More than 1,300 students — the largest-ever first-year class for UBC Okanagan — were welcomed to campus with Tuesday's Create events.

Surging out-of-province demand bolsters first-year enrolment at UBC Okanagan
Thanks to a significant upsurge of students from outside B.C., UBC Okanagan's first-year class of 2008 will be more geographically diverse than ever before, even as the number of B.C. Grade 12 students declines in some areas.

Increases of 27 per cent for international students and 36 per cent for Alberta students have contributed to an incoming first-year class of 1,312 at UBC Okanagan, up from 1,261 in 2007.

Overall enrolment at UBC Okanagan has grown by nine per cent to 5,325. This includes 293 graduate students, an increase of more than 26 per cent from 2007.


Staff Awards

Staff Awards of Excellence winners: Cindy Bourne (Community Engagement),
Don Thompson
(Leadership), Jan Paseska (Customer Service),
and Aaron Heck (Customer Service)

UBC Okanagan issues first Staff Awards of Excellence

Four staff members at UBC Okanagan were honoured on Thursday morning with the university's inaugural Staff Awards of Excellence.

"We believe in creating a workplace that is dedicated to excellence, equity and mutual respect," said Doug Owram, Deputy Vice Chancellor. "Recognition programs such as our Staff Awards of Excellence honour the talent and expertise of those who enrich our campus."

The awards were made in categories of customer service, leadership, sustainability and community engagement, and have been designed to reflect the objectives of UBC's TREK 2010 plan, UBC Okanagan's Academic Plan and UBC's Focus on People plan.


How would you create a healthy workplace at UBC Okanagan? 
Is there something that could be done to improve workplace health on campus? In the community consultations held last fall the campus community identified how it sees a healthy workplace culture at UBC Okanagan. As part of UBC's Focus on People framework, a Healthy Workplace Initiatives Program Fund has recently been created to support healthy workplace initiatives and practices at all UBC campuses.

PolecatsUBC Okanagan's Office of Workplace Health and Sustainability invites all departments and units to submit funding proposals. Total funding allocation is $100,000 across all UBC campuses and it will be awarded in two $50,000 funding cycles. The application deadline for the first funding cycle is Tuesday, Sep. 30. The second application deadline is February 28, 2009.

Everyone has a role in creating a healthy workplace — this is one very tangible way that any member of the campus community can make a difference. More information about funding criteria and application process is available on the Office of Workplace Health and Sustainability Website.

For more information about this fund please contact Leanne Bilodeau, Manager of Workplace Health and Sustainability, at 78938.

United Way UBC Okanagan kicks off 2008-2009 United Way Campaign on Oct. 1
Being a part of UBC Okanagan means giving back to the greater community that supports us so generously. One of the best ways to do this is by getting behind the campus United Way campaign. The United Way is UBC's designated charity, carefully chosen for its capacity to touch so many lives locally.

The 2008/09 United Way campaign will kick off formally with the Breakfast-to-Go event on October 1. Other events to watch for this year include:

  • Halloween barbecue: Friday, Oct. 31
  • Used book sale (start): Wednesday, Nov. 12
  • Silent auction and bake sale: Wednesday, Nov. 19
  • Poinsettia sale: Thursday, Nov. 27
  • Campaign Wrap-up: Friday, Dec. 5

Even with all this activity, the United Way campaign relies on faculty and staff pledges for almost 85 per cent of funds raised. In 2008-2009, your United Way campaign team encourages you to consider making a pledge when you receive donation forms in October. Remember that the United Way supports a broad range of organizations committed to individuals and families throughout our community. 

Your 2008-2009 UBC Okanagan United Way Campaign Team consists of Gwen Zilm (Chair), George Athans, Bonnie DeBruyn, Elizabeth Kershaw, Terina Mailer, Sharon McCoubrey, Louise Nelson, Leanne Perry, Carrol Pidhaichuk, Shawn Swallow, Don Thompson, Brenda Tournier, Alanna Vernon and Emily Webb.

conferences and accommodations

Conferences and Accommodations staff from left to right: Destanne Norris, Suzanne Nazareno, Dana Webster, Julie Thode (up top), Jessie Ravnsborg.

2008 conference season wraps up
This season was UBC Okanagan's Conferences and Accommodation's busiest yet, and planning is now underway for an even bigger 2009. Conferences and Accommodation had a huge impact on the campus May through August this year, providing invaluable exposure to over 2000 prospective students and a wide-range of visitors from across Canada.

The ever-popular "Taste of University" Program brought in students from 13 schools for a total of 900 middle school student visitors between May and June. This program features an overnight stay on campus, campus tours, orientations on UBC Okanagan programs, and science experiments.

Other interesting statistics to note from the 2008 conference season: 

  • Approximately $1,000,000 in revenue earned between accommodation, meeting space, audio visual equipment, food and beverage 
  • Number of guests who stayed on campus: 16,876
  • Number of conference groups who stayed on campus: 75 groups
  • Total number of youth under age of 18 on campus: approximately 2000

Run/Walk Group looking for new members
All students, staff and faculty are invited to step-up and out with the campus community's newest foot-powered group. The UBC Okanagan Run/Walk Group is a great opportunity to get fit while exploring the hiking trails around campus.  Starting on Sep. 16, the Run/Walk group will meet every Tuesday at 4 p.m. in the Kalamalka Residences Wellness Centre.  All levels of runners and walkers are encouraged to participate.

For more information please visit either Health & Wellness Centre on campus — located in the Student Service Centre building and Kalamalka Residences — or contact Health & Wellness Counsellors Tracey Sutton or Roger Wilson.

Looking for participants in the Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup
UBC Okanagan Career Services and Co-op Education Centre is starting an annual campus tradition by participating in this year's TD Great Canadian Shoreline Cleanup.

Teams of Co-op students will be leading members of the university community and general public on Sep. 20 in cleaning up some of the most vital and cherished waterways and shorelines in the Okanagan. Community is at the heart of what the Career Services and Co-op Centre does, and this is a very valuable way that UBC Okanagan can directly contribute to the greater Okanagan community.

Anyone interested is urged to join the cleanup on Saturday, Sep. 20 as the volunteer task force cleans up Waterfront Park, Gyro Beach, and Phase 2 of the Mission Creek Greenway — this event is a great way to be involved, interact with a wide diversity of clubs, groups and individuals to help keep Kelowna clean and beautiful.

Date: Saturday, Sep. 20
Time: 10 a.m.
Location: Waterfront Park, Gyro Beach, and Phase 2 of the Mission Creek Greenway

To sign up for the cleanup team, or for more information, contact Co-op Coordinator David Woodward at 79206.

Student Recruitment Staff

Student Recruitment and Advising welcomes new staff members
A warm welcome to Student Recruitment and Advising's newest staff members.
Paula Loewen is joining UBC Okanagan as a Student Recruiter/Advisor. Born and raised in Kelowna, Loewen has a wealth of post-secondary and private sector experience. She has studied at the University of Victoria, Queen's University, and the University of Waterloo, and has served as Director of Communications for a business development firm and Director of Sales and Marketing for a hotel chain.

Colleen Mooney will be beginning her UBC career as an Associate Student Recruiter/Advisor. Colleen originally hails from British Columbia, spending most of her time in Victoria until recently relocating to Kelowna in January 2008. Colleen has taught English in South Korea, as well as Spanish and French at Kelowna Secondary School.

The final addition is Student Recruiter/Advisor Jason Larsh. Jason attended the University of Windsor and the University of Western Ontario where he attained his B.Ed and Honours Specialist degrees in 2003. For the last five years Larsh has been teaching an alternative learning program for Grade 12 students in Woodstock, Ontario.

Exchange your information
The Exchange is your newsletter. Let everyone know what's going on in your corner of UBC Okanagan. Send submissions to Public Affairs c/o Chris Guenard.

Publication Date

Submission Deadline

September 17 September 12 (Friday)
October 1 September 26 (Friday)
October 15 October 10 (Friday)

View back issues of The Exchange

September 3, 2008


FCCS Presents...
Poet leads literary line-up for UBC Okanagan's The Lake: A Reading Series
Poet Sheri Benning will open UBC Okanagan's fall line-up of literary events with a public reading on Sep. 10, one of two on-campus readings and three downtown-Kelowna readings scheduled for The Lake: A Reading Series from September to December.

Sponsored by UBC Okanagan's Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies, The Lake: A Reading Series features four acclaimed authors, including two poets, a novelist and a playwright. There will also be one open-mic event for all poets in the community to read their work. 

Benning grew up in Saskatchewan and her second book of poetry, Thin Moon Psalm, won several awards in that province. She is a Research Fellow in the University of Glasgow's creative writing program.

Date: Wednesday, Sep. 10
Time: 4:30 p.m.
Location: ART103

All the readings are free and open to the public. For more information, see the website.

E-mail Nancy Holmes or call 79369 for more information.

FCCS Presents...
Greg Staats opens fall 2008 Visiting Artists Speaker Series

Greg Staats of Toronto is a photographer who also creates short video works. His video subjects include boreal markers on the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory in southern Ontario, Staats' birthplace. He has had several solo exhibitions including: at the Walter Philips Gallery, Banff; Mercer Union: A Centre for Contemporary Art, Toronto; and Gallery TPW, Toronto. Staats is the recipient of the Duke and Duchess of York Prize in Photography. This talk is held in conjunction with the Kelowna Art Gallery. 

Date: Thursday, Sep. 11
Time: 9:30 to 11 a.m.
Location: FIN144

See the Visiting Artists Speaker Series website for more details on the artists. E-mail Renay Egami or call 79764 for more information.

Next Pitstop Being Held Sep. 12
Sponsored by Aidan Kiernan, AVP Operations, all faculty and staff are invited for coffee on Friday, Sep. 12, in the Arts Atrium for Pitstop. Minimum donation for this event is $2 and all proceeds will be donated to this year's United Way campaign.

Date: Friday, Sep. 12
Time: 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Location: Arts Atrium

Minds and Music logo

Minds & Music kicks off Fourth Season with Robert Silverman concert

Recognized as one of Canada's premiere pianists, Robert Silverman has reached a level of musical and technical authority that can only be accomplished after years of deep commitment to the instrument.  In a career spanning more than five decades, he has climbed every peak of serious pianism: lauded performances in prestigious halls across the globe; orchestral appearances with many of the world's greatest conductors; and award-winning recordings distributed internationally.

In this unique Minds & Music presentation, Silverman's powerful yet romantic keyboard performance gains new depth through commentary on classical paintings and poetry. This concert is free and open to the public.

Date: Wednesday, Sep. 17
Time: 2 to 3:30 p.m.
Location: SSC026

DSS logo

First Distinguished Speaker Series event of the season to feature The Upside of Down author

Thomas Homer-Dixon is one of the world's leading experts on the intricate links between nature, technology, and society. Homer-Dixon's The Upside of Down sets out a theory of the growth, breakdown, and renewal of societies. It argues that today's converging energy, environmental, and political-economic stresses could cause a breakdown of national and global order. But there are things we can do now to keep such a breakdown from being catastrophic.

Date: Tuesday, Sep. 23 
Time: 7 p.m.
Location: Rotary Centre for the Arts — 421 Cawston Avenue, Kelowna
Tickets: Tickets are free but must be picked up or ordered in advance from the Rotary Centre for the Arts box office (call 250.717.5304). Box office hours are 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Saturday, and noon to 8 p.m. Sunday.

Registrations for Distinguished Speaker Series events typically fill up quickly. Make sure to get your tickets early. If the event is sold out, there will be a standby lineup at the event and efforts will be made to accommodate everyone.


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

Students Helping Students
Math and writing tutors can help students build skills and improve their grades. Students have created a series of entertaining videos to promote the Academic Resource Centre. Check out these new takes on a borrowed theme:

Math Centre video
Writing Centre video


NSERC Workshop
A representative from NSERC will be on campus on Tuesday, Sep. 16, to provide a presentation to Faculty members about upcoming NSERC funding competitions.

Workshop content includes:

  • How to prepare NSERC Grant Applications
  • NSERC news and program updates

Date: Tuesday, Sep. 16
Time: 2:30 to 4 p.m.
Location: ART114
Registration: Attendees must register by Wednesday, Sep. 10 

To register, or find out more, visit the workshop website