College calls for nominations for 50 people who made a difference

homepagelogoWith Okanagan College’s 50th anniversary just two months away (the B.C. Vocational School opened its doors in September 1963), the College is looking to bolster the ranks of already-honoured luminaries and contributors by acknowledging even more people – 50 of them – who have contributed to the development of the College, or who have strengthened the connection between College and community (regional, provincial, national or global) through their efforts.

An online nomination form is now live at and the College is encouraging submissions that can include current and former employees and students, supporters, Board members – almost anyone who has a connection with the College or OUC.

Current employees are eligible but must be nominated by community members who are not in the employ of Okanagan College (OC employees can nominate fellow employees for the College's annual Employee Excellence Awards).

Nominees can’t include those who have already been honoured officially by Okanagan College. Posthumous nominations are accepted.

The deadline for entries is Aug. 9, 2013.

The list of nominees will be reviewed, and the additional 50 people for acknowledgment will be chosen by an ad hoc committee of current and former employees of Okanagan College and Okanagan University College.
The names of those selected to be acknowledged will be revealed Sept. 27, 2013 at a celebration of the 50th Anniversary, to be held at the Kelowna campus. Watch for additional details on that public celebration in the coming weeks.

Calgary poet wins Kalamalka Press’s second annual chapbook award

nikkiCalgary writer Nikki Sheppy has won Kalamalka Press' second annual John Lent Poetry-Prose Award for her work, Grrrlhood: a ludic suite, which was selected from nearly 40 manuscripts.

“It was a wonderful and challenging process this time ’round,” says English Professor Kevin McPherson, one of the judges and editors of Kalamalka Press. “We had so many muscly entries that the shortlist ended up being quite long.”

Honorable mentions go to Natalie Simpson for her work, Surge, and Ben Ladouceur for Telegram from the Seventeenth Arrondissement.

“Reading Sheppy’s poems ionized our molecules. They marble lived experiences within raw, fearless and playful linguistic calisthenics,” note the judges, three local writers and teachers, Laisha Rosnau, Jake Kennedy and Kevin McPherson.

Grrrlhood was written in a “spirit of derring-do” and by having “a really great time trying out different literary games and styles, allowing myself to go astray as much as possible,” says Sheppy.

This will be her first published collection of poetry, which she finished while attending the Banff Centre Writing Studio.

The honourarium for the winner has increased this year from $100 to $250. The chapbook will be designed by English professor and award-winning bookmaker, Jason Dewinetz, and letterpress printed by students in Okanagan College’s Writing and Publishing Diploma program.

Sheppy is familiar with Dewinetz’s work as a bookmaker through Greenboathouse Press and confesses, “I love the tactility and attentive design of letterpress books, which continue to seduce readers into an engagement with the materiality of literature.”

Last year’s winner, Ariel Gordon’s How to Make a Collage, sold out within two weeks.

TRADE UP! conference celebrates women in trades

tradeupFor the second year, Okanagan College hosted a daylong conference in support of women in the trades. The event took place at the Kelowna campus on Saturday, July 6 and featured nearly 100 participants.

The Honourable Shirley Bond, Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Skills Training and Minister Responsible for Labour and the Honourable Steve Thomson, Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations and MLA for Kelowna-Mission both attended the event, with Bond bringing greetings from the province.

The event was packed with keynote lectures, workshops and networking opportunities for participants.

Camp OC heads into week three of fun for kids

gokartContinuing Studies’ Camp OC is now in its third week of summer fun for kids in Kelowna. This week will include nine camps with a total of 127 students taking part. 

Camps include:
1.   Cooking & Baking – Reinhard Foerderer
2.   Explore NXT Robotics – Jordon Truitt
3.   Go Kart Mechanics – Cam McRobb
4.   Extreme Survivor – Jeremy Gooding
5.   K’NEX Motor – Ryan Littau
6.   Deep Sea Science Adventure – Meaghan Walls
7.   Jewelry & Craft Creation – Ileasha Gooding
8.   Acting Academy – Ryan Grenier
9.   Rock-In Rockets – Clay McLeod
Take the time to see what’s going on with the summer camps and ask our campers which program they’re in. You will be amazed at the things they are learning. For more information on Camp OC please contact either Lara Jennings or Helena Jordo in Continuing Studies.


Melissa Munn co-authors new book

munnOkanagan College professor Melissa Munn has released a new book with professor Chris Bruckert of the University of Ottawa called On The Outside: From Lengthy Imprisonment to Lasting Freedom. 

“From the passage of Bill C-10, with its punitive, tough-on-crime provisions, to sensationalist media accounts of dangerous ex-convicts, it is evident that Canada is a country that is taking an increasingly hard line on crime. The truth is, however, that the vast majority of prisoners who serve out their sentences do not re-offend, but rather reintegrate into society and never see the inside of a prison cell again. Why, then, is there such a lack of focus on successful resettlement -- not only by politicians and journalists but also in criminology research? 

This silence regarding those who "make good" perpetuates the illusion of the "dangerous ex-convict" and renders invisible the complex and sometimes treacherous path out of prison.

Publisher UBC Press summed up the book as follows: "On The Outside illuminates that journey, exploring the post-carceral lives of men who have successfully resettled into the community after serving at least a decade in Canada’s penitentiaries. Discussing the transition from imprisonment, release, and re-entry through to the challenges of resettlement, this book will change the way you think about Canada’s prisoners and open up the debate on the perils of tough-on-crime legislation."

A squared brings home Bocce Cup

bocceThe seventh annual Kelowna campus Bocce tournament was won by the A squared team - Ali Hatami (IT Services) and Allan Hickey (Registrar’s Office). The winners battled runners' up We Adair Ya (Diane Adair and Joan Kleinsteuber, both from HR) in the final match.

Lorrie Forde retires from Okanagan College

Longtime Okanagan College employee Lorrie Forde has retired from Continuing Studies. Lorrie spent 25 years as a program administrator in CS. She began working at the College in 1989.

Lorrie is excited to be moving on to a new phase.

“I didn’t get a chance to say goodbye to everyone, so if I missed you feel free to give me a call at home,” said Forde.
Lorrie can be reached by email.

July 16, 2013 Vol. 8, Issue 6


Pension Plan Update

The College Pension Plan is changing the way pensionable service and salary is treated for plan members who have more than one employment in which they contribute to the plan, and their total pensionable service for the year exceeds 12 months: situations known as concurrent employment.

The attached Member News provides more information on this topic.

Kindles now available at Campus Store

ekindleThe Kelowna Campus Store is excited to carry the Amazon Kindle e-Reader and Kindle Fire, which are now available for students and staff to purchase. The retail prices are $109.99 and $209.99, respectively.
Okanagan College joins the University of British Columbia, Langara, the University of Victoria, and Simon Fraser University in offering e-readers and tablets to the general student body.
Please stop by the Kelowna Bookstore e-reader demo area, which provides users the opportunity to play with the devices and get information to aid in a buying decision.
For more information, read the e-readers press release.

Municipal Pension Plan annual meeting

Come explore the future of the Municipal Pension Plan at the annual meeting. Learn about the financial health of the Plan and preparing for the road ahead and more.

What: 2013 Municipal Pension Plan Annual General Meeting – Taking the Long View
Where: Victoria Conference Centre, 720 Douglas Street, Victoria, BC
When: October 17, 2013 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

For more AGM information, visit

This month’s Balance Sheet now available

Human Resources is pleased to present the July version of The Balance Sheet – the newsletter from the College’s Employee and Family Assistance program, PPC Canada.
This month’s newsletter features articles that examine navigating your career and working on ways to encourage personal development. The front page provides tips on setting and reaching your career goals followed by some helpful suggestions on renewing your interests and exploring your passions.

HR would also like to encourage readers to sign up for PPC’s next webinar on Wednesday, July 31 at 12 p.m. that will look at conquering conflict in the workplace. All of the monthly webinars for 2013 are available for registration via this link.


Okanagan College BBA graduate Reid Schretlen was profiled in the Kelowna Daily Courier after landing his dream job prior to celebrating Convocation. Read more about Schretlen and the hundreds of Okanagan College students who graduated in June in: Have degree, will work.

News of Okanagan College’s upcoming 50th birthday made the pages of the Kelowna Capital News. Read more about how the College is celebrating the milestone in: OC gears up for 50th birthday celebration.

Two Okanagan College students earned medals at the national Skills Canada competition held in Vancouver in June. Read about Collision Repair student Brandon Scott (bronze) and Electronic Engineering Technology student Nathanael Bergmann (silver) in: Students with the skills to win.

The College hosted TRADE UP! Women in Trades Conference in early July at the Kelowna campus. The event included nearly 100 female trades professionals and was featured in the Kelowna Capital News and the Okanagan Saturday. Read more in: B.C.’s first female carpenter to speak at conference and Women attracted to skilled trades.

Allan Coyle, Director of Public Affairs, and CS instructor Barry Brooks were recognized by the Applied Science Technologists and Technicians of B.C. for their work to promote education and careers in the applied sciences. Read more in: Thanks guys and ASTTBC recognizes two Okanagan College employees.

Okanagan College Honorary Fellow Mel Kotler was celebrated at a memorial golf tournament. Read more about Mel’s life and legacy in: Golf tournament a chance to remember.

Three local middle school students recently competed in the world RoboCup event in Eindhoven Netherlands and were recognized as the competition’s top programmers. The students earned a berth to the finals after winning Okanagan College’s RoboCup Junior competition. Read more about the young programmers in: Triumph at RoboCup.

Okanagan College’s new Director of International Education, Russel Boris, was interviewed by the Kelowna Daily Courier and CBC Daybreak after the results of an audit on his former employer, Medicine Hat College, was released. Read more in: Report blot on resume for new college director or listen to the interview with CBC.

Registrar Jane Muskens focused her School’s In column on the findings of a 22-year study, the Paths on Life’s Way project. Read more about the findings in: Interesting education/work findings from 22-year-long study.


Do you have comments, questions or a submission for INSIDE OKANAGAN COLLEGE? Please email Public Affairs c/o Christine Ulmer.

To ensure your submission is included, please send all details at least one day in advance of the newsletter’s publication.

The next edition of INSIDE OKANAGAN COLLEGE will be issued on July 30, 2013.