The backbone of an office is undoubtedly the administrative assistants, administrative support officers, senior secretaries and executive secretaries. While their titles differ, these professionals are all tasked with a range of responsibilities that include dealing with the public, assisting their bosses and completing office tasks to ensure everything is running smoothly. Their duties are, according to, include: organizing and coordinating the writing and sending of information; writing and presenting often confidential notes; filtering information and documents; preparing the agenda for various committee meetings; organizing upper management meetings; performing searches; preparing the results of these searches for their presentation by executives; meeting with various groups or people to identify their requests; recommending solutions to management; following up the budget for the department; and acting as a liaison between executives, management and the exterior companies.

Centennial College’s Office Administration – Executive program provides all of the knowledge students need to launch careers in just two years. The content is presented in an inclusive environment that is led by instructors who have experience in the business world and in this specific field, which makes their expertise and knowledge of current trends beneficial. Program topics cover all the office and business skills students need to effectively carry out the range of tasks for which they will be responsible upon graduation, including extensive software skills, Internet research abilities, presentation preparation, taking minutes of meetings, composing business correspondence and arranging national and international conferences, note-taking and related computer skills; client service, communication, time management and supervisory skills.

As one of the most respected office administration schools in Toronto, this program enjoys relationships with industry partners who accept students for a final-semester field placement. During this time, students take directions from supervisors at the companies with which they are placed and essentially function as employees, which gives them the opportunity to apply their knowledge in real-world scenarios. Students spend two days a week working in a business setting related to their area of specialization. Says David Lipton, president of SQM, of the offering: “From the students who participate in the executive work placement program to the employees we have hired through the school, we are proud to be associated with Centennial College’s Office Administration program.

Because Centennial College enjoys a top-notch reputation in the field, students are able to pursue more education through institutions that allow them to use their credentials at Centennial to skip certain classes. The partners with which this offering is associated include: Algoma University, Athabasca University and University of New Brunswick.