Sustainability – students, employees, campuses, communities

The countdown to Connections 2009 is on with just one day left until the start of this year’s employee learning conference. The opening of the new Centre for Learning has resulted in several sessions being relocated into the new building. Not only will Connections be a great chance to kick off the coming year, it will also be a unique opportunity to spend some time in the new Centre!

Many of the afternoon learning sessions are being relocated from various rooms around campus – participants will receive updated information in their welcome packages when they arrive at the event in the morning. Want an in-depth tour? There will be a sign up sheet available during morning registration to grab a spot for a short lunch hour tour of the Centre.

Traveling in from out of town? Carpooling is available – please contact your Regional Dean to make arrangements.

The event begins at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday and Thursday mornings in the lecture theatre but please come early to register and enjoy coffee. The morning activities, which include a video presentation, message from Jim Hamilton, presentations by Peter Gregg and the Institute for Leadership in Learning and Teaching (ILLT) Fellows, will be followed by lunch, a series of learning sessions and an afternoon social until 4:30 p.m.

Minister Stilwell visits Okanagan College


The Hon. Moira Stilwell, Minister of Advanced Education and Labour Market Development, paid a visit to the Kelowna campus of Okanagan College last week. She met with some members of the executive and Board of Governors as a part of a province-wide tour of several post-secondary institutions. While at Okanagan College Min. Stilwell was brought up to speed on some of the College’s most recent developments. After lunch she toured the new Centre for Learning building.

Okanagan College WORKS at Scotiabank

scotiaKathy Butler and Katerina Hay were joined by Okanagan College Alumni Association director John Perrot when they paid a visit to Scotiabank’s downtown Kelowna branch to reconnect with alumni. Ten Okanagan College alumni are currently working at Scotiabank branches around Kelowna, the majority of whom are graduates of the Okanagan School of Business. Seven alumni were able to attend the visit, where they were brought up to speed on changes at Okanagan College and the opportunities that exist for alumni involvement.

After catching up over coffee, Shauna Herron presented Kathy Butler with a cheque for $2,655 to support the Okanagan College Foundation.


In memory of Linda Bastien

Flags at Okanagan College were lowered in Kelowna this week in memory of Linda Bastien, who died on Aug. 12, 2009. Linda had a long and rich history with Okanagan College, both as a student and employee. Most recently, she was a faculty clerk in Science, Technology and Health.
She completed the Litigation Legal Administrative Assistant program in 2000 at OUC. She then worked as a student employee and teaching assistant while completing her Bachelor of Arts degree, which she earned in 2004. Linda began working as an auxiliary in the Business department in 2005. She became a regular full-time employee of Okanagan College in 2006 when she joined the department of Science, Technology and Health.
Linda enjoyed drawing, painting, needlepoint, biking and cross-country skiing. She will be missed by colleagues at Okanagan College. Linda’s family will hold a wake in her memory on Aug. 30 from 1 – 8 p.m. at:
880 Dougall Road, Kelowna.

Karmen Cozens joins Revelstoke staff

karmenIntroducing the newest member of the Revelstoke team: Karmen Cozens. Karmen has taken on the role of program assistant at the Revelstoke Centre. She brings with her a number of years of experience in the educational field, having worked at Camosun College for 12 years. More recently, Karmen worked as a Provincial Court Civil Mediator and in private practice. She holds specialized Conflict Resolution training from the Justice Institute and holds a BA in Justice Studies from Royal Roads University and an Associate of Arts Degree from Camosun College.

Gordon Shuster presents at international education seminar

International Education’s Gordon Shuster was a co-presenter at the British Columbia Council for International Education Summer Seminar in Victoria in June. Gordon’s presentation was themed around “Opportunities in the Middle East – Entering the Market.” For more information about his presentation, please contact Gordon.

Sansom raises funds in Nepal for children in need

kiliKaren Sansom is taking a short break from her work as an AACP instructor in Salmon Arm to travel to Nepal this October to participate in the Remedy's RX Himalaya Challenge. Karen is raising funds in support of programs, which Save the Children Canada oversees in Latin America.

She is personally committed to raising a minimum of $5,000 for Save the Children Canada and has raised 75 per cent of her goal. Anyone wishing to contribute to Karen’s fundraising campaign can visit her personal donation page or visit: for more information. Any donation of $15 or more is eligible for a tax receipt. This trek will not be Karen’s first eco-adventure in support of children. In 2008 she climbed Mt. Kilimanjaro in Tanzania, helping to raise $190,000 to support HIV/AIDS programs in Kenya.  

South Okanagan Staff represent at Peachfest

Half a dozen staff from the Penticton campus represented Okanagan College in the Penticton Peachfest Parade during the second weekend in August. Staff members were joined by students, alumni and prospective students in one of the city’s most well attended events. Okanagan College has been a force at Peachfest, which draws an annual crowd in the thousands, for the past five years.


Okanagan College’s Keith Germaine graced the cover of the Kelowna Capital News as the face of the Bicycles for Humanity project. Read more about Keith’s commitment to this local movement, which has a big impact in: Wheels for Africa.

News of a $1 million trades training expansion at the Salmon Arm campus made the pages of the Kelowna Capital News. Read more about the Knowledge Infrastructure Program project in: Trades training gets fed, B.C. funds. Or check out the Salmon Arm Observer's article, Funds keep OC growing.

Val Trevis, general manager of the Greater Vernon Chamber of Commerce, was published in the Vernon Morning Star talking about the training and educational opportunities that exist close to home. Read more about the Okanagan School of Business and other programs offered in Vernon in: Training is important.

Val Trevis is also hosting a training seminar at the Kalamalka campus of Okanagan College on Oct. 15. Read more in: Business organizations hosting training forum.

The Penticton Western News published an article about the advances made on the South Okanagan Habitat for Humanity Home for Learning. Read more about the community partnership and how Okanagan College students are helping in: Habitat seeks help with finishing touches.

The Okanagan School of Business earned some ink in the Kelowna Daily Courier for their new management course, which will offer select seats for professionals in the non-profit sector. Read more in: Management course.

The Vernon Morning Star shared a story about the experiences of students from Young Nam College in South Korea who are taking part in an intensive ESL Immersion program at Okanagan College. Read more in: Students are off to the races.

Okanagan College alumni Jesh Thiessen and Chris Gibbons were profiled in the Business Thompson Okanagan sharing their experience of training at Okanagan College. Read more about the grads and where they are today in: Young people heading back to school.

The Business Thompson Okanagan also ran a feature piece on Okanagan College’s Women in Trades Training Initiative. Hear from Nancy Darling, program administrator in: Women show keen interest in trades training.

The Penticton Herald and Kelowna Daily Courier published articles about the current state of the College’s fundraising campaign for the Centre of Excellence. Read more in: Fundraising proceeds at OK College and College funding drive slower than hoped.

The Penticton Herald covered the Kidney Foundation of Canada’s fundraising walk, which is organized in honour of former OUC advisory committee member Dr. Gerry Karr. Read more in: Kidney Foundation honouring doctor.

Gallery Vertigo’s Judith Jurica was profiled in the Kelowna Daily Courier. Read more about the OUC alum in: Gallery Vertigo.

The long list for the George Ryga Award was announced last week and covered by the Vernon Morning Star. Read quotes from John Lent and more in: Ryga award long list announced.

In his Global Citizen column Stan Chung wrote about the intellectual and emotional vacancies that go hand-in-hand with the Okanagan summer. Read more in: Fun in the sun not so easy with worries on your mind.

In her School’s In column, Jane Muskens wrote about the selective memory of youth and offered advice on how parents can inform their teenagers about educational opportunities and the reality of the college experience. Read more in: Choosing a career is not like shopping from a grocery store and Hollywood has badly portrayed the college experience.

Christine Ulmer filled in for Jane Muskens in her School’s In column and wrote about the green initiatives inside the new Centre for Learning. Read more in: Whole new vibe at Okanagan College.
August 18, 2009 Vol. 3 Issue 9


College Pension Plan member news 

Sustainable cost-of-living increases in retirement

Earlier this year, the College Pension Board of Trustees announced changes to the way post-retirement group benefits and cost-of-living increases will be offered. As part of its three-pronged approach to sustainable benefits, both members and their employers will see an increase in pension contributions of 0.25 per cent of salary. This change is scheduled to come into effect Sept. 1, 2009.

With the new rate, members and employers will pay 8.71 per cent of salary up to and including the year’s maximum pensionable earnings (YMPE). Contributions above the YMPE will be 9.46 per cent.

By acting decisively, CPP is able to preserve a more sustainable level of cost-of- living increase for members who are currently retired and for those who will retire in the future. For more information and to read the complete news bulletin, please access the College Pension Plan website:

Municipal Pension Plan Members AGM

The Municipal Pension Plan will be holding its Annual General Meeting on Oct. 17, 2009 in Kelowna. A special ‘Your Pension, Your Future’ pension seminar will be offered immediately following the AGM. The meeting will take place from 10 a.m. – 1 p.m. at the Delta Grand Okanagan Resort – 1310 Water Street, Kelowna. The pension seminar will follow from 2 – 3:30 p.m. For more information and to pre-register for the seminar, go to:

Alumni Award tickets now available at early bird price

Tickets are now on sale for the Okanagan College Alumni Association’s 2009 awards banquet. The event will take place on Thursday, Oct. 15 at 5 p.m. at the Okanagan Golf Club (The Quail) and will honour Distinguished Alumni winner Launi Skinner, President and COO of 1-800-GOT-JUNK? and Young Alumni winners Todd and Mark Regier, owners of Prestige Collision in Kelowna. CHBC’s Mike Roberts will emcee the event, which will include a silent auction with proceeds dedicated to the Okanagan College Alumni Association student bursary.

Early bird ticket prices are $100 and are available now by contacting Katerina Hay at: 250-762-5445 ext. 4771, or toll-free at: 1-888-650-6968.

Okanagan College Family Award seeks applications

Financial Aid & Awards and the Okanagan College Foundation remind staff that applications are now being accepted for the next round of the Okanagan College Family Award.
Full award criteria and the application form can be found in myOkanagan under "OC Express -  Forms" and "Foundation."
All applications must be date-stamped at the Welcome Centre in Kelowna or the Campus Administration office at your campus by Sept. 25. This round of applications is for programs starting between Sept. 1 and Dec.  31, 2009.

Please direct any questions about this award to the Kelowna Campus Financial Aid & Awards Office at 250-862-5419.

Fall CS Brochures – now online

The Continuing Studies Fall 2009 regional brochures are now available online. Remember that employees can take any of these courses free of charge using the tuition waiver form, as long as they don’t displace a fee-paying student. Find this form on myOkanagan under “OC Express – Forms,” “Continuing Studies” or call Jill at 4589 to get a copy of the form and the guidelines.

50/50 winner announced

Congratulations to Jan Leonard from Trades and Apprenticeship at Penno Road who has won last week's payday draw for $ 482.50. The Okanagan College Foundation 50/50 Staff Lottery is open to all employees of Okanagan College. If you wish to sign up for the lottery, registration forms are available from: Advancement & Alumni/Okanagan College Foundation office (P103, KLO Campus), Human Resources or online.


Aug. 31 - Orientation day for Okanagan School of Business students in Kelowna.

Sept. 1 - Welcome back barbeque for all students in Kelowna.

Sept. 8 - Orientation day for Trades students in Kelowna.

Aug. 27 – Okanagan College will celebrate Practical Nursing Convocation in Vernon on Aug. 27 at 1:30 p.m. in the Lecture Theatre. Visit: for more information. Faculty will also find information about ordering regalia on this page. Contact Karma Lacoff with questions.

Aug. 28 – Okanagan College will celebrate Practical Nursing Convocation in Kelowna on Aug. 28 at 1:30 p.m. in the Kelowna Lecture Theatre. Visit: for more information. Faculty will also find information about ordering regalia on this page. Contact Karma Lacoff with questions.

Sept. 16 – Okanagan College and The Canadian Federation of University Women will present LISTEN to the Whispers, a seminar about the signs and symptoms of Ovarian Cancer. The free event will take place on Wednesday evening from 7 – 8:30 p.m. in the Kelowna Lecture Theatre. To register or learn more about Ovarian Cancer Canada contact the Pacific Regional Office Toll-free at 1-800-749-9310 or email

Sept. 27 – Join staff from Okanagan College for the 13th Annual Okanagan Family Aids Walk in Kelowna. The event will take place on Sunday at 11 a.m. at Waterfront Park. Anyone who is interested in attending on behalf of Okanagan College can contact Linda Moore at extension 4692. Anyone wishing to pledge or donate can also contact Linda.


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

The next edition of INSIDE OKANAGAN COLLEGE will be issued on Tuesday, Sept. 1, 2009.