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Take it outside! Conference focuses on outdoor play
Okanagan College Media Release

Child’s play is serious work for a group of academics, professionals, and planners who will be gathering March 6 at Okanagan Beverlie Dietze Dec 2013College’s Vernon campus to consider the how and why of developing outdoor play spaces and why they are essential for children’s development and for building healthy, sustainable communities.

Shifting Views – Why Children Need Outdoor Play Now!” is a one-day conference being organized by Okanagan College’s Director of Learning and Teaching, Dr. Beverlie Dietze (who is also a principal researcher in outdoor play) and Jane Lister, the College’s North Okanagan Regional Dean. The conference is also being supported by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council, which funded recent research involving Dietze, and the Kelowna-based Outland Design Landscape Architecture company.

“Recent research is really reinforcing how important outdoor play is to children’s development, especially at a time when so much of their activity is focused around electronic devices and digital interaction,” says Dietze. “Having the chance to connect to nature is about a lot more than just the experience of the outdoors. It impacts a whole range of behavior and early childhood development.”

Details of the conference speakers and sessions, as well as instructions on how to register can be found at www.okanagan.bc.ca/play.

The day-long, free conference features a number of experts and workshops. Two Nova Scotians will present the story of Nova Scotia’s Journey of Advancing Outdoor Play – Peter McCracken (who works with the Nova Scotia Department of Health and Wellness) and Laura MacPherson (who works in the same department and also sits on the ParticipACTION’s National Active Play committee.)

Dr. Mariana Brussoni, an assistant professor in the Department of Pediatrics at the University of British Columbia will examine the need for children to have play environments that allow them to take a variety of risks in their outdoor play.  

Dietze will present an overview of the current research in the area of outdoor children’s play and how the research should influence public policy, community development, and how it ties into the UN Conventions on the Rights of the Child.

Fiona Barton, the principal in Outland Design Landscape Architecture, will focus on how important it is for landscape architects to create nurturing outdoor spaces for children. She’ll highlight some new outdoor play designs that incorporate natural materials into play space. 

Dr. Diane Kashin, a registered early childhood educator and College professor, will present a session called Cultivating Children’s Identities Through Outdoor Play.
New awards honour aviation pioneers and help college students take flight
Okanagan College Media Release

Margaret Fane Rutledge Feb 2015Students enrolled in the Commercial Aviation diploma program at Okanagan College will soon get a lift from new awards that recognize the achievements of two distinguished B.C. aviators.

The Roy Clemens Memorial Award in Aviation and Margaret Fane Rutledge Award in Aviation, valued at $1,000 each, celebrate the contributions to Canada’s aviation history made by Clemens and Rutledge over the course of their careers in the air. 

“We are proud to recognize the legacy of these two aviation forerunners” says Barry McGillivray, Associate Dean, Okanagan College School of Business. “These awards in their honour will assist young pilots in their training. Okanagan College is very grateful to the Clemens and Rutledge families for their generous support in creating these awards.” 

“We’ve trained over 400 pilots since the program began in 1990,” says Marc Vanderaegen, Flight School Director, Southern Interior Flight Centre, Okanagan College Commercial Aviation Diploma Program. “And the demand for pilots is only going to increase, with retirements looming in the big airlines. It’s a very exciting time to get into commercial aviation. This program gives students some great opportunities to connect with local employers and leaders in aviation from the moment they start training.”

Roy Clemens was born in Moose Jaw, Sask., on March 14, 1918. He studied aeronautics and served as a pilot and technical officer in the RCAF in England during WWII. In 1967, Clemens moved from Vancouver to Kelowna to set up and run Western Star manufacturing plant. It was here he rekindled his interest in flying, soon getting his pilot’s license and building his own plane. 

Clemens coordinated Air Search and Rescue in the region for 35 years, retiring from that volunteer position at the age of 87. He was a founding member of the Kelowna Flying Club and the Kelowna branch of the Experimental Aircraft Association, and provided technical advice to aircraft builders all over the world. Clemens passed away in 2013.

“Dad's greatest passion in life was flying—from his first flight in a crop duster at age eight, right up until the end of his life at age 95,” says his daughter, Patricia Campbell. “He inspired so many people to pursue flying—either as a career or as a hobby—and I know he would be pleased that this memorial award will continue helping others to achieve their airborne dreams.”

Born in Edmonton on April 13, 1914, Margaret Fane Rutledge’s life-long interest in aviation was sparked in early childhood. Rutledge was the first woman west of Toronto to earn a commercial pilot’s license. She overcame frequent discrimination in pursuit of her dream of being a commercial pilot, as many airlines refused to hire women for the role. 

"Aunt Margaret never saw herself as being special because she was a female pilot...she was special because she was a pilot,” says Rutledge’s nephew, Graham Fane. 

Rutledge persevered and ultimately piloted several flights for a Canadian airline, worked with a bush pilot outfit in northern B.C. She worked with Grant McConachie and Canadian Airlines, and also founded the "Flying Seven" - an elite group of Canadian female pilots associated with Amelia Earhart, based out of Vancouver. Rutledge passed away in 2004 at the age of 90.

“She wasn't just a pilot. She was a role model for following your dreams,” says Fane.

Both the Roy Clemens and Margaret Fane Rutledge Award will each be awarded annually to a student who has completed the first year of full-time study in the program. For more information about awards eligibility, please contact Okanagan College’s Financial Aid office at financialaid@okanagan.bc.ca

The Commercial Aviation diploma program is for men and women who are interested in pursuing a career in aviation. The two-year program provides participants with business experience along with the aviation training required by Transport Canada to ensure they are prepared to enter into the field of commercial aviation.

For information on the program, additional details on participant eligibility or to apply, contact Marc Vanderaegen at marc@flysifc.ca.
Let’s raise a glass (of water) to our water engineering technologists
Okanagan College Media Release

Turning on the tap this morning to brush your teeth, you probably didn’t think twice about the process of how that clean, fresh waterOC WET Grads Feb 2015 made its way into the comfort of your home. Who are those that we trust so immensely with the job of ensuring our water is controlled, treated, monitored, and ultimately safe?

Engineering Week (March 1 to 7) might just be the time to give thought to the vital and universal role of the water engineering technologists we depend on.

“We all want to drink water from the tap that is safe, and likewise to ensure our waste is taken care of properly,” says Professor Eric Jackson, Chair of Okanagan College’s Water Engineering Technology (WET) program. “Our graduates are the water quality monitoring technologists, environmental engineering technologists, and water and wastewater treatment plant operators who work diligently behind the scenes in our communities to ensure public health is protected when it comes to water and wastewater.”

Water treatment is a complex field that is rapidly evolving to constantly improve procedures and to protect the environment.  Engineering technologists monitor the various steps of water management and conduct preventative maintenance.  For the job, candidates need to have a strong foundational knowledge in biology, chemistry, technology, and have good analytical skills. As with all engineers, it’s about the desire to know how something works, and making it work. 

Nicole Moggey graduated from the College’s WET program 10 years ago. Since then she has worked with the City of Kelowna at the Wastewater Treatment Facility and manages the laboratory. 

“Each day I get to come to work in an advanced facility that is cutting edge from a design, technology and science perspective,” notes Moggey. “When I first graduated, I felt prepared to jump right in and put my skills to work. Now, I see new graduates joining our team who are knowledgeable about the latest technologies and methods. That speaks volumes about the quality of education the program provides and how it evolves to keep pace with the innovation we see in the field.”

Helping treat up to 45 million litres a day of wastewater from Kelowna, a total of seven College WET graduates work at the Kelowna Wastewater Treatment Facility.  An additional four graduates work to ensure that the City Water Utility provides safe drinking water.

The two-year WET program at the College offers students hands-on learning that includes traditional chemical and civil engineering technology combined with innovative water-focused environmental studies. The curriculum of the Water and Wastewater Technology specialty of the diploma focuses on domestic water treatment, municipal and industrial wastewater treatment, hydraulics, and industrial computer control.

For each hour of lecture, students have one hour of practical lab skills time. There is the appeal of small class sizes (an intake of 40 students per year) that allows students increased time with the instructors to train for a successful career, many of which are municipal positions offering pensions and job-security. 

“Training is a big expense for employers,” explains Jackson. “The combination of instruction by industry experts, the applied learning model, and co-op job placements mean our graduates are well-equipped to jump right into a job upon completing the program. In fact, most seamlessly transition into a permanent job with their co-op employer.”
Engineering technologists plug in to the business of IT
Okanagan College Media Release 

Troy Berg Feb 2015Information Technology (IT) managers increasingly have the ear of senior management and have a seat at the table when it comes to making strategic decisions to advance a company’s objectives. 

In today’s world, businesses operate on a need-for-speed model and it is the IT team’s responsibility to provide productive, timely, and most importantly connected business solutions. After all, nothing grinds business to a halt as much as Internet service interruptions or not being able to access working files on the network servers.

Kelowna resident Troy Berg graduated four years ago from Okanagan College’s Network and Telecommunications Engineering Technology (NTEN) program and currently works as IT Manager for the law firm of Doak Shirreff. “As an IT professional, I see myself as an advocate for and translator of technology to business managers,” he says. “IT can be confusing to those who are not familiar with it. We can use our knowledge to offer creative and proactive solutions on ways to improve productivity, workflow, security, and profitability. A huge part of my job is to make business cases for ways technology can help make businesses run faster and better, and get a calculable return on investment.”

The two-year NTEN diploma program at Okanagan College teaches students the intricacies of technology in three distinct areas of focus: network infrastructure, telecommunication, and client/server administration. Attuned to the business needs of the future, the program incorporates business management courses to help students understand the correlation between IT and business. 

“Certainly a passion for technology and a curiosity for finding out how things work is a must when entering this field of study,” says Phil Ashman, Associate Dean of Science, Technology and Health at Okanagan College. “More than simply being ‘techies’, our graduates are engineering technologists who apply their thorough understanding of the sophistication of IT in order to support businesses broadly across industries. They are employed as IT specialists for banks, natural resources companies, government and education institutions, and in Troy’s case a law firm.”

The diploma affords graduates the practical skills to become Computer System Analysts, Cloud and Data Centre Specialists, Network Administrators, Telecommunications Technicians, and IT Integrators and Consultants as examples. Since its launch, 136 students have graduated from the niche NTEN Diploma program. The BC Student Outcomes Survey results for the last five years found that 91 per cent of NTEN graduates are employed, many of which in a variety of organizations throughout the Okanagan.

“The convenience of technology is a part of our everyday life, and as such it’s easy to think we all know IT quite well. It’s the millennial factor,” explains Ron Light, Okanagan College Professor and Chair of the NTEN program. “What we see in our students in their first week of class is how surprised they are to discover the intricate back-end complexities of user technologies.”

As a rule, the easier the technology is for individuals to use, the more complex and bigger the team on the back-end to make it operate smoothly. It’s an unforgiving field of work with no margin of error: it either works or it doesn’t.

“I agree that this is indeed the age of the ‘Internet of Everything’,” says Light. “You cannot run a business today without having an efficient and secure computing infrastructure. From our smart phones and wireless devices that enable us to work remotely, to Voice over Internet Protocol (VOIP) and streaming video for conferencing, to fibre optic connectivity and cloud-based services., these are the tools of business today. The IT department is the architect, mechanic, and occasionally maybe even the magician, that makes it all happen.”

Engineering Week (March 1 to 7) celebrates the engineers and engineering technologists who make things work in our community. Visit www.okanagan.bc.ca/nten for more information about Okanagan College’s program.
A comedic curling match with the devil takes the stage in upcoming Red Dot Players production
Okanagan College Media Release

What could be more Canadian than W.O. Mitchell, a curling competition with the devil set in the Prairies and curling stones that can be used in any season?Red Dot Players Feb 2015

This is what you can expect on the stage March 5 to 8 as the Okanagan College Red Dot Players present Mitchell’s comedy The Black Bonspiel of Wullie MacCrimmon at the Kelowna campus. This will be the theatre company’s fifth production.

Based on the classic literary tale of Faust's deal with the devil, a curling match sets the stage for this humorous, clever and Canadianized version of the ultimate battle between good vs. evil. 

"One of the challenges with the script was to create an actual curling match on the stage," says the play’s director Mike Minions, Okanagan College's Educational Technology Coordinator. "Using the big lathe in the College's carpentry shop we built some wooden curling rocks on roller bearings. They painted up pretty well and the actors have been working hard to learn to make the shots they need to for each end of the game." 

The audience will be transported to the fictional town of Wildrose, Alberta in 1936 where protagonist Wullie, a shoe repairman, faces-off with the devil and his rink from Hell consisting of Judas Iscariot, Lucrezia Borgia, and none-other than the melancholic Macbeth in a curling match. The stakes are high: a win means Wullie will ultimately earn gold at the upcoming Brier Championship, but if he loses, he not only loses his immortal soul to the devil, but – even worse in his opinion— he will have to play on the devil’s team in the Celestial Brier, a curling match between Heaven and Hell. This two-act play delivers quirky characters, clever dialogue and takes a fond look at the obsession with curling so typical of a prairie town. 

“Each year I am truly impressed by the talent our extended College community brings to these plays,” says artistic director and Okanagan College English professor Jeremy Beaulne. “This year we have a cast of 10 and an additional five crew members who worked extremely hard these past few months to make this play come to life.”

Performances take place at the Kelowna campus theatre on March 5, 6, and 7 each at 7 p.m., with an additional matinee on Sunday, March 8 at 2 p.m.

Tickets are $15 and are available at the Okanagan College Campus Store, Mosaic Books, and at the door. 

The Red Dot Players is a theatre troupe for Okanagan College students, alumni, and employees based on the Kelowna campus. Previous productions include The Beaux' Stratagem (2011), Blithe Spirit (2012), Les Belles-Soeurs (2013), and The Government Inspector (2014). For more information, visit the Red Dot Players website at www.kalwriters.com/rdp
Okanagan College Students’ Union supports the future of trades
Okanagan College Media Release

OCSU Donation Feb 2015The profile of Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus along KLO Road will change significantly over the next year and the Okanagan College Students’ Union is showing support for the new complex that will elevate the region as a hub for trades training.

The OCSU has pledged $100,000 towards the Bright Horizons, Building for Skills fundraising campaign that supports the renovation and expansion of the trades training complex at Okanagan College.

“After supporting the Centre of Excellence at the Penticton Campus a few years ago, seeing how that building came together and the impact that it has had for students as a place to grow and succeed…that really inspired us to get behind this project,” says Chelsea Grisch, Executive Chairperson of the Okanagan College Students’ Union. 

“We are very proud and appreciative of the fact that our students have chosen to invest in the future of their college,” says Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton. “Their action demonstrates great leadership on their part and confirms our commitment to providing the best possible environment to support student learning.” 

“We think it’s a powerful message that Okanagan College students see the value of this new learning facility and want to step up and play an active role in building it,” adds Grisch. “We hope it will inspire others in the community to give to the campaign and support students.”

The College acknowledges the significance of its students stepping up to support not only their education, but the education of those students who will follow in their footsteps.  

“They are contributing to the students and the generations to come,” explains Hamilton. “That speaks very highly to their character, to the value they place on post-secondary education, and to the value they place on being a part of this community—both now and in the future.”

While the three-storey trades training complex will enhance the physical profile of the College along KLO Road, it was the College’s commitment to sustainability and reducing environmental footprint through an innovative design that motivated OCSU to support the project. The building is aiming to meet both the Living Building Challenge and LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum objectives.

“When the opportunity arose for us to play a part in supporting the rejuvenation of the trades training complex here in Kelowna, we wanted to show in a bold way just how important we feel it is for students to have a learning environment that is ahead of the curve, vibrant, and that reflects Okanagan College’s commitment to sustainability,” explains Grisch.

“The community should take note,” says Alf Kempf, President of the Okanagan College Foundation. “To have our students step forward like this and say ‘we want to help make the College an even better place…we want to help build a space that benefits not just our class but all the students that follow us’, that says a lot about our students and the connection they feel to the College.”

Construction of the new complex at BC’s second largest trades training institution is expected to be completed in spring of 2016. 

The $7-million Bright Horizons, Building for Skills fundraising campaign for project launched in October 2014. The campaign’s efforts will supplement the provincial government’s commitment of $28 million to the renovation project. In addition to capital, the Okanagan College Foundation is accepting donations of equipment, tools, and other support to help enhance programs and opportunities for students.

To learn more about the campaign and opportunities to get involved, please visit www.okanagan.bc.ca/campaign.

Okanagan College’s Dr. Barry McGillivray has decided to reinvest in the economy of the region that has treated him well
Okanagan College Media Release

Dr. Barry McGillivray, Associate Dean of the College’s School of Business, is donating $100,000 to develop a research centre at the College Barry McGillivray Feb 2015that will be focused on small business and entrepreneurship in the Southern Interior.

“I’m giving back to a region that has been very good to me,” says McGillivray. “Supporting research to benefit small businesses and entrepreneurs is one of the most effective avenues of building our region’s economy.”

A portion of the funds, invested with the Okanagan College Foundation, will be directed toward scholarships and bursaries for students as well. 

“I have a great and abiding faith in the quality of our students,” says McGillivray, pointing to a long list of student accomplishments in national and international case competitions and to a growing number of notable alumni from the College’s Business Administration degree and diploma programs.

“Research will round out the School of Business’s profile – regionally and nationally,” says McGillivray. “We have a well-deserved reputation for teaching excellence, and for meeting student and employer needs and expectations. We also have a cadre of professors who are undertaking research important to our region; research that focuses on small- and medium-sized enterprises, on the wine industry, on agriculture and on tourism.

“My intent is that the Centre for Small Business and Entrepreneurship Research will serve as an incubator for some of our newer faculty to do more applied research, especially with regard to the barriers that entrepreneurs face.”

McGillivray is also hoping that his contribution will spur others to support the Centre.

“Barry’s commitment to this region and to our institution is remarkable,” says Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton. “I know he thought carefully about what he could do to help the communities we serve, consulted many people and struck upon developing this Centre as the best investment he could make. I applaud him for his generosity and his foresight.”

“Barry’s donation is also evidence of the support being shown for the College by the very people who make this place what it is,” notes Okanagan College Foundation Executive Director Kathy Butler. “It is encouraging to see students, staff and instructors choose to contribute to enhancing the College and supporting students.”
New Construction Craft Worker program coming to the College
Okanagan College Media Release

Jason Bonneau Feb 2015The people who do the work of a Construction Craft Worker are a vital part of every construction site and team. They install utility piping, place concrete, construct roads, assist skilled tradespersons such as carpenters and bricklayers, and they set-up and break down a job site among other skills. 

Now, British Columbia and Okanagan College are offering those who function in the role the opportunity for Red Seal accreditation. Starting in March 2015 Okanagan College is offering a new two-level apprenticeship program to meet the provincial demand for the training.

“Construction labourers are professionals who have solid experience under their tool-belts,” explains Okanagan College Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship Steve Moores. “Earning this accreditation will make it easy for employers to determine that the worker is trained and skilled to perform the tasks at hand. For the worker, it can be the differentiator in getting hired.”

“Knowing that our trades workers have a Red Seal gives me confidence that they have a strong understanding of construction and the necessary skills to be on any site,” says Matt Kenyon, General Manager of Greyback Construction. “Ultimately, it makes for a safer work environment and ensures projects are completed to the highest standards. At Greyback we fully support the students of Okanagan College and will offer these workers mentorship and site tours.” 

Penticton Indian Band member Jason Bonneau has enrolled in Okanagan College’s March program, with encouragement from his employer Greyback Construction. “I’ve only ever worked in construction. It fascinates me to have the knowledge of being able to make something out of nothing, to build it up,” says the 38-year-old Bonneau. “As a father of five, providing for my family is a top priority. Obtaining my Red Seal as a Construction Craft Worker means I can earn more money and grow a lifelong career in a field I’m passionate about.” 

A Red Seal designation allows individuals to become journeypersons with a higher earning potential and they can participate in training new apprentices. It is a Canada-wide designation that translates into employability across the country, as cemented by the recent announcement in Nova Scotia that all premiers are in agreement to recognize inter-provincial apprenticeship credentials by 2016 across all of Canada.

The certification is one that is recognized across industries including building projects, roadside work, mining and forestry, oil and gas, and it is the most in-demand position for the anticipated LNG industry boom. The B.C. government forecasts that 11,800 construction trade workers will be needed by 2018 to support the LNG sector.

Okanagan College is one of a limited number of B.C. institutions offering the training program that consists of Level 1 and 2 (each four weeks long), as well as 4,000 work-based hours. As part of the program, graduates will also receive their Certificate of Apprenticeship, Certificate of Confined Space Training, Workplace Hazardous Materials Information System Certificate (WHIMS), and Industry Training Authority credential.

Blending instructor-led training with hands-on experience, students will attend class in the morning to learn methods and theories, and in the afternoon they apply that knowledge in their shop time.

The Kelowna campus program accommodates 16 students per level and applications are still being accepted for the March 2, 2015 program intake. Mobile training opportunities are also available. For registration and program information, please visit www.okanagan.bc.ca/apprenticeship.
Concussions, their effect, and return to play, topic of Science in Society Series talk
Okanagan College Media Release

When is it safe for an athlete to return to play following a concussion? In recent years, concussions resulting from sports activity have gained the attention of sports enthusiasts and scientists alike.Dr. Paul van Donkelaar Feb 2015

On Wednesday Feb. 18 clinical neuroscientist Dr. Paul van Donkelaar will present a talk as part of the Science in Society Series entitled ‘How can science guide the management of sport-related concussions?’.  The public event is jointly hosted by Okanagan College and the Okanagan Science Centre and will be held at the Okanagan College’s Vernon campus lecture theatre at 7:30 p.m. 

“The big question is ‘how do you know if an athlete who has suffered a concussion is truly fit to return to play?’,” says Dr. van Donkelaar, professor and Director of the School of Health and Exercise Sciences at the University of British Columbia Okanagan. “They may feel fine, their symptoms may be gone, yet there could be undetected damage to the brain. Further, the risk of multiple concussions could potentially lead to long-term disability or even premature death.”

In his research van Donkelaar and his team study how a concussion affects blood flow to the brain, and how that affects concentration, balance, and attention span. The presentation will highlight key discoveries in changes to the brain as a result of a sports-related concussion and how this knowledge will lead to improved initial diagnosis, care, and return to activity decisions.

Admission to the event is $7 in advance or $10 at the door. For advanced tickets, please call the Okanagan Science Centre at (250) 545-3644. Visit okanagansisss.wordpress.com for more information 

The Science in Society Speaker Series is sponsored by the Best Western Vernon Lodge, Starbucks Coffee, Cooper’s Food, and the Vernon Morning Star.
Carter family donation to enhance study space for trades students at Okanagan College
Okanagan College Media Release

Carters Feb 2015A generous gift by a local family will help support the creation of two new study spaces at Okanagan College, as part of the $33-million project to renovate and expand the institution’s trades training complex.

Al Carter, a well-known auto industry pioneer in Kelowna, has donated $50,000 to support the construction of two group study rooms in the new trades building, which is slated to open in spring of 2016. The study rooms will help meet the demand for student space as the College works to train and educate the tradespeople to address a government-projected shortage of skilled trades workers over the next decade.

“Our family has always been a strong supporter of apprenticeship,” says Carter. “We’ve had many Okanagan College alumni working in our auto repair shops over the years—including John Haller, former Dean of Trades. We think the apprenticeship process is a wonderful thing and we’re proud to support trades training at the College.”

“We know that labour shortages for the trades sector as a whole are expected as early as 2016—with the Government of Canada predicting that our workforce will need one million additional skilled workers by 2020,” says Jim Hamilton, President of Okanagan College. “We are grateful to the Carter family for investing in our College’s future and helping us to provide students with state-of-the-art spaces to learn and succeed.” 

After service in the Royal Canadian Air Force, Al Carter’s automotive career began in Vancouver in 1948 when he opened Carter Brothers Texaco Service with his brother, Ken. Over the next 15 years, he moved up the ranks to become sales manager of Marshall Pontiac Buick. Carter moved his family to Kelowna in 1961, opening up Carter Pontiac and Buick dealership early the following year on the corner of Pandosy and Lawrence.

“When you think about the change in Kelowna since then, it’s incredible” says Carter. “There were 12,600 people here when we started our first business and look at it now. It’s been great to watch the city grow, and with it the College and the opportunities for students.”

Starting each of his businesses from scratch taught Carter and his sons some valuable lessons, he says.

“There is a big difference between buying an established business and building one from scratch,” explains Carter. “Those early days were tough. We worked hard for everything we earned.”

“One piece of advice that I’ve always had for people starting out in any trade,” adds Carter, “is to keep learning. Learn your job well, and then learn the next job up. If you show that you’re hungry to learn, and that you want to keep building your skills, employers will take notice.”

Carter still recalls his sons Barry and Greg helping him in 1968 to clear the land on the corner of Spall and Harvey, which was an orchard at the time, for what would later become the first Honda dealership in Kelowna in 1974.

One of the family’s motivations for supporting the trades complex was to help Okanagan College to get trades training on the radar of students who otherwise might not have considered trades for a career, noted Al’s eldest son, Barry.

“Our goal is to help the College build a foundation for future growth,” explains Barry. “Getting people into trades is perhaps more important now than ever before. Just look at the current workforce and the big wave of retirements we’re facing.”

“We’re going to have a real shortage of trades people, if we don’t help new apprentices get started,” noted Al’s younger son, Greg.

The new complex will accommodate approximately 2,400 students annually in a range of trades programs. The Okanagan College Foundation launched the Bright Horizons, Building for Skills fundraising campaign in fall 2014 to raise the necessary $7 million to complete the project and help provide equipment and student support. The provincial government has committed $28 million. 

The Foundation is inviting the community to learn more about the project and opportunities to get involved, by visiting www.okanagan.bc.ca/campaign.  
Oline Smith Awards help college students pursue their dream careers in trades
Okanagan College Media Release

Knowing that the annual awards created in her name are bettering the lives of local college students would have been the highlight of Oline Smith award Feb 2015Penticton resident Oline Smith’s life, say her friends.

Bill and Grace Sawarin, Smith’s long-time friends and neighbours, recently visited Okanagan College’s Penticton campus to present the inaugural Oline Smith Technology Awards to 15 students in the Sustainable Construction Management Technology (SCMT) program. The awards are valued at $1,000 each.

“Oline would have been so honoured and pleased,” says Grace Sawarin. “She was very proud of the accomplishments of the trades students in Penticton. It was very important to her that people get behind them and support their training.”

“This award will help me monumentally in my educational career,” explains award recipient Connie Ramey, who hopes to become a residential contractor or pursue a career in environmental sociology. “I would not have made it through without this assistance. This gift has made possible the opportunity to follow my passion.”

Smith, who passed away in 2010 at the age of 92, had a life-long passion for learning, noted Grace Sawarin. “At the age of 85, Oline still had her grade one reader, which she donated to the museum near where she went to school in Saskatchewan.”

Hearing from the Sawarins about Smith’s life, and her dedication to supporting their education, made receiving the award all the more special, noted several students.

“The generosity of people like Oline Smith in helping with my education has been incredible,” says Sloane More, who hopes to use her SCMT diploma to launch a career as a green building consultant. 

The Oline Smith Technology Awards will be presented annually to students in the three-year Sustainable Construction Management Technology diploma program who demonstrate a combination of academic achievement and financial need. 

The awards were made possible thanks to a generous bequest left by Smith to Okanagan College in her will. The Okanagan College Foundation assists donors like Smith who wish to create a planned gift that will help create new awards, support existing scholarships and bursaries, or provide program or capital support for the College.

The SCMT program is offered in the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation at the College’s Penticton campus. 

More information about Okanagan College awards, bursaries, and scholarships, can be found at www.okanagan.bc.ca/awards. To learn more about the Okanagan College Foundation’s Planned Giving opportunities, visit www.okanagan.bc.ca/give
Daniel Boone’s character awakens in College professor’s debut novel
Okanagan College Media Release

All True Not a Lie In ItIn her debut novel All True Not A Lie In It, released today, Kelowna-based author Dr. Alix Hawley recounts the poignant adventures of American pioneer Daniel Boone who attempted to settle Kentucky and was famously held captive – yet adopted – by a Shawnee Chief.

A striking image she saw in a National Geographic magazine when only 10 years old inspired Hawley to conjure up the adventurous and historical world of Boone, and tell his tale from his perspective. 

“It was a labour of love, one that was six years in the making,” says Hawley, with an upbeat enthusiasm. “In the end, I chose to write the novel long-hand, which was a challenge, but I think it helped me connect more deeply with Daniel, his life, and his story.”

Hawley wrote each moment, chapter, phrase and word of the 371 page novel in longhand, rewriting the story as needed. This was not an easy feat, but it gave Hawley a sense of freedom and allowed her writing to be much less inhibited. Initially she drafted the story from several other perspectives, but she felt that the voice wasn’t quite right. She wanted to take the time to explore how and what perspective was best suited to tell the adventures of this great man. 

“I felt lucky that nobody had written a contemporary tale about Daniel Boone’s life, and I had a blank canvas to tell this intensely powerful story of finding new worlds and the sacrifices made for this discovery, including murder and Alix Hawley Feb 2015kidnapping,” adds Hawley.

Hawley is a professor with Okanagan College’s English Department, currently on a sabbatical leave. The novel is her second published work, following the collection of short stories, The Old Familiar, which received accolades of its own. She holds a Doctor of Philosophy degree and a Master of Studies in Research Methods in English from Oxford University, and a Master of Arts in Creative Writing from the University of East Anglia.

“We are very proud of Dr. Hawley’s achievement with this novel, which we are certain will establish her as one of Canada’s leading authors in the Canadian writing community,” says Dr. Robert Huxtable, Okanagan College’s Dean of Arts and Foundational Programs. “Her commitment to writing has always nourished her passion for post-secondary teaching, obviously benefiting our students, and it is appropriate that her writing nourishes the imaginations and reading interests of the public at large.”

Hawley will read passages from her novel and share insights and anecdotes about her writing process at The Bohemian Café in Kelowna (524 Bernard Ave.) on Thursday Feb. 19 at 7 p.m. Books will be for sale and a book signing will follow. Musicians Tariq and The Old Familiar, which includes Hawley's brother, composed an original song inspired by Boone's story which will also be heard at the event.
Hawley’s All True Not A Lie In It, Knopf Canada's New Face of Fiction pick for 2015, is now available in stores, including at Mosaic Books locally, for $29.95 (hardcover) and $12.99 (e-book). 

For additional information about Alix Hawley, please visit www.alixhawley.com. 
Christian family donation drives new student space at Okanagan College
Okanagan College Media Release

Students at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus will soon have a bright new gathering space thanks to a donation by a local family.Lorinda and Randy Christian Feb 2015

In memory of Frank Christian, his wife Barbara Christian along with her children Randy, Lorinda, and Liana have pledged $75,000 to support a new food service seating space in the trades training complex that is currently undergoing a major renovation and expansion along KLO Road. 

When Randy and Lorinda heard about the need for expanded study and gathering spaces in the new trades complex, they knew they wanted to help build a space that would bring students together and foster a sense of community on campus. The family’s donation is also intended to recognize Frank and Barbara Christian’s contribution to the community, explains their son Randy.

“Having owned car and RV dealerships, obviously the automotive trade has played a big role in our family’s businesses,” says Christian. “So when we learned about the new trades complex and the opportunities it will provide for students, the focus aligned with our family’s history and our desire to give something back to the next generation.

“This building will bring people here. It will energize students and provide them with a fantastic facility,” added Christian.

“Formal training is so important,” says Lorinda Christian. “Even if you are a natural mechanic or carpenter, you need that Red Seal to open up your horizons and take your career to the next level. We’re proud to support students’ futures in this way.”

“Every aspect of the new trades training complex—from accessibility to sustainability to technology—has been conceived to give students the best possible training experience,” says Jim Hamilton, President of Okanagan College. “We greatly appreciate the Christian family’s support in helping us grow to meet the demand for trades training in the region.”

The Christian family has owned various automotive dealerships in Kelowna, dating back to 1963 when Frank and Barbara moved their family from Vancouver and took over Kelowna’s Volkswagen dealership. They opened Parklane Lincoln Mercury in 1977 and Parklane RV in 1978. Parklane Acura followed in 1987. Though Frank retired in 2004, he continued to be actively involved in the business and the community until he passed away in 2007, noted his son.

“Our family has seen the value of trades training firsthand,” says Randy, whose son Kaeden completed the dual-credit program in electrical trades at Okanagan College. Lorinda’s son Ryley completed the first level of the welding program. The dual-credit programs are offered to students currently in high school who wish to take college level courses while completing their high school education.

“This work force needs to be filled,” says Randy. “The industry can’t find trained RV technicians fast enough right now. There is a huge shortage. That’s a guaranteed job.”

Slated to open in spring of 2016, the new trades training complex will feature state of the art classroom and work shop spaces. The Okanagan College Foundation launched the Bright Horizons, Building for Skills fundraising campaign in October of last year to raise the necessary $7 million to complete the project. The provincial government has committed $28 million.

To learn more about the campaign and opportunities to get involved, please visit www.okanagan.bc.ca/campaign.  
Gold Medal Plates helps student chefs shine

 
stephaniehuffLast year’s Gold Medal Plates finale could have turned out differently had it not been for one savvy student assistant.
 
Okanagan College apprentice chef Stephanie Huff was assisting Toronto Chef Lorenzo Loseto as he was creating his gold medal winning plate, which featured gently fried potato-wrapped ahi tuna.
 
When a key cooking tool was nowhere to be found, Huff knew she’d have to think on her feet.
 
“My chef didn’t have the proper thermometer he needed to be able to calibrate the oil to the right temperature and get the right cook on the tuna,” she said. “He was going to have to wing it.”
 
With most of the cooking supply stores closed for the day, Huff phoned a local restaurant and jumped in her car. Her competitive spirit kicked in and she made it back in time to hand the thermometer over to the chef just when he needed it to complete his winning dish.
 
Huff is one of several Okanagan College student chefs returning to assist Canada’s top 11 chefs during this year’s Gold Medal Plates competition, which runs from Feb. 6-7 in support of the Canadian Olympic Foundation.
 
The student chefs are tasked with everything from slicing and peeling to plating dishes for the public during the course of three competition events.
 
The highly-anticipated black box challenge, held at Okanagan College’s Kelowna Campus, sees chefs produce and finish 14 plates for the judges in 50 minutes using six of 10 mystery ingredients revealed at the start of the hour.
 
For many Okanagan College student chefs, participating in the challenges alongside the competing chefs gives them valuable hands-on experience and the ability to expand their industry network.
 
The recipient of a 2014 Gold Medal Plates Best Student Assistant Award, Melissa Masters, compares the experience to a job interview.
 
“Local chefs watch how you interact with your team and the public and they get feedback from the competing chefs,” she said. “If you put yourself out there and work hard, it opens a lot of doors.”
 
Masters is currently working as a cook at a local mental health facility, but has decided to participate again this year for the learning experience.
 
“Every time you learn something new,” she said. “I’m there to watch the chefs and learn as much as I can from them.”
 
Those interested in watching the black box competition live can log in to www.okanagan.bc.ca/gmp2015 on Saturday morning at 8:15.
 
For more information or to purchase tickets to attend the Gold Medal Plates events, visit: www.goldmedalplates.com.
 
 

Kelowna College students received more than $169,000 in scholarships
Okanagan College Media Release

In recognition of educational merit and community contributions, the Okanagan College Foundation has awarded 136 Okanagan College Kelowna campus students with a total of 173 scholarships and bursaries valued at $169,697 during the 2013-2014 academic year. 

“Our students consistently demonstrate incredible dedication to our community while also excelling in their studies,” says Central Okanagan Regional Dean Heather Schneider. “We encourage our students to be involved, to challenge themselves, and to achieve success. These awards are a recognition of their accomplishments, and encourages new students to follow in their footsteps.”  

Graduating this year from the Bachelor of Business Administration Honours program in Accounting, Amanda Wright expressed her gratitude for receiving two awards that recognized her commitments to philanthropy and academic success. 

“The Honours program is quite intensive. Receiving these generous awards means that I can focus on my courses, my honours thesis research, and still continue with my non-profit commitments,” says Wright, who is the executive advisor and past president of the Okanagan College Accounting Club, a volunteer with United Way, the volunteer coordinator for Motionball Kelowna supporting the Special Olympics Canada Foundation, and a former board executive with Gennext Kelowna.

Wright received the Crowe MacKay LLP CAEF Scholarship and also the Edd Kyle Memorial Award totaling $6,500. After she graduates this spring, she will begin an articling position with local accounting and business consulting firm KPMG in Kelowna.

“Our donors are an integral part of our community here at the College,” says Kathy Butler, Executive Director of the Okanagan College Foundation. “Their generosity makes it possible for students to pursue their studies and explore new careers. These awards not only help relieve the financial pressure and support students being able to stay in school, but beyond that they let students know that there are donors in the community behind them, celebrating their successes.”

The 173 Kelowna awards represent a portion of the total number of awards, bursaries and scholarships granted each year by Okanagan College. In 2013-2014 the Foundation disbursed 647 scholarships and bursaries totaling $541,851 and Okanagan College also awarded an additional 880 financial awards amounting to $404,462, for a combined total of $946,313.

Starting now, students are encouraged to apply for Okanagan College awards, bursaries and scholarships for the September 2015 intake. Specific awards information, deadlines and application details can be found at www.okanagan.bc.ca/awards
Vernon College students received more than $41,000 in scholarships
Okanagan College Media Release

Hard work, determination, and commitment for 38 Vernon students translated into a boost to their education fund. The Okanagan Gabriella Carr Feb 2015College Foundation distributed 54 awards totaling $41,036 to students studying at Okanagan College’s Vernon campus during the 2013-2014 academic year.

“When students go above and beyond, either in their academic achievement, community contribution, or personal conviction they deserve to be recognized,” says North Okanagan Regional Dean Jane Lister. “These award recipients motivate and inspire other students to achieve great things.”

One such student is Gabriella Carr who is completing her Human Service Work diploma this year at the Vernon campus. She is not only an inspiration to other students, but importantly to her three young sons. Recently, personal circumstances saw her marriage dissolve and this meant she became the sole-provider for three children under the age of five. This life-change was motivation enough for her to go from dreaming of post-secondary education, to making it a reality, and soon to graduate.

“Receiving these awards is the determining factor for education being within reach, especially as a single mom,” says Carr.

Carr received the Canadian Federation of University Women 1st Year Bursary, Rotary Club of Vernon Scholarship, P.E.O. Gwen Maeland Memorial Award, and the Alf Peters Memorial Award totaling $3,500.

“It's not simply financial support, it's encouragement that keeps my focus fixed and emotional support that propels me through this process. It's people believing in me enough to invest in my education, career, my life and my children's lives. The generosity of these awards not only affects the quality of our lives while I am studying, but also impacts our future as I can now access a career-path which was previously unattainable,” reflects Carr.

She aspires to continue her studies in order to one day earn a PhD in psychology.

“Our donors are an integral part of our community here at the College,” says Kathy Butler, Executive Director of the Okanagan College Foundation. “Their generosity makes it possible for students to pursue their studies and explore new careers. These awards not only help relieve the financial pressure and support students being able to stay in school, but beyond that they let students know that there are donors in the community behind them, celebrating their successes.”

The 54 Vernon awards represent a portion of the total number of awards, bursaries and scholarships granted each year by Okanagan College. In the 2013-2014 fiscal year, the Foundation disbursed 647 scholarships and bursaries totaling $541,851 and Okanagan College also awarded 880 financial awards amounting to $404,462, for a combined total of $946,313.

Starting now, students are encouraged to apply for Okanagan College awards, bursaries and scholarships for the September 2015 intake. Specific awards information, deadlines and application details can be found at www.okanagan.bc.ca/awards
College student chefs at the heart of event to support local charity on Valentine’s Day
Okanagan College Media Release

Winter Indulgence 2015Okanagan College pastry arts students will create 800 high-end desserts for a Valentine’s Day event in support of the Central Okanagan Elizabeth Fry Society. 

Winter Indulgence, which runs from 7-10 p.m. on Feb. 14 at Okanagan College’s Kelowna Campus, will feature a buffet of delicately-crafted desserts handmade by students under the guidance of Culinary Arts Pastry Chef Instructor Danny Capadouca. 

“This event is great way for students to use their talent to help a meaningful cause,” said Capadouca. “Not only do they learn how to put on an event of this caliber, they also learn the importance of supporting their community.”

Proceeds from Winter Indulgence will go toward the Central Okanagan Elizabeth Fry Society’s counselling program for men, women and youth who have experienced violence in their lives. 

The charity’s Community Engagement Coordinator, Allie Grey, highlighted the significance of holding a Valentine’s Day event to raise awareness of the work they do to create a community free of violence, poverty and oppression.  

“We wanted to tie in the theme of love; love for your community and one another,” she said. “We’re hoping to see the community come together to celebrate Valentine’s Day and to enjoy all aspects of the event.”

The buffet will feature local wines and specialty desserts ranging from strawberry champagne French macarons and red velvet cupcakes to Okanagan apple cinnamon cheesecake parfaits and an assortment of cheese. Tickets to enjoy the dessert buffet to your heart’s content are $40 per person. 

A silent auction will also be held during the event with proceeds going to support the charity. A variety of auction items will be available, including gift cards for restaurants and massages.  

For those interested in learning to make their own desserts, Okanagan College Culinary Manager Chef Bernard Casavant and Pastry Arts Chef Danny Capadouca will be hosting a workshop open to the public on Feb. 13 from 7-10 p.m. Tickets for the workshop are $50 per person and space is limited. 

For more information or to purchase tickets to the Winter Indulgence dessert buffet or workshop, contact the Central Okanagan Elizabeth Fry Society at 250-763-4613 ext. 209 or visit the Eventbrite webpage: www.eventbrite.com/e/winter-indulgence-tickets-15455720476.
Nominations open for OCAA annual Alumni Awards
Okanagan College Media Release

The Okanagan College Alumni Association (OCAA) is now accepting nominations for the 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award and Young Alumni Award. 
 

The Distinguished Alumni Award recognizes alumni of Okanagan College and Okanagan University College for their demonstration of excellence in the areas of leadership, the environment, business or industry, public or community service, the arts, and/ or support for Okanagan College. The Young Alumni Award celebrates the outstanding contributions of an alumna or alumnus who is under the age of 35.  

"Reviewing nominations for the alumni awards is always one of the highlights of our year,” says Kara Kazimer, President of the OCAA Board of Directors. “The achievements of Okanagan College and OUC alumni are as inspiring, diverse and far-reaching as the alumni themselves.

“Hearing about the impact our alumni are having in their communities is inspiring for us at OCAA, but even more so for current students and recent graduates of the College who are following in their footsteps. These awards are an opportunity to share our alumni’s stories and celebrate them for their accomplishments.” 

All members of the Okanagan College Alumni Association are eligible to be nominated for the distinguished or young alumni awards. Nominees must have completed a certificate, diploma, degree, apprenticeship program or have completed a minimum of 30 academic credits at Okanagan College or OUC. 

The deadline for nominations is midnight on Feb. 28. Nominations may be made by completing an online form available at: www.okanagan.bc.ca/DAA-YAA

Lane Shupe, Certified Dental Assistant (1981), was the recipient of last year’s Distinguished Alumni Award. Donnie Ungaro, Bachelor of Business Administration (2003) was honoured with the 2014 Young Alumni Award. Profiles of previous years’ recipients can be found at alumni.okanagan.bc.ca/alumni-awards

The 2015 Distinguished Alumni Award and Young Alumni Award will be selected by the Alumni Association Board of Directors and presented at a reception later this year.
College student grateful to Rick and Yasmin Thorpe for scholarship
Okanagan College Media Release

For Penticton resident Sloane More, the pursuit of post-secondary education was a way of opening doors and creating opportunitiesRick & Yasmin Thorpe Award Feb 2015 for her future. That is until she faced the challenge of funding. Thankfully, her ambition for higher education was made possible this year as she was one of the three recipients of the Rick and Yasmin Thorpe and Friends Scholarship awarded by the Okanagan College Foundation.

“Wondering how I would afford tuition, plus living expenses was a barrier for sure. But, what’s wonderful is that there are these generous scholarships available to students which help make schooling accessible,” says More. 

“Funding should not be a barrier for these deserving students, and we are proud to help facilitate their desire to advance their education and training,” says Yasmin Thorpe. “We are committed to rewarding those students in our region who participate in the community, apply themselves to excel in their studies, aspire to be leaders, and have a vision for a better future.”

This year More, and fellow students Dylan Hoogveld and Connie Ramey, each received the $2,500 scholarship to support their studies in the three-year Sustainable Construction Management Technology diploma in the Jim Pattison Centre of Excellence in Sustainable Building Technologies and Renewable Energy Conservation at the Penticton campus. 

The program teaches construction techniques, project management, and emerging technologies with the common thread of sustainability woven throughout the multiple disciplines. 

“What better way to exemplify the very concepts the students are learning about than for them to attend class in a state-of-the-art building that highlights sustainable green technologies,” says Rick Thorpe. “Innovation and sustainability are the gateways to the businesses of tomorrow. It’s important that students learn today the principles of reducing our carbon footprint.”

“It was fantastic having the chance to shake the hands of the two people whose philanthropic nature made such a difference to me,” says More. “I’ll always remember Rick telling me at that moment to ‘pay it forward,’ and this is exactly what I plan to do one day. It’s a good reminder to do good and to build on their generous momentum.”

Since its inception in 2007, the Rick and Yasmin Thorpe and Friends Scholarship has awarded $61,500 to deserving students from the West and South Okanagan.

The Okanagan College Foundation awarded 67 financial awards to 41 students in Penticton specifically with a total value of $64,650. In the 2013-2014 fiscal year, the Foundation disbursed 647 scholarships and bursaries totaling $541,851 and Okanagan College also awarded an additional 880 financial awards amounting to $404,462, for a combined total of $946,313.

Graduating high-school students, as well as mature students returning to school, who meet the eligibility criteria are encouraged to apply for the Rick and Yasmin Thorpe and Friends Scholarship for the September 2015 intake. There are 10 scholarships available, each for $2,500. Deadline for application is March 6, 2015. More information can be found at www.okanagan.bc.ca/awards.

Pushor Mitchell supports trades expansion at Okanagan College
Okanagan College Media Release

Pushor Mitchell Feb 2015A local law firm is recognizing the importance of trades to the entire community and is putting its support behind a $33-million project to renovate and expand the trades training complex at the Kelowna Campus. 

Pushor Mitchell LLP has pledged $30,000 to the Okanagan College Foundation towards the Bright Horizons, Building for Skills Campaign for the complex. 

“Our gift is based on community mindedness,” says Alf Kempf, Partner, Pushor Mitchell LLP. “We know that many of our commercial clients are either tradespeople or employ tradespeople, and we believe that all Kelowna businesses, even if they don’t employ trades, should recognize the importance of trades education.”  

The gift has special meaning for Kempf, who also serves as President of the Okanagan College Foundation.

“When we hear the excitement among students for the new complex, we are reminded continually that this campaign goes way beyond bricks and mortar,” says Kempf. “The education they are receiving at the College is charting new courses in their lives—it’s getting them ready for careers that are in high demand, meaning that they will have security, opportunity, and mobility in the region. The campaign is an invitation to everyone to help us make that future a reality for students right here in the valley.”

“We know there are 430,000 job openings projected in the province by 2022 that will require trades or technical training,” explains Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton. “We are very grateful to Pushor Mitchell and other local organizations for working with us to further trades training in the region. This is an investment that will have a huge impact, both at the immediate level for students and in the long-term for the region’s economy as a whole.”

The $7-million campaign launched publicly in October and is now over the $3-million mark according to the Foundation, thanks to strong support from local businesses and individuals. 

“It’s great to see how quickly the community has responded to the Bright Horizons Campaign,” says Campaign Ambassador Mike Roberts. “A huge thank you to our corporate supporters, like Pushor Mitchell, and everyone else who has stepped forward to help us with the project. Whether large or small, all your donations can make a world of difference for trades students at Okanagan College.

“This expanded facility will attract thousands of students to train here, work here, live here…and that positive effect will be felt throughout our communities, without a doubt.”

The campaign’s efforts will supplement the provincial government’s commitment of $28 million to the project. 

Construction on the complex at the second-largest trades training institution in B.C is expected to be completed in spring of 2016. When completed, the new complex will help unite Okanagan College’s Kelowna Campus trades students who currently train in multiple campus facilities across the city.

To learn more about the campaign and opportunities to be involved in shaping the future of Okanagan College, please visit: okanagan.bc.ca/campaign.
Styffe and Manning head College’s Board of Governors
Okanagan College Media Release

Tom Styffe Feb 2015Tom Styffe has been re-elected as Chair of Okanagan College’s Board of Governors.

In an election held at the year’s first Board meeting last week Styffe, who has served for two years in the role, was chosen again as Chair. Doug Manning, who has served on the Board since 2010, was elected as Vice Chair.

“I’m proud to be in this role,” explained Styffe. “I have the privilege of working with a tremendously dedicated group of colleagues on the Board – people who understand and appreciate what Okanagan College means to so many students and to the communities it serves.Doug Manning Feb 2015

“This coming year will be a very important one for Okanagan College as we revisit our strategic plan,” Styffe notes. “We will be connecting with our internal community and to the people and organizations of the region to help us develop that plan.”

Manning is an educational consultant, and was previously CEO, President and Director of Bridges.com, North America’s leading provider of career and educational planning.

“We have a lot on our plates in the coming year with the strategic plan and other major initiatives and I’m pleased I’ll be able to contribute in my role as vice chair,” said Manning.

Connie Denesiuk, who served as the Board’s vice chair in 2014, explained that she decided to step back from the role because of her decision to run as a candidate in the next federal election in the South Okanagan West Kootenay riding.

B
esides Styffe, Manning and Denesiuk, other appointed members of the Board of Governors are: Christopher Derickson, Charity Gerbrandt, Susan Johal, Joe Maciel, and Robert McGowan. Elected members are Wesley Favro (student), Spencer Lupul (student), Laura Thurnheer (representing Okanagan College faculty), CJ Mitchell (representing support staff), Michelle Nicholson (ex officio, representing Education Council), and President Jim Hamilton (ex officio).

To learn more about Okanagan College’s Board of Governors, visit: okanagan.bc.ca/board.