Early ABEA Recollections

The idea for an ABEA had its beginnings in the Spring of 1973.  At the spring conference of the Alberta Business Education Council, nine Alberta college and institute business instructors got together for lunch and discussed the concern that postsecondary business teachers without valid Alberta teaching certification could not become full members of the BEC.  In other words, MBAs and other university degrees were considered valid for instructing at the college level but these degree holders had to be associate members only of BEC.  These folks said they “felt like second class citizens”!  It was decided to appeal our case to the Alberta Teachers Association.  It was also decided to ask the program planning committee of the next BEC Annual Conference to include a couple of sessions geared particularly for postsecondary business classes. 

At the BEC Spring Conference in 1974 no sessions were planned for the postsecondary group.  Also, a request for a meeting on the agenda had also been denied.  In addition, our appeal to the ATA regarding membership status was denied.  At the following BEC 1975 Spring Conference,  about fifteen postsecondary instructors in attendance arranged a special meeting one afternoon during the conference.  It was decided to plan a fall workshop for postsecondary business instructors at Red Deer College and Mel Delaney (Chair, Secretarial Science, Red Deer College) was appointed to chair a committee with two other members:  Earl May (Chair, Secretarial Arts, Mount Royal College) and Donna Allan (Faculty, Secretarial Science, Red Deer College).  The main purpose for the committee was twofold:  (1) to plan for a one-day workshop for postsecondary business instructors and (2) to draw up a proposal for a constitution for a postsecondary association.  It was also decided that the workshop should be planned for the fall to avoid any conflict for attendance at the annual BEC Spring Conference.

 The first fall workshop of the fledgling group was held on a Saturday in the fall of 1975 at Red Deer College.  Letters had been sent out to business instructors at all Alberta colleges,  institutes of technology and vocational centres.  Included was a draft constitution for discussion at the business meeting to be held the same day.  Over thirty instructors attended the workshop and business meeting.  A first draft of a constitution for the Alberta Business Education Association was presented and some minor modifications were suggested.  The main principle was that all business teachers in Alberta could become full members, regardless of provincial certification, whether they were teaching at postsecondary or secondary levels.   It was decided to seek further feedback and participation from other instructors back at our institutions and to present the draft constitution for acceptance at the 1976 Fall Workshop at Red Deer College.

 The constitution of the ABEA was accepted at the 1976 Fall Workshop in Red Deer and memberships were sold on the spot!  The first elected President was  Murray Arnold, Chair, Business Administration, Red Deer College.

Web info, questions or comments?

Contact Heather Taylor