VIU Media Highlights: Top 24 of 2020

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January 5, 2021 - 10:45am

Happy New Year!

For the first edition of the 2021 Media Highlights report, we wanted to take a look at some VIU-related stories that made an impact in the media last year. We were planning on doing a top 20 of 2020, but couldn’t stop there – from an extraordinary archaeological find, to chow mein sandwiches, to bald eagle footage, ancient brews and setting up your home work space, VIU employees and students were featured in articles read by millions across the globe in 2020. 


  1. New York Times: How a Human Cousin Adapted to a Changing Climate (profiling VIU Anthropology student Samantha Good’s find while on an excavation site in South Africa). Reach: 135 million. 
  2. 9 Ways That Corona Will Improve K-12 Education (column by Tim Cavey, Master of Education in Educational Leadership alum). Reach: 82.8 million.
  3. National Public Radio, What Happens When Sea Otters Eat 15 Pounds of Shellfish a Day (featuring VIU Biology Professor Dr. Jane Watson’s research). Reach: 59.7 million.
  4. Associated Press: Ecotourism Program Eyes Job Opportunities for First Nations. Reach: 24.8 million. 
  5. Global News: ‘A Wonderful BC Moment’: Couple Witnesses Bald Eagle’s Ocean Plunge, Swim to Shore (VIU Biology Professor Dr. Tim Goater and his wife captured this amazing video footage). Reach: 17.7 million.
  6. CBC News: 6 Experts’ Advice for Saving the Northern Tourism Industry (Patrick Brouder, VIU Research Chair, Tourism and Rural Development, featured). Reach: 12.6 million.
  7. Global News: BC Provides $3.5 Million in COVID-19 Funds for Post-Secondary Students. Reach: 12.3 million.
  8. CBC News: ‘All the Dreadlocked Rastas Were White’: BC Poet Sings About Being Black in Nanaimo (featuring VIU Creative Writing Professor Dr. Sonnet L’abbe). Reach: 7.01 million. 
  9. National Post: First World War Letters Shed Light on Spanish Flu that has Parallels with COVID-19 (featuring Dr. Stephen Davies, Director of VIU’s Canadian Letters and Images Project). Reach: 5.81 million 
  10. American Sandwiches Tell the Story of Immigration, Class and Capitalism (featuring VIU Anthropology Professor Dr. Imogene Lim and her research into the legendary Chow Mein Sandwich). Reach: 4.36 million. 
  11. BC Government News: Improving Access to Quality, Affordable Child Care in Nanaimo (new VIU child care centre announcement). Reach: 1.74 million. 
  12. Esquire: How to Create the Perfect Home Work Space, According to Science (featuring VIU Psychology Professor Dr. Lindsay McCunn). Reach: 1.71 million.
  13. Maclean's: Universities in Western Canada Are Going All-in on Climate Change Research (featuring Dr. Bill Floyd, VIU Adjunct Geography Professor and Co-Leader of the Cryosphere Node). Reach: 1.66 million.
  14. Maclean's: Raising a Pint to History (featuring VIU Anthropology Professor Dr. Marie Hopwood). Reach: 1.62 million. 
  15. Vancouver Sun: Learning Never Stops at Wesgroup Equipment (featuring VIU alum Jeff Allen). Reach: 1.59 million.
  16. Vancouver Sun: VIU Wins Top Employer Award: Education is for Everyone at Vancouver Island University. Reach: 1.59 million. 
  17. The National News (Abu Dhabi, UAE): From Mayar Sherif to Football’s Revival: How Egypt are Taking Big Strides in Female Sport (featuring VIU alum Farida Salem, founder and director of Empower Football Academy). Reach: 1.37 million. 
  18. Maclean's: How Tuition Waivers Help BC Youth in Care Overcome Stubborn Systemic Barriers (featuring VIU alum Ruby Barclay). Reach: 1.23 million. 
  19. Yahoo, IndigiNews: Jesse Wente Says It’s Time to Tell the Truth About Indigenous Sovereignty (Wente was speaking during VIU’s sixth annual Indigenous Speakers Series). Reach: 845,000.
  20. Yahoo News: Indigenous Broadcaster Feels Blessed to be in the Chair Hosting Our Native Land (featuring VIU alum Tchadas Leo). Reach: 820,000. 
  21. Georgia Strait: Vancouver Island University President Deborah Saucier Wins Indigenous Women in Leadership Award. Reach: 799,000. 
  22. CTV Vancouver Island: Wildfire Smoke Smothering BC Stark Indicator of Climate Change, Researchers Say(featuring Dr. Erik Krog, Co-Director of the Applied Environmental Research Laboratories). Reach: 754,000.
  23. Times Colonist: VIU Surpasses Goal, Raising $7.3 Million (About the Imagine VIU Campaign). Reach: 729,999.
  24. National Observer: BC Researcher Aims for Early Warning System to Prevent Oyster Contamination (featuring Dr. Tim Green, Canada Research Chair in Shellfish Health and Genomics at VIU). Reach: 719,000.

Tags: Announcements

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