November 29, 2005: Students benefit from real-life experience

      November 29, 2005
      Contact: Shelley Kean Tel: 604.983.7596

      (NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C.)—Real-life experience is the key objective of an innovative partnership formed between the Capilano College School of Business and the B.C. Olympics & Paralympic Winter Games Secretariat’s 2010 Commerce Centre. The affiliation will help B.C. businesses prepare for the challenges and opportunities that will be presented before, during and after the 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games.

      Students enrolled in the College’s third-year project management program have been selected to take on a project management plan initiative with business sectors operating in the GVRD and Whistler during the Winter Games.

      Four student groups made presentations to a high-level industry panel of judges on November 28 at Capilano College’s North Vancouver campus. Their project plans were developed for various industry sectors to help them proactively prepare for the 2010 Games. The plans focused both on how these sectors can optimize potential benefits of the Games and how they can mitigate potential negative impacts.

      The panel included: Madleine Rab, general manager, business development and Olympics, Bell Canada; Betty MacLeod, senior manager, Olympic business development, RBC; Maureen Douglas, director, operations and community relations, Whistler and Sea to Sky Corridor, VANOC; and Brian Krieger, director of the 2010 Commerce Centre.

      The students have been developing their plans for project sponsor Brian Krieger of the 2010 Commerce Centre, an area that falls under the umbrella of B.C.’s Ministry of Small Business and Economic Development. The Commerce Centre is tapping into the wealth of expertise and intellectual capital available at the only educational institution with campuses in the regions that will be impacted by the Games

      “Capilano College is uniquely positioned to service all the communities of Vancouver through the Howe Sound Corridor and on to Mt. Currie,” said the College’s Squamish campus dean, Casey Dorin. “We are prepared to help the 2010 Games, our communities, and most of all, our students, through this unique opportunity with the 2010 Commerce Centre.”

      The student groups have also been contacting industry associations to learn more about the needs of the various sectors and to ensure their project plans could potentially be used by industry as they prepare for the Games.

      The winning team was comprised of three North Shore residents: Tamara van den Berg, Heather Maude, and Dave Takei, as well as Vancouver residents David Mason (project manager) and Adam Henderson. Along with a cash prize worth $300 at the Capilano College bookstore, the project manager received an HBC jacket and the other team members received shirts. All first place team members will receive an opportunity to interview with the 2010 Commerce Centre for a summer internship.

      “We’re taking a leadership role in our communities and are being proactive and innovative,” Dorin explained. “This project is an excellent example of a winning situation for our students, the College, business communities in the GVRD to Mt. Currie, and the Commerce Centre,” Casey said. “It’s a good news story of how the Vancouver 2010 Olympic and Paralympic Winter Games is helping our students in a real and concrete way.”

      The judges also participated in a panel discussion after the presentations where they answered questions pertaining to the 2010 Olympic Games.

      “This experience was incredible,” said van den Berg, who is a new mother and a member of the winning team. “Just being able to ask the panel about the 2010 Games was a really great opportunity.”

      Van den Berg also couldn’t say enough about the business program at Capilano College and her instructors. “I’ve attended other post-secondary schools in the Lower Mainland, but I always felt like a number,” she said. “At Cap, you can walk right up to an instructor’s office and knock on their door. You don’t have to make an appointment. Everyone is really approachable.”