What's New at BC Colleges: May 17, 2012

Message from Jim Reed - President, BC Colleges

With locations in more than 70 communities throughout BC, our colleges are part of the fabric of the province. As I read the articles this month, I was struck by the strong connections between colleges and the communities they serve. Not only are colleges economic drivers in BC but, they are also social and cultural drivers.  The following community building initiatives were undertaken by our 11 member colleges in the past month:

  • CNC's Professional Cook students hosted a fundraiser for the community of Lakeland Mills.  This event was attended by close to 1750 people and raised close to $33,000 for workers and families affected by the tragedy.

  • Vancouver Community College is working with families and children providing free dental check-ups for kids.

  • Langara's sense of community extends to the Pacific Rim with the launch of the 24th issue of Pacific Rim Magazine.

  • Douglas College, Klein and Associates Inc., Immigrant Services Society of BC and MOSAIC opened a learning centre for their community of new immigrants to BC.

  • Northern Lights College hosted an evening held at the Saulteau First Nation (SFN) administration building for First Nation peoples interested in pursuing post-secondary training.

  • Okanagan College's Let's Can Hunger Team implemented 20 projects raising awareness about hunger and collecting over 47,000 pounds of food for the local food bank and charities.

  • CNC’s dental hygiene students spent two weeks volunteering in a community in Tanzania.

  • College of the Rockies is hosting an informal session for adults, young parents and seniors in their community who are considering returning to learning.

  • Northern Lights College and the South Peace Community Resources Society (SPCRS) celebrated the completion of the latest NLC home construction project that will house programs for youth in the South Peace community.

  • And, Selkirk College has asked for community input towards their future direction and the development of their strategic plan.

Read on to discover more of what is happening with each of our members.  For a full list of this month's news,  please check out  "In the News" on the BC Colleges website.


Jim Reed
President, BC Colleges

Mining & Exploration expo comes to NWCC
Northwest Community College Media release, May 11, 2012

As part of BC Mining Week, Northwest Community College (NWCC) will host the first annual Exploration & Mining Community Expo on Thursday, May 17 at the Smithers Campus. Danielle Smyth, Project Administrator with NWCC's School of Exploration & Mining (SEM), says the free and public event will showcase the many opportunities the mining and exploration field has to offer, with an emphasis on outreach to high school students. Provincial and federal employment forecasts show the mining industry and its support activities will grow by 3.5 per cent a year with 12,600 new job openings in the sector between 2007 and 2017. Read more.

Douglas College and partners open Surrey learning centre for newcomers to Canada
Douglas College Media Release, May 10, 2012

The Training Group at Douglas College and its partners are opening a newly renovated learning centre in Surrey today for recently arrived immigrants and refugees. The 835-sq.-m Surrey Learning Centre, at 9801 King George Blvd., currently provides more than 200 new immigrants and refugees in Surrey with free English classes. Classes first opened in a temporary space in July and moved to the newly renovated centre in January. The centre officially opens today with a ribbon-cutting ceremony conducted by the consortium partnership group of Douglas College, Klein and Associates Inc., Immigrant Services Society of BC and MOSAIC. The Surrey Learning Centre includes seven classrooms ranging from 45-75 sq. m each, two kitchens, two decks, a registration area, a prep area for instructors and a recently opened child-minding centre - a unique feature - where parents can leave their under-school age children while they attend classes. Read more.

Photo-Imaging Grad Show a Hit at Waterfall Building
Langara College Media Release, May 8, 2012

Langara's Photo-Imaging graduates put on a spectacular showcase of work at Vancouver's Waterfall Building last week. The exhibition featured pieces by 18 passionate students focusing on a range of photographic disciplines, from contemporary fashion to creative landscape work. Visitors at the packed gallery space were treated to a unique blend of imagery while enjoying the company of the graduating class and their faculty.   "The atmosphere and quality of work at the Photo-Imaging grad show was outstanding," said Tomo Tanaka, Division Chair for the Creative Arts. "It's no wonder we have several award-winning photographers in this graduating class." Read more.

NLC and the Saulteau First Nation partner for Education and Career Fair
Northern Lights College Media Release, May 8, 2012

Approximately 100 visitors attended an education and career fair held at the Saulteau First Nation (SFN) administration building April 25.The on-location event was hosted by Northern Lights College for First Nation peoples interested in pursuing post-secondary training. Lunch was sponsored by the University of Northern British Columbia who also exhibited at the event. Eleven exhibitors, including industry and education partners, set up booths and information tables in the SFN administration building for visitors to browse and learn about training and employment opportunities. Read more.

Selkirk College Announcing CE Building Service Worker Certification Course
Selkirk College Media Release, May 7, 2012

Selkirk College would like to announce the CE Building Service Worker Certification Course starting on May 28th in Nelson. Graduates of this certification will be prepared for entry-level employment in the custodial field in with school districts, public health care, post-secondary institutions, hotels, offices and industry. It is also valuable for existing employees to upgrade and update skills. This intensive full-time 160 hour, non-credit certificate program provides training in theory, practical applications and cleaning procedures required in a variety of industrial settings. Topics of training include complete floor/carpet care, washrooms, industrial kitchens, classrooms and special areas. Read more.

VCC's Junior Culinary Team Canada competes in Korea
Vancouver Community College Media Release, May 3, 2012

Chefs from Vancouver Community College finished a whirlwind tour of Korea competing against culinary talent from around the globe, cooking for Canadian diplomats and even getting a taste of Korean television fame. Junior Culinary Team Canada was awarded one gold medal competing at the 35th World Association of Chefs World Congress in Daejeon, Korea. "We were up against senior teams and still placed second overall," says JC Felicella, team manager. "It is not only our skill that was admired but our extreme discipline and attitude recognized by all who saw us." Read more.

Dr. Richard Atleo to speak at College of the Rockies
College of the Rockies Media Release, April 30, 2012

Well-known First Nations scholar, speaker and elder, Dr. E. Richard Atleo, will give a free presentation at College of the Rockies on Thursday, May 10. During his visit to the region he will also spend time with the elders and members of the Ktunaxa Nation. "The Ktunaxa Nation would like to welcome Dr. Atleo to Ktunaxa Territory,” said Ktunaxa Nation Chair, Kathryn Teneese. “He is highly respected within the First Nation community and we are grateful for the opportunity the College has provided for our citizens and local residents to hear him speak." Read more.

$725,000 For CNC Skilled Trades
College of New Caledonia In the News, April 26, 2012

The College of New Caledonia has hit pay dirt, when it comes to trades funding.  The provincial government has given the college just over $725,000. This one time funding is to be used this year to assist skill trades training at its campuses. The money is part of a $10 million dollar plan by the province to fill the skill trades gap in the north. Read more.

College drives trades exploration into South Okanagan
Okanagan College Media Release, April 19, 2012

Okanagan College smoothes the road to new careers when its Trades Discovery Trailer swings into the Similkameen Wednesday, May 9. Students from schools throughout the region, and the general public, will get a practical picture of what it means to work in a variety of trades through a series of demonstrations put on by members of the College’s Trades and Apprenticeship Department at the Similkameen Secondary School in Keremeos.“This is the biggest event we’ve done so far,” said John Haller, Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship at Okanagan College. The trailer is packed full of equipment, giving students from Keremeos, Osoyoos, Princeton and Merritt a chance to check out activity stations. Read more.

North Island College Signs Exclusive Agreement with the University of Manitoba Offering Academic Credit for Military Rank
North Island College Media Release, April 19, 2012

Getting an undergraduate degree just got easier for Canadian Forces (CF) members on Canada’s West Coast.  North Island College and the University of Manitoba announced a student mobility agreement providing CF academic credit for their military rank, courses, and training and guaranteed course transfer to one of Canada’s largest research universities. The agreement provides access to university transferable courses from both institutions to military members and their spouses based at 19 Wing Comox. They can earn a Bachelor of Arts (General) or Bachelor of Arts (Integrated Studies) degree at the University of Manitoba faster, knowing their military experience and training counts toward their degree. Read more.

Learning to sail the international seas—without leaving dry land
Camosun College Media Release, April 18, 2012

Camosun's Nautical department can teach everything you’ll need for an exciting sea-faring career. With a combination of sophisticated technology and expert faculty, you can gain at-the-helm experience on the high seas—virtually, that is—using Camosun’s Transas Navi-Trainer 4000 desktop simulator! The simulator, located at the Interurban campus, is a teaching tool that gives students the experience of being out at sea through virtual exercises and labs. Read more.


BC Colleges is a consortium representing BC’s 11 public, community colleges serving more than 200,000 students annually with campuses in close to 70 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 .