Insider March 10, 2011

In this issue

We'll Miss You Ken!

GPRC's VP Administration, Ken Riley, is entering the world of retirement as of Friday, March 11.  He will be greatly missed by both staff and faculty and by members of the Executive Team but he has left us in the capable hands of his successor, Laurie Sutherland.  A retirement party was held for Ken on Tuesday, March 8th in the Collins Recital Hall.  It was very well attended and indicative of the impact Ken has had during his tenure at GPRC.  Ken surprised many of the attendees by playing a piano medley near the beginning of the party, demonstrating one of his hidden talents.

Ken began his employment with GPRC in 1976 as a part-time sessional instructor in the Department of Business.  In 1990, he left GPRC to pursue another employment opportunity and returned as a full-time instuctor in Business Administration in 2001.  For the past three years, Ken has been Vice-President of Administration, completing over 20 years of service at GPRC.

In his new found retirement, Ken plans to play a lot of golf, partake in some well-deserved R&R and spend the summer travelling and visiting friends with his wife Marge. They also have a big trip to Australia and New Zealand planned for Christmas.

GPRC was fortunate to have Ken on board for the time that we did. He is noted as a passionate instructor who loved teaching and cared a great deal for his students.  As an administrator he was very well-respected by his colleagues and committed to the advancement and progresssion of the College.  We bid you a fond farewell Ken and look forward to seeing you in the community.

Business Instructor Doug Frattini                                Ken accepts a gift from his direct reports

Lots of cards & gifts                                                       Ken and wife Marge cut the cake!

Hot off the Presses

University of Toronto Press has just released a new scholarly tome in their ‘Canadian Social History’ series. Re – imagining Ukrainian Canadians takes a new direction in the history, politics and identity of Ukrainian Canadians as a current in mainstream Canadian history. Dr. Jerry Petryshyn is one of the 13 contributors with a lengthy section entitled ‘The Ethnic Question Personified: Ukrainian Canadians and Canadian – Soviet Relations, 1917 – 1991.” According to Petryshyn, “as a collection, this book seeks to challenge some of the stereotyping of Ukrainian immigrants as basically pioneer farmers cultivating prairie land by examining the varied experience of Ukrainian Canadians as writers, intellectuals, national organizers, working class wage earners and urban as well as rural inhabitants.” The book is available on- line from the University of Toronto Press.

Standing Up to Bullying

February 25th was International Stand Up to Bullying Day.  Fairview High School held an Anti-Bullying assembly in their gym and invited the community to attend and show their solidarity by wearing a pink shirt.

Several staff and faculty members from the GPRC Fairview Campus showed their support by either wearing a pink shirt or a pink ribbon at work that day.  Some staff members also attended the assembly at the high school to help spread the message that bullying must stop.

Below is a photo of the staff who “stood up” to bullies.  (There were also several instructors who participated by wearing pink as well, but they were in class at the time of the photo). - submitted by Cheryl Frank

Mark Coates

Mark Coates, Coordinator of the Learning Support Centre in the Library on the Grande Prairie Campus, was recently interviewed by the Daily Herald-Tribune. Congratulations Mark on the great work you do for our students!

~The Library

Recruitment Road Rules March 7, 2011

When driving the highways and byways as recruiters many topics of conversation come and go. February 28 – March 3 was no different. While it is often said that “what goes on the road, stays on the road” there are some tales that must be shared! On our way to Deh Gah School in Fort Providence NWT, we made the annual stop at Diamond Jenness High School in Hay River NWT. Our usual warm reception from guidance counselor and GPRC advocate Jean Hinton was followed by a tour of their brand new trades and technology building. Needless to say we were impressed.

The highlight of the tour was an opportunity to meet a DJSS graduate. As Jean introduced Teara Arneault, and praised the trophy Teara was creating for the Territorial High School Debate Championship, Gord and I were both trying to place where we had seen Teara before. After some small talk, it was all made clear. In May 2009 on our first joint trip to Hay River the CTS instructor was asking Gord at length about our welding programs. He had a crackerjack student that was interested and wondered if GPRC had anything for her. March 2011 we finally met that crackerjack, a proud graduate of the GPRC Pre-Employment welding program. As recruiters this is the real reward:  to see the process move from awareness, to application and completion, to watching a GPRC student at work doing something he or she loves. Oh, and Cindy Nychka, Teara say “hi”.

Travelling that far north is always a special experience, and one of the perks of being a recruiter. Each year, we are invited and welcomed and with every visit know that northern communities are more confident and comfortable sending students our way. Being in a smaller town, it’s pretty obvious that we aren’t from around there when we pull up to answer questions of the community, meet with prospective high school students and allay the fears of applicants through personal conversation. During our last morning in Hay River, I overheard a conversation and I had to introduce myself to the group of six men during a pre-work gathering. The reason for the imposition was, the proud father of a grade 11 student that had a passion for mechanics and come home the evening before absolutely crazy to go to GRPC. His father said he was so excited after meeting with Gord Ivey his hands had been vibrating while he shared the experience with his parents. The fact that his father was now sharing it with his colleagues was again a validating moment as a recruiter. There is no doubt that David will attending GPRC Fairview Campus in the fall of 2013!

The personal connection definitely makes all the difference in recruiting students and promoting the college, something the GPRC should be proud of. After crossing the Mackenzie River on the ice road to reach the small hamlet of Fort Providence it was very gratifying to be 1400km north of GPRC and have parents of former students mention how much their daughters love Kim Richardson in Housing and that she took care of them; or to hear stories of Wolves athletes and programs from the younger brother of a GPRC student. It is all of these connections that ensure GPRC is well received, and definitely considered when it comes to making choices in post secondary. - submitted by Megan Ryan-Walsh