What's New at BC Colleges: June 3, 2013

Greetings from beautiful Penticton, BC. I'm here at Okanagan College, along with the Presidents from all of our 11 BC public, post-secondary colleges, to meet with our counterparts throughout the country at the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (ACCC) 2013 Annual Conference.

At this conference more than 600 delegates from Canada and around the world will explore post-secondary education in new ways, examine trends and issues, and unite efforts to create new ideas about programs, services and research. This is a time of great change for post-secondary education. Visionary thinking is needed to ensure that our institutions are leading the country and the world and providing accessible, affordable, relevant college education right here in BC.  Key stakeholders will explore the key issues facing post-secondary education and the important role colleges play in the sector. The conference is expected to contribute $500,000 to the local economy.

Before the conference started, all of BC's college Presidents and Vice-Presidents Academic participated in a strategy session to chart our priorities during the coming years. This session focused on how we as a system can effectively respond to the growing need for graduates with the advanced skills necessary to fill the pending skills gap and power BC's economic growth.

Additionally, we will be meeting with our counterparts from other provinces to explore partnership opportunities for education and training to fulfill demand for projects that span the country and are of strategic importance to Canada's future economic prosperity.

Read on to learn more 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, President BC Colleges

Provincial Funding Brings Cutting-Edge Equipment to Selkirk
Selkirk College Media Release, May 30 2013

Thanks to provincial funding from the Ministry of Advanced Education, Innovation and Technology, Selkirk College purchased new state-of-the-art equipment for trades programs that will provide students with real-world, hands-on experience. Over $780,000 was received from the Province, and the amount was put towards purchasing and installing over 20 pieces of new equipment, from a hydraulic testing board for automotive to a Programmable Logic Controllers (PLC) upgrade for the Sand Plant. Read more.

Comics and the Multimodal World conference takes interactive approach to engage wider audience
Douglas College Blog, May 29, 2013

Presenting a dry academic paper while an audience passively listens is so passé. Yes, the scholarly conference is evolving, and three Douglas College instructors – Brenna Clarke Gray, David N. Wright and Peter Wilkins – have found the perfect platform on which to build a new-school style conference that is both interactive and has wide appeal to a broad audience: comics. Read more.

NIC Nursing Program Receives Highest Honours
North Island College Media Release, May 28, 2013

The College of Registered Nurses of British Columbia (CRNBC) Education Program Review Committee recently conducted a full review of the baccalaureate nursing program (Registered Nursing program) offered by North Island College and the results were impeccable. This review was conducted to ensure NIC’s baccalaureate nursing program is meeting its duties and obligations as set out in the Health Professions Act. Requirements for registration, standards of academic or technical achievement, indicators of curriculum standards, student standards and graduate standards are all evaluated. Read more.

Okanagan College boosts its sustainability with new high-tech trades technology
Okanagan College Media Release, May 27, 2013

A newly installed automotive spray booth for Okanagan College’s Collision Repair program is reducing carbon emissions while providing students with training on the latest technology. The $170,000 Col-Met spray booth is one of the first pieces of equipment to be installed as part of the phase one funding of the $33-million renovation and expansion of the Trades building at the Kelowna campus. “It’s state of the art, what the students are experiencing here,” said Collision Repair instructor John Euloth. Read more.

Brush with death changes VCC student's outlook on life and learning
Vancouver Community College Media Release, May 27, 2013

Going to school was never really Cassie McDonald’s thing. So much so, in fact, she didn’t bother finishing high school, opting instead for a cooking job and a steady paycheque. How this high school dropout from Burnaby ended up an A+ student at Vancouver Community College and chasing down a newly discovered passion for the mind is something of a weird science. Read more.

NLC receives support for job training in wind energy sector
Northern Lights Media Release, May 27, 2013

The investments of $225,000 and $100,000 by the Harper government and NVIT respectively will help to construct and install a tower for training workers to build and maintain turbines for capturing wind-generated energy. This tower will allow students access to the training that is necessary to attain the certification that is required by most wind turbine companies. Read more.

Points North social work conference a success
Northwest Community College Media Release, May 27, 2013

On Friday May 10, over 70 people from the social services field attended the second bi-annual Points North social work conference at Waap Haawk, Northwest Community College (NWCC), Terrace campus. The conference was organized in partnership between NWCC and the University of Northern British Columbia (UNBC). Social work students, instructors and faculty from both institutions participated in professional development workshops along with community social service and social workers. The local chapter of the British Columbia Association of Social Workers also participated. Read more.

CNC workshop helps trucking companies increase productivity
College of New Caledonia Media Release, May 21, 2013

Northern trucking companies and heavy equipment operators had the opportunity to learn about using technology to maximize productivity and save lives through a unique workshop at CNC on May 30. The In-Vehicle Intelligent Transportation Systems (IV-ITS) use computers, sensors, and other electronic devices to increase fleet efficiency, both in terms of finances and environmental friendliness. Read more.

College of the Rockies’ Expansion Receives LEED Certification
College of the Rockies Media Release,  May 8, 2013

College of the Rockies’ expanded south entrance, completed in 2010, has achieved certification by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) certification program. LEED certification indicates the new construction meets the highest environmental performance criteria in Canada. LEED is an internationally accepted standard for the design, construction and operation of green buildings. Read more.

Camosun 5-year energy plan exceeds greenhouse gas targets by 400%
Camosun College Media Release, May 9, 2013

Camosun's five-year energy management plan concluded on a high note March 31, greatly exceeding its targets and contributing over $2.7 Million to the fiscal bottom line in avoided costs and new equipment/infrastructure. Read more,

BC Colleges is a consortium representing BC’s 11 public, community colleges serving over 160,000 students annually with campuses in over 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.