Meet Mercy; Your New Student Success Officer!

Meet Mercy; Your New Student Success Officer!

Hey GPRC, meet your new Student Success Officer!

My name is Mercy Balogun and I am the new student success officer for the Faculty of Arts, Science and Upgrading.

In August 2008, I moved from Nigeria (West Africa) away from my family and friends and everything I have always known to Canada for school at GPRC (Business Administration Program). It was a huge step for me as I have never lived away from home. I was very young and nothing prepared me for the weather of Alberta. With the help of new friends, I started to adapt to my new environment. Seeing snow for the first time ever in December 2008, was an exciting experience!

I had my own struggles as a student but starting at a small community college, like GPRC made all the difference.

In my leisure time, I love to spend time with my family and friends, I love to read books, meet new people and I love to travel. One of the things on my bucket list is to travel and see the world. Travelling I believe is part of education. It makes you experience new cultures, food, environment and a new way of life.

I am looking forward to providing support and resources to help students achieve their academic and personal growth. As a former graduate of GPRC, I definitely identify with the ups and downs of being a student. I am very excited to meet all the students and start my new role. Mercy joins Alaina Archibald as one of the College’s Student Success Officers.

Check out the blog post we did welcoming Alaina here.

So how can these Student Success Officer’s help you?

“As Student Success Officers, we will act as a contact point for students to offer assistance in accessing various resources within the college and in the surrounding communities. We want students to gain the supports they need, both academically and personally, to ensure that they are successful in achieving their post-secondary goals. We will regularly check-in with students and provide information to help them to continue moving forward.”

Pretty cool, right? So don’t hesitate to reach out!

Image result

GPRC Student Success Officers are available to students from Monday-Friday and we can be reached via email, phone or in person.

Alaina Archibald
Student Success Officer
School of Trades, Agriculture & Environment
Office: FAC131, Fairview Campus
Phone: (780) 835-6763

Mercy Balogun
Student Success Officer
Arts, Education & Upgrading
Office: C310, Grande Prairie Campus
Phone: (780) 539-2942

GPRC Wolves Athletes of the Week: September 11, 2017

GPRC Wolves Athletes of the Week: September 11, 2017

Each week, two GPRC Wolves athletes are selected to showcase their achievements in the classroom and on the field, track, or court. We are pleased to congratulate Troy Bogh and Kelcie Bulas as our current Athletes of the Week!

Troy Bogh

With the pride of Prince George, B.C., Troy Bogh enters his rookie year with the Wolves with unbridled enthusiasm. A 2011 graduate of St. Joes in Grande Prairie, Bogh had a distinguished high school track and cross-country running career that saw him garner 16 Northwest Zone gold medals and a provincial championship bronze.

After a six-year hiatus, Bogh returns to the sport with a chip on his shoulder and a score to settle.  He hopes to be toeing the line at CCAA XC Nationals in Montreal this November with his the rest of his wolf pack.

Bogh is a 4th year apprentice in the Heavy-Duty Technician program.  And yes, ladies, he is single and available.

Kelcie Bulas

A 2017 graduate of Edwin Parr Composite High in Athabasca, A.B., Kelcie Bulas led the Wolves women with a 5th place finish in her first ACAC race, hosted by Concordia Thunder, in Edmonton on Saturday, September 9.

Bulas went undefeated in high school in the North Central Zone in cross-country running and in the 1500m and 3000m in track.  Provincially, her best result was a 4th place in 2017 ASAA Track and Field Championship in the 1500m.

Currently enrolled in Open Studies, Bulas hopes to pursue a degree Kinesiology. She spent last summer working as an Assistant Race Planner for the Athabasca Ultra 100-mile trail race.  The event is slated for July 28 and 29, 2018.

Congratulations Troy and Kelcie! 

GPRC Wolves Weekend Recap

GPRC Wolves Weekend Recap

Our GPRC Wolves had a busy weekend on the field and track, check it out.

GPRC Wolves Soccer Home Opener vs. Keyano Huskies.

With a win from the Women, and loss from the Men, your GPRC Wolves hosted the Keyano Huskies in their Home Opener this weekend, at the Pomeroy Field, on the GP Campus.

The Women won 6-0 on Saturday, and 2-0 on Sunday, with players of the game being veteran 5th year defender, and ACAC All Conference Athlete, Brook Robert, and rookie striker, Ashtyn Haycock. An excellent performance was put in by rookie strikers, Alexi Watson and Ashtyn Haycock said Coach Chris Morgan, adding that Watson scored a hat trick in Saturday’s game, with Haycock, 2nd year forward, Shelby Henley, and rookie midfielder, Alex Verhun also netting. A second half brace from Haycock secured the win Sunday.

On the Men’s side, the Wolves were unlucky losing both games, 0-4 on Saturday, and 2-3 on Sunday. Both goals for the Wolves came from rookie striker, Zack Fisher. Players of the Game were 2nd year defender, Cameron Close, and rookie midfielder, David Wokoma from Nigeria. Coach Morgan commented that in a much tighter game Sunday the Wolves lost where they deserved at least a share of the spoils.

The squads are back on the field this weekend, hosting the University of Alberta – Augustana Vikings. Kickoff is at 2 p.m. (W) and 4 p.m. (M) Saturday, and 12 p.m. (W) and 2 p.m. (M) Sunday. All games can be watched on, and home game schedules are available at

Wolves Track Weekend Wrap-up

Bill Corcoran for the Ambassador

It was a busy Saturday for club members with action on three fronts.

In Edmonton at ACAC #1 – The Concordia Open, the GPRC Wolves Varsity team opened its season with a token squad of five athletes.  Brandon Wladyko was the top local runner placing second among the college runner.  He covered the hilly 8 km loop in 30:04. Rookie, Troy Bogh made his debut with the Wolves, placing 13th.

In the women’s 6 km, another Wolves rookie, Kelcie Bulas, had a spectacular debut placing 5th among the college runners.  Anna van der Geissen placed 16th, while Britney Duvall was 20th.

With less than the minimum of four runners per gender, the Wolves did not register a team score. A full squad of Wolves athletes be in action in two weeks’ time when the Wolves host ACAC #3 – The Steve Burgess Memorial at Wapiti Nordic.

ACAC #1 Results will be posted here.

Also on Saturday, former Wolves standout Amanda Patteson and current Wolves runner Kailey Bratland took part in the Mount Robson Half Marathon outside of Valemont, BC.  The pair both made the podium in the women’s division – Patteson placing 2nd and Bratland 3rd.

Mount Robson Marathon Results will be posted here.

Finally, a pair of younger Wolves Athletic Club athletes contested the Kids of Steel Triathlon in Grande Prairie on Saturday.  Jacob Farnsworth topped the boy’s field, while Mairen Lawson placed second in the girl’s race.

2017 East Link GP Triathlon Results will be posted here.

Go Wolves Go!


Happy Anniversary, GPRC NBDC-TAC!

Happy Anniversary, GPRC NBDC-TAC!

On this day in 2012, the GPRC National Bee Diagnostic Centre – Technology Access Centre (NBDC-TAC) opened for business. To celebrate, we wanted to share a few things you may not have known about the NBDC-TAC; who they are, where they’ve been, and where they’re heading in the future.

The NBDC-TAC core staff. Left to right: Christy Curran, Patricia Wolf Veiga, Emily Ryan, Dr. Carlos Castillo, Jamie Lee Martin.


NBDC-TAC has been called “a CSI crime lab for bees” – when bees die, they get sent to NBDC for tiny bee autopsies. The scientists at NBDC-TAC perform diagnostic tests to determine which diseases, parasites, and pests may have been responsible for the bee’s demise. They can then report back to the beekeeper or apiculturist and give them information about the overall state of the hive’s health.

This service is essential to beekeepers and apiculturists. It allows them to keep tabs on the ever changing health of their hives. Knowing which pests and pathogens are harming the hives gives apiculturists the tools they need to take management measures. With bee health worldwide on a decline, it’s up to organizations like NBDC-TAC to offer as much information and expertise as possible to help bee populations survive and thrive.

NBDC-TAC: Front view, summer 2016.

A Look Back

Although only five years old, NBDC-TAC has already become widely known as “the benchmark for bee diagnostics.” The Centre has formed international partnerships in France, New Zealand, Peru, and the United States, while offering services to beekeepers and apiculturists from across the country. NBDC-TAC is one of only 30 Technology Access Centres in Canada, with funding provided by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC).

Dr. Lou Gallagher, Senior Adviser from New Zealand’s Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI), referred to NBDC-TAC as “the gold standard” for bee diagnostics when she visited our facilities this August. Quite the honour for such a young, small-time research lab in small town Alberta!

Of course, NBDC-TAC couldn’t have done it alone. They’ve relied on partners like Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada and the Beaverlodge Research Farm, funding organizations like NSERC, and the provincial and federal governments to achieve their successes. As they enter their sixth year of operation, NBDC-TAC looks forward to continuing to grow and strengthen these partnerships.

Dr. Carlos Castillo, Manager and Applied Scientist at NBDC-TAC, working in the laboratory.

The Next Five Years

NBDC-TAC’s 5th anniversary comes at an exciting time for the Centre. Their lab space is expanding, and will soon be shared with AAFC’s National Apiculture Research Program to allow for better collaboration between the two entities. The expansion project, which commenced in the spring of 2017 and is expected to be complete next May, will roughly triple the current lab space. Dr. Carlos Castillo, Manager and Applied Scientist at GPRC NBDC-TAC, said that with additional staff resources and new equipment, the lab will be able to triple its capacity from 20,000 diagnostics per year to 60,000.

The NBDC-TAC expansion is underway and will be complete in the summer of 2018.

Tripling in space and capacity so quickly may seem like quite the challenge, but our little bee lab in Beaverlodge is no stranger to taking on challenges. Happy anniversary, NBDC-TAC – we can’t wait to see what you will accomplish next!