Tuesday, August 23, 2016

Vancouver Latin American Film Festival comes to Douglas College Sept. 8

The Vancouver Latin American Film Festival returns to Douglas College on Sept. 8.

The annual event promotes Latin American cinema in Vancouver and encourages dialogue among cultures, while exploring and celebrating the art of contemporary Latin American and Latin-Canadian film making.

This year's screening at the College will feature Camino a La Paz (Road to La Paz) from Argentina. The film follows the story of an unemployed man who starts a private car service and takes an older Arab man, Jalil, on a long-distance journey from Buenos Aires to La Paz that will change their lives. The film is in Spanish with English subtitles. The concept of the film - by Brazilin director Glauber Rocha - is based on the film Entranced Earth 1967.

The film will screen at 4:30pm at the New Westminster Campus in Lecture Theatre N2201. Admission is free and everyone is welcome.


Monday, August 22, 2016

Douglas College ELLA student to lead staff at new Vancouver restaurant

A former English Language Learning and Acquisition (ELLA) student will be heading the team behind the new restaurant located in the soon-to-be completed Trump International Hotel and Tower Vancouver.

Eric Yang was hired as the general manager of famed Chinese fine-dining restaurant Mott32. The Hospitality Management grad has come a long way from his first day in Canada.

“When I first came here at 19, I struggled with the language, but the ELLA program at Douglas College helped me,” Yang said.

Yang heard about Douglas College while a student in China, where he was born and raised. The presentation – made by International Marketing and Recruitment Manager David Chen – resonated with him as he was looking for a seamless transition when he moved to Canada.

“I wanted to learn the language and learn about the culture before diving into a big university,” Yang said. “Douglas College was perfect for that. There’s a real connection between students and staff, and you develop personal relationships and networks.

“When I came to Canada, I started from scratch and the International team really took me under their wing.”

Through the ELLA program, Yang was able to boost his English proficiency and establish a core group of support that helped him navigate at the College.

After testing the waters with political science – which he deemed “too dry” – Yang began to inquire about the hospitality industry, leading him to the Douglas College Hospitality Management Certificate.

Through the hands-on training he received in the program, Yang was able to land positions at prestigious establishments in Vancouver, including the Four Seasons, Shangri-La and now, Trump International Hotel and Tower Vancouver.

“It was really practical. The program was more like training for the real world,” Yang said. “When I started actually working in the industry, I was at the bottom of the bottom. But with what I learned at Douglas College, and the constructive criticism I received, I started moving up.”

Now, Yang is gearing up for the launch of the anticipated Mott32, when he will take the skills he learned to the main stage. And there will be some familiar faces cheering him on.

“The ELLA team really care about my success and even now, six years later, there is still a strong connection,” Yang said. Read more...

Tuesday, August 16, 2016

Douglas College introduces gender-neutral washrooms

Douglas College is creating a more inclusive space for students, staff and faculty with the introduction of gender-neutral washrooms.

All single-stall washrooms at both the Coquitlam and New Westminster campuses are now barrier-free.

The change was spurred by former Douglas College Student Union Pride Liaison Milo Leraar and former Douglas College student Brett Collins, who advocated for the creation of the barrier-free washrooms. The two students connected with College instructor Jaime Yard in 2013 through her Anthropology of Gender and Sexuality class and found an avid supporter.

“Students, faculty and staff need to know that they can get their biological needs met on campus without hassle. This is a big piece in making our campuses safe and inclusive places to learn and work,” Yard said.

The duo then connected with Markus McIntyre – then of SFU’s Out on Campus – to run a professional development workshop for Douglas College Faculty on LGBTQ positive spaces in classrooms. The workshop was attended by more than 35 faculty who supported the plea for barrier-free washrooms.

“I'm a student, a researcher, and queer. I constantly ask ’is this place safe for me?’ and worry that if I misjudge that I’ll suffer the consequences,” Collins said. “My time at Douglas had me hearing other students with similar concerns and experiences. I felt that if I could do anything to change this I should.”

After Leraar graduated with an Associate of Arts Degree, Collins continued the advocacy work with members of the DSU Pride Collective. With the help of volunteers, Collins and Yard assessed the state of all washrooms on the New Westminster Campus and made recommendations.

“All of the multi-stall washrooms are still marked with the traditional for male and female symbols. We take this to mean that anyone who identifies as male or as female is welcome to access these facilities,” Yard said.

The perfect opportunity to change the single-stall washrooms to inclusive, gender-neutral washrooms came when the College’s Facilities department was leading a project to update the signage at both campuses. After consultation with a variety of groups, all washroom signage was changed this spring.

“The message is that Douglas College is not a place for policing gender. We want people to have options on campus, and don't believe that you should have to declare your sex or gender to go to the washroom,” Yard said. Read more...

Friday, August 5, 2016

Douglas College Financial Services Diploma student gaining hands-on experience

A Douglas College student is getting a head start in her industry thanks to the skills and experience gained from her classes.

Financial Services Diploma student Elizabeth Schonewille took on the role as a credit officer with Westminster Leasing – the automotive and heavy equipment department of Westminster Savings Credit Union – following the completion of her diploma. Her next step is to complete her Bachelor of Business Administration – Financial Services at the College.

“With my experience in administration in the last eight months paired with my schooling at Douglas I was able to move into a lending position in our automotive leasing department. I am now a credit officer, I review applications for car loans and make decisions based on a variety of factors such as cash flow, net worth and beacon scores,” she said. “Douglas helped me with this placement by giving me the tools to analyze financial statements, review debt service ratios and determine cash flow.”

Schonewille first began at Westminster Savings in 2011 as a teller, and has steadily moved up because of her positive attitude, said manager Greg Oyenhart.

“What struck me about Elizabeth is that she is someone who is able to juggle with a lot on her plate. She brings a lot of energy to whatever she does,” Oyenhart said. “She exemplifies the kind of attitude we want on our team – willing to do anything and try anything. She’s shown a lot of initiative.”


Thursday, August 4, 2016

Douglas College introduces Social Work Degree

Looking to forge a career as a social worker?

Douglas College will be offering a Bachelor of Social Work degree for the Fall 2017 semester.

The College added the degree following approval by the Ministry of Advanced Education.

“It’s really exciting for the College to be adding a social work degree. Our program has a history and a really strong culture of preparing people to be excellent practitioners,” said Carla Alexander, Community Social Service Work Program coordinator.

The decision to pursue the degree approval was influenced by student requests. Students indicated they wanted to stay at Douglas College for the entirety of their post-secondary education, and needed a bachelor’s degree in social work for the career path they had chosen.

“The bachelor’s degree is the entry level for many careers in the profession,” Alexander said. “We had a good number of our students who had a relationship with their instructors and wanted to stay. Now, they can.”

The expansion of degree options at Douglas College fills a need in the education system by combining the academic foundations of a university with the employer-ready skills of a college.

A bachelor’s degree in Social Work prepares graduates for a wide range of careers including work with public and private agencies focusing on child welfare, health care, addiction and mental health, immigrant and refugee settlement, community development and social policy, as well as the justice and education systems.

The curriculum is still in development. For further information, check the douglascollege.ca in Winter 2017 or contact Zeineen Panju at 604-527-5136.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Douglas College Poem of the Month: August 2016

Poem of the Month showcases outstanding work written by Douglas College students.

Each month, the Creative Writing Department displays posters across both campuses featuring a new poem.

Click on the image to the right to see an enlarged version of this month’s poster, featuring "Yearning" by Eleanor Reed.

All Douglas College students are eligible to enter the Poem of the Month competition. Featured poems are selected by a committee of instructors.

To learn more about submitting poems, contact the Faculty of Language, Literature and Performing Arts at 604 527 5465.

More information about the Creative Writing Department is available on the Douglas College website.

Tuesday, July 19, 2016

Douglas College VOAC grad pairs dogs with new owners

As a veterinary assistant, Ilana Goldberg is familiar with the struggles involved with rehoming pets.

But she became more familiar with the arduous process when helping a friend rehome a Beagle named Max.

“I soon realized after posting on Craigslist that there were a lot of people who seemed interested and would email, but were not serious or ready to own a dog. I looked on Facebook for a group to post him in and saw other cities had pages but nothing came up in Vancouver,” Goldberg said.

Realizing the obvious need for a page in her city, the Douglas College Veterinary Office and Animal Care Certificate (VOAC) graduate took matters into her own hands. In 2014, Goldberg created the Facebook group Adoptable Dogs Vancouver, connecting owners looking to rehome with people looking to adopt.

“The primary goal of this page was to help network these dogs and make it an easier choice than buying a new puppy for those who are open to it. There is a problem if we have so many rescues needing homes and people wanting to adopt them, but thinking there are no dogs available,” Goldberg said.

Since its inception, the page has helped connect countless individuals. And the feedback Goldberg has received has been overwhelmingly positive.

“Through my job and life experience I have learned that the bond between humans and pets is so very special. Animals can greatly increase quality of life for us by providing love, affection, responsibility, socializing and change in perspective,” she said.

Goldberg – who has two dogs herself – has always been passionate for animals. Her curiosity for all things animal-related led her to the VOAC program three years ago. Since her graduation, she has worked at the Oak Animal Hospital in Vancouver.

“The program opened the doors for me to work in a career I’m passionate about,” Goldberg said, noting she plans to further her education in the field, specifically in Veterinary Clinic Management and Animal Behaviour.

“Within my role as a vet assistant and running Adoptable Dogs Vancouver, I try to lead with compassion and understanding to my fellow humans while prioritizing the health and safety of animals and feel strongly that the two can coexist.”


Friday, July 15, 2016

Douglas College to offer Geological Resources Diploma

Looking to break into the mining industry?

Douglas College will be offering a Geological Resources Diploma this fall.

The two-year program will provide students with the skills and knowledge needed to pursue a career in mining and mining exploration.

“This diploma bridges the gap between finding employment and getting a degree,” said David Waddington, chair of the Earth and Environmental Sciences department. “Students who graduate from this program can go to work right away or continue to a university degree.”

The diploma program features a flexible program structure and most courses are university transferable to the research universities in B.C.

“There is no other program like this offered in the province,” Waddington said. “Douglas College is really expanding options for students and providing the hands-on training they need to start their careers.”

The creation of this diploma program comes as approximately 40 percent of the current workforce in the mining industry will need to be replaced in the next 10 years, opening up many opportunities for grads.

Students interested in the program can apply now to start in September.


Monday, July 11, 2016

Video: Meet Communications student Domunique Booker

It makes perfect sense that Domunique Booker's first steps were on a basketball court. The life-long basketball player has always been immersed in the world of sport. Now, she's taking her passion for the game and bringing it off the court as a sports broadcaster.
Domunique is honing her skills as a writer and on-air personality by taking Communications at Douglas. When she's not in class, the soon-to-be media maven can be found shooting, editing and preparing segments for the Athletic's department. Her next move? Transferring to an accredited journalism program.

Check out this video to learn more.


Friday, July 1, 2016

Douglas College Poem of the Month: July 2016

Poem of the Month showcases outstanding work written by Douglas College students.

Each month, the Creative Writing Department displays posters across both campuses featuring a new poem.

Click on the image to the right to see an enlarged version of this month’s poster, featuring "In Retrospect" by D'arcy Arseneau.

All Douglas College students are eligible to enter the Poem of the Month competition. Featured poems are selected by a committee of instructors.

To learn more about submitting poems, contact the Faculty of Language, Literature and Performing Arts at 604 527 5465.

More information about the Creative Writing Department is available on the Douglas College website. Read more...