Early Career Professionals

CHRA currently offers a number of programs specifically aimed at supporting Early Career Professionals though opportunities to learn, engage, network and present their research to the national housing community.


For years, CHRA has invested in sector leadership through a range of programs specifically aimed at professional development through learning, research and networking – such as pub nights, speed-date-a-mentor events, research colloquiums, webinars and other opportunities.

Most recently, CHRA has been working to expand its current offerings to Early Career Professionals – and is developing a new pan-Canadian Early Career Professional’s Housing Mentorship Program set to launch later this year. 

The Canadian Housing and Renewal Association,  CIH Canada and Housing Partnership Canada are collaborating to launch the first ever pilot mentorship program for Early Career Professionals working in the housing and homelessness sector across Canada.

The Early Career Professional’s Housing Mentorship Program is being developed to offer increased opportunity for professional development, learning, and one-to-one coaching for those who are seeking further support, consultation and advice from leaders in the affordable housing and homelessness fields.

Mentorships may be oriented around projects, front line or property service delivery, policy, research, advocacy, government relations or other related field initiatives.


The program will allow early career professionals an opportunity to:

  • Explore career and leadership potential in the housing sector;
  • Identify relevant networks, knowledge, skills and career development opportunities;
  • Be guided by a qualified and experienced colleague from the housing sector towards your goals.

The program will offer experienced professionals as mentors and opportunity to:

  • Contribute to an individual’s development and professional career growth;
  • Discover new ways of thinking, and to develop leadership skills while building a professional relationship with your mentee;
  • Share experiences and knowledge.


To participate in the pilot mentorship program, you must be a CHRA, CIH Canada or HPC member in good standing. Eligibility for mentees will not be limited to age, but preference may be given to those in the first five-years of their housing career in order to promote learning and leadership development in the sector. Applications will open in September 2017 - stay tuned for more information. 


Housing Leaders Challenge: Managing Change from the Ground Up

During the 2017 CHRA Congress Innovation Forum, a panel of Canada’s early career professionals made good on a ‘Housing Leaders Challenge’ that drew upon their experiences in housing related research, business, partnerships and front line service delivery. Panelists addressed evolving issues in their respective fields, the implications of affordable housing to the ‘millennial’ generation, and challenged issues of workplace change, sector capacity growth and career development. 

Emerging Professionals Research Colloquium

The Emerging Professionals Research Colloquium, held at CHRA Congress every year as a part of the concurrent workshop series, highlights new ideas and original research from the next generation of housing leaders. At this annual event, graduate students with a concentration in a housing related area, and housing sector professionals 30 years of age and under, present their work and research on one of a series of thematic panel. Congress 2016 will mark the fourth year in which this event will run. Download the proposal.

Fundamentals of Housing Policy & Governance

This condensed, one-day course is designed to build professional development through a comprehensive overview of Canadian housing policies, programs and institutional operations. Topics include housing policy as related to urban, social and economic outcomes, housing markets, housing need, and the changing role of governments in the delivery of Canadian housing policy.

Taught by Steve Pomeroy, President, Focus Consulting Inc., this course is open to all CHRA delegates, though Emerging Professionals can take part, either independently or through work, as a significant investment in their learning and development.


Congress Lunch n' Learn: Personal Brands: Creating and Managing Your Online Identity

For early career professionals, the landscape of job seeking and professional development has changed dramatically. Current employers not only have full access to their employee’s online profiles, but so do a range of potential future employers.

This Congress 2017 session discussed how to manage one’s online presence in a way that balances personal and professional development – and how to use your online presence as a tool to leverage your personal ‘brand’, and enhance your profile in a way that goes beyond what a traditional CV can do. 

The event was hosted by Revolve CEO Phil Otto, considered one of Canada’s strongest brand strategists. Phil writes and speaks to business groups internationally about the importance of aligning business strategy with brand strategy. Working with small businesses and not-for-profits to multi-national corporations and government agencies – Phil helps connect brand to culture, values, employee behaviour and customer experience. He is a passionate supporter of entrepreneurism, local business and the community. 

Emerging Professionals Speed-Date-A-Mentor Networking Lunch

Held at CHRA’s annual national Congress, this event offers a series of short, back-to-back meetings that provide the opportunity to network and form introductions with leaders, stakeholders and innovators working in the housing sector from across Canada, and to learn from their experiences. Congress 2016 will mark the third year in which this event will run.

Emerging Professionals Pub Night

This meet and greet, held at CHRA Congress, allows fellow Emerging Professionals to meet and mingle in a casual and relaxed atmosphere.


Emerging Professionals CHRA Congress Bursary

Emerging Professionals can apply for financial assistance to attend CHRA Congress. Bursaries are allocated on a first come, first served basis, and provide significant discounted savings to allow students and young professionals the opportunity to participate at Congress.

Congress Rates for Emerging Professionals:

Pre-Congress Sessions + Congress: $405
Congress Only : $305
Pre-Congress Sessions or Day Pass : $160

More information will be available in January 2017.


CHRA welcomes Early Career Professionals to join our national network of housing sector organizations, and to receive membership benefit in return, such as access to our monthly newsletter, webinars, special events, programs and Congress savings.  

For more information on joining CHRA.

CHRA continues to explore new ways to collaborate and expand our Early Career Professionals program that will increase opportunities for participation and engagement.

For more information contact:
Kristen Holinsky, Director, Programs & Strategic Initiatives
kholinsky@chra-achru.ca | 613.594.3007 ext. 10



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