Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Douglas College Criminology grad follows dream of becoming a lawyer

For Clayton Gray, his decision to take on a criminology course at Douglas College came around the same way many young men try new things: for a girl.

“There was this girl, and she said ‘hey, come to this class,’” the Criminology grad recalled. “I went to check it out, and my teacher, Lorree Bogden, was so articulate and passionate – I was drawn to her teaching style.”

As for the girl?

“She actually dropped the course,” Gray laughed.

Fast-forward a few years later, and Gray is pursuing his passion for justice as a transfer to the University of Victoria, where he is working towards his law degree.

Gray – whose mother is Ojibwa – has been interested in law all of his life, specifically in relation to social justice and his family’s history. Affectionately known as the "lawyer for the defense" while growing up, Gray recalls a story his mother told him about the day his grandfather decided his grandson’s future career path – when he was negotiating over how many scoops of ice cream he should get after dinner.

“My grandfather turned to my parents and said ‘that kid, he should be a lawyer,’” Gray said.

Getting to this point hasn’t been easy, Gray noted. Prior to coming to Douglas, the 28–year-old had a difficult time at Simon Fraser University, resulting in an early departure. Once at Douglas, Gray found himself struggling again.

“My academic history wasn’t the brightest. And it was suggested I take Student Success,” Gray said. “Between that and the criminology course, it helped turn around my academic trajectory.”

The first-year law student also credits the support he received from Aboriginal Co-ordinator Dave Seaweed as another factor to his success.

“He was one of my mentors. I don’t know where I would be without Dave,” Gray said.

Aside from law, Gray, an avid wrestler throughout high school, also started a drop-in wrestling program at the Urban Native Youth Association of Vancouver, which he continued leading before moving to Victoria. Gray was also an active member of the Douglas community, participating in number of campus activities and working as a student assistant.

“Students need to get involved with their school in an active way,” he said. “You make connections at school that you will use in the future, and you don’t make those connections if you just come and sit in class.” Read more...

Monday, September 28, 2015

This week at Douglas College: Legacies of Berger panel discussion at New Westminster campus

Here’s what’s happening at Douglas: Sept. 28- Oct. 4

Tuesday, Sept. 29

Composer Tuesday - Marcus Goddard
Muir Theatre
New Westminster Campus
The Music Department presents a special presentation by Marcus Goddard, Associate Principal Trumpet with the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and a composer of over 35 works.

Wednesday, Sept. 30

Hawaii Field School Information Session
New Westminster Campus
Meet the instructors and find out about studying in Hawaii in 2016.

Hawaii Field School Information Session
Coquitlam Campus
Meet the instructors and find out about studying in Hawaii in 2016.

Thursday, Oct. 1

Arts at One - Nyundo School Road Show
Muir Theatre
New Westminster Campus
Student choir from Rwanda to perform a collection of songs.

Friday, Oct. 2

Thunder in our Voices opening reception
Amelia Douglas Gallery
New Westminster Campus
Contemporary portraits from the Berger Inquiry by Linda MacCannell to be presented. Refreshments will be served.

Panel Discussion: Legacies of Berger
New Westminster Campus
Panel discussion about the legacy of Justice Thomas R. Berger's consultations with the Dene and Inuvialuit community in 1974 about a proposed oil and gas pipeline, which to this day has not been constructed. Berger's commission set the stage for all future hearings.
Reserve seats here

Maritime Field School Information Session
New Westminster
Meet the instructors and find out about studying in the Maritimes in 2016.


Friday, September 25, 2015

Interns to experience "life-growing" placement in Uganda

Douglas College graduates and faculty will be among a group of 20 who will call Uganda home for the
Melissa Paluch in Uganda. Wendy Parry photo.
next six months.

The College received federal funding to host the International Youth Internship Program that will see post-secondary graduates from across Canada complete internships in the east African country while gaining experience in education, health and social services. The group left for Uganda on Sept. 23.

“This is a way for Canadian graduates to gain life experience,” said Douglas College instructor Janice Spencer, who is heading the project with fellow faculty member John Fox. “We’re all going in as learners.”

Spencer, who has gone to Uganda five times in previous years, said the trips are a "life-growing experience."

Douglas College graduate Melissa Pulach will be returning to Uganda after 12 months. Pulach, who is in the Child and Youth Care Counsellor program, previously volunteered with the College’s Uganda Project as she was wrapping up her diploma in Early Childhood Education.

“I’m so excited to go back,” she said. “I fell in love with Uganda – not just the country, but the people and the culture."

The 28-week paid internships are broken into three job categories: community education worker, community health worker and community social service worker. Interns will use their skills as bridge-builders in the community while taking on various projects – including working with local, grass-root organizers, the Masaka Regional Hospital and the Uganda Community Libraries Association.

“We will be supporting the identified needs in the community and working to fill the gap,” Spencer said.

The federal funding will send 40 interns in total over the next two years and will support intern salaries, travel and accommodations, as well as faculty time and travel. In order to qualify, Canadian youth must be between the ages of 19 to 30 and be post-secondary graduates of a diploma or degree program.

Thursday, September 24, 2015

Douglas College Veterinary Technology program to celebrate Animal Health Week

The College is going to the dogs – and cats – Oct. 7-8 for Animal Health Week.

Students and faculty of the Veterinary Technology program will host the two-day event at the Coquitlam Campus, which will feature tours of the facility – frequently used to provide free treatment to rescue and shelter animals – and the multimedia performance Adventures of a SuperVet Tech on Oct. 8.

“We want to increase awareness of the Vet Technology program, vet nursing and what we’re all about,” instructor and practicing veterinarian Diane Boyle says. “We hope that this presentation will help bring that information to the general public and reassure them that their pets are in good hands.”

On Oct. 7, the VTEC program will also be collecting used towels or blankets – no frays or tears – all day. Donations can be dropped off at Room A2143 at the Coquitlam Campus when tours will be offered over the lunch hour, 12:30–1:30 pm. Donations are also welcome anytime.

On Oct. 8, Sandra Lean-Leighton will perform her one-woman comedy show, Adventures of a SuperVet Tech from 7:30-8:30pm in Room A1470 at the Coquitlam Campus. Tickets are $10, plus a $1.59 fee and can be purchased online. Funds raised benefit the VTEC Trust Fund, which provides student awards and bursaries and is used for equipment acquisition.

The show is designed to recognize and celebrate the work vet techs do, Boyle said.

“This show brings up the humour and pathos we find in the veterinary field daily, and will hopefully make Vet Techs feel good about themselves. It recognizes their critical role in a veterinarian hospital, and will help the public be aware of this too,” Boyle said.

Following that performance, Boyle will be leading a tour of the clinic to anyone who is interested.

The VTEC program – previously known as Animal Health Technology – was established eight years ago. The two-year program takes in 60 students each year from hundreds of applicants and provides hands-on training with animals of all shapes and sizes that is needed to succeed as a veterinary technologist.

Students in the program receive training in basic and advanced nursing care, veterinary anesthesia, pharmacology, radiology and dentistry, as well as a nutrition, animal behaviour and administrative procedures.


Wednesday, September 23, 2015

A harmonious match for Douglas College Music program grads

Photo by Tayler Fuller 

It’s a pairing that hits all the right notes.

Douglas College Music program alums Jess Cichos and Nicole Broughton have come together to create folk-pop duo The Echos.

The two musicians decided to come together in 2013 and perform after bonding over their love of singing while at school.

“We were friends, but we didn’t start thinking about making music until the end of the year. I remember saying, ‘hey, let’s sing Fleetwood Mac’s Landslide together, I think it would sound really good,’” Cichos said. “So we did and it sounded really good. And I thought we should do this more often.”

Cichos, a Port Coquitlam resident, and Broughton, who hails from Coquitlam, have both had a passion for music from a young age. And through the connections they made at Douglas, the two we were able to take their dream of making music and bring it to fruition.

“Having the resources at Douglas helped so much. We always had access to a piano and we wrote one of our songs – The Sun Never Sets On Us – in one of the practice rooms after our music history class got cancelled last September,” Broughton recalled. “We sat there for two hours and wrote a song. “

And, through a friend in the Music Technology program, The Echos recorded their demo, Blue, this summer in Kelowna.

“Our friend built a studio for herself in her basement, so we road-tripped to Kelowna and spent a week there and recorded and did a couple of videos, too,” Broughton, who plays the piano, said.

The EP is currently being mixed and mastered, and The Echos plan to have it available for purchase as soon as possible.

“We will alert everyone on social media when it’s ready,” Broughton said.

For those who can’t wait to hear The Echos, Cichos and Broughton will be performing Oct. 10 at Studio Records as part of the Best in Vancouver 2015 competition. Doors open at 7:30pm. Tickets are $12.

The Echos also perform weekly at the Westwood Plateau golf course’s lounge, Rogue, every Wednesday from 7-9 and will be performing at the PoCo River and Trails festival at Peace Park and Lion Park.

“Every time we accomplish something, we just look forward to what’s next. You can have dreams, and that’s a beautiful thing, but you have to work for it – really hard. And that’s what we discovered,” Cichos said.


Tuesday, September 22, 2015

Computing Studies student takes her skills to work at co-op placement

David Denofreo photo
Poonampreet Kaur knows that being a successful computer programmer means keeping up with the latest developments in the field – and getting as much experience as she can.

That’s why the Computing Studies and Information Systems student jumped at the chance to take the Co-operative Education program. Through it, Poonampreet is gaining valuable practical experience at her placement with the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch, where she’s working as a developer to help the organization achieve its business goals.
"Programming is a challenging field, but there's nothing I'd rather do," she says.

Interested in doing what Poonampreet does? Come to an info session for the Computing Studies and Information Systems diploma program. 


Monday, September 21, 2015

Douglas College Nursing grad provides treatment with compassion to those in need

For Zahra Lalani, volunteering as a nurse in the Indian state of Hyderabad brought things full circle.

Growing up in a developing country herself, Lalani was acutely aware of the medical need for those who lack access to basic care – especially palliative care.

The Nairobi-born transplant came to Vancouver at the age of 13 and, later, enrolled in Douglas College’s Nursing Diploma program before transferring to the University of Victoria's Bachelor of Nursing program and graduating with distinction in 2000.

Upon graduation, Lalani took on various roles with the B.C. Cancer Agency, where she has been a nurse for the last 15 years. Lalani currently works as the research nurse with the Pain and Symptom and Palliative Care Team part-time and recently stepped into the role of Palliative Care Co-ordinator in January 2014 to help open and establish a brand new six-bed hospice home in Vancouver.

On top of these two time-consuming roles in Canada, Lalani has also taken on the challenge of improving access for palliative care for people living below the poverty line in India with Canadian-based not-for-profit organization, Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration Foundation.

Lalani’s passion for providing accessible palliative care and end-of-life support in developing countries stems from the realization that she could have faced a similar situation.

“That could be me, or anyone who is not born here, where resources are so flush,” she says. “I’ve always wanted to give back and have volunteered here in Canada, but I also feel the urgency to do something for people who are not necessarily part of our day-to-day lives - people in circumstances where they have no voice and no access, who need someone to advocate for them and tell their story.”

As a member of the fundraising committee and the executive team with Two Worlds Cancer Collaboration Foundation, Lalani volunteers her time in Canada to raise awareness, and in India, where she uses her vacation time to work with the front-line clinical team and improve medical processes.

During her visits, Lalani has implemented safer chemotherapy mixing and administration practices with the pediatric-oncology unit. She has also provided basic hygiene education for people with limited access to clean, running water with the goal to prevent infections for those who are immunosuppressed due to chemotherapy treatments.

Upon her first trip to India, Lalani realized that in many developing countries, approximately 80 percent of cancers are diagnosed in late stages, which require palliative care. However, less than one percent of patients have access.

Adding to the suffering for people who are already experiencing hardship is the lack of access to essential pain medicines, like morphine – which is produced in India but is not necessarily accessible to the people in India.

“It felt like people were seen as just numbers – not people - and I believe people should live and also die in dignity. Not having access to pain medicines and palliative care and having to endure needless suffering is a human rights issue,” she says.

Since that initial trip, Lalani is happy to note that there have been a number of improvements, including an increase in cure rates for curable-cancer patients.

“We are trying to change this,” Lalani said. “We are trying to promote access to palliative care and essential services and pain medicines. We’ve started small in India, where we have been able to grow, and we are hoping our program will serve as a model for other countries.”

Douglas College no longer offers a Nursing Diploma Program. The College does offer a Bachelor of Science in Nursing degree.


Sunday, September 20, 2015

This week at Douglas: Celebrate National Coaches Week

Here’s what’s happening at Douglas Sept. 21-27

Tuesday, Sept. 22

National Coaches Week: Strength and Conditioning Tips New Westminster Campus
8am – 3:15pm
Douglas coach Jake Elder invites the public to watch training sessions with Douglas varsity athletes in two sessions. First is 8-9:45am (men’s baseball) and 1:45-3:15pm (men’s soccer). Sessions are in the New Westminster Fitness Centre.

Wednesday, Sept. 23

Wales Field School Information Session New Westminster Campus
Room 2203 (Lecture theatre)
Meet the instructors and find out about studying in Wales in Summer 2016.

Thursday, Sept. 24

National Coaches Week: Strength and Conditioning Tips II
New Westminster Campus
8am – 3:15pm
Douglas coach Jake Elder invites the public to watch training sessions with Douglas varsity athletes in two sessions. First is 8-9:45am (men’s baseball) and 1:45-3:15pm (men’s soccer). Sessions are in the New Westminster Fitness Centre.

Arts at One
New Westminster Campus
Arts at One in the New Westminster Theatre. This week’s show is Firecat, featuring Paola Borolussi on flute and Corey Hamm on piano. Free and open to the public.

Friday, Sept. 25

Wales Field School Information SessionCoquitlam Campus
Room B2090
Meet the instructors and find out about studying in Wales in Summer 2016.

Saturday, Sept. 26

Institute for Urban Ecology: Water and Wildlife in Your Garden
Coquitlam Campus
Learn about creating better habitat for wildlife and native pollinators, with a focus on water features.
Discuss the importance of water features in urban gardens and how to care for a water feature safely. Participants will create their own small garden water bath to take home.
RSVP to iue@douglascollege.ca

Got an event you want listed? Submit it here.

See more upcoming Douglas College events on the Events Calendar.

And make sure to join Douglas College on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!


Thursday, September 17, 2015

Legacies of Berger to delve into Canada's pipeline history

The contentious issue of pipelines dominates today’s headlines and political debates, much like it did during the Berger Inquiry decades ago.

On Oct. 2, Douglas College will host a free in-depth panel discussion, Legacies of Berger, to debate the lasting legacy of then-BC Supreme Court Justice Thomas R. Berger, who headed the commission from 1974 to 1977.

The panel discussion is open to the public and will be held Oct. 2, 7-9pm at the Laura C. Muir Theatre at the College’s New Westminster Campus, 700 Royal Avenue. Prior to the panel will be the official opening of the Thunder in our Voices exhibit at 5:30pm. The exhibit provides a multimedia perspective into the commission.

The Legacies of Berger will explore the history and contemporary ramifications of the Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Inquiry, says Anthropology instructor Jaime Yard.

“Attendees will delve into this complex, unprecedented, and, to the best of my knowledge, unduplicated, process of consultation with communities about the potential environmental and social effects of pipeline development in the north,” says Yard. “The panel brings together a group of scholars who have spent decades engaged in research on indigenous and non-indigenous political movements, history, health and land use.”

The panel will feature Dr. Michael Asch, an anthropologist who was an expert witness at the Berger Inquiry; Drew Ann Wake, exhibition curator and documentary filmmaker; Dr. Peter Stephenson, Emeritus Professor of Anthropology and chair of the School of Environmental Studies at the University of Victoria; and Dr. Glen Sean Coulthard, member of the Yellowknives Dene First Nation and an assistant professor in the First Nations and Indigenous Studies Program and the Department of Political Science at UBC.

Justice Berger was appointed by the federal government to hold hearings into a proposed natural-gas pipeline from the Beaufort Sea, along the Mackenzie Valley, to U.S. markets. Berger’s extensive consultation with communities set a precedent for conducting hearings on large industrial projects.

To reserve seats for the panel, visit https://bergerlegacy.eventbrite.ca

Also featured at the Amelia Douglas Gallery on the New Westminster campus is the Thunder in our Voices exhibition.

The exhibition, which runs until Oct. 23, is the product of Wake’s work with five generations of Inuvialuit and Dene families. The story began when she was a young reporter with the CBC covering the inquiry. For eighteen months she attended both the formal hearings in Yellowknife and community hearings in a dozen Dene and Inuvialuit communities across the North West Territories.

Seven years ago, she found a suitcase of her old audio tapes in storage. From 2008 to 2015, she travelled with photographer Linda MacCannell, down the Mackenzie River from the B.C. border to the Beaufort Sea. In each community, Wake and MacCannell gave classroom workshops so children and teenagers could produce images and videos to contribute to the Thunder in our Voices exhibition.


Wednesday, September 16, 2015

Douglas College instructor wins prestigious literary award

When Douglas College Sport Science instructor Rob Lake attended the British Society of Sports
History annual conference more than a decade ago, he had no idea that one day he would be standing in the place of the keynote speaker.

The researcher and author, whose book, A Social History of Tennis in Britain, was published less than a year ago, will be attending the conference next September as the winner and keynote speaker of the society’s 2015 Lord Aberdare Literary Prize for best sports history book.

Each year, the British Society of Sports History awards the Lord Aberdare Literary Prize for the best book on the topic of sport in Britain or for the best book on sports history written by a British author.

“The first time I went to this conference, I remember hearing about the award and watching the keynote speaker and thinking ‘you know, that would be amazing,’” says Lake, who holds a PhD in Sport Science from London’s Brunel University. “I never thought 12 years later I would be up there myself.

“I told my wife it’s really a dream come true.”

In the 300-page book, published by Routledge Research in Sports History, Lake delves into the history of tennis – rife with racism, elitism and gender conflict – and how it shaped British society in modern times. 

According to the society’s panel of judges, the research offers fresh detail on the sport of tennis and pioneering work that will become standard text for scholars.

The book has also been shortlisted for the North American Society of Sports History book award.

“When I started this book, it was something I really wanted to do. I wanted to leave a legacy, to some extent, and if it gets picked up and is liked by people, that’s a bonus,” Lake says.

Lake plans to continue his work on the subject of tennis and is already looking ahead to an equivalent book in the North American context. The researcher has also connected with Tennis Canada to discuss a number of projects that will focus on tennis and youth.

“I’m really pleased with Douglas College, which is obviously trying to develop a research culture and it’s nice to contribute to that,” Lake says.


Tuesday, September 15, 2015

Varsity basketball player loves being part of Royal family

David Denofreo photo

"I love that I’m here to play the sport I’m passionate about with other teammates who love to be here, too. There’s a sense of pride in being part of the Royals family.” 

NAME: Adelia Paul


HEIGHT: 5’5”

HOMETOWN: Kitimat, B.C.

PROGRAM: Academic Foundations in Nursing

CAREER HIGHLIGHTS: Member of the PACWEST Women’s All-Rookie team (2013). PACWEST Women’s Basketball Athlete of the Week (2014). Meeting fantastic teammates who have turned into lifelong friends.

THE DOUGLAS ADVANTAGE: “My athletic goal is to play at my fullest potential while I still have the chance to play at this level. Douglas helps me reach this goal through consistent support from our coaching staff and athletic trainers. They push us to improve in every aspect of being a student athlete. Through all of the hard work and commitment, they make it fun to be at Douglas.”

Do you want to play a varsity sport at Douglas? Visit the Royals webpage to learn more. 


Monday, September 14, 2015

This week at Douglas College: Make new friends with E.D.G.E events

Here's what's happening at Douglas Sept. 14-20

Monday, Sept. 14

Vancouver Latin American Film Festival
New Westminster Campus
The second screening of the Vancouver Latin American Film Festival at Douglas College features the films Agarrando Pueblo, a classic 30-minute film about staging Latin American realities to foreign audiences for profit, and Entornos Protectores, a series of shorts made by locals by Antioquian culture, created by an initiative supporting those at risk of sexual or domestic violence and drug abuse.

The event is free and open to the public.

Thursday,  Sept. 17

Arts at One - de Profundis 
New Westminster Campus
Laura C. Muir Performing Arts Theatre
Arts at One to feature De Profundis with Terence Dawson on Piano.
Free and open to the public.

The E.D.G.E
New Westminster Campus
Douglas College Student Union
Join the DSU for a fusion of of intramural sports, team activities, and more on this exhilarating, action-packed mult-day orientation event for new students. The EDGE is open to all students whose first semester at Douglas College was/is either Winter, Summer.
Cost: $10.

Friday,  Sept. 18

The E.D.G.E
New Westminster Campus
Douglas College Student Union
Join the DSU for a fusion of of intramural sports, team activities, and more on this exhilarating, action-packed mult-day orientation event for new students. The EDGE is open to all students whose first semester at Douglas College was/is either Winter, Summer.
Cost: $10.

Saturday,  Sept. 19

The E.D.G.E
Coquitlam Campus
Douglas College Student Union
Join the DSU for a fusion of of intramural sports, team activities, and more on this exhilarating, action-packed mult-day orientation event for new students. The EDGE is open to all students whose first semester at Douglas College was/is either Winter, Summer.
Cost: $10.

Got an event you want listed? Submit it here.

See more upcoming Douglas College events on the Events Calendar.

And make sure to join Douglas College on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!


Douglas College Chemistry student focuses on clean energy alternatives

A Douglas College student and research assistant is at the helm of a project that is contributing to the progress of clean fusion energy ­– and it all begins with a “star.”

Randall Volberg, in collaboration with Douglas College Chemistry Chair Brenda Addison-Jones and Physics instructor Nakul Verma, has created an Inertial Electrostatic Confinement fusion (IEC) device known as a “fusor.” The fusor – not to be confused with a reactor used in nuclear fission - is a fusion-capable reactor modeled after a design outlined in an issue of Make Magazine.

“I’ve been interested in alternative energy since completing a project in Grade 3,” Volberg said. “I did a report on energy, which included wind, solar and fusion. So I thought, ‘when I’m an adult, we’re going to have fusion everything!’

“Things haven’t quite worked out that way, but then I saw (Burnaby-based company) General Fusion on the scene and that reignited my interest.”

The aim of the project is to use the fusor as an educational tool and to conduct research at the College that supports international efforts to realize a commercial fusion reactor for clean, cheap and inexhaustible power for the future.

“It’s the cleanest energy you can get,” Volberg said. “It has none of the downsides of fission reactors – there is no long-term radioactive waste or risk of a meltdown.

“Fusion is clean. The fuel comes from sea water and doesn’t emit any pollution or greenhouse emissions.”

The mobile fusor in jet mode.
The mobile fusor uses an electric field to heat deuterium ions to conditions suitable for nuclear fusion. There are three main modes: halo, jet, and the coveted “star mode” – the state when fusion occurs and releases energy. Volberg and his team have so far achieved halo and jet mode, with star mode expected this month.

As a result of the reaction, the fusor has been aptly dubbed a “star in a jar.”

“The idea is that it will be a demonstration unit that we can literally roll into the classroom, whether it’s physics or chemistry, and explain the process and get students really excited about what may be renewable energy in the future,” Addison-Jones explained. “It’s been a long time coming, but there are a lot of people working on this. Though it’s small scale, there are big things going on.”

The project, which launched last fall, has also been supported by Kyle MacDonald and Arsalan Hammoodi, both students of the Chem 2400 program, Addison-Jones notes. And now, with construction of the fusor completed, the next milestone is to replace the common metal cathodes with carbon nanotubes, now possible due to recent breakthroughs in their production. Obtained from a research partner in Europe, the carbon nanotubes may boost energy output and better withstand the extreme conditions during fusion.

“Currently fusors generate much less than one percent of the energy they consume,” Volberg said. “We’re looking to improve that. The project has been an amazing learning experience.”

Both Volberg and Addison-Jones noted that none of this work would have been possible without grants received from the College.

“We’re so grateful for funding from the College, which allows us to do this innovative work,” Addison-Jones said.


Friday, September 11, 2015

Fighting mental illness, one step at a time

Students are invited to lace up their running shoes and support mental-health awareness with the Douglas College Miles for Mental Health event Oct. 4.

Hosted by the Canadian Mental Health Association and Douglas College, the annual fundraiser features 2.5-km and 5-km run/walk options at Queens Park and will kick off at 8am.

Douglas College grads Hailea Williams and Meredith Graham will serve as team leaders for the run, which is open to students, staff and faculty. Graham, a youth and family development worker in Burnaby, has bipolar disorder, while Williams, a psychology grad, has grown up with a number of family members who have been diagnosed with mental illnesses.

The aim of the run to raise awareness on mental health while decreasing the stigma surrounding it, as well as raising funds for various support programs. This year, the monetary goal is to raise $60,000, which would support programs within the CMHA Vancouver-Fraser branch, including educational services such as Bounce Back and Living Life to the Fullest, as well as support services like the community clubhouses.

As the presenting sponsor for Miles for Mental Health, Douglas College has provided more than $30,000 towards the event since its inception.

To register for the Douglas College Miles for Mental Health team, click here.

All Douglas College registrants receive an exclusive green shirt to wear on the day of the event and $10 off registration using the DOMH15 coupon code.


Thursday, September 10, 2015

New semester, new goals for Douglas College students

Every year, thousands of students enroll at Douglas College with an appetite to learn and expand their skill set.

With the first week back to school wrapping up, new and returning students took a few minutes to reflect on their goals for the semester.

Danica Seguro
First year at Douglas College
General Studies student

"I want to make new friends for one thing, and to get out of my comfort zone."

Amanda Stewart
Third year at Douglas College
Chemistry student transferring to SFU

"I want to get through the semester in a consistent manner and avoid the ups and downs I experienced last year."

Cameron Jordan
First year at Douglas College
Associate of Science student

"I want to have a successful year - get through without failing anything."

Laura Scott
First year at Douglas College
General Studies student transferring to Music Program

"I want to expand my horizons. This is an exciting year for me. I'm going back to school as a mature student - I'm 27 - and I'm going to further my education."

Blake Hobson-Dimas
First year at Douglas College
Theatre Program student

"I want to keep up with my program. Everyone tells me if you get behind it's the worst thing you can do." Read more...

Douglas College getting pumped up for Coaches Week

Douglas College Athletics photo

Douglas College campuses will be must-visit venues to celebrate National Coaches Week Sept. 19-26.

A series of events, organized by the Sport Science department, is scheduled at the New Westminster campus and the Coquitlam campus. The aim of the week-long celebration is to recognize the dedication and hard work of coaches across B.C. and Canada, as well as the positive impact they have on the lives of those who participate in sport.

“Coaches are the cornerstone of any athletic community. They are the leaders who inspire participants to develop a positive relationship with sport and recreation,” said Dominique Falls, the Fieldwork and Coaching Co-ordinator for the Sports Science Department. “Coaches Week is a great way for the students and faculty in the Douglas College Bachelors of Physical Education and Coaching (BPEC) program to demonstrate the excellent work being done on campus and in the community by coaches." 

The College will be providing a behind-the-scenes look at how competitive athletes train, including tips from the pros. During Coaches Week, students, staff and faculty are invited to the New Westminster campus to watch Strength and Conditioning coach Jake Elder run through a 75-minute training session on Sept. 22 and 24 with Douglas College Varsity athletes. Jake will then lead the audience through the rationale and athletic benefits behind the training sessions.

Other events slated for the week include a Coach Awareness Booth on Sept. 21 (Coquitlam campus) and Sept. 23 (New Westminster campus). The New Westminster campus will also feature a session on Coaching with a Smart Phone on Sept. 21 and an information seminar on Sport Psychology on Sept. 24.

From Sept. 19-27, students will take part in the Go Shoeless challenge, raising funds to support Right to Play, an international organization that helps to educate and empower disadvantaged children through fun programs and activities.

Douglas Sport Science students will challenge varsity athletes to take off their shoes for one practice or class, take a “selfie” of their bare feet and fundraise for Right to Play. The Douglas College group with the highest donation total by the end of Coaches Week will win the challenge.

For more information, click here

Earn while you learn at Douglas College

Whether you’re looking to find work while you’re going to school or searching for a job related to your studies after you graduate, Douglas College has the resources you need.

Both the Student Employment Centre and Co-operative Education help students earn while they learn by placing students with job opportunities that can lead to careers related to their studies.

Co-operative Education (Co-op) combines academic studies with related work experience. After completing the first half of a diploma, degree or university transfer program, eligible Co-op students alternate semesters of classroom studies with semesters of paid, full-time employment.

The Co-ops provide students with the opportunity to network and make connections with members in their field of interest, opening the doors for future work. For more information, attend one of Co-ops information sessions this month.

The Student Employment Centre provides a wealth of resources for current students and alumni who are searching for work experience or offsite volunteer opportunities. The Centre, which was established two years ago, is the on-campus office for any job-search related needs for students, including those who have graduated and are looking to transition into a career focusing on their area of study, or those who need part-time work while they’re going through school.

With offices at both campus, SEC offers both in-person services as well as online resources for assistance with resumes, cover letters, interview preparation and job-search techniques, to name a few. There are dedicated drop-in hours, weekly workshops and online services including resume review, job coaching, and webinars. One of the SEC’s most-popular resources is the online job board, which allows employers to connect with students for free. Posted positions vary from paid full-time and part-time, to seasonal, volunteer and temporary.

In collaboration with Co-op and the Alumni office, SEC will also brings employer-related events to campus including the much-anticipated Career Fair slated for March, Monthly Employer Panels, and a new-initiative this Fall that will allow employers to set up a table on campus for recruitment purposes.

For more information about Co-op, contact Lianne Johnston at 604 527 5769 and for information on SEC, contact Barb Kojder at 604 527 5890.


Get involved and have fun outside of class with Student Life

Discover the other half of the college experience!

Head to the new Student Life portal to learn more about how you can get oriented, healthy, involved, and gain experience! You’ll find information about new student programs, academic success, rec and wellness, student leadership programs, employment, and campus events.

Complimentary fitness classes are offered at both campuses ranging from yoga and pilates, zumba, core strength, bootcamp and more. There are also two fitness centres accessible to Douglas College students and staff: one at the New Westminster Campus and one at the Pinetree Community Centre next to the Coquitlam Campus. Hours of operation are listed online.

Some of the Douglas College Student Union clubs that exist on campus are the Business Association, the Photography Club, the International Association, several dance clubs and many more. Get the complete list on the College website.

Why get involved? 

Students who get involved on their college campus are more likely to be successful academically and career ready!
  • Get Oriented: Getting involved in co-curricular activities gives you the chance to meet new people with similar interests. In other words, make new friends and have fun doing it. 
  • Get Healthy: In order to succeed academically, you need to take care of yourself first. Physical activity can have a strong, positive impact on mood, and social interaction can boost cognitive performance. 
  • Get Involved: Explore personal and professional development opportunities geared towards students who are passionate about making a difference 
  • Get Experience: Gain personal and professional skills that will help your career and benefit you in classroom settings. 

Come visit the Student Engagement team in our new offices!

We are located in the newly renovated Douglas Students’ Union (DSU) study space (room A1190) at the Coquitlam Campus. Our shared space has comfy chairs, lots of study space and movable furniture - the perfect place to host your next student group or club meeting!
We are also located in the 1300 block near the fitness centre at the New Westminster Campus.


Free peer tutoring this Fall at the Douglas College Learning Centre

Is philosophy giving you fits? Is APA absolutely agonizing? Is Excel making you enraged? If so, you may want to check out the Douglas College Learning Centre for free help with your courses.

The Learning Centre (or the “LC”) uses a student-led approach to learning that helps you evaluate and improve your study skills to succeed in both current and future courses. The LC has branches at both the Coquitlam and New Westminster campuses, offering free help for writing and college courses.

LC tutors are peer tutors; they are students just like you, taking classes at Douglas or other post-secondary institutions. In addition to helping you with coursework, they can help you with essay writing, math skills and computer skills. Plus, they can coach you on how to study more effectively.

If you are having trouble with a course, don’t wait until it’s too late. From the LC homepage, you can register for an account, log into WCOnline and find a time that’s right for you for a 25-minute appointment. Bookings can be done 24 hours a day, so there’s no need to hesitate. You can also apply for a weekly, ongoing 50-minute session with a tutor. All Learning Centre tutoring is free to Douglas College students.

Another option is to send your written assignments to an online tutor. You can send in your written work any time, seven days a week. Getting help is as easy as going to our website and choosing the option that works best for you.

The LC also offers computer skills help at the New Westminster campus. If you’re having trouble with a program or need a hand with formatting, ask one of our computer skills tutors. You can find them at the computer skills desk, which is located in the library, just outside the library classroom (room 2100A).

The Learning Centre is open during the following hours for the Fall 2015 semester, starting on September 8:

New Westminster
Room 2105, in the Library

Mon: 9:30am-5:30pm
Tues-Thurs: 9:30am-7:30
Fri: 9:30am-5:30pm
Sat: 10:30am-2:30pm

Room A1040, beside the Atrium

Mon-Tues: 10:30am-5:30pm
Weds-Thurs: 10:30am-6:30pm
Fri: 10:30am-1:30pm

Computer Skills Desk
(at New Westminster only)
Mon-Fri: 10:30am-3:30pm

Learn around the world with Douglas College field schools

What are you doing in 2016?

We’re planning field schools in Hawaii and the Philippines in Winter 2016 and in Wales in Summer 2016, and you’re invited!

Field schools are amazing opportunities to study abroad for a few days to a few weeks, depending on the program. Courses are taught by Douglas College instructors and, depending on the program, an instructor from one of our partner institutions.
Virtually all field school courses are university transferable.
You’ll spend part of the program studying at Douglas before travelling overseas with your instructors and classmates to complete the program.

To be eligible, you must be: 
  • A Douglas College student eligible to take the courses offered in the field school. Qualified students from other institutions are welcome to apply but must first gain admission to Douglas College
  • 18 years of age or older prior to departure 
  • In good academic standing with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.0 by application deadline. If you do not meet this requirement, you’ll need to get approval from the program’s lead faculty member
  • A passport holder or able to obtain a passport
$2,100-$4,000 per student, depending on the program. Includes airport transfers overseas, use of facilities at the partner institution, tuition for course taught by partner institution, program field trips, shared accommodations, and most meals (depending on the program).
Airfare, passport application, fees for Douglas College courses, airport transfers in Vancouver, textbooks and personal spending are extra.
Visit Fields Schools for details.

Unlimited resources available at Douglas College Library

The Douglas College Library has a wide variety of resources designed to assist you in finding high-quality, relevant content to help you make the grade. Best of all, many are available online for you to access from anywhere, any time and are absolutely free.

Not sure where to start? Check out our Subject Guides, which will point you to the best search tools for specific courses. Student tested. Instructor approved.

Still need help? Librarians are ready to answer your questions about using these resources, turning your research topic into a search strategy, finding the best information sources available and citing the sources you use in completing your assignments.

You can also borrow laptops and other equipment, or book a study room for your group work. Why not take a few minutes to explore the Library, either in person or online?

Keep in touch with us on Twitter and Facebook to get updates, alerts, reminders and more.              

Twitter: @Douglas_Library


Tuesday, September 8, 2015

Douglas College Counselling Services is here to help

College can be a stressful and confusing time for many students. Often this has an impact on school performance. It may be helpful to talk to someone who can assist you with managing personal challenges and easing the pressure of college life.
If you are dealing with a problem that is affecting your school performance, it may be useful to talk to someone who can support you. Counsellors, located at both New Westminster and Coquitlam campuses, are trained to provide short term personal counselling, career counselling and student advocacy. You may want to visit Counselling Services for free support if you are having trouble in areas such as:
  • Managing personal stressors
  • Relationship problems
  • Grief
  • Family related concerns
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Adjustment to college
  • Setting career goals
  • Making career choices
  • Understanding your rights and responsibilities according to college policy

How do you make an appointment?

Simply phone or come in to make a 50-minute appointment. If you are in crisis, or if you do not require a full appointment, shorter, 20-30 minute drop-in appointments are available on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Locations and hours

New Westminster Campus, room 4600 (South)
604 527 5486 TTY: 604 527 5450
Open Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm
and Wednesday from 8:30am-6:30pm

Coquitlam Campus, room A1050
604 777 6185 TTY: 604 777 6179
Open Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm
and Tuesday from 8:30am-6:30pm
You aren’t alone – Counselling Services is here for you. More information is available on the Douglas College website.

UT Science student eyes career in medical research

David Denofreo photo
Daniel Kojder is most at home when he’s surrounded by Bunsen burners, beakers and test tubes. “I’m a hands-on kind of person,” he says. “I love being in the lab, mixing chemicals and creating reactions.”

Daniel discovered his interest in biochemistry after coming to Douglas straight out of high school. Now, as a University Transfer student, he is earning credits that will count toward the first two years of a degree. After that, he plans to transfer to SFU to study biochemistry, finish his degree and pursue a career in medical research and development.

For Daniel, it made sense to come to Douglas first. He likes the lower fees and smaller classes sizes. But there’s also a bonus for students who share his interest in the sciences.

“At Douglas, I can get more lab time than I would at a university,” he says. “That practical experience is really important.”

When he’s not studying, Daniel plays competitive pool in one of the biggest leagues in the Lower Mainland. Last year his team won first place in the B.C. championships. One of the youngest players in the league, Daniel is ranked in the top 15.

Thinking of taking your first two years at Douglas? Check the BC Transfer Guide to see which courses transfer to university and how. 

Monday, September 7, 2015

This week at Douglas College: New Westminster campus to host VLAFF screenings

Here's what's happening at Douglas Sept. 7-13

Wednesday, Sept. 9

Vancouver Latin American Film Festival
New Westminster Campus

The third edition of the Festival Itinerante de Artes Audiovisuales Colmbianas, the Travelling Colombian Media Arts Festival, will be taking place at the 13th Vancouver Latin American Film Festival.

FIDAAC offers the public a journey through the past, present and future of Colombian cinema by showcasing feature-length films, short films and music video clips.

On Sept. 9 and 14, FIDAAC will come to Douglas College and present a selection of films.

Thursday, Sept. 10

Arts at One - Brazilia
New Westminster Campus

The first Arts at One event of the year, featuring Celso Machado on vocals, guitar and percussion. Free and open to the public.

Institute for Urban Ecology: Pollinator Survey
Coquitlam Campus

Help researches and enthusiasts learn more about the variety and numbers of local pollinators by participating in a pollinator count. Get familiar with local bees and the opportunities and challenges they face in a hands-on workshop.
RSVP to iue@douglascollege.ca

Got an event you want listed? Submit it here.

See more upcoming Douglas College events on the Events Calendar.

And make sure to join Douglas College on Facebook and follow us on Twitter!

Safer Walk program to continue at New Westminster campus

Want some friendly company when walking at night from campus?
Douglas College will continue to offer the Safer Walk program for students and employees heading to the New Westminster SkyTrain station.

Safer Walk trips are available Monday to Friday and will depart every 30 minutes, from 7 to 11pm. These trips will depart from the New Westminster campus’ main concourse, level 2, near the West entrance of the campus.

In addition to the Safer Walk program, both the Coquitlam and New Westminster campuses provide escorts to the parkade at any time during campus hours.

Escorted trips at the Coquitlam campus will depart from the Security Kiosk located in the main floor atrium and escorts at the New Westminster campus will depart at the same location as Safer Walk trips.

For more information, please contact the New Westminster Security Kiosk at 604 527 5405 (non-emergency), the Coquitlam Security Kiosk at 604 777 6254 or the Director of Safety, Security and Risk Management at 604 527 5828.



Friday, September 4, 2015

Food Bank available for students at DSU

Douglas College students struggling to make ends meet are able to utilize a valuable resource through the College’s student union.

The Douglas College food bank serves students at both campuses and was established to help students with tight budgets, explains Douglas College Students’ Union Co-ordinator Deepa Singh.

“The high cost of tuition and housing can leave very little for food,” she said.

According to Singh, approximately 100 students use the food bank per month.

“We’ve seen an increase in numbers,” Singh said, noting that more awareness of the food bank may be a factor.

All that is required in order to access the food bank is valid Douglas College identification. The food banks are located at both campuses at the DSU. At the New Westminster campus, the food bank is located near the main office of the DSU building. For Coquitlam students, the food bank is located at the DSU kiosk in the AB atrium.

The food bank can be accessed Monday to Friday, 9am to 4pm.

To donate to the food bank, unopened, non-perishable items can be dropped off at either DSU office at the front desk. Read more...

Wednesday, September 2, 2015

VLAFF comes to Douglas College

Douglas College's New Westminster campus will roll out the red carpet this month for the 13th annual Vancouver Latin American Film Festival.

The third edition of the Travelling Colombian Media Arts Festival (Festival Itinerante de Artes Audiovisuales Colombianas) will be taking place at VLAFF and will feature a selection of programs at the College.

¡PACIFISTA!, Medellin in one minute and Antioquia in one minute are slated for the big screen at the concourse, located on the second floor, on Sept. 9, starting at 7pm.

¡PACIFISTA!, a Vice Colombia project, is a platform for peacemaking that contributes to the opening of spaces for analysis and reflection in Colombia through documentary filmmaking.

Medellin in one minute and Antioquia in one minute focus on the environment, identity and memory in one-minute shorts.

On Sept. 14, Agarrando Pueblo - a 30-minute film from 1977 - and Entornos Protectores will play at 2:30pm at the College's Lecture Theatre 1614, located on the first floor.

Agarrando Pueblo focuses on staging Latin American realities to foreign audiences for profit, while Entornos Protectores is a selection of shorts by locals about Antioquian culture, created by an initiative supporting those at risk of sexual or domestic violence and drug abuse.

All films are in Spanish with English subtitles.

The Douglas College New Westminster Campus is located at 700 Royal Ave, New Westminster, two blocks north of the New Westminster Skytrain Station.

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Future Teachers grad prepares for career in the classroom

David Denofreo photo
Imagine having a job where you’re surrounded every day by people who make you smile. 

That’s what appeals to Terralynn Price about becoming an elementary school teacher. “I love working with kids,” she says. “They have such a positive outlook on the world and are so eager to learn.” 

To prepare for a teaching career, Terralynn has completed the Associate of Arts – Future Teachers program. She picked the program because it provides a clear path to the teacher training program at SFU. That’s where she plans to head after graduating from Douglas. 

But first she’s finishing up a Bachelor of Arts in Applied Psychology. As part of the Applied Psychology program, she’s doing a specialization in Disability and Applied Behaviour Analysis. The knowledge and practical experience she gains will help her support students with autism and other challenges. 

“I think the training will help me turn my classroom into a better learning environment for every student,” she says.

Want to do what Terralynn's doing? Come to an info session to find out more about our Associate of Arts - Future Teachers and BA Applied Psychology programs.