NTEn students volunteer their expertise and connect with community

nenLast week a group of first-year Okanagan College Network and Telecommunications Engineering Technology students had the opportunity to put their education to work when they volunteered their time to help set up a network for the Okanagan Regional Innovation Centre, which is newly located on St. Paul Street. With support from instructors Phil Ashman and Clinton Myers, the team spent an afternoon helping set up data connection terminations. This hands-on experience was timely as the students are currently learning about this in one of their classes.

Four additions to Okanagan College Board of Governors

Four new members will join the Okanagan College Board of Governors. Two members, Loretta Swite and Yvonne Pinder, have been appointed to the Okanagan College Board of Governors by the Provincial Government and two new student members, Jason Manning and Zhen Zhou, will join the body this fall. The Province also reappointed Brian Hughes, of Penticton, to another three years on the Board, ending in 2012.

Swite is a Councillor with the Westbank First Nation, Chair of School District 23’s Aboriginal Education Committee, and an Okanagan College alumna (Civil Engineering Technology ’01). Yvonne Pinder is a former Vice-President of Finance at Okanagan College and former Chief Financial Officer of the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology as well as a former Director of Integrated Financial Services at Saskatchewan Health. Both members will serve on the Board for a year. For more information, read the Public Affairs press release.

Kalamalka Vertigo

Randy Hennessy & John Lent
at Kalamalka Vertigo
Vernon has a brand new art gallery. In its inaugural exhibition, Kalamalka Vertigo, located at the Kalamalka campus of Okanagan College, presents a selection of art works by Gallery Vertigo studio artists. Kalamalka Vertigo represents a new joint venture between Gallery Vertigo and Okanagan College. This is the newest incarnation of the ongoing partnership between the two institutions.

A new exhibition began on Thursday, October 23 and will run until early December. The new show includes excerpts from Gallery Vertigo's current exhibition, "Not with a BANG, but with an SUV..." as well as never-before-seen works addressing environmental issues.

All are invited to view the works at Kalamalka Vertigo, located at Vernon's Kalamalka Campus of Okanagan College. The gallery is located just past the college lecture theatre in the main building adjacent to the college office. For more information, contact John Lent.

Join Okanagan College’s Speaker’s Bureau

As an institution Okanagan College has a wealth of resources in its staff. Many of the College’s faculty, administrators and support staff hold expertise in teaching, scholarly activity, or research, and have extensive knowledge in a variety of topics. Public Affairs is often approached by community groups and the media looking for experts to speak on a variety of issues. In order to streamline the process of identifying individuals who are willing and able to share their knowledge, Public Affairs is generating a Speaker’s Bureau. Anyone interested in joining the Bureau is asked to follow this link to a form and fill out biographical information. As the results are compiled they will be posted on our website and will be available to the public. Anyone with questions about the Speaker’s Bureau can contact Christine Ulmer.

College staff, students praised for corporate social responsibility

spineboard1A number of Okanagan College staff including: Alf Leimert, Dean Nutter, Tim Dorn, Greg Burkett, Allan Coyle and Christine Ulmer, were commended for their efforts in a community initiative in Kelowna that resulted in the achievement of the Okanagan’s only Mass Casualty Incident (MCI) Trailer Unit.

The idea for the unit, which contains 180 spineboards, a generator, emergency lights and can be utilized as an emergency command post, first came to organizers Gerry Harris and Brian Moore during the September 11 attacks and was revisited after the Okanagan Mountain Fires.

spineboard2Now, seven years later, the Okanagan has an emergency unit that can be called upon during an emergency scenario. Okanagan College played a major role in the project with carpentry students and staff donating their time to cut, sand and spray all 180 spineboards for the project. Students and staff from the welding department stepped up to help, constructing the generator mount and metal racks that house the spineboards. The launch of the event was held at Okanagan College.

In a letter of thanks to the Okanagan College Board of Governors organizer Gerry Harris said:

“I wish to stress the importance of what you and these dedicated staff have provided to our communities. Corporate social responsibility is a current “buzzword” in the outside world - Okanagan College lives that philosophy. I and my colleagues are humbled to have this calibre of dedication and energy to the community. In a world of cynicism, it is refreshing to see that the concept of service and quality are being practiced in spades.”

Shaw TV and College partner to increase awareness of trades

westgateA new strategic partnership between Shaw TV and Okanagan College will profile different trades and educational opportunities that exist in the region. This yearlong series will air on Shaw TV and be promoted on cable channels as well. Those channels include A&E, CNN, CNN Headline News, Speed, Spike, TBS & TLC. The first segment in the series aired on Tuesday, Oct. 21 and featured the Automotive Collision Repair trade with Okanagan College alumni and Prestige Collision owners Todd and Mark Regier. Follow this link to watch the segment. The second segment in the series will air Tuesday, Oct. 28 and will feature the RV Service Technician trade and Okanagan College alumni who are working at Westgate RV.  

Centre for Learning: new phase of construction

cflA particularly beautiful evening sky made for a great photo of the construction on the new Centre for Learning by facilities' Rick Montagnon. Rick couldn’t resist capturing the moment with his digital camera.

Construction on the Centre for Learning has now reached a new phase with work being done to complete the fifth floor of the new building and to join the library to the new construction. This phase has unfortunately resulted in some increased construction noise for the staff, students and classrooms in the library. Constructing the walkways and the needed library expansion to the south has the construction team working more directly on the library building itself.
As a result, there is a new work schedule with PCL. The construction crew will not be working on the library building itself from 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. Monday through Friday to reduce the noise affecting classes and studies. Anyone with concerns about the level of noise can contact Charmaine Eby.

Home for Learning Summerland

Partners and sponsors in Okanagan College’s 2008 Home for Learning project in Summerland celebrated the completion of the home today at a reception. The completed project is now for sale - net proceeds from the sale will go toward scholarships and new tools and equipment for trades students. To download a pdf of the print supplement about the 2008 Home for Learning, follow this link. The next South Okanagan Home for Learning project will begin in February in Penticton and will be a not-for-profit joint partnership with Habitat for Humanity. For more information, contact Nancy Darling.

Baseball team finishes season on a high

bballThe fledgling Okanagan College Baseball team ended their fall exhibition season on a major high crushing their number one rival, the TRU Wolfpack, 9 -1. Lefty Rob Alskne pitched nine strong innings, Nick Perruzo hit a home run, everyone in the starting lineup had at least one hit, contributing to Okanagan College’s big win. 

The team put together an errorless game, played strong defense behind a great pitching performance by Alksne, and had lots of timely hitting, giving the team something to look forward to for their first league game in the spring of 2009.  Several more players are scheduled to enroll at the College in January, making the team even more competitive.

Head Coach Geoff White and assistants Scott Wallis, Jared Johnson, Pedro Ibanez, and GM Bill Bayne, have worked hard to put this team together in a very short period of time, in conjunction with some very cooperative staff from Okanagan College, and look forward to making the College’s only athletic team a great ambassador in the region. Anyone wishing to show their support for the team can purchase an Okanagan College baseball t-shirt ($20) or hat ($30) at the Campus Bookstore.


Meet William Richardson

williamA familiar face around the Kelowna campus, William Richardson is always keen to help staff and takes great pride in his work with Facilities Management in the recycling program. William’s colleagues have always known about his positive attitude, friendly smile and great work ethic – what they may not know is that William is also an award-winning multi-sport athlete. William has won top honours at several regional, provincial and national competitions in softball, five-pin and 10-pin bowling.

His medals and trophies tell the story of a dedicated team player: silver medal at the 2005 BC Special Olympics Summer Games in softball, second-place trophy at the Special Olympics in Langley in 1999 in bowling, BC Special Olympics Men’s High Series winner for 10-pin bowling in 2005/06, and the list goes on. William bowls three times a week to keep his skills sharp and will join another softball team this spring.

As for his work at the College, William said, “I like to see people’s faces and the way they smile at me. And I like helping them out and doing a good job for them – I like to make them proud.”  

Olga Osipova back by popular demand

olgaAfter launching her CD, Velvet & Lace in July, Olga has been inundated with requests for a second concert date in Kelowna. Not wanting to disappoint her growing number of fans, Olga has scheduled a fundraising concert on Oct. 25 at the Rotary Centre for the Arts, with partial proceeds to be donated to the United Way.

The concert will be opened by the Darylectones, an award-winning blues/jazz duo, and continued with the performance by Olga and her band (Scott Gamble on drums, Craig Thomson on tenor sax, Loni Moger on guitar, and Bill Lockie on bass). For anyone who hasn’t heard Olga perform, follow this link to listen to one of Olga’s Tango songs that has been playing on CBC radio. Tickets to Olga’s concert ($25) can be purchased at Ticketmaster 250-860-1470 or by following this link..

Good luck to Linda Way

After 23 years of service at Okanagan College, Linda Way has announced her retirement, effective October 14. Linda was most recently a Development Officer, specializing in Planned Giving, with the Advancement & Alumni Office. She also spent part of her career at Okanagan College and OUC as the key person involved in Alumni Affairs. Linda was also instrumental in raising over $4-million for the Bold Horizons Campaign in the 1990s. We wish her all the best as she enters the transition into retirement. 

Glen Coulthard signs book deals

glenCongratulations to Glen Coulthard, professor with the Okanagan School of Business, who has signed two book deals with the McGraw-Hill Publishing Group in Chicago. Glen’s first book, Working with Microsoft Office 2007, will be published later this spring for academic distribution in fall, 2009. The second book, Computing Concepts 2010, is a cross-discipline textbook (although primarily for business and computer science majors) and will be marketed directly for first-year college/university courses.

 Computing Concepts 2010 will emphasize real-world applications – with a focus on using technology in everyday life and across careers. The publication year for Glen’s second book is 2010 so he has about a year to write 1,000 pages in addition to finishing up his PhD! For more information about Glen, who teaches primarily at the Kalamalka campus, visit his website at or the site for his book series:

Butler to lead team to Australia

kathybKathy Butler, Director of Advancement and Alumni Relations, has been chosen to lead a team of six young professionals from throughout the Southern Interior and Washington State on a Rotary (District 5060) Group Study Exchange to the Northern Territories and Queensland, Australia in April 2009. Kathy is a Past President of and member of the Rotary Club of Kelowna.

The purpose of the five-week trip is to meet with, talk and live with Australians, especially those working in post secondary education, in a spirit of fellowship and through professional exchange to know each other’s problems and aspirations, and to make personal contacts that will build into lasting friendships. Rotary sponsors a GSE exchange every year. Team members must be between ages 25 and 40. A team will go to England in 2010. For more information, give Kathy a call at 4775.

Welcome to Carly Chute

carlyAncillary and Business Services is pleased to announce that Carly Chute has joined the Print Services Department as the Print Services Coordinator, responsible for the operations of the department. Carly has worked for a number of years in the printing industry and has considerable expertise and experience in the field. Please do not hesitate to give Carly a call at local 4545 to discuss your printing requirements or simply to welcome her to Okanagan College.

Nancy Whyte and Alison Landry join Campus Stores

 nancy alison 
Nancy Whyte
Alison Landry
Campus Stores would like to welcome Nancy Whyte (Penticton) and Alison Landry (Salmon Arm) to Okanagan College and to the Campus Stores’ team.

Both women bring a wealth of customer service experience to their positions and both did a phenomenal job stepping into the busy fall rush period.  If you haven’t already done so please stop by to say hi.

Arellano challenges notion of art

tshirtIf you’ve walked around the Kelowna campus lately, then you may have seen a number of t-shirt clad torsos fixed to the construction fencing around the front of the library.

When people asked why he did the installations, Communications professor Marc Arellano said, “I had a number of motivations. From an artistic point of view, I wanted to challenge the notion of the use of public space and I chose the construction fencing as a location to call into question our assumptions of where art can be art.”

To find out more about Marc’s inspiration for the installation follow this link. Marc also has one size large t-shirt left and would like to give it away. He is asking anyone interested to email him with a reason why they should receive the shirt – the best response will win the shirt.

October 24, 2008, Vol. 2 Issue14


How can we make Inside Okanagan College better?

Early results are in as a number of staff shared their thoughts on how to make Inside Okanagan College better. After two weeks of feedback through the new Inside Okanagan College survey, staff told Public Affairs that 53 per cent would rather see the newsletter published on Mondays and 82 per cent would like to receive the newsletter in the morning. Early results show that the news section is the most valued section of the newsletter, followed by people. Have your say about how to make the newsletter better and complete this short, eight-question survey now. All feedback will be confidential. Please help Public Affairs make Inside Okanagan College even better.

Education Plan Sessions

The Okanagan College community is invited to attend open houses at the various campuses regarding the 2007-2012 Education Plan Review. At each of the open houses the Regional Deans will be looking for feedback on the suggested changes and issues raised by the Education Plan Review.
Below are dates and times for all of the Open Houses.

Nov. 3 Kelowna - S103B - 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Nov. 7 Penticton - CO2 - 3 - 4 p.m.
Nov. 12 Vernon - E202 - 9:30 - 11:30 a.m.
Nov. 12 Salmon Arm - 134 - 2 - 4 p.m.

For more information, contact Lara Jennings.

Supply Management Services  -  we make your job easier

Ever wondered how to make your job at Okanagan College easier? Find out more about Supply Management Services and the services they offer to assist staff. The Supply Management Services department is structured around Procurement Services and Central Receiving. The central purchasing activity procures materials, services and certain professional services for the College. This includes:

Purchasing goods and services
Providing information about products, prices, and suppliers
Researching new products and locating suppliers
Issuance of all Procurement Cards - Visa
Filing credit applications with new vendors
Providing web requisition assistance and training
Activating the on-line e-way user accounts for ordering office supplies

Check out the Supply Management Website for more information or email if you have any questions or require Web Requisition assistance. Supply Management Services would like to hear from you with feedback and comments. Please take a moment to fill out an online form.

Call for nominations - Distinguished Service Awards

The Okanagan College Tributes Committee invites nominations for the Distinguished Service Awards for the 2009 Convocation and Commencement ceremonies. This award honours and recognizes former Okanangan College employees who have given outstanding service to Okanagan College, who share and support the mission, vision and values of Okanagan College, and who are active within and outside the Okanagan College community. This award will not be given as a matter of routine and is extended to only those who are most deserving.    

To make a nomination:

Nominations from either a peer or supervisor are the chief source of candidates and all are given serious consideration. Nominations should include:
1.    A personal profile of the nominee, including name, title, position, address, telephone number and email.
2.    A comment on their exceptional service to the institution, and the special connection the nominee has to Okanagan College and our region.
3.    A clear statement in support of the nomination including any supporting documents
4.    The name, signature, department or address and telephone number of the nominator(s).

Nominations should be submitted by Nov. 28, 2008 to:

Joanna Campbell, Assistant to the President
Okanagan College
1000 KLO Road
Kelowna, BC   V1Y 4X8
250-762-5445, ext. 4715     

Please note: A nominee should never know s/he is being nominated for an award. This saves embarrassment on both sides if the nominee is not selected by the Committee.

50/50 winner announced

Congratulations to Janet Mantyka from the Penticton campus who won today's payday draw for $477.50. 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 (Landmark V, Kelowna) or online.

Look who got shot?

allanSuccumbing to the persuasive words of Health and Safety Officer Catherine Williams,  Allan Coyle was just one of many staff who received a flu vaccination this week. Catherine would like to remind anyone who may have missed the flu clinics but would like to receive a flu shot, to contact Interior Health to schedule a vaccination.

United Way Campaign update

The 2008 United Way campaign at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus is well underway. Thank you to everyone who has already sent in pledges and donations. Please keep those pledge forms coming in. If you did not receive a pledge form and would like to participate in the program, please contact Dawn Douglas. The deadline to submit your pledge form is November 15, 2008.

Throughout the month of October, the Advancement & Alumni office will be selling raffle tickets for two baskets full of great gifts. The first basket has been donated by Truffles Chocolate Café and is valued at over $75. The second basket is valued at over $350 and is full to the brim with items provided by:

Apple Valley Promotions
Bella Clothing & Nail Boutique
Campus Store
Fezziweg’s Artisan Café
Kelowna Rockets Hockey Club
McCulloch Station Pub
Okanagan College Alumni Association
Okanagan College Foundation

Tickets are one for $2 or three for $5 and can be purchased from the Advancement & Alumni team in P103 at the KLO Campus.

To learn more about the United Way and its community partners, please visit: or


Oct. 24 - Join Mel Hurtig, a Canadian publisher, author, political activist and former political candidate, for a lecture on his latest book, “The Truth About Canada: Some Important, Some Astonishing, and Some Truly Appalling Things All Canadians Should Know About Our Country.” The event will take place in the Kelowna campus lecture theatre beginning at 7 p.m. Admission is $5 in support of Project Literacy.

Oct. 24 – 25 – Okanagan College’s Kalamalka campus and Willis Associates are hosting a Conference on Community Sustainability in a Changing Global Environment at the Kalamalka Campus Lecture Theatre.

The two-day conference is part of Okanagan College’s annual Speakers’ Series, which will bring together students, professors, the general public and the business community to hear national and international experts weigh in on critical issues for the public. Read a Public Affairs press release for more information about the event and how to purchase tickets.

Oct. 29 – Okanagan College and the Okanagan College Alumni Association will celebrate the achievements of Don Turri, winner of the 2008 Distinguished Alumni Award, and Chris Gibbons, winner of the 2008 Young Alumni Award, at a dinner banquet at the Harvest Golf Club. Tickets to this event are still available and can be purchased until 4 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 27. For more information, email, or call Marcy Nelson at 250-762-5445 ext. 4773 or toll free: 1-888-650-6968.

Oct. 30 – Find out more about how you can help brighten the life of children with severe physical disabilities or life-threatening illnesses at a Sunshine Foundation volunteer information night. The event will take place at 7 p.m. at the Ramada Lodge in Kelowna. For more information contact Linda at 1-800-461-7935 or visit:

Oct. 31 - Annual Halloween BBQ (11 a.m. – 1 p.m.)
Outside the Cafeteria, KLO Campus
For a $5 donation, you will receive a BBQ lunch and goodie bag, some goodie bags will have prizes inside. Net proceeds from the BBQ will be donated to the United Way.

Nov. 2 – Celebrate more than a quarter-century of community involvement at the 27th annual Okanagan College Career Fair. The event takes place at the Kelowna campus on Sunday from 10:30 a.m. – 4 p.m. For more information, or to volunteer, visit the website or contact Katie Bowyer.

Nov. 3 –  Penticton Speaker’s Series
Lecture Theatre, 7 p.m.
Join the Penticton Speaker's Series for a special screening of the film Into the Wild. Admission is by donation. Contact Kaya Forest for more information.

Dec. 17 – Celebrate the holiday season with staff from the Kelowna campus at the Snowflake Cocktail Party in the cafeteria. Entertainment will be provided by Lennox Smart, a soprano saxophonist who is also an international student. The event will take place from 4 – 6 p.m. and will offer appetizers and a cash bar. Staff are welcome to bring their significant others. Admission will be $5.


Last week, under deadline and possibly hopped-up on too much caffeine, Inside Okanagan College editor Christine Ulmer wrote about the brilliance of English professor Matt Kavanagh’s book, which was reviewed in the Globe and Mail. After coming down from the caffeine high and after a gentle reminder from Matt, Christine realized she’d made a slight error. Matt’s book review did appear in the Globe and Mail, however, it wasn’t his book that was being reviewed, it was his review of author Patrick Lane’s book. Sincere apologies to Matt for the mix-up. Follow this link to read Matt’s review of Red Dog, Red Dog,  A howl of a book (page 1) (page 2).

As reported in Inside Okanagan College, well-known developer Ed Hall has accepted the position of Entrepreneur-in-Residence of the Okanagan School of Business. Read an article from the Daily Courier’s Steve MacNaull: Hall entrepreneur-in-residence at OK College.

News of the addition of four new members of the Okanagan College Board of Governors made it into the Kelowna Daily Courier via a press release from Public Affairs. Read more in: College board grows by 4.

Okanagan College made the pages of the Kelowna Daily Courier for its environmentalism when it was reported that the College will face off against UBC-O in a waste reduction competition. Read more in: Talking and doing something about trash and Students to sift through trash in effort to reduce it.

News of Okanagan College’s crushing win against TRU on the baseball field appeared in the Kelowna Capital News. Read about the team’s end of season victory in: New OC team crushes TRU.

This weekend’s conference on sustainability at the Vernon campus of Okanagan College resulted in an article in the Vernon Morning Star: Campus hosts sustainability conference and the Kelowna Capital News: Experts gather to discuss environmental topics at OC’s Kalamalka campus.

The Kalamalka campus made the news again this week when it announced the formation of the Kalamalka Vertigo. Read more in: Vertigo a hub of literary activity.

German professor Olga Osipova’s upcoming concert fundraiser was profiled in the Kelowna Daily Courier’s Bliss section. Read more in: Local award winners come together for charity show.

The launch of the Community Emergency Multi-Casualty Incident Unit at the Kelowna campus of Okanagan College drew media from the Kelowna Daily Courier. Read about the project and how Okanagan College staff made the vision a reality in: Unit ready in case of disaster.

This week Kelowna’s business excellence award winners were announced and among them was Okanagan School of Business alumnus Andrew Gaucher. Andrew was a finalist for the 2008 Young entrepreneur of the year for his company Green Solutions. Read more in: Business excellence award winners.

The Okanagan College Home for Learning project partners in Summerland were photographed in the Summerland Review after the Summerland and District Credit Union made a donation of $10,000 to the project. Read more in: Funding a home.

Okanagan College students from the Penticton campus were the focus of an article in the Penticton Western News after the campus hosted a candidate’s forum in the days leading up to the federal election. Read more in: Students gain a political education.

Adult learners over the age of 45 were the focus of an article by Jennifer Smith that featured Okanagan College’s Terry Tuck. Read more in: Back to School.

Jane Muskens’ School’s In columns hit the topics of funding your education during a recession and transitioning from high school to post-secondary. Read both pieces: Recessions only raise need for student loans and Making transition from high school to college.


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

Don't forget to take the Inside Okanagan College survey and share your thoughts on how this publication can be even better.

The next edition of INSIDE OKANAGAN COLLEGE will be issued on Nov. 7, 2008.