AlumniED Newsletter - Summer 2013 Convocation Issue

Dean's Message from Dr. Harry Janzen

photo of Dr. Harry JanzenGreetings and welcome to the June 2013 Convocation issue of our AlumniED newsletter. The newsletter serves to keep our Alumni and teaching colleagues up to date with our Education programs and our Education program graduates.

Convocation offers an opportunity to reflect on our students' successes over another academic year and to congratulate our deserved graduates.

Our June 4 Convocation celebrated the success of our Bachelor of Education program graduates. 57 enthusiastic grads are eager to begin their teaching careers after 2.5 years in our Bachelor of Education program. As well,15 graduates from the Masters of Education(Leadership) joined in the celebrations.

This Spring , 13 school districts and 100 schools supported our student teachers on practica. Our students were hosted locally, provincially and internationally in Belise and South Korea. Thanks to all our 282 sponsor teachers, along with our faculty supervisors and district students who collectively help our student teachers achieve their career and personal goals.

We are excited to encourage all our program graduates to continue your studies in one of our excellent Graduate programs. We offer both Graduate diploma and degree programs; SETS diploma, Graduate Diploma in Global Education, Graduate Diploma in Online Learning and Teaching (OLTD), Masters of Special Education, Masters of Education (Leadership) and a new Masters of Education (International Focus). Our programs offer AlumniED partners the opportunity to continue their pursuit of life-long learning opportunities.

Our Education Program grads continue to support student success in our schools locally, nationally and internationally. Congratulations to all our graduates-- past and present.

Dr. Harry Janzen, Dean, Faculty of Education

 June 2013 Convocation

photo of convocation at VIU

More photos here

June 3 and 4th were the dates for our recent Convocation ceremonies, held twice yearly at Nanaimo's Port Theatre. This semester's celebration was just that as administration, faculty, family and friends gathered to share in our students' successes.

A highlight, on behalf of The Honourable Judith Guichon, OBC, Lieutenant Governor of British Columbia, Chancellor Atleo awarded the Governor General’s Gold Medal for academic excellence to VIU Master of Education (Leadership)program graduate Denise Spencer-Dahl. She achieved the highest grade point average of all Master’s students at VIU after completing the Post-Bach degree program here.

VIU awarded Honorary Doctor of Law degrees to three prominent lawyers with exceptional records of distinction in legal affairs and a passion for helping to improve the lives of Aboriginal peoples in BC and Canada: Thomas Berger, Ronald MacIsaac and Mary Ellen Turpel-Lafond.

The University will also award a Distinguished Alumni Award to Snuneymuxw First Nation Chief Douglas White III and an Outstanding Service Award to retired VIU English professor Dr. Kevin Roberts.

A special note, retiring Education faculty member Jean Tonski was honoured with the role of Mace Bearer for the ceremonies in acknowledgement of her many years of dedication to our faculty, students and graduates.

Congratulations to all!

Our Featured Graduate: Jeff Saunders-- Blogger International!

You may recall program grad Jeff Saunders (Grad 2012) who has been vicariously sharing his experiences as a busy TOC working with the Classroom Connect Agency in and around London, England. Jeff's blog is available here and documents his many adventures.



A few quotes include:

"Thursday was actually one of the best days of teaching I've had since arriving here. It was a day of firsts: my first time in Hackney, the first time I taught PE all day and the first time I was called Mr. Jeff. I think it might have been because I tried to fit the role of a PE teacher, but I felt so much more relaxed with the kids, but definitely was able to flex my classroom management skills at the same time. If offered, I would definitely go back to teach PE there!"

"It really has been a roller coaster ride since I've arrived here. There's been times I've thought of booking a flight home, and times that have really affirmed my decision of moving across the world. This week has presented several examples of both sides of the coin... I knew that it would be like this going into it, I think. All week I was at a special needs school in Northeast London working with students that have moderate learning difficulties...It's quite a lovely school, with helpful staff and amazing students."

Jeff returns to Canada this August with a wealth of experience under his belt.

For more information on Classroom Connect and its' services visit their websiteThey are currently hiring for Fall 2013!

Faculty Retirements- You Will Be Missed!

(l to r) Jean Tonski, Jennifer Brownlow, Mary Lindsay, John Phipps.
Photo courtesy Wes Pascoe

This semester marks the start of a new journey for four department faculty members as they take a new path on their way; Jennifer Brownlow, Education Librarian and Reference Coordinator, Mary Lindsay, Masters of Special Education degree program Coordinator, Jean Tonski, Principles of Teaching and Language Arts Instructor and John Phipps, our Field Experience Coordinator.

All four leave us after decades of combined experience assisting our students in achieving their educational, career and personal goals.

I know you will join us in sincerely wishing each of them as most rewarding and satisfying retirement.

Education Alumni Reunite in China

Dean Harry Janzen joined Education program graduates at a VIU Alumni Reception last Spring in Beijing, China. Front (l-r) April Hendriksen, Elicia Murdoch, Sarah Lumley, Veronica Grocott. Back (l-r) Patrick Louie and Graham Giske.

Opportunites for those wishing to teach overseas abound. Please contact us for further information.

VIU Graduate Programs - Time to Continue Your Educational Journey?

The Faculty of Education is proud to offer 6 exciting graduate programs-- both diploma and degree offerings-- to meet the needs of educators wanting to pursue further education at a graduate level.

More information on all our Graduate Program offerings

12 years Later... Another Proud Graduate

Tara Hicks graduated from Ladysmith Secondary School in June 2001. Our soon to be retired Field Experience Coordinator, John Phipps, was principal of LSS and presented her with her high school diploma. As well as being a top citizen and student at LSS, Tara was also chosen Miss Ladysmith and represented the town very well for her year of duty in that role. Tara’s mom, Kim, was a leader on the LSS Parent Advisory Council during this time too; they were STRENGTHS in the school and the community!

Twelve years later Tara graduates from VIU with her Bachelor of Education in June 2013. She thought that we needed another photo!!

Recent Hirings

Over two thousand students have graduated from the Faculty of Education since our inception in 1989. If you are one of them please contact us to update your employment status and be added to our growing list of graduates teaching in schools locally, nationally and internationally.

Please visit our Recent Hirings page and let us have an update on your current teaching status. Teaching overseas? We would love to share your story too!

Be sure to update your contact Information via VIU's Alumni Relations department to stay ConnectED.

Read the latest issue of VIU's Alumni magazine celebrating over 75 years of excellence in Education.

AlumniED is published twice a year by the Faculty of Education. If you have stories, photos or information you would like to share with fellow graduates please contact us.