Douglas 360°

Build your career – without leaving home

By Lucia Green, Career Centre

Don’t let your career goals stagnate while you’re stuck at home. The Career Centre team is working from home, too, but we’re still offering lots of the same services – just virtually.

Covid-19 and the job outlook

The pandemic brings with it a new reality, where there is more competition for fewer jobs. Stay active in your career management skills training. Visit CareerHUB for:

  • one-on-one coaching appointments
  • workshops
  • resumé and cover letter review
  • interview practice and more

Employers are still posting jobs on CareerHUB’s job board – check there frequently for new postings and don’t wait to apply!

Read more: The Career Centre helped this Finance student get a job at a major bank.

Career Boost

The Career Boost for post-degree students is running completely online for both current and interested students. If you’re a post-degree student and aren’t already part of the program, you’ll definitely want to check it out.

DC Café

Try an online mentoring and networking platform such as DC Café to make connections remotely.

Co-operative education

The co-op program is continuing to place students into summer work terms. Current co-op students seeking positions are still being placed; students who are interested should sign up for an online info session in May.

The Career Centre can help you prepare with tips for interviewing online and upgrading your LinkedIn profile through workshops and one-one career coaching sessions – book your appointment on CareerHUB. You can also follow the Career Centre on Facebook or Instagram for general tips and advice. 

Read more: Co-op gave this IT student valuable work experience

More to come

The Career Centre is looking at additional online services to help you train and become more competitive in the labour market, and strategies to help you continue building your career from home. Stay tuned for updates.

Get free tutoring online from the Learning Centre

By the Learning Centre

With the relatively sudden transition to distance education, it can feel like you’re now studying and completing you courses all alone. But there are still tutoring services and assignment help available to you through the Douglas College Learning Centre – all from a safe distance.

As Douglas College transitions to online classes, the Learning Centre has moved all of our tutoring online to continue to support you in your learning. 

What is the Learning Centre?

The Learning Centre is the peer tutoring and writing centre for Douglas College. We provide free tutoring and academic support for all Douglas College students. A peer tutor can help with study skills to improve oral presentations, note-taking, study strategies, test preparation and time management. Here are the services available to you online:

  • Submit a Draft to an online tutor: We have added hours to our current online writing tutoring service to review and provide online feedback on drafts of your writing assignments.
  • Chat with a tutor: All of our tutors are available for online appointments. You can check the schedule to make an appointment to chat online
  • New resources: Additional resources are now available on the Learning Centre website to help you transition to online learning, including creating a schedule for online learning  

Who are the peer tutors?

Peer tutors are students taking classes at Douglas or other post-secondary institutions. They are hired based on instructor recommendation, academic performance and more.

Interested in becoming a peer tutor? Here’s how.

How to reach the Learning Centre

Keep fit, stay safe: Advice for finishing the semester strong

Maia Odegaard, Marketing and Communications

Photo courtesy of Sarah Moore

Staying active is important, not only for your physical health, but your mental health too. And with so much uncertainty in all our lives right now, health is more important than ever. As the Winter Semester draws to a close, Dr. Sarah Moore, a Douglas College Therapeutic Recreation instructor, encourages you to stay active, get outside and find enjoyment in leisure during self-isolation.

Time to de-stress

“Physical activity is crucial during times of stress – which may be on overdrive right now. You may be feeling less productive and finding it harder to focus right now, which is completely normal,” says Moore, “Give yourself some grace, try to add some structure and routine to your day and add activity, leisure and the outdoors – it will give you a boost.”

Moore says that adding activity into your daily routine at home while in isolation will help you find some mental clarity and focus as you finish up your final assignments and exams.

“We know that adults need to be active every day to promote good physical and mental health,” Moore says. “Scheduling exercise into your daily regimen is well worth the effort. Studies have demonstrated that physical activity may help decrease feelings of stress and anxiety, improve academic performance, and promote better sleep in college students.”

Stay informed

If you choose to pursue outdoor activity, Moore has a few recommendations: “The first step is to check your local health guidelines before going out, which are changing very rapidly. Recommendations currently include keeping at least two metres (six feet) from others, not using outdoor gym equipment or community centres and washing hands frequently. If you choose to go hiking, don’t take any unnecessary risk and please avoid backcountry trails.”

Do what you love

Whether you are transforming your dining room into a workout studio or stretching on your patio, Moore offers some suggestions for finding an activity you enjoy.

“If you’re permitted to go outside, take a walk around the block or somewhere that isn’t crowded, challenge others to activity using your fitness tracker app, ride your bike or make a circuit training course in your backyard – try to get moving every day,” says Moore. “If you’re inside, try an online yoga or exercise class, join an online dance party and break up your study time with standing and walking – there are lots of creative ways to keep moving.”

Dr. Moore feels that with the world in crisis management, the benefits of physical activity may feel like a secondary priority.

“But fresh air and physical activity can help to reduce the effects of this crisis as you finish off your semester,” she says. ”So, be compassionate with yourself and find a physical activity that you enjoy. Oh, and wash your hands.”

Managing anxiety and stress during COVID-19

By Student Affairs and Services

1. Avoid information overload

Find and use reliable sources of information. Decide how often you will check for updates rather than continually refreshing your feeds. If social media is increasing your anxiety, reduce the amount of time you spend on it; connect with friends and family through other platforms (such as Facetime, Whatsapp, Skype, etc.) and spend more time on activities that will help you de-stress. 

We’ve collected some reliable sources of information here (look for the “additional information” section on the right side). 

2. Practise Coping

Think about how you’ve managed during difficult times in the past and practise coping strategies and habits that could be helpful now. You might also want to try some new ideas; many communities, companies and organizations are offering free resources right now, such as free meditation apps, online fitness classes, videos, courses, virtual chats and more. 

The World Health Organization has some tips.

3. Connect

Social distancing refers to physical distance only. During this time, use phones and online tools to stay connected with people you care about and who care about you. Check in. Share how you are feeling and ask how others are doing. Plan some virtual time to talk about things that aren’t related to COVID-19 too. Many community supports and services are available online or remain open for essential services. 

Check out a list of local resources here.

4. Plan

New information and changes are happening daily and there is a lot that is not within our control right now. Make plans to help you focus on what is within your control. It may be small decisions about how to stay connected with friends or eat healthy, or bigger decisions like how to manage finances or childcare. Making plans can help you feel more in control and remind you of the resources and resilience you have. 

Try a financial plan, a wellness plan, or studying at home plan.

5. Reach out

If your anxiety is starting to impact your ability to sleep, study or interact with others, reaching out for professional support can help. Even a one-time conversation with a mental health professional can help you manage your stress or other emotions. If you’re already connected with mental health support, reach out to them. 

Try the Crisis Text Line or BC Crisis Center or make an appointment with a counsellor at Douglas

COVID-19 information and resources

Douglas College faculty, staff and administration are working hard to provide instructional and support services to our students while following the recommendations of health authorities during the COVID-19 outbreak.

To help you through this difficult time, we’ve gathered some resources to keep you in touch with the services you need. As this is a situation that continues to evolve, please note that some of these resources may be updated or changed periodically, as new information is received.

Student Services links

These are various services offered by the College and how to access their services remotely. From help choosing your courses, to assistance with forming good study habits in isolation, these and many more student support services are still available to you.

Have questions? We have answers. Visit our Frequently Asked Questions page to learn more. Topics include: Can I still study on campus? Will exams be in person? Is Douglas College offering courses online? And many, many more.

Campus events March 9-13

Looking for something to do this week? We’ve got you covered! Here are the events taking place on campus. Have an on-campus event you want listed? Submit it here.

Monday, March 9

Free tax clinic

  • What: The Douglas Commerce and Business Association (DCBA) are running their annual tax clinic to help you file your taxes on time! The clinic runs weekdays until April 30.
  • Where: the Douglas Students’ Union Building, first floor, 88 Seventh St., New Westminster
  • When: 10am-5pm, Monday-Friday
  • Why: If you earn under $35,000 annually ($45,000 household income if you’re married), you can have a trained Accounting students do your taxes for free! Some conditions apply. Visit the DCBA website for details.

Tuesday, March 10

Photo by Madison Inouye on Pexels.com

Health Fair

  • What: Join Student Life for the annual Health Fair! Visit the various booths to learn more about physical, mental, sexual, environmental and emotional health. Lots of health-related prizes to be won!
  • Where: Coquitlam Campus atrium
  • When: 10am-2pm
  • Why: Because there’s more to health than just hitting the gym! Also, did we mention the prizes?

Periods, Politics and Beyond

  • What: Hear from advocates, community organizers and entrepreneurs about advancing menstrual equity in British Columbia.
  • Where: New West Campus concourse
  • When: 5:30-8:30pm
  • Why: Periods are normal. Period. Learn more about the movements to normalize menstruation and make menstrual products freely available. And, if you can, bring a menstrual product donation, which will be distributed to local women’s shelters.
An angry joint, by Otto Kamensek

Shards, Bone Deep artist’s talk

  • What: Bring your questions or simply come to learn more about the current exhibit, Shards, Bone Deep, by Burnaby artist Otto Kamensek, on until April 18.
  • Where: Amelia Douglas Gallery, New West Campus 4th floor north
  • When: 6:30pm
  • Why: This is your change to pick the brain of a professional artist who’s created some fascinating pieces about the experience of living with chronic pain.

DSU Dog Therapy

  • What: Join us in the concourse for some dog therapy! Doggos will be here from BC & Alberta Guide Dogs from 11am-1pm. Come say hi and pet some dogs.
  • Where: New West Campus concourse
  • When: 11am-1pm
  • Why: Because animals are proven to help reduce stress and because dogs are sweet and adorable. Do you really need a reason?

Wednesday, March 11

Photo by Suzy Hazelwood on Pexels.com

Criminology networking event

  • What: Meet employers in your field. Come learn about the work employers do in the criminology sector, ask questions and expend your professional network. Register on CareerHUB.
  • Where: New West Campus lower cafe, room N1200
  • When: 4:30-7pm
  • Why: If you’re pursuing a career in the criminology sector or are curious, this is a great opportunity to learn and ask questions.

Thursday, March 12

Photo by Nathan Cowley on Pexels.com

Health Fair

  • What: Join Student Life for the annual Health Fair! Visit the various booths to learn more about physical, mental, sexual, environmental and emotional health. Lots of health-related prizes to be won!
  • Where: New West Campus concourse
  • When: 10am-2pm
  • Why: Because there’s more to health than just hitting the gym! Also, did we mention the prizes?

Urban Challenges Forum – Inclusive Cities: Welcoming Newcomers

  • What: Join us for the latest Urban Challenges Forum to discuss and learn more about the social integration of immigrants and refugees. Speakers for this event include professors from both Douglas College and SFU, as well as an expert from the field.
  • Where: New West Campus, room N2201
  • When: 6:30-8pm
  • Why: Canada is a country filled with newcomers and has been for many years. How we welcome people who move their lives and families to Canada to create inclusive cities is an important topic. Join the conversation or come to listen and learn.

DSU Dog Therapy

  • What: Join us in the concourse for some dog therapy! Doggos will be here from BC & Alberta Guide Dogs from 11am-1pm. Come say hi and pet some dogs.
  • Where: Coquitlam Campus atrium
  • When: 11am-1pm
  • Why: Because animals are proven to help reduce stress and because dogs are sweet and adorable. Do you really need a reason?

DCBA info session

  • What: There will be a presentation from CPABC professionals about the CPA recruiting process, as well as tips and tricks about networking and applications. Register here.
  • Where: Anvil Office Tower, 9th floor, room 910
  • When: 5-7pm
  • Why: This is a great chance to make friends, learn about chartered professional accountants and snag some free food and drinks.

Friday, March 13

Jekyll opening night

  • What: The latest production from the departments of Theatre and Stagecraft & Event Technology, Jekyll is an explosive, female-driven, re-imagining of the classic novella.
  • Where: Studio Theatre, New West Campus
  • When: March 13-20, various times
  • Why: It’s cheaper than going to the movies (discounted tickets available for students!) and a great way to expose yourself to a bit of culture while supporting your fellow students.

Ongoing Campus Events

Fitness classes

  • What: Free weekly fitness classes for staff and students ranging from power yoga to Zumba
  • Where: Movement Studio, room N1313 (NW) and the Pinetree Community Centre (COQ)
  • When: Various times
  • Why: Get fit, have fun, meet people or try something new!

Check back often for more fun and entertaining campus events!

Hot off the (bench) press! This Douglas grad won gold for Canada

By Carly Whetter, Foundation and Alumni Relations

When Sumeet Sharma first came to Douglas College, he had no idea he’d graduate with both an education and a new outlook on his health.

“Back when I was in high school, I ate a lot of junk food and didn’t take care of myself,” says Sumeet, who graduated with a diploma in Criminology and now works in B.C. corrections. “When I went to Douglas, I took a few Sport Science electives, and the information really resonated with me. I knew if I wanted to live a healthier lifestyle I had to change my habits.”

Read more: Psychiatric nursing student founds women’s self-care community

A new lease on life

Sumeet started going to the gym and eating healthier. He eventually decided to venture into weightlifting.

“I really did my homework,” Sumeet says. “I spoke to other people who lifted and watched YouTube videos so I could do it safely. When I started working out regularly, I realized I had a lot of energy and strength. I wanted to see where I could go.” 

In 2015, Sumeet started powerlifting – a heavyweight strength sport that focuses on three attempts at squat, bench press or deadlift at a maximum weight – with the help of a coach. After finishing second place in his first competition in 2016 and qualifying for the provincial championship, he hasn’t looked back.

“It was such a positive experience, and everyone was amazing – from the other competitors, to the audience and volunteers – and that’s what really encouraged me to keep going,” says Sumeet.

Since 2016, Sumeet has been taking Canada’s powerlifting competitions by storm, specializing in bench press. His successes include the B.C. Provincial Championships and Commonwealth Championships, each trip to the podium qualifying him for the next tier of powerlifting.

At the North American Regional Bench Press Championships in October, Sumeet won gold for Canada in raw, non-equipped bench press, a category where athletes compete without the assistance of an upper torso belt. After bench pressing 160kg at the Canadian Powerlifting Union National Championships this week, Sumeet placed first. His win qualified him for the World Powerlifting Championships in May, in the Czech Republic.

Read more: Douglas grads use therapeutic recreation to help kids with disabilities improve quality of life

Giving back to the community

In the wake of his success, Sumeet has begun sharing his story at schools in the Lower Mainland, covering everything from powerlifting, to health, to careers in corrections.

After his first presentation, he was hooked.

“There were kids with disabilities, depression and anxiety who approached me and asked a lot of questions. Sitting down and talking with them warmed my heart,” Sumeet says. “I hope I made a little bit of difference in their lives.  “Now that I work in corrections, I see a lot of kids who are on the wrong path,” he adds. “So I try to tell them my story and what motivates me to encourage them to pursue their dreams.”

Douglas instructor advocates for free menstrual products in public washrooms

By Marie Del Cid-Luque & Melissa Nilan, Marketing and Communications

This year, all public schools in B.C. will be required to have free dispensers for menstrual products in their washrooms. This change is a direct result of the efforts of Geology Instructor Selina Tribe and other advocates who are helping lead a push for free pads and tampons in washrooms.

Read more: Meet the Douglas instructor who is starting conversations surrounding gender equity and gender neutral washrooms

But Selina isn’t stopping there: Her ultimate goal is to get amendments made to the provincial and national building codes and occupational health and safety codes so menstrual products are required by law to be available in all public washrooms.

“I want to change the law. Current regulations require public washrooms to provide free soap, toilet paper, paper towels, washing water and even urinals for men, but there is no mention of menstrual supplies,” says Selina.

Urinals, as Selina points out, are a convenience, not a medical necessity, and they are paid for with tax dollars. Gender equality would indicate menstrual products, which are medically necessary, should be equally available.

Selina’s concern around availability of menstrual products began when she discovered her daughter’s elementary school did not have dispensers in their washrooms. On top of that, School Board standard practice required students to go to the office and ask an adult for a tampon or a pad.

“The principal said that this is how the school board does things,” says Selina. “So I purchased a coin-free dispenser and got permission to install it in the girls’ washroom.”

Selina says young women face difficulties if they have to go and ask a stranger, let alone a male, for a tampon or pad. Some cultural and religious groups are very reserved about the topic of menstruation, which can make an already embarrassing request doubly so. Some students may choose to go home or send a friend on their behalf instead of approaching an unfamiliar adult with such a personal matter, which means they are either missing class or interrupting their classmates to ask for help.

“Boys never have to do this. We don’t ask them to go to the office to ask for toilet paper, we don’t make them carry their own toilet paper or pay for toilet paper or pay to use the urinal that’s conveniently installed for their speedy use,” says Selina. “It’s unnecessarily infantilizing; you’re treating a young woman like a child, making her go ask an adult for menstrual products.”

With free period products now (or soon to be) available for all students up to Grade 12, Selina wants post-secondary institutions to follow suit, starting with Douglas College. She says there is a lack in menstrual supplies available in the College’s washrooms. And of the few coin-operated dispensers that do exist, about a quarter of them don’t work.

Read more: Inclusivity in cities: yay or nay?

Selina says that with costs ranging from 25 to 50 cents (and up to $2 outside of the College) for a single tampon or pad from a dispenser, female students face an extra financial burden when they are caught unprepared – an added expense to their “already expensive” education.

“What if you need multiple supplies because you have a heavy flow, or a long day on campus? You could be spending several dollars. The alternative is to take time out of your day to go to bargain hunt and buy supplies at a store, which may result in missing classes or exams if you have a tight schedule.”

Selina teamed up with Douglas College Sociology Instructor Lisa Smith to study how the cost of and access to menstrual products can affect students. Together, they founded the Menstrual Research Institute.

“We’re trying to understand how college students are dealing with their period on campus.”

Selina has organized a public event that will feature a group of specialists for a discussion on menstrual equity. It will also include a menstrual product drive, encouraging the public to bring in menstrual products to donate to Period Promise, a campaign by United Way. Periods, Politics & Beyond! takes place on March 10, 5:30-8:30pm, in the concourse at New Westminster Campus.

Campus events March 2–6

Looking for something to do this week? We’ve got you covered! Here are the events taking place on campus. Have an on-campus event you want listed? Submit it here.

Monday, March 2

Career Fair prep workshop

  • What: Attend the Career Fair prep workshop to get ready for this week’s Career Fair.
  • Where: Career Centre
  • When: 3:30-4pm
  • Why: There will be employers ready to accept applications at the Career Fair this week. Find out what to expect before you meet your future employer.

University of Victoria UT info

  • What: Representatives from UVic will be in the concourse ready to answer your questions about transferring to their University.
  • Where: New Westminster Campus concourse
  • When: 12-3pm
  • Why: If you’re curious about transferring to a research university, but don’t want to travel too far from home, find out more about transferring to the University of Victoria.

Tuesday, March 3

30th annual Career Fair

  • What: Meet employers, expand your professional network, and connect with recruiters and hiring managers. The Career Fair is a great place to learn about careers that interest you and explore employment opportunities. This event is open to both current students and alumni.
  • Where: Coquitlam Campus atrium
  • When: 10am-3pm
  • Why: Dress to impress and bring your resumé – we’ve invited over 30 employers looking to hire Douglas students!

Listening to Different Voices in the Process

  • What: Part two in a three-part series titled Changing the Conversation: Reflective Empathy and Public Discourse on Social Housing.
  • Where: The New West Public Library, 716 6th Ave.
  • When: 6:30-8pm
  • Why: This event will feature the perspectives of individuals who have experienced poverty and homelessness, centering the importance of representing marginalized voices in public engagement processes.

Wednesday, March 4

30th annual Career Fair

  • What: Meet employers, expand your professional network, and connect with recruiters and hiring managers. The Career Fair is a great place to learn about careers that interest you and explore employment opportunities. This event is open to both current students and alumni.
  • Where: New Westminster Campus concourse
  • When: 10am-3pm
  • Why: Dress to impress and bring your resumé – we’ve invited over 30 employers looking to hire Douglas students!

Thursday, March 5

An angry joint, by Otto Kamensek

Shards, Bone Deep art exhibit opening reception

  • What: An opening reception for the new sculpture exhibit. Refreshments will be served and a cash bar will be available.
  • Where: The Amelia Douglas Gallery, New West Campus
  • When: 4:30-7:30pm
  • Why: Explore the sculptures of a local artist while snacking on free cheese. The exhibit runs until April 18.

Douglas Commerce and Business Association CFA info session

  • What: The CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) is a branch of finance responsible for stocks, portfolio management and business to business relationships. A rep from the CFA will be speaking about upcoming job opportunities and designations! Register here.
  • Where: Anvil Office Tower 9th floor, room 910
  • When: 5-6:30pm
  • Why: If you’re interested in pursuing a career in this field, now is a great time to ask questions and learn more from a professional.
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30th annual Career Fair

  • What: Meet employers, expand your professional network, and connect with recruiters and hiring managers. The Career Fair is a great place to learn about careers that interest you and explore employment opportunities. This event is open to both current students and alumni.
  • Where: New Westminster Campus concourse
  • When: 10am-3pm
  • Why: Dress to impress and bring your resumé – we’ve invited over 30 employers looking to hire Douglas students!

Friday, March 6

Goodnight Desdemona (Good Morning Juliet) opening night

  • What: The latest production from the departments of Theatre and Stagecraft & Event Technology, this play combines twisted humour with Shakespearean style into a delightful, modern piece.
  • Where: Laura C. Muir Performing Arts Theatre, New West Campus
  • When: March 6-13, various times
  • Why: It’s cheaper than going to the movies (discounted tickets available for students!) and a great way to expose yourself to a bit of culture while supporting your fellow students.

Ongoing Campus Events

Fitness classes

  • What: Free weekly fitness classes for staff and students ranging from power yoga to Zumba
  • Where: Movement Studio, room N1313 (NW) and the Pinetree Community Centre (COQ)
  • When: Various times
  • Why: Get fit, have fun, meet people or try something new!

Check back often for more fun and entertaining campus events!