Jim Hamilton's term extended

President Jim Hamilton's appointment has been extended until March 31, 2010. A Media Release to go out later today will inform the public that the Board of Governors made the decision recently. "The decision to extend his term was an easy one for the Board to reach," says Board Chair Janet Shaw in the release. "I must express my appreciation for this vote of confidence," Jim says. "But I think that what it really reflects is the Board's support for our staff and students and our track record of success and achievement over the past two years."

Honorary Fellows announced

mcgrath2Three prominent Okanagan residents who personify excellence, innovation and commitment to their communities will be recognized as Honorary Fellows of Okanagan College. Lorraine McGrath, Ken Smedley and Ross Gorman have been selected by the College for their ongoing contributions to their communities, personal achievements and dedication to excellence. They will be recognized in convocation ceremonies in June. To find out more about each of the Honorary Fellows, read the Public Affairs Media Release.

College attends Aboriginal Career Fair

The 13th Annual Aboriginal Career Fair was held on May 3, 2007 at UBC Okanagan. It was an opportunity for Aboriginal high school students from Okanagan, Shuswap and Nicola Valley schools to explore career options and various post-secondary education programs and services. Over 300 students attended the event with over 25 exhibits and more than 40 role models from the fields of business, arts, trades, science, health and social development were on hand to present and answer questions. Jim Hamilton, President of Okanagan College, along with his UBC Okanagan counterparts, and the Chief of the Okanagan Indian Band, Fabian Alexis, welcomed participants to the event during an opening ceremony that also included an opening prayer and drumming from Westbank First Nation representatives. Interactive displays, music, dancers, activities, lunch and door prizes made for a fun and interesting day for students and presenters alike.

Math contest winner proves older is not necessarily wiser

mathOn May 3 Okanagan College's Kelowna campus opened its doors to 62 students from 17 schools throughout the interior who qualified for the final round of the 17th annual British Columbia Secondary School Math Contest. The contest was organized by Okanagan College mathematics professor Clint Lee with help from staff and faculty of the College and UBC Okanagan.  The top prize in the Senior category went to Immaculata's Richard Mack. Last year as a Grade nine student, Mack won the Junior category. Though he is only in Grade 10, he asked for permission to compete in the Senior category. Mack won the contest scoring higher than the 24 Grade 11 and 12 students who also competed.Students also participated in a mathematical scavenger hunt that sent them searching for clues all over the Kelowna campus. Click here for the full list of the competition results or read articles by the Kelowna Daily Courier and Kelowna Capital News.

Winners named in Short Fiction Contest

The results are in and the winner of the 2007 short fiction contest has been named. Karen Hofmann, an English instructor at Thompson Rivers University, took home first place honours and a cash award of $500 for her short story, The Canoe.  Hofmann rose to the top of the competition out of a field of 151 entries from throughout the Southern Interior. The second place winner was Leah Todd of Kelowna with third prize going to UBC Okanagan student Hugh Anderson, also of Kelowna. To read more about the Okanagan College-sponsored contest visit Castanet's website.

Fred and Margaret Coote bursary awarded to HSRCA student

HSRCAHome Support Resident Care Attendant student, Philippa August recently received news that she was selected as the winner of the Fred and Margaret Coote Okanagan College Bursary. Presenters Ray and Verna Bartlett and Development Officer Linda Way dropped by Philippa's class to give her the good news and hand-deliver the $1,200 award.

College participates in Learning Conference

A conference held at UBC Okanagan May 2-4 featured contributions from several members of Okanagan College. Making Connections: Learning and Research, the third annual UBC Okanagan Learning Conference, explored the connections between research and learning. The conference focused on questions such as how can research enrich and enhance the student learning experience; how can the curriculum be redesigned to reflect a process of inquiry; what classroom strategies can be used to help students gain insight into research and when and how are these best taught? How can technology help? For more information about the conference, visit the website.


Okanagan College received front page coverage on the Salmon Arm Observer on May 2 thanks to an article about the shortage of health care facilities and the response by Okanagan College to initiate new health care opportunities for students at Okanagan College's Salmon Arm campus. The expansion of training opportunities in the areas of Home Support Resident Care Attendant and Licensed Practical Nursing were featured. Follow this link to read the entire article.

Okanagan College Paves way for RV Techs - A profile of the RV Service Technician program - is currently airing on Click on the photo of the RV and watch instructor Al Cohoe and fourth year journeyperson Sarah Morrison explain the benefits of pursuing a career in this growing industry.

Last week Calona Vineyards celebrated its 75th anniversary. An article published in the Kelowna Capital News chronicled the winery with a photo and profile of winemaker and Okanagan College Continuing Studies instructor, Howard Soon.

The 17th annual British Columbia Secondary School Math Contest generated media coverage from the Kelowna Daily Courier and the Kelowna Capital News.

A project recently completed by Okanagan College Geographical Information Systems student, Joe Langlois, created front page headlines in the Salmon Arm Observer. The project involved creating a geographical profile of property crimes in Salmon Arm. Read the full story about how Langlois' project is assisting the local RCMP.

The Kelowna Daily Courier covered the $10,000 donation Gorman Brothers Lumber Ltd. made to address skill shortages in the health care sector by creating two $5,000 financial awards to be given to students enrolled in the Licensed Practical Nursing program at Okanagan College.


Frances Greenslade releases memoir

GreensladeBy the Secret Ladder: A Mother's Initiation, Frances Greenslade's second book, was published by Penguin on May 1. The book is a personal account of Greenslade's sometimes harrowing first year of motherhood; it uses the quest motif to view the perils and joys of the experience as an adventure that ultimately transforms the mother-hero. Three weeks after her son's birth, a time when she expected to be in the clear, Greenslade began hemorrhaging. The near-death trauma that followed forced Greenslade to face the reality that motherhood would not just be a "lifestyle change." Weaving myth and memoir, By the Secret Ladder ventures into some dark terrain in the new mother's journey, and recognizes that along with the birth of a child comes a kind of re-birth -- for the mother. Read the Vernon Morning Star's article about Greenslade's memoir.

Collection of poetry by John Lent re-published

Mary Ellen Holland, Department of English, has re-published John Lent’s suite of ten poems entitled Black Horses, Cobalt Suns. This edition is unique in that it also includes an introduction from Canada’s father of postmodernism, Robert Kroetsch, and creative and critical commentary from Glen Sorestad, Dennis Cooley, Sharon Thesen, Kevin McPherson Eckhoff, and Craig McLuckie. This list of commentators, all of whom willingly agreed to participate in this project, includes two Governor General’s award winners, a poet laureate of Saskatchewan, the chair of Okanagan College’s Department of English, and a graduate student whose undergraduate honours advisor was John Lent.

Bike to Work Week a success

BTWW2A dedicated group of Okanagan College employees took advantage of the opportunity Bike to Work Week presented when they left their vehicles in the driveway and peddled their way to work last week. Biking under the team name, "Just for the shirt," the group included: Paul Stephenson, Greg E. Fjetland, Sandi Gould, Cathy Fitzgerald, Judy Colpitts, Mike Craig, Tanya Tarlit, Yanike Sophie and Helena Jordo-Zieske. Congratulations to all participants of this great event.

Manager of IT Services contributes to ARMA publication

Deb Matheson
was a major contributor to the recently published third edition Association Of Record Managers (ARMA) Glossary of Record Information Management (RIM)  Terms.  The task force spent three years reviewing more than 500 terms from numerous disciplines that have an impact on the Records Management, Information Technology, legal, business and archival professions. 

Culinary Arts offers a sweet ending to business after hours

bentleyOkanagan College's Culinary Arts students prepared a delicious and artistic cake with input from their instructor, Perry Bentley, which was served to hundreds of business people who took part in the valley-wide Business After Hours in Penticton yesterday. Students annually prepare an original and innovative cake for the event. Okanagan College had two booths at the event, and was well-represented by instructors, students, and alumni from throughout the valley.

May 11, 2007  Vol. 1, Issue 3


College teams sign up to walk for a good cause

Following a successful fund raising event last year, Okanagan College will again participate in the 24-hour Easter Seals Relay in Kelowna. Two teams have been formulated for the event which raises funds for children with disabilities; one was coordinated by an energetic group of ACE/OBSA students and the other is co-captained by Regional Dean Heather Schneider and Public Affairs Director Allan Coyle. The College will be defending its "most kilometers walked" title from last year and hopes to raise $3,000 for the cause. The event takes place June 9 and 10. Pledges can be given directly online on the relay's website where team rosters are also displayed.

Alumni Association holds AGM

The Okanagan College Alumni Association is hosting its Annual General Meeting at Infusions restaurant on Wednesday, May 16. The meeting starts at 4:30 p.m. with a wine and cheese event to follow. For more information, or to attend this free event, please RSVP to Katerina Hay.

Home for Learning pours innovative foundation

H4L2Students in Okanagan College's Home for Learning project in Summerland are currently pouring the footings for the green home they are building under the direction of general contractor Homescape Building & Design. Fab-form Industries has generously donated all the materials for a fast foot forming system. The system consists of fabric bags supported by expanded 2X4s to create a concrete form. The main advantages to using the Fab-form system is that you are able to avoid contamination from ground water or dry soil and obtain a perfect cure for the concrete.

Three other residential construction projects are currently underway in Kelowna, Salmon Arm and Revelstoke. To track their progress, visit the Home for Learning website.

IT Services to upgrade this summer

IT Services will be upgrading 312 computers and monitors in Okanagan College computer labs over the summer months.  Some of the machines will be sent to recycling while the newer models will be re-deployed within the organization. IT Services will also be installing new audio-visual equipment (LCD projector, DVD/VCR and speakers) in a significant number of rooms.  The goal is to be able to discontinue use of the A/V carts by next summer. Jake Block, Manager Desktop Computing, is currently gathering input from Deans and Directors regarding software requirements in the labs and suggestions for which rooms would most benefit from A/V upgrades for the fall semester. Send Jake an email if you have any input you would like to share.

Update your information in MyOkanagan

In an effort to update the phone list to create a paper-based copy for those who wish to have it, Okanagan College is asking all staff and faculty to log on to MyOkanagan and update personal details in the staff directory. Please follow these instructions to complete the update:

Log onto MyOkanagan
Go to Employee Tab
Under OC Express – Administrative Functions click the link to “My entry in the OC staff directory”
Fill in changes and click "Update my information"

Ceremony to be held for CS Certificate graduates

A ceremony for Okanagan College Continuing Studies Certificate graduates will be held at the Kalamalka campus on Monday, June 18, 2007. A commencement ceremony begins in the lecture theatre at the Kalamalka campus at 6:30 p.m., followed by a reception with refreshments in the cafeteria. Graduates interested in attending can RSVP with number of guests (limit of three per graduate) to Tawnya Cameron or call 545-7291 ext. 2309.

Manage your workload with Outlook Express

Due to popular demand, Continuing Studies will be offering a more extensive and comprehensive course on How to Utilize Outlook.  Put your Pro-D funds to use and sign up for this two-evening, six-hour course May 22 and 24 from 6-9 p.m.  Topics include: scheduling appointments, managing a contact list, creating to-do lists and recording notes.  Learn how to use Outlook to organize and share information on your desktop and communicate with other people inside and outside your organization, or for personal use (i.e. Blackberry). The cost is $90+GST. To register or for more information, call (250) 862-5480.


May 12 - Okanagan College's Kelowna campus is hosting an Interior Fitness Conference offering participants workshop sessions featuring innovative workouts, the latest advances in fitness knowledge, networking opportunities and lots of fun. Sessions cover topics such as Boot Camp, Preventative Medicine and Fitness, Nordic Pole Walking and Pole Dancing for Fitness. For more information about the event call (250) 862-5480.

May 14 - The Okanagan Partnership would like your help in planning our region’s economic future. Tomorrow’s Realities is a new initiative designed to allow communities to make better economic and social policy choices today - on issues like transportation, water and urban/rural development – by allowing participants to see the impact of those decisions in the future. A series of five workshops will take place from 6-9 p.m. in each of the following locations: Kelowna (May 14), Oliver (May 15), Penticton (May 16), Vernon (May 17) and Peachland (May 23). Click here to register on line for a free community workshop in your area.

May 16 - Okanagan College, the Economic Development Commission and School District 23 will host an awards luncheon for finalists in the Young Entrepreneur Program - Apprentice Edition. The competition charges Secondary and Middle school students with creating a product or service to promote healthy eating or exercise. The winners of the contest will be announced at the lunch which will be held in the cafeteria at the Kelowna campus of Okanagan College from 11:45 a.m. - 2 p.m. Infusions will provide the lunch for the participants and their guests. Follow this link to watch a profile of the event on

May 16 - Penticton's Spring College 101 FAQ session takes place in the lecture theatre beginning at 6:30 p.m. Future students and interested community members are invited to a free evening class, designed to answer frequently asked questions about entering post-secondary. The differences between college, technical schools, and universities will be outlined, and Okanagan College's Financial Aid department will be on hand to give an overview of options and opportunities students can take advantage of.

May 23 - Students, partners and sponsors in the Home for Learning projects in Salmon Arm and Revelstoke will host a wall-raising event as they open up their work sites to the community and media to view the progress made on the projects. For more information about the events, contact Leslie Bogula.

June 1 - Okanagan College's Kelowna campus is proud to host and sponsor the 2007 FortisBC Wild Festival for Youth. Focused on promoting environmental responsibility and stewardship to school-aged children, the FortisBC Wild Festival for Youth is currently the largest environmental festival in Canada focused entirely on youth. To learn more about the 2007 Wild Festival for Youth click here.


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 May 25, 2007.