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Return to the Okanagan for Laisha Rosnau,
UBC Okanagan's next Writer in Residence

Novelist and poet Laisha Rosnau is UBC Okanagan's third annual writer-in-residence. Sponsored by the Department of Creative Studies, this program allows 16 selected local writers to get free critiques of their work.

"Laisha Rosnau, who grew up in Vernon, is back in the Valley as our writer in residence and we're delighted," says Nancy Holmes, Head of the Department of Creative Studies. "I hope new and developing local writers take advantage of this rare opportunity to benefit from the advice of someone who's been there."

Rosnau is an award-winning poet and novelist. Her second collection of poetry, Lousy Explorers, was released by Nightwood in April 2009, and her first, Notes on Leaving (Nightwood), won the Acorn-Plantos Poetry Award in 2005. Her novel, The Sudden Weight of Snow (McClelland & Stewart), was an honourable mention for the in Canada First Novel Award.

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Art on The Line gala fundraiser tickets now available
With only 100 tickets being sold, art enthusiasts will want to secure their spot early for the 8th annual Art on the Line gala fundraiser at UBC Okanagan. At $175 each, one ticket admits up to two people and includes appetizers and refreshments, live entertainment and one juried work of art.

The Art on the Line fundraiser gala features works by students, noted local artists, visual arts professors and alumni and offers a variety of media and styles -- including drawings, paintings, prints, photographs, sculpture and mixed media -- to meet the tastes and interests of everyone.

Ticket holders will select the artworks based on a random lottery system. Time is provided for previewing the art and building wish lists. With 130 pieces to choose from, all 100 participants are assured a choice of juried art.

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Have questions for CBC's Quirks and Quarks?
CBC Radio's popular science program Quirks and Quarks will be recorded live at UBC's Vancouver campus on March 8 during Celebrate Research Week.

The What's on Your Mind? challenge has been created to gather great questions for the program. If you have a burning question that has never been answered, here's your chance -- submit it by phone or on the Celebrate Research Week website, and host Bob McDonald and 10 experts will answer the top 10 entries.

Submit questions by phoning 604-822-5675 or go to Include your contact information and how you heard about the Quirks and Quarks What's on Your Mind? challenge.

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Make those 2010 resolutions reality with UBC Okanagan's Continuing Studies courses
'Tis the season for New Year's resolutions, and UBC Okanagan's Continuing Studies has put together an extensive Spring lineup of courses starting in January that can help people learn new computer or writing skills, explore their passion for art, wines, gardening or photography, and even learn a new language.

"We all have things we'd like to learn or try our hand at, and having easy access to a great selection of courses can empower us to actively pursue those goals," says Program Leader Elaine Crebo MacLeod. "If you've made a decision to discover something new about yourself or explore your talents in art or gardening or even Office computer applications, we're here to help make this your year."

Writing courses offer instruction in writing short stories, freelance and travel writing, and other personal and creative writing -- plus there are specific courses tailored to academic writing and writing for the workplace.

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Applications for graduation now open
Students preparing to apply for graduation can now do so via the online Student Service Centre (SSC).

Be sure to encourage students to apply as soon as possible if they plan on graduating this spring. Applications must be submitted regardless of whether students are planning on participating in the Convocation ceremony in June.

For more information visit the UBC Okanagan Graduation website.

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Conferences & Accommodation offers year-round accommodation to visiting UBC faculty and guests
UBC Okanagan's newly built one-bedroom and den, and two-bedroom City Homes offer guests a great place to stay year-round on campus. Each unit offers queen sized beds, kitchen, living room, in-suite laundry and complimentary cable and Internet. With affordable pricing for short- and long-term stays, these units are available to guests of UBC Okanagan.

To reserve, call 78055 or email

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Free fitness pass makes sticking
to New Year's resolutions easier

Start the New year off right and try one of Campus Recreation's fitness classes at no charge. Sponsored by the Office of Workplace Health and Sustainability, any faculty or staff member can get a free fitness pass from Jeff Zeitz, Workplace Health and Sustainability advisor, by calling 78183.

To view the schedule for this term's fitness classes, visit the Campus Recreation website.

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UBC Okanagan students earn Public Anthropology awards
UBC Okanagan's Anthropology students were top performers in a major competition involving 4,000 students at 28 universities and colleges across North America over the past few months.

Taking part in the Public Anthropology Community Action project, students in the Anthropology 100 introductory course taught by Diana French, Associate Professor in Community, Culture and Global Studies, were challenged to write opinion-editorial (op-ed) pieces suitable for newspaper publication. The opinions focused on the plight of South America's Yanomami people, arguing for the return of Yanomami blood taken for research purposes in the 1960s, and currently stored in the United States.

Papers were peer-reviewed and 19 UBC Okanagan students were among the award recipients. The top UBC Okanagan student this term was first-year Arts student Cody Decker, who placed third out of 2,000 competitors from 18 post-secondary institutions.

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Kevin Beiler, a UBC PhD forest sciences student, prepares samples of fungal and tree DNA extracted from a tree root tip from a Douglas fir forest near Kamloops, B.C.

UBC team looks below ground to learn about healthy forests
Research creating a new understanding of old growth's importance

UBC researchers are looking below ground in a forest near Kamloops, B.C., to better understand how the health and survival of Douglas fir trees may be affected by the relationships and connectivity of webs of fungi that grow on tree roots.

Called mycorrhizal networks, these interconnecting webs of fungi are believed to transfer nutrients, water and carbon between two or more plants, potentially improving the survival of seedlings connected to old trees. The research could have implications on forest management policy and practices, and offers more evidence supporting the preservation of old growth forests.

"The functional aspects of mycorrhizal networks are very important and there is substantial evidence now that suggests the transfer of important nutrients, such as nitrogen and phosphorus, occurs from one plant to another through this web-like underground system," says Dan Durall, associate professor of biology and physical geography at UBC Okanagan. "However, no one has ever looked at the structure of these networks."

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New developments in the Centre for Teaching and Learning

Three DATEs (discussions about teaching excellence)
A new teaching excellence series is being offered by the Centre for Teaching and Learning this spring. These DATEs will take the form of an open meeting hosted by the Centre for Teaching and Learning. The discussion begins with a guest speaker providing insights into teaching excellence followed by an open discussion. The DATE speakers include:

  • Doug Owram, deputy vice chancellor, Friday, Jan. 22
  • Alaa Abd-El-Aziz, provost (Okanagan), Friday, Feb. 26
  • Jan Cioe, associate professor of psychology and Teaching Excellence and Innovation award winner, Friday, Mar. 19

Each of the DATE talks run from 1:30 to 2:20 p.m. and will take place in the University Centre ballroom (room UNC200).

Centre for Teaching and Learning Workshops in January

To find out more contact Heather Hurren, manager of academic development, at 79288.

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GST/HST overview and legislative update
This seminar is comprised of two sessions on January 13 and is intended as a brief review of major points and issues raised by the impending implementation of Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) on July 1, 2010. Proper identification and characterization of a supply is critical in determining whether a supply is exempt or taxable, and identification of the tax status of the supply will impact the recovery eligibility of tax paid.

Session one: supplies of goods and services made by the university
Identification of the tax status of supplies and resupplies by the University is the subject of the first session. In most instances, supplies are made for consideration (revenue) but this is not always true -- many supplies are made for which no consideration is received.

Session two: supplies of goods and services received by the university
The second session is focused on expenditures incurred by the university and the eligibility of those tax amounts paid to be recovered. This is an issue area with significant financial implications for the University.

Date: Wednesday, Jan. 13
Time: 9 a.m. to 12 noon (session one); 1 to 4 p.m. (session two)
Location: Arts building, room ART110

To register please contact Carla Waters at 78617 and provide a name, department, phone local, email address and session(s) attending.

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NSERC Strategic Projects Grant workshop
Deborah Roberts
, associate director of graduate studies and research for the School of Engineering, and NSERC representative Pam Giberson are presenting a workshop on January 13 that examines strategies for building a successful Strategic Projects Grant application.

Targeted areas for this workshop will be advanced communications and management of information, biomedical technologies, competitive manufacturing, healthy environments and ecosystems, quality foods and novel bioproducts, safety and security, or sustainable energy systems.

All faculty members interested in these areas are invited to attend, regardless of whether they are funded by NSERC or another tri-council agency.

Date: Wednesday, Jan. 13
Time: 1:30 to 3 p.m.
Location: Fipke Centre, room FIP250

This workshop is free but online pre-registration is required. To find out more contact Susan Allen, manager of the Research Services Office, at 78443.

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CIHR Info Sessions offered throughout the month
UBC's Health and Research Resources Office and the Faculty of Medicine will be hosting two types of Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) Operating Grant workshops this January. All faculty members are invited to attend via videoconference from the Research Services Office.

The first workshop is an info session intended for researchers considering a March 2010 Operating Grant submission -- particularly those new to the CIHR Faculty. This session will provide a strategic overview of the CIHR, including Peer Review Committee selection as well as an introduction to grant writing strategies and key internal resources and requirements.

Date: Thursday, Jan. 14
Time: 2 to 4 p.m.
Location: Administration building, room ADM/SSC103E

The second workshop features a series of CIHR grant sessions intended for UBC researchers preparing March 2010 Operating Grant submissions. These sessions function as mock reviews intended to increase the competitiveness of the proposals.

This series of CIHR grant sessions are organized from January 19 to 29. Visit the Research Services Office website for specific dates and times.

There is no charge for any of these sessions, but online pre-registration is required. To find out more contact Research Officer Kristen Kane, at 78832.

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Finance workshops in January
UBC Okanagan Finance is offering a number of workshops this month designed for a range of staff and administrators with financial responsibilities.
To find out more visit the UBC Okanagan Finance website.

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UBC and Tri-Council policies and procedures
The Tri-Council agencies (NSERC/SSHRC/CIHR) have developed standard guidelines surrounding the eligibility of expenditures for all three agencies to streamline the administrative process. Through lecture, examples and problem-solving, this session will go through those guidelines and will identify the related UBC policies that have a research impact.

Date: Friday, Jan. 29
Time: 1 to 4 p.m.
Location: Arts building, room ART110

This workshop is open to all researchers and administrators who are involved in ensuring compliance of expenses incurred on Tri-Council research grants. To register contact Jeannette Chevrette at 78616 and provide a name, department, phone local and email address.

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news | people | research | workshops | events | UBCO.TV | top

January 6, 2010

Don't stay in your office
for coffee this Friday

Sponsored by the Career Services and Co-op Education Centre, all faculty and staff are invited for coffee on Friday, Jan. 8, in the University Centre for Pitstop.

Coffee or tea and a variety of pastries will be served for only $2 per person.

Date: Friday, Jan. 8
Time: 9:30 to 10:30 a.m.
Location: University Centre building, room UNC207

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Brown bag lunch: health promoting effects of hunting and gathering in British Columbia Métis communities
This presentation -- part of the Institute for Healthy Living and Chronic Disease Prevention's Partnerships in Research series -- will focus on a research project currently underway to better understand the health promoting benefits of hunting/gathering activities in Aboriginal communities. Presenters for this talk include:
  • Peter Hutchinson, chronic disease surveillance program manager for the MĂ©tis Nation of British Columbia, and an adjunct professor with the Faculty of Health and Social Development
  • Dean Trumbley, chief of operations for the Métis Nation of British Columbia
Date: Monday, Jan. 18
Time: 12 noon to 1 p.m.
Location: University Centre building, room UNC334

This event is free event and open to the public. To find out more contact Caron Currie at 78072.

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Enrolment Services Fair
Get set for the second annual Enrolment Services Fair on January 20. Providing equal parts information and motivation, the fair offers seminars presented by Student Recruitment and Advising, Undergraduate Admissions, Records and Registration, and Senate and Curriculum Services. Members from key committees, such as Kuali Student, will also provide news on initiatives impacting the way UBC Okanagan recruits, enrols, and supports students.

Date: Wednesday, Jan. 20
Time: 9 a.m. to 12 noon
Location: University Centre ballroom, room UNC200

Refreshments will be provided to all participants. To register or find out more visit the Enrolment Services Fair website.

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What's Happening at UBC Okanagan
The UBC Okanagan events calendar is the central point for online information about university-related events, on and off campus. Visit this page often for information about interesting speakers, people doing things on campus, or groups recognizing a national day of celebration or social action.

Events at a Glance:

For a full listing visit the UBC Okanagan events calendar.

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

  • New Media advances learning
    Much of the content that a library delivers in the 21st century is more than just text and words on the page. Chief Librarian Melody Burton describes some of the latest digital features of the UBC Okanagan Library.

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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 Public Affairs c/o Chris Guenard.

Publication Date

Submission Deadline

January 20 January 15 (Friday)
February 3 January 29 (Friday)
February 17 February 12 (Friday)

View previous editions of The Exchange

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