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More than 80 community members, VIU faculty and alumni joined in the first MABRRI BioBlitz at Milner Gardens.
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Nine Medals for VIU Students at Provincial Trades Skills Competition

Five students from Vancouver Island University (VIU) and regional high schools will advance to the Skills Canada National Competition in Saskatoon May 28 to 30 after winning gold medals at the Provincial Skills Canada BC competition.

Culinary student Kaya Peters won a gold medal in the Culinary post-secondary competition. The Salmon Arm, BC resident had just started the program in late January.

Brooks Secondary in Powell River was the only high school in BC to win two gold medals, with Devon Degraag and Zane Hernandez taking the top spots for Dual Credit students competing in Automotive Service Technician and Carpentry respectively.

Gold medals also went to a team of two students from Cowichan Secondary, Alasdair Shaw and Wyatt Wratten, competing in the Junior Skills “Gravity Vehicle Car” competition.

 Silver medals went to Andrew Vissers in the Automotive Service Technician post-secondary competition; Trevor Ford, a Dual Credit student from Cowichan Secondary entered in the Electronics competition; and Dylan Moore, a post-secondary student at VIU’s Cowichan Trades Centre, in Refrigeration.

Bronze medals went to Cam Frenette, entered in the post-secondary Carpentry competition; and Erin Detchkoff, winning in the post-secondary Culinary competition.

“It’s so great to have this platform for the students to showcase their skills,” said VIU Automotive instructor Ron Depape, who supported students at the Provincial Skills competition in Abbotsford April 15. “It’s a great confidence builder and it looks good on their resumé when they are ready to enter the work force.”

 The Skills Canada National Competition is the only national, multi-trade and technology competition for students and apprentices in the country.


 Photo Caption: VIU Culinary student Kaya Peter (l) celebrates her gold medal win with classmate Erin Detchkoff, who took home a bronze medal in the post-secondary competition.


Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E:
Wednesday, April 29, 2015 - 2:45pm

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VIU Seeks Public Input on Future Programming at Centre for Healthy Aging

Vancouver Island University (VIU) is seeking public input on programming that would see Oceanside become a leader in gerontology education on Vancouver Island and beyond.

A community consultation meeting about the future direction of VIU’s Centre for Healthy Aging will be held May 21 at 5 pm at the Parksville Civic & Technology Centre on Jensen Avenue. It’s the first of several community meetings on VIU's involvement in the Oceanside region.

“We have an exciting new vision for the Centre for Healthy Aging, which has operated out of VIU’s Parksville Centre since 2013,” says Dr. Carol Stuart, Dean of VIU’s Faculty of Health and Human Services.

“The proposal – still in early development – calls for a self-sustaining, locally managed educational hub within the Centre for Healthy Aging anchored by a new graduate diploma program in gerontology.

“Students from Parksville and Nanaimo would be involved in experiential education and undergraduate research with older adults in the Oceanside community, while existing local health care practitioners would have ongoing access to training and professional development in gerontology and active aging.”

Stuart says the programming for the Centre is far from being finalized, and that VIU hopes to build on the strong connections established over many years with community partners in Oceanside.

“We know that the Parksville/Qualicum community is supportive of VIU’s continued presence in Oceanside,” she says, “and we believe that great opportunities exist for the Centre for Healthy Aging to thrive and serve as an institutional and community asset.”

According to Stuart, area demographics and projected job shortages in nursing and related occupations by 2019 outline a clear opportunity for the presence of a thriving Centre for Healthy Aging in the region.

More than 10 percent of the current population in Oceanside are people over 75. Stuart says the 25-50 age group, the primary market for new educational programming, is growing faster than the Island average.

Stuart recently made presentations about the new vision for VIU’s Centre for Healthy Aging to Parksville and Qualicum councils. She will deliver the same presentation at the May 21 community consultation meeting, and then facilitate a focused public discussion to gather input.

Invitations have been circulated to health care practitioners and other individuals in Oceanside. Any interested adult who wishes to attend may register or email



Marilyn Assaf, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P: 250.740.6559 C: 250.618.4596 E: Marily Twitter:@viunews
Tuesday, May 12, 2015 - 4:00pm

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VIU Invites Public to Family Day at Deep Bay Marine Field Station

There’s still plenty to do for the whole family at Vancouver Island University’s Deep Bay Marine Field Station during the annual Brant Wildlife Festival.

A Family Day Open House will be held at the Field Station on Sunday, April 12 from 10 am to 4 pm. There will be touch tanks, large public aquariums, face painting and other marine science educational activities. Admission is by donation.

Visitors can also enjoy an exhibition by artist Caroline James of sixty limited edition original bird paintings in oil and mixed media until April 19. The prints are mounted on beautiful mahogany and spruce supports and then coated in clear high gloss epoxy resin giving the traditional image a very unique and modern look.

The Field Station’s popular High Tea by the Sea, featuring a selection of teas, sandwiches and treats, also continues every Tuesday during April between 11 am and 2 pm.

Various authors and speakers will participate in a spring lecture series Thursday’s at 7 pm until April 30 at the Field Station. The cost is $10 per lecture. For an additional $15, guests can indulge in a pre-lecture themed dinner at 5:30 pm. Dinner tickets include admission to the Field Station. Advance registration is required.

See for a full schedule of other upcoming lectures.

For music lovers, the Field Station will host a Music by the Bay luncheon and concert on April 19, 1 to 4 pm, featuring the A Cappella Plus Chamber Choir performing “A Buffet of Choral Music: twelve years of musical fare.” Tickets are $40 each.

The annual Brant Wildlife festival, organized by The Nature Trust of British Columbia, is a celebration of nature, particularly Brant geese as they rest and feed on the shores of the Parksville and Qualicum beach areas on Vancouver Island. Other festival events will include wildlife viewing, kids nature camps, marsh walks and more. (www.brantfestival.bc)

VIU’s Deep Bay Marine Field Station, located in Bowser about an hour’s drive north of Nanaimo, has teemed up with BC Nature Trust to offer activities during the festival for three years.

The Field Station is a key research facility, public marine science centre and a popular tourism destination on Vancouver Island.

Advance tickets or registration is required for all events except Family Day. Tickets are available at the Deep Bay Marine Field Station at 370 Crome Pt. Road in Bowser, or at the Salish Sea Market in Bowser, Court Yard Café in Qualicum Beach and at A Capella Plus in Nanaimo.
For more information visit or to register for events call 250.740.6611.


Marilyn Assaf, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University P: 250.740.6559 C: 250.618.4596 E: Twitter:@VIUNews

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Coast Capital Savings Gifts Ceremonial Convocation Suite to VIU

A celebration to recognize Coast Capital Savings’ gift to Vancouver Island University (VIU) of a unique Ceremonial Convocation Suite was held today in the Malaspina Theatre on the University’s Nanaimo campus.

 More than 150 people attended the elegant celebration including Her Honour, The Honourable Judith Guichon, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, to witness the unveiling of the suite, made up of a Chancellor’s chair, a President & Vice-Chancellor’s chair and a Bentcorner box designed to hold degree parchments. The suite was created by world-renowned artist Arthur Vickers, OBC, DFA, and given by Coast Capital to the University with the goal of inspiring and celebrating future generations of students, graduates and alumni.

 “Coast Capital’s community promise focuses on building a richer future for youth in our community, and an inspiring and beautiful gift like this fits with that philosophy,” says Wayne Berg, Chief Commercial Officer of Coast Capital Savings. “We know that encouraging people to pursue their educational dreams is a powerful way to build stronger communities, here in BC or wherever VIU graduates’ lives take them. Now, when VIU graduates walk across the stage and see this beautiful suite built to celebrate them and their significant accomplishment, I hope they will feel tremendously—and rightfully—proud of what they’ve achieved. It’s our hope that these inspiring symbols will also make them realize they are a part of something bigger than themselves, and that they will go on to inspire other young people to pursue their own educational goals.”

 The Ceremonial Convocation Suite is an awe-inspiring masterpiece by Vickers that reflects a profound connection to his First Nations culture and heritage. It took thousands of hours to design and produce. The artist created 22 original images referencing students, teachers, the natural and spirit worlds, and the architecture of VIU. All this is presented within the context of the continuity of wisdom and knowledge through the Elders going back to the beginning of time.

 “We become who we are through the teachings of our ancestors,” says Vickers. “The ancient wood, which has been recovered from Vancouver Island has seen so many world events and through its growth rings it tells the story of our past and our history.”

 Rich and inspiring in its message, the suite is breathtaking in its physical creation. Of particular note is the holographic effect or “chatoyance” Vickers has achieved as the 24 karat gold leaf designs shimmer through the refraction of light into the centuries old grey ghost cedar wood fibres.

 The suite will take pride of place at VIU’s convocation ceremonies. The University’s Chancellor Louise Mandell will sit in the chair known as “The Keeper of Wisdom and Knowledge” and the President & Vice-Chancellor Dr. Ralph Nilson will sit in the chair known as “The Keeper of Knowledge”. The degree parchments will live in the Ceremonial Parchment Bentcorner Box (Huupukwanum). Vickers hopes that as the students walk up to receive their degrees they will leave their imprint on the ancient wood leaving a lasting legacy of their own achievements – their own story – on the box.

 “We are very grateful to Coast Capital Savings for their foresight and vision in making this gift to Vancouver Island University,” said Nilson. “With their support, Arthur has created a magnificent legacy piece that will inspire our students and graduates for generations to come. It will lend a significance to the convocation ceremony that will demonstrate and reinforce the value of the experience they’ve had pursuing their post-secondary education at VIU. The fundamental values of VIU and of our partner Coast Capital Savings have been beautifully captured in these ceremonial pieces. I know they will have a profound impact on our students, faculty, staff, and our broader community.”

 Louise Mandell, VIU’s Chancellor was also at the event and discussed the profound impact the suite will have on VIU’s students far into the future.

 “We live in a world of continuing relationships, linked by a higher vision of what it means to be human. To Coast Capital Savings, the VIU community, Arthur Vickers, and all those who participated in this dream of creative partnership, I honour you. This transmuted spirit of creation will mold the mindset of all subsequent generations.”

 When the suite is not in use at VIU’s convocation ceremonies it will be on public display on the University’s Nanaimo Campus in the Welcome Centre (Bldg 300).

For more information on the convocation suite please see the website at:


Janina Stajic, Manager, Communications & Public Engagement, Vancouver Island University
P: 250.740.6288    C: 250.618.2360   E:   T:@viunews 

About Coast Capital Savings:

Coast Capital Savings is Canada’s largest credit union by membership, owned by its 522,000 members. It has 50 branches in the Metro Vancouver, Fraser Valley, and Vancouver Island regions of British Columbia and has exciting plans to grow. Coast Capital works to change the way Canadians feel about banking, forever, through simple financial help – with innovative products like the Free Chequing, Free Debit and More account and their You’re the Boss Mortgage. Each year Coast Capital Savings invests 7% of their pre-tax earnings to help build a richer future for youth in their communities through sponsorships, grants, and education awards. The credit union is one of Canada's 10 Most Admired Corporate Cultures™ and was named one of 2014’s BC Top Employers. It is a member of Canada's Best Managed Companies Platinum Club and an Imagine Canada Caring Company.
About VIU:

Vancouver Island University is Canada’s west coast university. Known as a centre of excellence for teaching, learning and applied research, VIU offers a diverse range of certificate, diploma and undergraduate and master degree programs to more than 18,000 students on campuses in Nanaimo, Powell River and Cowichan, and at the Parksville-Qualicum Centre. For more information visit

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Gifts of Artwork Enrich VIU Cowichan Campus

Original art by talented BC artists will grace the walls of Vancouver Island University’s (VIU) Cowichan Campus, thanks to two generous donations.

Long-time Cowichan Valley resident and avid art collector and supporter Bruce Blyth has donated an original painting to VIU Cowichan Campus titled Howe Sound 2010, by Vancouver Island artist Peter Lawson.

Blyth regularly frequents exhibitions by the Cowichan Valley Art Council, and in 2010 purchased the painting he would eventually donate after he was struck by its beauty. Upon his 90th birthday last year, he decided to donate the painting to VIU Cowichan Campus.

VIU Cowichan also recently received a donation of a collection of First Nations prints from the Salish Weave Collection. Titled Box Sets I & II, the donation of 18 prints by Victoria residents Christiane and George Smyth represents work by seven different First Nations artists, six of whom reside on Vancouver Island.

The Smyths were encouraged to donate Box Set I & II by one of the artists represented in the collection, lessLIE (Leslie Robert Sam), a VIU alumnus. Box Set I & II is a collection of Coast Salish graphic art rendered through the serigraph, or silkscreen printing process. Artists represented in the collection are lessLIE, Andy Everson, Luke Marston, Susan Point, Dylan Thomas, Maynard Johnny Jr. and Chris Paul.

Donors of the artworks were recognized in a special reception at VIU Cowichan Campus May 6.

At a special reception and unveiling of the donated artworks May 6, Cowichan Campus Academic Administrator Warren Weir recognized how the art donations enrich the campus.

“The Smyth’s Salish Weave donations represent the integral relationship VIU has with its Coast Salish First Nations partners, supporters, faculty, staff, and students,” Weir said. “The Blyth donation reinforces the essential connection VIU has with the West Coast in general, and Vancouver Island specifically.”


 Photo Caption: A donation of original art by BC artists to VIU Cowichan Campus was cause for celebration by (l-r) George Smyth, Justine Auben Drummond, Christiane Smyth, Dr. Ralph Nilson, Warren Weir, and (seated) Bruce Blyth.

Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University

P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E:
Wednesday, May 13, 2015 - 3:00pm

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An emergency has been reported on Nanaimo Campus. Shelter in place until further notice.
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Whats the real prob coz people need to know

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VIU Baking Student Wins for BC in USA Pear Bureau Competition

A winning recipe for a pear crumble dessert has earned a Vancouver Island University (VIU) Baking program student the chance to represent BC in the USA Pear Bureau’s Culinary Student Competition.

Winning for BC with her Pear Custard Cheese Crumble recipe, Esther LePage will compete in the national competition on April 14 in Montreal.

A student in VIU’s Professional Baking and Pastry Arts program, LePage says she was surprised to learn her recipe had won for BC.

“I really like crumbles and thought I should create a recipe for something I like,” says LePage, whose hometown is just outside Montreal.

A few months away from completing her program, LePage is aiming to work in an artisan bakery in Victoria.

LePage will be vying for a $2,500 first prize, with an additional $500 going to the winning institution.  Her recipe was judged for its originality, creativity, appearance and mechanics, and by its prominent use of fresh USA pears and at least one Canada-produced ingredient that compliments the pears.

Photo Caption: VIU Professional Baking instructor Ken Harper (l) coaches Esther LePage in the preparation of her entry in the USA Pear Bureau’s national competition in Montreal April 14.

Learn More
Learn more about the USA Pears Culinary Student Competition at

Learn more about VIU’s Professional Baking and Pastry Arts program at

Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E:

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VIU Grad Leaves Legacy Related to Food Security and Sustainability

Celia White is taking her passion for sustainability and food security to the provincial and national level.

White’s term as Healthy Communities Coordinator at Vancouver Island University (VIU) in Nanaimo ended in April but she’s beginning a new job with The Meal Exchange, a national youth led non-profit organization based in Toronto.

“I’m applying for grant money to create a western branch in Vancouver and will be launching a new program called the Real Food Challenge in BC,” says White, who graduated from VIU with a double major in Anthropology and Global Studies in 2013.

“The project will determine standards for ‘real food,’ meaning food that is environmentally sustainable, humane, socially just, and beneficial to the local economy. The goal is to develop standards and then assess purchasing policies of BC universities in order to increase their percentage of real food purchases.”

As the Healthy Communities Coordinator at VIU for the past year, White made lasting improvements to VIU’s sustainability and food security initiatives.

VIU now hosts a twice weekly Farmer’s market on the Nanaimo campus during the peak harvest season
( VIU students volunteer with the Nanaimo Community Garden’s Glean Team, and staff and students participate in bi-monthly field trips to a local farm where they volunteer in exchange for free, fresh local vegetables.

White’s interest in food security, sustainability and global issues was fueled while taking classes with VIU Anthropology professor Dr. Imogene Lim and VIU Global Studies professor Dr. Catherine Schittecatte.

As an undergraduate student, she became a founding member of the VIU World University Service of Canada Committee, which sponsors refugee students to complete their education in Canada, and a key player (and one of the inaugural coordinators) in VIU’s Campus Food Movement.

In between organizing events for both clubs and helping integrate WUSC sponsored students into Canadian life, White focused her course work on human rights and the local connection to international food system sustainability.

In her third year, she won an Irving K. Barber British Columbia Scholarship from the BC government, and used it to complete a summer internship in a village near Dehradun, India.

There, she ran a gardening project with local children and conducted research on the most desired local foods in the community, while maintaining her daily duties on a seed saving farm.

Initially, White envisioned a future career abroad, yet her experience in India developed her understanding of the global impacts of local actions.

After she graduated in 2013, White’s passion for local sustainability encouraged her to submit a proposal to VIU administration for a Healthy Communities Coordinator on campus.

With the support of Dr. Dave Witty, VIU Provost and Vice-President Academic, and a grant contributing 50 percent of the costs, White was hired on contract to continue work on sustainable food projects that she was deeply involved with as a student. 

Her first task was to connect VIU curriculum with food related research in hopes of building a purchasing system at the University focused on local, organic and fair trade foods. She served on VIU’s Food Services Advisory Committee, and met with hundreds of faculty and students across disciplines, encouraging them to engage in active research projects.

White believes the momentum she helped create on campus will continue with new student leaders trained and ready to take over the Campus Food Movement next semester.

Looking back at her time as a student and then an employee, White says VIU “opened up countless extraordinary opportunities - from working for professors, to developing my own directed study course, to participating in extra-curricular activities, to traveling to India.”
One of her greatest achievements was having an article published in a scholarly anthropology journal and winning the National Association for the Practice of Anthropology's Student Achievement Award—all while an undergraduate student.

“I encourage any young student to get involved in the campus community,” she says. “There are so many opportunities to develop your skills outside of the classroom. You truly can create your own educational experience and your future career opportunity. Be visionary and be open to all possibilities.”

White graduated from Wellington Secondary School in 2008 where she gained considerable experience working on community action projects – she was a founding board member of the Village Medical Project for Sierra Leone, and involved with the local organization Alianza, which raised money for health care in Guatemala.
She enrolled at VIU because of the interdisciplinary nature of the Global Studies and Anthropology programs, small class sizes and faculty interaction.

“It proved to be the perfect learning environment where I could understand my place in this vast, complicated world, and learn to identify my own assumptions and biases that I didn’t even know I had,” she says.

“Ultimately, Celia created opportunities in which she ran with boundless energy and enthusiasm,” adds Dr. Lim.  “She'll be missed, but we'll be looking to see what she accomplishes next.”



Marilyn Assaf, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P: 250.740.6559 C: 250.618.4596 E: Twitter:@viunews

Thursday, April 30, 2015 - 10:15am

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VIU Hairdressing and Esthetics Join Trinidad and Tobago in Training Partnership

Sharing best practices and methods of teaching for training future hairdressers and esthetics practitioners has been a great experience for instructors from Vancouver Island University (VIU) and their colleagues in a three-year partnership with the Caribbean island nation of Trinidad and Tobago.

Two representatives from YTEPP Limited (Youth Training and Employment Partnership Program), the partner organization in Trinidad and Tobago, spent two weeks in March with VIU’s Hairdressing program at the Nanaimo campus and the Esthetics program at VIU’s Parksville Centre.

 “We’re here to understand the methodologies, the way VIU runs the salon and training labs, and to look at the ways students interact with clients while they are still training,” said Yola Hernandez, who was joined by her colleague Natalie Clarke. Both women are technical supervisors, working to train instructors in YTEPP Limited’s cosmetology programs.

Hernandez said YTEPP Limited has partnered with VIU as a learning exchange, and also to collaborate on the best teaching methods and spaces for a new Centre of Excellence in Cosmetology in Trinidad and Tobago.

Sally Vinden, Chair of VIU’s Hairdressing program, joined her colleague Lesley Osborne, Chair of the Esthetics program, in welcoming the delegation, sharing their ‘competency-based’ learning methods, and involving their guests in the day-to-day classes, clinics, and delivery of hairdressing and esthetics services to the public.

“On a professional level, and on a personal level as well, it’s an incredible opportunity to have such fantastic partners to work with,” said Vinden. “It doesn’t happen every day that you have the chance to work cross-culturally.”

Osborne said it has been very exciting to collaborate with the YTEPP partners, and to share a passion for the highest quality training in the beauty industry.

Osborne travelled to Trinidad and Tobago to tour education facilities and meet partners with Vinden and Meg Savory from the Faculty of International Education in May 2014, and was pleased to deepen the relationship with the recent visit.

The visit came at a busy time in the Parksville Centre’s VIU Spa Institute, with many clients on site enjoying a variety of esthetic services as students completed the last month of their training.

“We’ve learned many different things from each other,” Osborne said. “It always amazes me how people can do things differently and come out with the same great result.”

Clarke and Hernandez are the second delegation to visit VIU in the training partnership, which is supported by Colleges and Institutes Canada’s Carribean Education for Employment program.



Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E: T:@viunews

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Artist Arthur Vickers and Dr. Skye Creba to Receive Honours at VIU Convocation

An internationally renowned BC First Nations artist currently living on Vancouver Island and a Vancouver Island University (VIU) alumna and Nanaimo resident who fulfilled her lifelong dream of becoming a medical doctor will be awarded honourary credentials at VIU’s spring convocation ceremonies at Nanaimo’s Port Theatre June 1, 2 and 3.

Arthur Vickers, OBC, DFA – 2015 Honorary Doctorate of Letters: June 1, 2:30 pm

Arthur Vickers is an artist, storyteller and philanthropist. Spending his childhood years in the coastal Tsimshian Village of Kitkatla, his mother was of English and Canadian heritage and his father was of Heiltsuk, Tsimshian and Haida First Nations ancestry. Drawing inspiration from his history and heritage, Vickers transforms traditional designs into breathtaking works of art that are powerful and unforgettable. Major works include the “Leadership Desk” installed in the office of BC’s Lieutenant Governor, the Eagle Aerie Gallery in Tofino, and “Intangible Heritage” created in 24 karat gold leaf. Vickers is recognized for his many contributions to charities, helping to raise hundreds of thousands of dollars; and for his role in sustaining and celebrating First Nations heritage.

Quote from Virginia MacCarthy, VIU Faculty of Education professor: “Arthur Vickers has brought credit to British Columbia through his artwork, and he has contributed equally through support of charity and his work to enlighten and inspire BC children.”
Dr. Skye Creba – 2015 Distinguished Alumni – Early Achievement Award: June 3, 10 am

Dr. Skye Creba is an emergency room physician at Nanaimo Regional General Hospital (NRGH). A graduate of Nanaimo District Secondary School in 2000, Skye began her post-secondary education in VIU’s Bachelor of Science degree program, which ignited her passion for science and medicine.

Skye conducted outstanding research in VIU’s Chemistry Department’s Applied Environmental Research Laboratory (AERL), published two peer-reviewed papers and won the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) Undergraduate Student Research Award.

Graduating with distinction from VIU in 2006 (majoring in Biology and Chemistry), Skye received one of Canada’s most prestigious research scholarships – a $17,500 Natural Science and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) post-graduate scholarship.

After completing a degree in medicine in 2010 at the University of Calgary, Skye returned home to embark on a family practice residency in Nanaimo through the University of British Columbia (UBC). The following year, she completed specialty residency training in emergency medicine through UBC on the lower mainland.

Skye returned to Nanaimo once again in July 2013 to begin her full-time position in the emergency room at NRGH.

Quote from VIU Biology Professor Dr. Tim Goater: “Skye was renowned for her resourcefulness, attention to detail and outstanding interpersonal skills. In her undergraduate career at VIU, she distinguished herself as an excellent experimentalist and terrific team player. She thrived and excelled in the research environment of VIU’s AERL, gaining the respect and admiration of her supervisors and peers.”

Quote from Dr. Creba’s colleague at NRGH, Dr. George Sheppard: “Skye is smart, capable and really easy to work with. She knows her stuff, and isn’t afraid to ask for opinions and assistance, a real hallmark of being a great doctor.”



Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E:
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The High School at VIU Hosts "Sustainable Solutions" Symposium

Grade 10-12 students gathered recently at Vancouver Island University (VIU) to discuss important issues confronting Vancouver Island, including waste management, forestry, green energy, population growth, Island lifestyle and transportation.
Hosted by the grade 10 Global Studies class at The High School at VIU, the “Sustainable Solutions” symposium attracted students from Aspengrove school and Woodlands Secondary school in Nanaimo.
“Our goal was to educate high school students about sustainability and how we can change our lifestyle to use natural resources more wisely and keep our world safe and clean,” said Joshua Luh, an international student from Taiwan studying at The High School at VIU. “The future is ours and we can be the change.”
Students from The High School at VIU organized the one-day symposium as part of their Global Studies 10 class under the supervison of teacher David Butler.
“It was a team effort,” said Angelika Hebert, a student from Nanaimo who enrolled at VIU’s High School last September. “Our whole class got involved in planning this event. It’s been a great learning experience.”
Natasha Subocheva from the Ukraine, another student at The High School, agreed that working on the project with other international and Canadian students benefited everyone. “The international students got to practice our English skills and everyone got to know each other a little better.”
Principal Catherine Brazier says The High School at VIU offers Canadian and international students an environment where they are encouraged to thrive.
Students graduate with a BC Dogwood diploma within a truly international program.
“Our staff encourages students to become global citizens with a strong sense of social responsibility and a commitment to help solve problems in Canada and around the world,” said Brazier.
Operating on VIU’s Nanaimo campus since 1996, The High School at VIU is open to both international and Canadian students. The diverse student body helps to enrich the learning experience for everyone.
Brazier says students benefit from small class sizes, opportunities for one-on-one classroom instruction, and the chance to deeply explore topics of personal interest during their studies.
The High School at VIU prepares students for entry into university, and qualified graduates are guaranteed direct admission to VIU, she adds.
Students can take university courses in their Grade 12 year, and have access to a myriad of resources and amenities, including VIU’s Library, gymnasium, cafeteria and science labs.
The High School at VIU is one of only three high schools attached to a Canadian university, added Brazier, and “it’s one of the most affordable options to students outside of the public system on Vancouver Island and throughout Canada.”
Applications for Grades 10, 11 and 12 are accepted on an ongoing basis throughout the year. For more information contact Brazier at or 250.740.6317.
Marilyn Assaf, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University
P: 250.740.6559 C: 250.618.4596 E: Marily Twitter:@viunews

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The official Google+ page for Vancouver Island University. Love where you learn in one of the most beautiful places in the world. Matter here.
Vancouver Island University is located in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada (with regional campuses in Cowichan, Parksville and Powell River). We are located on beautiful Vancouver Island on the West coast of Canada. Known as a centre of excellence for teaching, applied research and learning, Vancouver Island University (VIU) is producing quality graduates that are in demand by employers across the country and around the world.
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1-888-920-2221, 250-753-3245
900 Fifth Street, Nanaimo, BC, V9R 5S5