What's New At BC Colleges June 2014

Message from Jim Reed, President of BC Colleges

It’s an exciting time of year for colleges and students in BC. Convocation ceremonies dot calendars throughout the province as thousands of students are recognized for their dedication and hard work. When I read about the terrific things happening throughout the college system in BC, I’m struck by the transformative power of a college education. Colleges offer quality, career-oriented education and training and position our graduates to meet the demands of the constantly evolving knowledge-based economy. Our graduates are extremely well positioned to excel at the demands of the “real world”. We are proud to be part of the educational success of our students and wish them all the best of luck in their future. Congratulations.

Behind the scenes, our colleges are working hard to ensure that the supply of highly skilled and educated graduates matches the demand of the labour market. This isn't always easy. As part of our planning, today we are hosting a strategic session with all 11 college Presidents and their Vice-Presidents Academic. The goal of the session is to determine how we can better align supply with demand and produce graduates that are ready to make a difference in BC. This session will involve an intensive review of the BC Government's recently released BC's Skills for Jobs Blueprint and strategic sessions designed to ensure colleges continue to effectively meet the needs of students, communities and businesses throughout BC.

I hope you will take a few minutes to read about the accolades, projects, collaborations and announcements from our 11 member colleges during the past month. For a full list of this month's news, please check out "In the News" on the BC Colleges’ website.

As always, I welcome your feedback, you can reach me by e-mail.


Jim Reed

NWCC Houston Campus Receives Funding
Northwest Community College Media Release, June 11, 2014
Northwest Community College (NWCC) receives funding from the Government of British Columbia under BC’s Skills for Jobs Blueprint. NWCC received $150 000 to provide job skills training and retraining opportunities for the workers who are impacted by the closure of the West Fraser sawmill in Houston. NWCC worked with the Houston Community Adjustment Team and affected workers from the closure of the sawmill to determine which training would be offered. Programs include heavy equipment operator, construction safety officer and electrical. Read more.

College Of The Rockies Dental Assistant Program Sees Milestone
College of the Rockies Media Release, June 4, 2014
College of the Rockies’ Certified Dental Assistant program is marking a new milestone as students graduate from the program for the 30th year. The Certified Dental Assistant program, first offered in 1983, has evolved over the past 30 years to match innovations in dental practice. The program provides access to a modern clinic with a digital radiography computer, a panoramic x-ray machine, a sterilization area and more, all which help prepare students for a real-life work environment. Read more.

Langara Supports Youth In Care
Langara Media Release, June 8, 2014
Langara College is pleased to announce a new Youth In Care bursary program. Starting in the fall of 2014, the four-year pilot program allocates $200,000 annually for bursaries for British Columbians who have lived in care. The aim of the program is to increase the students’ access to and participation in post-secondary education. Each Youth in Care Bursary will cover up to the costs of tuition and student fees. The exact value of each bursary will vary depending upon the number of applicants and each students’ demonstrated need. Read more.

School District 57 And College Of New Caledonia Sign New Education Partnership Agreement
College of New Caledonia Media Release, June 6, 2014
College of New Caledonia and School District 57 signed an Education Partnership Agreement during the College’s board meeting Friday, which ensures high school students will continue to have access to Career Technical Centre (CTC) trades training at CNC. The Chairs of both boards signed the Education Partnership Agreement, which will be reviewed annually to ensure high school students in the Prince George region have access to trades and other training and education opportunities at CNC. Read more.

Douglas College Honours HIV/AIDS Researcher Julio Montaner
Douglas College Media Release, June 5, 2014
Douglas College is today awarding its highest distinction, honorary fellowship, to Dr. Julio Montaner, a renowned researcher and pioneer in the fight against HIV and AIDS. “I am very thankful and honoured to receive this special distinction from Douglas College. This fellowship is a testament to the work my colleagues and I have carried out over the last three decades to stop HIV and AIDS,” says Dr. Montaner, Director of the B.C. Centre for Excellence in HIV/AIDS (BC-CfE). Read more.

VCC Is Helping Students Live Well With Less
Vancouver Community College Media Release, June 1, 2014
Vancouver Community College is on a mission to help financially squeezed students live well on a shoestring budget. In the coming weeks, VCC will roll out a series of videos of tips and tricks from experts across the college. Launching today, the Live Well for Less series kicks off with the inaugural video hosted by celebrity chef and VCC culinary instructor Shelley Robinson (of Chopped and Top Chef Canada fame). Learn how to make a perfect roast chicken. Other episodes will teach students how to score thrift shop bargains and upcycle a t-shirt. Read more.

NLC Students Benefit From Spectra Energy Foundation’s Support
Northern Lights College Media Release, June 1, 2014
Students in three programs at Northern Lights College have benefited from a special $7,500 award provided by the Spectra Energy Foundation to support trades programs. “We are very appreciative of the generosity shown by the Spectra Energy Foundation in providing this funding that assisted 10 NLC students in resolving financial questions that could have potentially had a negative impact on the students,” said Rene Tremblay, Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship. Read more.

Selkirk Rural Pre-Medicine Program Student Takes On Challenge In South Africa
Selkirk College Media Release, May 29, 2014
The long and winding road to becoming a rural doctor has begun for Selkirk College student Jesse McDonald who has journeyed to South Africa this summer to take part in a meaningful research project that will help her prepare for the challenges that await. Jesse McDonald is preparing for her medical school journey by spending an intense summer on a research project aimed at making life better for some of the most vulnerable youth in South Africa. Read more.

Camosun Grad Brings Home Silver Medal From Canadian Sheet Metal Competition
Camosun College Media Release, May 28, 2014
Sara Wilson, Camosun College Sheet Metal and Metal Fabrication grad and apprentice, came in second at the Canadian Sheet Metal Apprenticeship Competition in Windsor, Ontario. Sara was one of 11 apprentices, and the only woman, who competed in the event put on by the Canadian Council of Sheet Metal Workers and Roofers. Read more.

Key Industry Leaders Supporting New Okanagan College Trades Training Complex
Okanagan College Media Release, May 26, 2014
Owners of some of the most established Central Okanagan businesses focused on the trades are now adding their weight to support the new $33-million Trades Training Complex under construction at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus. Representatives from companies as diverse as automotive dealers to steel fabricators have joined the Okanagan College Foundation’s volunteer campaign team, Campaign Chair Dennis Gabelhouse announced today. Read more.

North Island College Team Ranks Among Top 50 In Global Business Competition
North Island College Media Release, May 26, 2014
North Island College (NIC) business administration students recently received world-class recognition, tying for the 49th best overall performance out of 6,230 participating teams from 336 universities and colleges worldwide in the program’s annual online business simulation competition, which ran from January to April. Read more.

BC Colleges is a consortium representing BC’s 11 public, community colleges serving over 160,000 students annually with campuses in more than 60 communities throughout British Columbia. BC’s colleges offer a comprehensive range of programs from university studies and baccalaureate degrees to career, technical and trades education. All of BC’s colleges offer programs that are designed to be accessible, affordable and responsive to the evolving needs of BC communities and industry. For more information, visit our website.