WorldVIU Days Nov. 2-6 Celebrate Global Community

Charles Montgomery, author of Happy City, is the keynote speaker for World VIU Days on Nov. 3 at 7 pm at the Vancouver Island Conference Centre.

October 28, 2015 - 9:30am

WorldVIU Days at Vancouver Island University (VIU) Nov. 2-6 will celebrate the connections we make as global citizens throughout the world, and with each other right here in our own communities.

“Creating a Connected Community” is the theme for this year’s WorldVIU Days, which include daily public activities at VIU’s Nanaimo campus and a free keynote presentation Tuesday, Nov. 3 by Charles Montgomery, an urban planner, urban ‘experimentalist’ and  award-winning author of Happy City.  

Montgomery’s work takes lessons from psychology, neuroscience, and design activism to help fix fragmented cities and improve the lives of urban dwellers. In his keynote at 7 pm in the Shaw Auditorium of the Vancouver Island Conference Centre, Montgomery will talk about how weaving the principles of Happy City into VIU campuses and our communities can foster stronger social connections. Seats at this event are limited, and first come, first served.

Leading up to the keynote, students at VIU and residents of Nanaimo have been involved in a “Where makes me happy” project, tagging places on campus and in the community that make them feel either happy or unhappy. Results of the tagging project will be revealed at Montgomery’s talk, which is jointly sponsored by VIU, TD Bank, the City of Nanaimo, The Central Vancouver Island Multicultural Society and the Planning Institute of BC.

Other activities on VIU’s Nanaimo campus during WorldVIU Days offer people the chance to connect with students, learn about world cultures, and celebrate diversity.

Learn a few words in another language and enjoy a treat (Nov. 4, 11:30 am, upper cafeteria); join in a different kind of “Happy Hour” (Nov. 4 and 5, 12 pm, courtyard by upper cafeteria) by sharing a coffee along with games and prizes; and discover the deep connections students and faculty are developing through field schools in Belize in the Belize Field Work Showcase (Nov. 5, 11:30 am, Royal Arbutus Room, Building 300).

Two film nights will celebrate cultural diversity and connectedness: Crossing Borders (Nov. 4, 6 to 7:30 pm, Building 200, Room 203) follows four American and four Moroccan students travelling together, encountering ‘the other’ and discovering themselves; while the film Happy, presented as part of the ongoing Worldbridger Film Series, follows filmmaker Roko Belic as he travels to more than a dozen countries searching for the meaning of happiness.

WorldVIU Days culminates in a fun, colourful Multicultural Festival in VIU’s upper cafeteria on Friday, Nov. 6 from 11:30 am to 2:30 pm.

Students have taken the lead in planning an afternoon that includes a fashion show with both traditional and modern fashion attire from all over the world, as well as a talent showcase and cultural displays. Live music with Afrolanders and Masimba Marimba rounds out the afternoon.

“The presence of international students from around the world enriches our lives on the VIU campus and in the community”, says Dr. Graham Pike, Dean of International Education. “We can learn so much from their cultures and traditions, and their perspectives on the world. Their presence in our classrooms and in our communities helps everyone develop a fuller understanding of the interdependent world we live in.”

For a full schedule of WorldVIU Days activities, see


More Information

For more information on World VIU Days, see

For more information on keynote speaker Charles Montgomery, see


Shari Bishop Bowes, Communications Officer, Vancouver Island University

P:250.740.6443  C: 250.618.1535 E: T: @viunews


Tags: In the Community

Sign up for our VIU news and experts email