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Forensic psychology professors Michael Woodworth and Stephen Porter and their team have published new research that could help police generate predictions about the characteristics of a killer -- or killers -- based on the crime scene evidence and victim.

Murder by numbers: researchers compare the crimes and minds of individual vs. multiple killers
The RCMP, FBI and other crime investigators have powerful new knowledge at their disposal to potentially help solve murders, thanks to a ground-breaking study involving UBC Okanagan forensic psychology researchers. Their findings could help police generate predictions about the characteristics of a killer -- or killers -- based on the crime scene evidence and victim.

The study, Partners in Crime: A Comparison of Individual and Multi-Perpetrator Homicides, looked at 124 cases of convicted Canadian male offenders -- a third of the cases involving multiple people during the crime -- to determine what the crime scene could reveal about the nature of the suspect, and the likelihood of multiple perpetrators being involved.

"It was the first empirical study of this nature," says Stephen Porter, professor of psychology at UBC Okanagan and a practicing forensic psychologist. "We really had no literature to draw upon to come up with predictions, so it was very exploratory in nature."

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War reporter Kevin Sites opens UBC Okanagan Distinguished Speaker Series Jan. 14
Kevin Sites, former correspondent with ABC, CNN and NBC, and recipient of the Daniel Pearl Award, will share stories of people and places from the world's combat zones as the first presenter when UBC Okanagan's Distinguished Speaker Series resumes in January.

Yahoo's first news correspondent, Sites blends the best of traditional reporting with cutting-edge reporting tools, using portable digital technology to shoot, write, edit and transmit multimedia reports. In 2006, beginning in Somalia and ending with the Israeli-Hezbollah clash, he spent one year covering 20 war zones -- practically every armed conflict in the world -- for Yahoo's award-winning site Kevin Sites in the Hot Zone. He is author of the book In the Hot Zone -- One Man, One Year, 20 Wars.

Sites will speak at the Kelowna Community Theatre at 7 p.m., Jan. 14. Seats are free but pre-registration online is required.

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Campus Security advises on theft prevention
Campus Security reminds everyone to safeguard both UBC and personal effects after several reported thefts from offices, study areas, and computer labs on campus during the past couple of weeks. Thefts of this type are crimes of opportunity. Complainants report leaving items or offices unattended for a period of a couple of minutes to several hours, and all end with the same result.

Never leave personal effects unattended for any period of time. Always secure office doors when leaving the area even for a short moment. Staff are encouraged to display UBC Okanagan identification at all times when working. Campus Security takes a proactive approach to off-hours use of the institution, and carrying proper identification aids both yourself and Campus Security when verifying individuals in locked buildings after regular business hours.

Report all suspicious activity to Campus Security at 250-807-9236 (local 79236). For crimes in progress, notify RCMP by dialling 9-1-1. For other crime prevention initiatives, contact the Security Coordinator's office at 250-807-9173 (local 79173).

The Campus Security team wishes everyone a safe and secure holiday season. To find out more visit the Campus Security website.

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Project GROW raising money for Ghana initiatives
Students at UBC Okanagan have raised $20,000 and hope to move even closer to their $40,000 fund-raising goal this holiday season for Ghana Rural Opportunities for Women -- Project GROW.

Through the sale of holiday greeting cards and donations since 2007, Project GROW has provided donkeys and carts, water barrels, dozens of goats, and family-sized mosquito nets for every household in the villages of Nyobok and Nkenzesi in northern Ghana.

"Malaria is down substantially because every family has a net," says Cindy Bourne, UBC Okanagan Learning Centre coordinator and a volunteer with Project GROW. "There is income generated through small business started by the women, and there is a school lunch program. Last week, the men of the villages worked to build a structure in which to house a grinding mill which has been purchased by the funds raised by Project GROW."

UBC Okanagan student Sterling Nelson adds a leaf to the fund-raising tree signifying that Project GROW has raised $20,000 for women in rural northern Ghana, Africa.
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UBC Okanagan alumna hopes to fulfill
Christmas wishes for the homeless

A former UBC Okanagan social work student is striving to fulfill the Christmas wishes of homeless people in Kelowna this holiday season. Ana Frias is now the Kelowna-based project coordinator for, a continuation of a project she helped bring to Kelowna as a student at UBC Okanagan.

The purpose of is to help people connect personally and directly with individual homeless people in a way that is safe and practical. The program is a non-profit, self-funded program run entirely by volunteer efforts, in partnership with the staff at local shelters. There is no head office or official organization and efforts are coordinated by a small number of individuals, such as Frias, who assist volunteers in starting and running the program in their city.

To contribute or find out more visit

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UBC Okanagan in the news...

Heat shape up to be worthy national hosts
If there was ever a question as to whether the UBC Okanagan Heat would be worthy hosts for next spring's national collegiate women's basketball championship, then the first four weeks of the 2009-2010 campaign should remove all doubt.

The Heat have posted a perfect 7-0 record in conference play and head into the first semester break alone in top spot in the BCCAA.

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Where to find it: lost and found in Used Bookstore
UBC Okanagan's official Lost and Found is located in the UBC Students' Union Okanagan (UBCSUO) Used Bookstore -- University Centre Room UNC103.

When found items are turned in to your office or building, simply use inter-office mail to send them to UNC103, or call Security to have them picked up. Items of value will be marked and recorded for Security bookkeeping. All items are held for one month, and if not claimed they will be donated to local charities. Campus Security appreciates the campus community's cooperation.

To reach the Security Office, call 79236. The Used Bookstore number is 79280.

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About snow closures at UBC Okanagan
In the event that winter weather conditions require UBC Okanagan to cancel classes or close the campus, the best reference for information is the UBC Okanagan homepage ( and local radio stations.

For more information about snow closures at UBC Okanagan visit the Snow closures at UBC Okanagan website.

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Tom Alan Morris, a client of Kelowna's Gospel Mission, shows off the Christmas card that Amy Banerd, a second-year education student at UBC Okanagan, helped him pick out as part of the UBC Okanagan Learning Exchange Connecting at Christmas project.

UBC Okanagan students help homeless connect at Christmas
UBC Okanagan Education students have created Christmas cards for clients at Kelowna's Gospel Mission to share holiday greetings with family and friends.

Part of an Education course art portfolio, the Connecting at Christmas initiative is coordinated through the UBC Okanagan Learning Exchange program and builds on an idea sparked during a previous student-driven volunteer project with the homeless community.

"A student was asked if they had a pen and paper so that one of the people could write a letter home," says Lori Field, program coordinator of the Learning Exchange. "This request came as a surprise to the student because it was such a small thing. Yet, it is not something that homeless people have ready access to."

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UBC Okanagan in the news...

Student Kevin Craig elected to Kelowna council
Kelowna's civic byelection in November saw UBC Okanagan student Kevin Craig elected to Kelowna city council. Part of the 19-year-old's campaign strategy was to use social media -- Facebook and Twitter for example -- to build support.

Both Craig and UBC Okanagan sociology professor Christopher Schneider were interviewed by CTV News about the phenomenon of social media as campaign tools.

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Amazing Race Health Challenge update
Congratulations to all who participated in this year's Amazing Race Health Challenge. It was an action-filled five weeks of scavenger hunts, challenges and races. Results have been tallied and the top-three individual participants have been identified as:
  • Kim de Scally, The Racy Readers
    rank: fourth of 456 participants
  • Barbara Hunter, The Racy Readers
    rank: seventh of 456 participants
  • Harriette Ghosh, Snazzy Gals
    rank: ninth of 456 participants

The top UBC Okanagan teams are, in order: The Racy Readers, Walking Our Talk, The Educating Educators (E-squared), Snazzy Gals, Weathering Heights, The Bookettes, A Team, Kwakwakwa, Human Resources, The Book Worms and Athletic ReC'ers.

To find out more contact Jeff Zeitz, Workplace Health and Sustainability advisor, at 78183.

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Breadfruit focus: Potato of the Pacific
The latest edition of Frontier magazine features the breadfruit research of Susan Murch, Canada Research Chair in Natural Products Chemistry at UBC Okanagan. The story, Potato of the Pacific (p. 15), highlights the collaboration of Murch's Plant Chemistry and Biotechnology Lab and the Centre for Species at Risk and Habitat Studies at UBC Okanagan, the National Tropical Botanical Garden in Hawaii, and Cultivaris, a commercial horticultural company.

Murch's lab cultivated 7,500 breadfruit trees in its first four years, the report says. "Within a month of distributing the first batch, she was inundated with requests for over two million trees from organizations around the world."

To meet the demand for propagated breadfruit, Murch's lab and partners have formed a company called Global Breadfruit. Read more about it in Frontier, the quarterly publication of UBC's Office of the Vice President, Academic and Research. It is available online as a PDF document:

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Lorrianne Topf, UBC Okanagan graduate student in Nursing
Nursing research seeks
those who cared for a loved
one dying at home
UBC Okanagan study explores what happens when a desired home death does not occur

Lorrianne Topf, a UBC Okanagan Master of Science in Nursing student, is looking for family members of people with cancer willing to share their experiences when a desired home death for their loved one did not occur and happened instead in either a hospice or the acute care hospital.

Currently on leave from her position as Palliative Care Coordinator for the North Okanagan, Topf received a Psychosocial Oncology Research Training (PORT) fellowship in March to support her thesis research project, When a desired home death does not occur: family caregiver experiences.

"In my position as the Palliative Care Coordinator, I became aware of the challenges family caregivers face when they care for their ill family member in the home with the intent to support a home death," says Topf.

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news | people | research | workshops | events | UBCO.TV | top
December 16, 2009

Don't stay in your office
for coffee this Friday

Sponsored by the Irving K. Barber School of Arts and Sciences, all faculty and staff are invited for coffee on Friday, Dec. 18, in the Arts Atrium for Pitstop.

Coffee or tea and a variety of pastries will be served for only $2 per person. All proceeds will be donated to this year's United Way Campaign

Date: Friday, Dec. 18
Time: 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Location: Arts Atrium

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Alumni and Friends Curling Funspiel
Looking for a day of all-Canadian winter fun with family and friends? Show the UBC spirit at the first annual UBC Okanagan Alumni and Friends Curling Funspiel.

This day-long event includes an optional curling lesson, as well as breakfast, lunch and a guest speaker. Net proceeds for this event go to student leadership awards.

Date: Saturday, Jan. 23
Time: 9:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m.
Location: Kelowna Curling Club -- 551 Recreation Ave.
Registration: Alumni and friends -- $45.00; students -- $25.00.

Team and individual registrations are available. Teams must include at least one UBC alumnus or current student. Faculty and staff who register are asked to send the names of your team members to Andrew Mercer. Individuals may register and will be matched to teams. Participants must be 19 years of age or older.

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The campus community's people, achievements and events are constantly being showcased on UBCO.TV. Check out what's new:

  • Remembering the fall of the Berlin Wall
    The 20th anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall is remembered at UBC Okanagan.
  • Campus trails officially open
    A new Campus Trails System officially opened at UBC Okanagan on October 21. Created for students, faculty and staff, the trails greatly expand campus green space.
  • Mayor's youth forum
    Student leaders from seven Okanagan secondary schools join Mayor Sharon Shepherd for a sustainability-focused forum.

Accounting 101 and Finance overview
This course is intended for new employees and current employees who are assuming new finance responsibilities. It describes the structure of the UBC Finance Department, offers key contact information, and introduces employees to the basics of UBC accounting. Topics covered will include the roles of Payroll, Accounts Payable, Research and Trust Accounting, basic accounting practices, UBC account structure, and fund accounting.

Date: Tuesday, Jan. 19
Time: 9 to 11:30 a.m.

Location: Arts Building, room ART106
To register: contact Frank Mueller, financial analyst, at 78726.

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Smart Forms training
Smart Forms are web-based requisition forms that replace paper-based requisition forms (Q-Requisitions and Travel Requisitions). This session is limited to 12 participants.

Date: Thursday, Jan. 21
Time: 8:30 a.m. to 12 noon
Location: Fipke Centre, room FIP133

To register for this workshop please contact either Antonella Lee or Audrey Kirby in accounts payable. Please include your CWL login ID, your local and e-mail address.

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Emotionally intelligent leadership
Sponsored by Organizational Development and Learning, this new workshop -- part of the new Sauder School of Executive Leadership Series at UBC Okanagan -- offers participants an opportunity to learn more about emotional intelligence.

Led by Bruna Martuzzi -- licensed facilitator for the Coaching Clinic for Leaders and Managers and qualified HayMcBer emotional intelligence consultant -- this workshop will help enhance self-awareness in terms of communication, conflict resolution and leadership style. It will also help participants gain practical tools for engaging others and understanding the characteristics of great leaders. The session also includes a Myers-Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI) personality assessment.

Date: Tuesday, Jan. 26
Time: 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Location: DVC office, SSC/ADM building
Cost: $200

To register for this workshop visit the Professional Development workshops website.

Upcoming Workshops in the Sauder School of Executive Leadership Series include:
  • March 2010: strategic communication
  • October 2010: leading change
  • December 2010: strategic planning
  • April 2011: effective project management

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Navigating FMS nQuery
This course is intended for anyone on campus that has access to FMS nQuery. It provides participants with an overview of the FMS nQuery menu items and program features. An on-screen demonstration will highlight key options available and how to use them. The topics covered will include how to navigate this read-only system for various purposes: voucher inquiries, payments, vendor searches, purchase orders, ledger summaries and various payroll functions.

Participants are recommended to attend the Accounting 101 and Finance Overview workshop in advance of attending this workshop.

Date: Tuesday, Jan. 26
Time: 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Location: Fipke Centre, room FIP133
To register: contact Frank Mueller, financial analyst, at 78726.

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Understanding Financial Risks and Internal Controls
This workshop will be of interest to all unit heads and financial officers as it provides the tools necessary to manage financial risks of the unit and support the 2008-2009 Financial Statement Certification Program. The training is designed in a case study format and is very interactive.

Date: Thursday, Jan. 28
Time: 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Location: Library building, room LIB306
To register: contact Gabriel Gock, accounts payable

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Exchange your information
The Exchange is your newsletter. Let everyone know what's going on in your corner of UBC Okanagan.

Send submissions to Alumni and University relations c/o Chris Guenard.

Publication Date

Submission Deadline

January 6 January 4 (Monday)
January 20 January 15 (Friday)
February 3 January 29 (Friday)

View previous editions of The Exchange

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