 8008: Community Involvement and Social Life   

Employ skills to identify and access services provided by local community agencies and facilities.  Research and attend social events of interest to develop social skills. Understand leisure and social interactions as an integral part of self-care.   

LESI 8009: Career Discovery and Employment Preparation 

Explore employment opportunities through local events, speakers and assessments. Discuss principles of conduct that would be expected within the workplace. 

LESI 8010: Work Experience I 

Complete a work experience opportunity in an employment setting suited to individual interests and abilities. 

LESI 8011: Math Skills for the Workplace

Develop mathematical skills for the workplace including how to count money and give change, measurement techniques, problem solving and basic math computing. 

LESI 8012: Leadership and Self-Advocacy  

Develop the tools to make decisions, understand legal rights, and advocate for personal needs to be successful in the work and social environments. 

LESI 8013: Workplace Standards and Employment Readiness Simulation

Become familiar with workplace standards, complete a job search, submit a resume or application, and complete the interview process. 

LESI 8014: Post-secondary Level Course  

Audit a post-secondary level course to become immersed in the post-secondary life. The course will practice study, social and leadership skills in an academic environment. 

LESI 8015: Work Experience II

Complete a work-experience opportunity in an employment setting suited to individual interests and abilities. 

How to Register:

Request an Application Package from the Division of Education at (403) 356-4900 or extended [dot] ed [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (extended[dot]ed[at]rdpolytech[dot]ca)

Complete and Submit an Application Package, including:

1. RDP (Red Deer Polytechnic) Application for Admission Form

2. LESI Applicant Profile Form

3. 2 Reference Letters i.e., Teacher/Counselor; Employer/Work Experience Coordinator; Other

4. Copy of most recent Psychological Assessment, including scores

5. Unofficial High School Detailed Academic Report/Transcript

6. Other information as appropriate (work experience reports, relevant school reports, etc.)

Send completed LESI (Life and Employment Skills for Independence) Applicant Profile and associated documents to:

Red Deer Polytechnic  

Division of Extended Education 

Millennium Centre 

Box 5005 4909 49 Street Red Deer AB T4N 5H5  

Email: extended [dot] ed [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (extended[dot]ed[at]rdpolytech[dot]ca) 

Apply early, as space is limited. Late applications will be considered, space permitting. Once applications have been reviewed, successful applicants will be contacted for an interview. Information regarding community supports and funding will be provided at the interview.

You have questions, we have answers. Contact us by extended [dot] ed [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (subject: LESI%20%28Life%20and%20Employment%20Skills%20for%20Independence%29%20Application) (email) or call 403.356.4900

We understand that you still have questions about the programs.
You can talk to us and we can help.
Are you interested in Corporate Training opportunities?
Contact our Business Development Consultant to explore group and customized training solutions.
Corporate [dot] Training [at] rdpolytech [dot] ca (Corporate[dot]Training[at]rdpolytech[dot]ca)