Photo by Gerd Altmann

October 19, 2020 - 10:00am

We are so happy to celebrate the amazing accomplishments of our colleagues! If you have something you want us to share, please send your items to Check out the list for this issue below. 

Forestry Students

A team of students from VIU's two-year Forestry Diploma program won the Student Quiz Bowl competition at the Canadian Institute of Forestry's (CIF) Annual General Meeting. They beat out students from four-year degree programs from the University of Alberta and the University of Toronto, who won second and third respectively, among other post-secondary programs. The team comprised: 

  • Caribe Neimann (captain)
  • Nick Hadaller 
  • Kyra Pearce
  • Madeleine Poirier
  • Chris Williams

Bill Beese, Scientific Achievement Award

Also in Forestry, the instructor of the winning students, Bill Beese, won the CIF's Scientific Achievement Award. His colleague, Doug Corrin, put it this way: 

Bill is an accomplished researcher in the realm of forest ecology.  Known internationally for his work in applying the principles of ecology for forest management and creating innovative techniques in forest operations.  I invite you to Google "Bill Beese variable retention".  His contributions to sound forest management in BC (and beyond) have been significant, and will live on for quite some time.

Dr. Linda Derksen, Difference Maker

Dr. Linda Derksen received the Rick Hansen Foundation's (RHF) 2020 Difference Maker award for her role as Director of the Universal Access Committee. The RHF said of Linda:

Linda recently became VIU’s first-ever Universal Access Director following her tireless advocacy to improve the limited accessibility on campus. In her new role, she has secured $2 million in government funding to build a ramp and accessible washrooms, and regularly holds public consultations to ensure everyone on campus feels heard.

To learn more about how Linda and a big team of VIU employees have made big strides in making VIU a more inclusive place, keep an eye on future issues of VIU Voices and the Digest.

Dr. Sally Vinden, Excellence in Open Education

Dr. Sally Vinden Open Education Awards for Excellence

Dr. Sally Vinden was the August recipient of the BCcampus Award for Excellence in Open Education. BCcampus said: 

Through her role as a fellow at the Centre of Innovation and Excellence in Learning at VIU, Sally has worked on a number of significant educational projects, both locally and internationally. Within those projects, she has helped trades faculty from differing backgrounds learn the importance of having the right pedagogical mindset when approaching curriculum development. This became the driving theme within her successful doctoral dissertation, titled “An exploration of British Columbia’s TVET instructors’ perceptions that influence their curriculum choices.”

When it comes to the open educational resource (OER) development space, Sally has been at the forefront in her trade of hairstyling. She has been active on her trade’s articulation committee as it begins the process of developing OER for the hairstylist apprentices in the province. Her ability to tailor collaborative approaches to the complexity of navigating the apprenticeship system will be the cornerstone of future curriculum development not just in her trade, but in others as well. Since COVID-19 struck, Sally has been capturing the innovative pedagogies that have emerged in the trades on the newly created VIU trades faculty blog Life is an Apprenticeship: Teaching and Learning in a Digital World. 

Tags: In the Community

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