Enactus OC teams on the road to nationals

Enactus OC regionals 2018An impressive finish at the Enactus Canada Regional Exposition means at least two Okanagan College Enactus teams are heading to the national competition in May for the chance to once again distinguish themselves as Canada’s best.

Enactus OC sent five teams – totaling 34 students – to compete in regionals in Calgary last weekend. The results once again surpassed expectations with two first-place finishes, one in the TD Entrepreneurship Challenge and the other in the Scotiabank Youth Empowerment Challenge. An OC Enactus team also scored a third-place finish in the Scotiabank Eco-Living Green Challenge.

“We’re the only team in Western Canada out of 23 to get two first-place finishes,” says Dr. Kyleen Myrah, Okanagan College School of Business professor and faculty advisor with Enactus OC. “We’re extremely proud of how these students represented their college and community and know that we have some very busy weeks ahead as we continue working on our key projects and prepare for the national competition.”

Read the full story here.

Trades complex honoured for innovation

Trades complex wins awardThe College's Trades Complex in Kelowna notched another accolade for its forward-thinking design and construction.

OC took home the Institutional Wood Design Award at the 2018 Wood Design Awards hosted by Wood WORKS! BC in Vancouver on Feb. 26. The annual awards celebrate excellence in wood building and design, along with leadership and innovation in wood use.

"We set out to provide our students and employees with a facility that through its design and construction would truly celebrate the trades – past, present and future – and reflect the quality of trades training offered at the College," says Okanagan College President Jim Hamilton. "We're honoured to be named among some of the most innovative wood building projects in the province."

The Trades Complex was designed by Diamond Schmitt Architects and built by PCL Constructors Westcoast Inc. Among other sustainable features, the renovated and expanded Trades Complex incorporates Cross Laminated Timber from Structurlam, a Penticton-based manufacturer of mass timber solutions.

Read more in the media release.

Tuition increasing at OC

Tuition will be increasing at the College in the coming year. 

Following provincial policy, the College's Board of Governors has approved a two per cent increase for domestic students in the coming year. Tuition for international students will increase two per cent for some programs and 5.9 per cent in other programs (arts, business, science and English as a Second Language).

Adult Basic Education courses and English as a Second Language courses remain tuition free for domestic students.

For a Canadian student taking a full semester of five university arts lectures, the increase will add $33.42, increasing the semester's tuition to $1,704.73. For an international student taking the same courses, the increase will add $382.91 totaling $6,872.91 per semester. Tuition for international students is higher than domestic students because they are not supported by taxpayer funding.

Click here to read the full story.

Lumby siblings shine at Spaghetti Bridge

heavyweight spaghetti bridge winners 2018Two very determined defending champions, a dash of friendly sibling rivalry and a home team hungry for victory was the recipe for a dramatic finish at the 35th annual Spaghetti Bridge Building competition at Okanagan College.

The bridge built by Justin Dessert and Hanya Riddick withstood an impressive 223.61 kg (almost 500 pounds) of load on the College’s Fettuccine Fault Line scale before it exploded. The Grade 9 duo earned first place in the heavyweight competition – and the top prize of $1,500 – for the second year running. Last year, their bridge withstood 255.06 kg of load.

“We went with a similar design this year – a simple arch with spokes – but we made a few tweaks,” explains Dessert, who hopes to be a teacher one day and whose life-long interest in science has continued to swell as a result of the competition. “We used fewer noodles and smaller noodles, which made the bridge a little lighter.”

The pair have already agreed they’ll try for a Spaghetti Bridge three-peat next year.

Dessert’s older brother James, a Grade 12 student at Charles Bloom and last year’s runner up, once again took home second place. His bridge withstood 159.39 kg this year before shattering in front of a packed lecture theatre at the Kelowna campus.

The team of Keyvan Khadem, Gavin Saini, Ahmed Ramadan, Harvey Mann, and Jordan Van Drimmelen of Okanagan College settled for a disappointing third place after their bridge crumbled early on under 36.48 kg of load.

Click here for the full story.

Law Enforcement studies info sessions

JIBCA collaboration between the College and the Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC) is allowing students in the region to complete their law enforcement studies close to home.

Thanks to a partnership that began in 2015, graduates of Okanagan College’s Criminal and Social Justice (CSJ) Diploma program who meet admission requirements can continue their studies and step directly into the third-year of JIBC’s Bachelor of Law Enforcement Studies (BLES) degree at the College’s Penticton campus.

The collaboration doesn’t just benefit Okanagan College CSJ graduates. The program is also open to holders of a recognized Criminology, or similarly relevant, Diploma or Associate Degree.

Those interested in the program can learn more during a series of info sessions on March 12 in Kelowna (from 11-11:45 a.m. in C276) and Penticton (from 1-2 p.m. and again from 5:30-6:30 p.m., both in PC 229).

Read the full story here.


Beastly underworld on the bill for OC's Red Dot Players

Neverwhere - Red Dot PlayersMonsters, magic, mayhem and a reluctant hero are on the agenda as Okanagan College's Red Dot Players bring Neverwhere to the stage at the Kelowna campus beginning Thursday.

"Neverwhere is a dark, exciting play that should appeal to lovers of fantasy, mystery and magic," explains director Jeremy Beaulne, whose day job is being an English professor at the College. "We're excited about the play because it is a great stage adaptation of the classic fantasy novel by Neil Gaiman."

The story focuses on a London office worker, Richard Mayhew, who helps a mysterious young woman who appears on the sidewalk in front of him. Mayhew is drawn into the depths of London Below, a sinister realm brimming with monsters and magic. As he helps the Lady Door discover who murdered her family, Mayhew has to battle a beast, match wits with a pair of Victorian assassins and survive an ordeal that forces him to question his very sanity.

Click here for more information about showtimes and the theatre troupe. Tickets are on sale at Mosaic Books in downtown Kelowna and at the Kelowna Campus Store. They will also be available at the door.   

Remembering Stuart Muir

Stuart Muir, an OUC employee who began his career with the institution in 1988, passed away on Feb. 23 at the age of 77.

His 14-year career spanned many changes and developments for the institution, including development of the North Kelowna campus (now home to UBC Okanagan).

He was a focused manager, recalls Graham Kershaw, who worked with Muir in the late 90s and until Muir retired in 2002. "He was very principled in the way he did things. He liked to get to the business at hand."

"He always - absolutely always - flew the flag for the college," says Kershaw.

His obituary can be found here.

Beer appreciation course on tap in Vernon

Stefan BuhlAn award-winning brewmaster who was among those to help ferment the craft beer revolution in B.C. is serving up a guided tasting course in Vernon this month that will appeal to everyone from industry professionals and home brewers to newcomers alike.

After completing his apprenticeship as a brewmaster in his homeland of Germany, Stefan Buhl brought his knowledge and passion for German-styled lagers and ales and English ales to Canada in 1996. He spent 17 years brewing beer and overseeing production for Tree Brewing in Kelowna and is now owner of his own brewing and packaging solutions company. 

Buhl will share his decades of experience during a three-hour beer appreciation course on March 8 starting at 6:30 p.m. at Marten Brewing Company in Vernon.

The course is offered through the College's Continuing Studies Department in partnership with Marten Brewing Company. For more information, click here.

Opening doors for women in trades 

Frances SadowickAn opportunity to test-drive a career in the trades put Frances Sadowick on the path to a career she loves and helped her build the confidence to pursue it. The College recently hosted an open house inviting women to follow in Sadowick’s footsteps and learn about opportunities to train for a future in the building trades.

It was precisely this 12-week exploratory Gateway to the Building Trades for Women program that provided Sadowick with her introduction to the trades that led to continued education and employment.

As soon as her Gateway program wrapped, she applied to, and was sponsored again by Okanagan College Women in Trades to enrol in the Plumbing and Piping Trades Foundation program. Sponsorship included full tuition, textbooks, personal protection equipment and tools required for the program.

“I’ve found my confidence in the workplace and am excited for my future working towards a Red Seal ticket,” she explains. “I’m creating a brighter future for myself and my son.”

More information about the upcoming Gateway to the Building Trades for Women program in Salmon Arm in April is available here. Read Sadowick's full story here.

March 6, 2018, Vol. 12, Issue 5


EdCo welcomes new members; upcoming elections notice

Two new members will join Okanagan College’s Education Council next month. Norah Bowman was successful in the recent by-election for the Central Okanagan faculty seat. Amanda Lang is joining as the South Okanagan-Similkameen student representative. Both terms commence March 1. 

More governance opportunities:
Call for nominations will open this month for the following positions:

Education Council
• Shuswap-Revelstoke faculty (by-election)
• North Okanagan (by-election)
• Portfolio faculty (six seats)
• Support staff (two seats) 

Board of Governors
• Faculty (one seat)
• Support Staff (one seat)

For more information about the upcoming elections and important dates, please see the notice in College Matters.

Overflow parking notice

As a reminder, only vehicles displaying valid OC parking passes will be permitted to park in the designated Kelowna campus overflow spaces in the lot at Evangel Church (3261 Gordon Drive).

New staff parking passes

Please check the front of your parking pass to see if it has an expiry date of December 2017. If it has expired, you will need to apply for a new parking pass as soon as possible.

Click here to apply for a new pass and complete the form with your current vehicle information and submit. Once submitted, your designated approver will send their confirmation back to Facilities. The new permit will be available for pickup at the Facilities office and it is requested that you bring your old pass with you in exchange. In the interim, if you received a parking ticket for an expired pass, bring it to Facilities to be voided.

If your pass is broken or doesn't have an expiry date listed at all, please also apply for a new pass.

For more information, please contact Facilities at ext. 4262.

Call for volunteers – Aboriginal Recognition Ceremony

Aboriginal Services is looking for Okanagan College employees to volunteer as greeters and ambassadors at the upcoming Aboriginal Student Recognition Ceremony on Saturday, March 17 from noon – 3:30 p.m. in the Lecture Theatre at the Kelowna campus. Click here for more details and contact Jewell Gillies to sign up as a volunteer.


Last Learning and Applied Research Workshop

March 8 – Learning and Applied Research offers various professional developmental workshops for OC employees. The goal is to provide opportunities for employees to engage in sharing their knowledge and skills as well as gaining new perspectives on various topics that support them in their daily work. 

Upcoming workshops

  • March 8, 2 – 3 p.m.: Cynthia Garcia and Michael Saad present "In the Shoes of an International Student" in room B130 at the Kelowna campus.

This concludes the 2018 winter schedule. If you have any ideas or suggestions about the types of professional development workshops you would like to see offered in the next instalment, please email Learning and Applied Research.

Beyond opioids: the overdose crisis

March 9 – Cheyenne Johnson, Director of Clinical Activities and Development at the British Columbia Center on Substance Use and the Canadian Research Initiative in Substance Misuse, will present "Beyond opioids: the overdose crisis – how did we get here?" in the lecture theatre at the Vernon campus on Friday, March 9 at 7:30 p.m. The talk is open to the public and is part of the Science in Society Speaker Series. Admission to the lecture is $7 in advance or $10 at the door. For advanced tickets, call the Okanagan Science Centre at (250) 545-3644 or visit the website here. 

Win big with OC's NCAA March Madness bracket pool

March 9 deadline – Want to test your powers of prediction and have a chance to win $1,000? The OC Coyotes basketball program is teaming up with the Okanagan College Foundation to offer a March Madness bracket pool. Enter before March 9 to make your game predictions and choose the NCAA National Champion. All proceeds go to a scholarship or bursary fund for OC athletes. Tickets cost $25 and include a Papa John's pizza card.

Please visit Richard McAdam in the Foundation office or email him for more details. BC Gaming License #103255; participants must be 19+ to play.

Trivia night - Are you Smarter than an OC Student?

March 14 – Are you a pop culture junkie, sports fan or history buff? If yes, then OC Alumni Association's trivia night – Are you Smarter than an OC Student or Graduate – is for you!

Put together a team of friends, colleagues, family members or fellow alumni and join in a fun night of trivia at the Kelowna campus. A cash bar is available and the registration fee includes an appie platter for each team. There are a ton of prizes and all proceeds go to student awards, bursaries and scholarships. For more information and to register a team, click here.

Free Canadian Mental Health Association workshop

March 14 – The Canadian Mental Health Association is presenting a "Responding with Respect" workshop in two sessions from 9:30 a.m. – 12:30 p.m. and again from 1 – 4 p.m. on March 14. The free workshop teaches supervisors, managers and employees a framework for how to support a co-worker going through a challenging time. Click here to register.


The Salmon Arm Observer and the Capital News shared word that the College is now accepting nominations for the 2018 Distinguished and Young Alumni Awards.

A pair of Okanagan College Business students and a Civil and Mechanical Engineering student’s new project, Project ReCharge, caught the attention of KelownaNow.

Okanagan College hosted the Salmon Arm Economic Development Society’s third annual Technology Meet Up where more than 600 students from across the district attended the event: the Salmon Arm Observer and the Vernon Morning Star shared highlights.

Local students in Grades 8 - 10 took part in a recent Math Challengers regional competition at the College and the Vernon Morning Star caught up with a group of students who did well in the challenge.

Castanet and the Vernon Morning Star shared the news about renowned substance use researcher Cheyenne Johnson coming to the Vernon campus to present “Beyond opioids: the overdose crisis – how did we get here?” 

The Oliver Chronicle and Osoyoos Times profiled OUC alumnus (B.Ed. 2004) Pinder Dhaliwal who was elected as president of the B.C. Fruit Growers’ Association after spending five years as the vice-president of the association.

Okanagan College Women in Trades program hosted a free public open house on Feb. 28 and the Vernon Morning Star shared information about the event.

Castanet and InfoTel News Kamloops reported on award-winning brewmaster Stefan Buhl who is teaching a new course on craft beer appreciation in Vernon.

The College’s Board of Governors has approved a two per cent increase in tuition for domestic students in the coming year and the Lake Country Calendar, Global News, Capital News, KelownaNow, CastanetSalmon Arm Observer, Daily Courier and Penticton Herald reported on it.

The 35th annual Spaghetti Bridge contest at Okanagan College’s Kelowna campus has come to a close. InfoTel News KamloopsGlobal NewsPenticton Western News, Castanet, KelownaNow, AM 1150's iheartradio, Okanagan Weekend, Daily Courer and the Vernon Morning Star all reported on contest results.

The College's Kelowna Trades Complex was honoured with the 2018 Institutional Wood Design and Castanet, Capital News and the Journal of Commerce blog shared details and the Vancouver Sun put up a photo gallery of all winning buildings.

Okanagan College's Kelowna campus has been named an official Canadian English Language Proficiency Index Program (CELPIP) Test Centre and CELPIP gave full details.

Led by the College, a troop of educators and policy-shapers from across Canada went to Scotland in February to learn how to better plan and incorporate outdoor play into children's early educational experiences; the Daily Courier reported on the story.

The College's Red Dot Players is bringing Neverwhere to the stage at the Kelowna campus starting on March 8. The upcoming play caught the attention of the Okanagan Weekend who reported on the details.

Talk of a new diploma aimed at the tourism industry at the College's Revelstoke centre caught the Lake Country Calendar's attention.

Maxine Dehart's column in the Capital News shared that The Dragons' Den is coming to Okanagan College's Kelowna campus on March 8 from 11 a.m. - 6 p.m. to find budding entrepreneurs. 

Several OC students unveiled a solar-powered table to help people power up on the go and the Daily Courier shared details and CBC caught up with the inventors for an interview.

Okanagan College professor Dr. Rosalind Warner participated in a symposium about North Korea at UBC Okanagan last week. Warner introduced speakers and summarized key points and issues around North Korea's nuclear capabilities; Global News shared word of the event. 

The growing demand for skilled workers in the wine industry and in the trades sector propelled the Salmon Arm Observer to catch up with Dr. Gabriel Balint, chair of the Viticulture Technician program, Steve Moores, Dean of Trades and Apprenticeship and Nancy Darling, Program Administrator for Women in Trades Training to talk about training opportunities at the College.


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

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 March 20, 2018.