(NORTH VANCOUVER, B.C.)---The British Columbia Council for International Education (BCCIE) honoured Capilano University administrator Catherine Vertesi and the University and its partner, the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Northwestern Switzerland, with provincial awards of achievement in international education.
Vertesi, vice-president, international, external relations and new initiatives for Capilano University, was presented with the BCCIE's International Education Distinguished Leadership Award.
The award recognizes Vertesi's contributions and service after more than 30 years as an educator and administrator. Students, faculty, administrators and post-secondary institutions alike have benefited from her innovative approach to education excellence and best practices in international study programs and cross cultural experiences.
"It is an honour to be recognized for doing something you're really passionate about," remarked Vertesi. "It's been particularly rewarding to be involved in developing international educational opportunities for Canadian students. Not only are they having once-in-a-lifetime learning experiences, they are gaining valuable perspectives that will enhance their careers and the contributions they make to society."
Vertesi was instrumental in establishing the Canadian Academics Studying Europe (CASE) Study Tour program--a partnership between Capilano University and Professor Robert Buttery of the University of Applied Sciences and Arts of Northwestern Switzerland--which received the Outstanding Program in International Education Award. The program, created in 2008, has provided faculty and administrators from nine B.C. institutions the opportunity to gain valuable insight into international business practices and business education in Europe. Such opportunities in turn lead to the development of enriched international curriculum and comprehensive strategies which benefit Canadian students in their studies at home.
Capilano University shared the award with a Douglas College program.
"The 2013 Awards Committee shares our delight in honouring Capilano University and Catherine Vertesi with these awards," said Dr. Randall Martin, executive director of the B.C. Council for International Education. "Catherine has been both a pioneer and a leader in international education in B.C., indeed in Canada and internationally. She is passionate, knowledgeable and articulate on the subject and she is inspirational on the themes of student and faculty learning. These passions and her international connections have helped to create this world-class program for which Capilano is rightfully being recognized."
The BCCIE also presented an International Education Lifetime Achievement Award to Capilano faculty emeritus Bob Bagshaw who received the award in 2012 but was unable to receive the award in person. In 1986, Bob was responsible for the development of the McCrae Institute of International Management--originally the Asia Pacific Management Co-operative Program--which became a Canadian model for overseas management development. Today there are over 600 McRae alumni around the world who are working as professionals in corporate and NGO endeavours.
The B.C. Council for International Education is the provincial Crown Corporation which reports to the Ministry of Advanced Education and is responsible for profiling British Columbia as the education destination of choice for learners from around the globe and for promoting global citizenry and internationalization at all levels in B.C.'s education system.
International education is a significant driver for British Columbia's economy. According to a 2011 BCCIE report by economist Dr. Roslyn Kunin, the total contribution of international education to the province-nearly $1.8 billion annually-makes it one of the top five sectors. Over 21,000 jobs in the province depend on educating international students
More than 700 students from 54 countries are enrolled in 43 programs at Capilano University while Canadian students benefit from a multi-cultural learning environment, both on campus and through participation in study abroad and exchange programs as well as field-schools and study tours.
For more information on Capilano University's international programs, visit: www.capilanou.ca/international/
BCCIE news release
Biography - Catherine Vertesi
Catherine Vertesi joined Capilano University (then College) as dean of Business in 2001 after a long career at the University of British Columbia and has been a vice-president since 2006. She serves on the Premier's Project Council on International Education and chaired the NAFSA: Association of International Educators Annual Conference, held in Vancouver in 2011 for 9,000 attendees from more than 125 countries. A respected authority in the sector, she is often requested to present on various issues in international education at conferences around the world.
She adds the BCCIE award to a number of other honours including the national award for Leadership in Internationalization from the Canadian Bureau of International Education, and the 2012 Woman of Distinction Award from the YWCA in the field of Education.