Douglas 360°

Keeping it local

Douglas Music alum Jay Schreiber stands in Steel & Oak brewing room with drum and glass of beer

By Melissa Nilan, Marketing and Communications

Tomorrow, Oct. 25, the Arts at One concert series at Douglas College will present a performance by alumni, including Music Diploma grad Jay Schreiber playing percussion. Though his various interests initially led him away from home, in the past few years Jay has come back to his roots in New Westminster and found a way to balance his two passions – music and beer – as an incoming Board Member for the Arts Council of New Westminster and Account Manager for Steel & Oak Brewing Co.

“I had a rough start at college and failed a couple classes in my first semester. But my instructors were very encouraging and pushed me to keep going,” says Jay. “The final semester of the diploma program was really intense, but it gave me the momentum I needed for UVic, and the transition was pretty easy.”

Jay completed a bachelor’s degree in music performance and composition. Once he’d acquired his degree, he started thinking about his career options. He was – and still is – interested in teaching, but at the time of graduation wasn’t quite ready to commit to more schooling. Instead, he decided to chase a different interest – beer.

He got a job at Granville Island Brewery, where he developed a passion for craft beer. When Steel & Oak Brewing Co., New Westminster’s local craft brewery, announced their opening, the opportunity to join a brew team in the town where he grew up was one he didn’t want to miss, so he reached out to the fledgling Steel & Oak asking for a job. Jay’s initial position at Steel & Oak involved everything from working the tasting room to packaging and delivery. As word spread about the brewery, and as Jay began to develop relationships with customers in the community, he moved permanently into a sales role as account manager, helping to grow the brewery from 10 accounts to over 400.

“The workforce is changing so much. Millennials are encouraged to be as creative as possible and to take the time to learn creative skills, such as music. My music education gave me those essential creative skills and taught me about society, community, infrastructure and socio-economics,” Jay says. “Going to post-secondary put the blocks in place to allow me to see a bigger picture, and that kind of thinking is what’s helped me be successful.”

Despite his heavy involvement in the craft beer industry, he hasn’t given up on his first craft; instead, he’s found a way to balance both passions. He is involved with the music scene as a juror for artist development grant proposals through FACTOR Canada, as well as a member – now board member – of the Arts Council of New Westminster. His connections to both Steel & Oak and the Arts Council have given him the opportunity to be involved with the local festivals, such as Fridays on Front and Music by the River. He’s played at many of the venues in New Westminster with other local musicians, and guest-lectured at Douglas on music composition.

See Jay perform live on Oct. 25 at 1pm at the Laura C. Muir Theatre at the New Westminster Campus. Arts at One is a series of free concerts featuring professional musicians and outstanding Douglas Music students, and is held most Thursdays at 1pm during the Fall and Winter Semesters.


Campus events: Oct. 22-27

Don’t miss out – here’s what’s happening around campus this week!

Monday, Oct. 22

  • Introduction to Open Journals – Oct. 22, 11:30am-12:20pm, New Westminster Campus, Library, Room N2100B. SFU Library’s Head of Digital Publishing will discuss the Open Journal System, the impact it’s having globally and opportunities for grassroots publishing project proposals at Douglas College.
  • Finance Recruit – Oct. 22, 5-7pm, New Westminster Campus, Aboriginal Gathering Place, Room S4650. Recruiters from CIBC will be on campus to hire Douglas College students and alumni. For more information, see here.

Tuesday, Oct. 23

  • B.C. Referendum on Electoral Reform Speaker Event – Oct. 23, 6:30-8pm, New Westminster Campus, Aboriginal Gathering Place, Room S4650.  SFU professor Eline de Rooij will shed light on the motivation behind the 2018 BC Referendum on Electoral Reform, what is at stake and the differences between the two options on the ballot. Details here.
  • Douglas College Open Repository Open House – Oct. 23, 12-1pm, Coquitlam Campus Library, Room B1307. Scholarly Communications Librarian Gretchen will highlight the Douglas College Faculty Scholar pages, as well as the scholarly work collections of both students and faculty. Learn more about the steps involved to have your own work deposited and how you can contribute to the open access movement. Register here.

Thursday, Oct. 25

  • Human Library – Oct. 25, 2:30-4:30pm, New Westminster Campus, Aboriginal Gathering Place. Sport Science student Hannah Sanvido will host a human library focused on diversity and inclusion in sport and physical activity. Various individuals will present their stories with the opportunity to ask questions after their presentation.

Friday, Oct. 26

  • Implementing Opus – Oct. 27, 3:30-4:20pm, New Westminster Campus, Library, Room N2100B. Kwantlen Polytechnic University Scholarly Communications Librarian Karen Meijer Kline explains how Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) Library implemented OPUS – their Open Publishing Suite. Register here.

Anthropology students dig deep in the pursuit of knowledge

Excavation of Lil'wat people's village near Pemperton, photo by archeology instructor Bill Angelbeck

By Melissa Nilan, Marketing and Communications
Photos by: Bill Angelbeck, Adelaide McKenna, Kristal Maxim and Johnny Jones

A group of Douglas College Anthropology students uncovered a love for archeology last summer through a unique field trip that provided valuable evidence to support the oral history of the Lil’wat Nation.

Organized by Douglas Anthropology instructor and archeologist Bill Angelbeck, the hands-on project saw three Douglas students visit the site of an ancient village of the Lil’wat people in the Pemberton and Mount Currie region.

A traditional winter village, the site contains the remnants of at least 13 pithouses and numerous cache pits, which were smaller pits used for storing smoked and dried salmon. The pithouses were round homes built partially underground to reserve heat during the Winter. Because of this, they leave a prominent circular depression eight to 15 metres across that is noticeable to archeologists. The village is estimated to be approximately 2,000 years old, though samples from a base camp in the area indicate the territory was home to the Lil’wat Nation for much longer – more than 5,500 years.

The goal of the project is to determine a time range for when the site was in use and create a 3D topographical map of the entire village.

Old 2D map vs. new 3D map of archeological site

Old 2D map vs. new 3D map of archeological site

Bill and his students – Adelaide McKenna, Kristal Maxim and Greg Waldock – along with Douglas alum-turned-research-assistant Kristin Oliver, worked at the excavation for a week in July. They were joined by a team of Lil’wat Nation community members and other volunteer archeologists and researchers.

“This project provides a platform for an ongoing relationship between Douglas College and the Lil’wat community; it’s an opportunity to conduct research of interest with the collaboration and involvement of the Lil’wat people,” says Bill.

By involving students in the dig, Bill says he wants to give them an opportunity to put lecture into practice and gain hands-on learning experience in excavating a real archeological site.

“It’s something students can add to their resumé if they choose to pursue the discipline as a career,” he says.

Kristal, an Anthropology major, says she wasn’t even interested in archaeology before taking classes with Bill and fellow instructor Laurie Beckwith. Once she did, she realized how inseparable the two disciplines were, and wanted to experience life in the field.

“The excavation itself was physically demanding and meticulous – lots of digging, lifting and careful measurement-taking. I got to work directly with an archeologist, which was invaluable, and despite the slow nature of the process, I found it exhilarating,” she says. “Also, it was an honour to work alongside Lil’wat community members, who graciously welcomed us onto their ancestral lands. I’m grateful to have had the opportunity to be a part of the work Bill is doing; it was a transformative experience that left me feeling inspired and humbled. I can’t wait to do again.”

For Greg, this was his second field dig with Bill. He says that much like the first, it affirmed his career choice.

Each excavation pushes me more into the field of archeology,” he says. “This year was especially interesting as all three members of the Douglas Anthropology department joined, along with another independent archeologist. Working alongside them showed me a lot about the many dynamics of anthropology as a career. My greatest experience, though, was the privilege of working with representatives from the Lil’wat Nation.”

Adelaide was originally enrolled in Environmental Sciences, but after taking Bill’s Intro to Archaeology course as an elective, she was hooked, and changed her major to Anthropology.

The excavation was a fantastic experience in both the archeology and anthropology disciplines,” she says. “The archeological appeal lay in the unfurling of the Lil’wat people’s ancestry in 10-cm increments, stepping piece by piece into history and the science of how that is done; the anthropological aspect aided in understanding what we were seeing in each layer and ensuring we were respectful of both past and present members of the Lil’wat community. Members of the Lil’wat community cleansed and blessed the site, and sang and drummed; we got to witness the living legacy of the Lil’wat Nation. The whole excursion will have a lifelong impact on me.”

This year marks the fourth year of the project.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Psychiatric Nursing students find a cure for toxic work environments

Image shows a stethoscope and pen on a scheduling chart.


This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Douglas College Nursing students are working to turn the tide on toxic work environments for new nurses. Read below to hear from fourth-year Bachelor of Science in Psychiatric Nursing student Sadie Gallant on how an online movement aims to promote a positive and inclusive workplace.

“While researching for a project, we came across the Nurses Support Their Young movement, which challenges the popular notion that nurses “eat their young” or being rough to new nurses to toughen them up or thicken their skin as an initiation to the field.

The movement, which is sweeping social media on an international level with the hashtag #NursesSupportTheirYoung, also features an online pledge that nurses can take, vowing to promote a healthy and empowering work environment.

The goal for the project is to challenge workplace bullying and address the issue of lateral abuse between nursing professionals. The issues of bullying and psychological abuse between nurses is seldom brought to light, however both are quite prevalent in the caring field.

The concept of being tough on new nurses as an initiation to nursing is still being practiced today because we have normalized it – that’s how nurses before us were trained and it continues to get passed down with little reflection on how it is impacting practice.

Evidence-informed practice tells us the opposite. A toxic work environment leads to lower nurse satisfaction and poor patient outcomes. As we are soon to be graduating, the this cohort will enter the field with strong values for civility in the workplace, fostering empowerment, supportiveness and encouragement.”

Breaking down the ballot

By Darin Nesbitt, Instructor, Department of Political Science

IMG_0005[752] British Columbia will soon have a referendum on which voting system will be used for provincial elections. Referendums are a democratic tool for empowerment, making citizens feel informed and consulted. It is both desirable and necessary that British Columbians choose the rules that define how representatives are elected since governments have an inherent conflict of interest doing so. The type of voting system we use is simply too important to be left to representatives to decide.

The B.C. referendum will be held by mail from Oct. 22 to Nov. 30, 2018. Vote PR BC is the official proponent group, while NO BC Proportional Representation Society is the official opponent. Voters will be asked two questions on the ballot:

The referendum result is binding, so if more than half of voters support first-past-the-post on the first question, it will continue to be used for provincial elections. If a majority endorses proportional representation, the proportional system with the most support on the second question will be adopted.

An Angus Reid poll of British Columbians on Sept. 28 suggests 33 percent support proportional representation, 31 percent single-member plurality and 33 percent are undecided. That same poll indicates that of voters who favour proportional representation, 49 percent support mixed-member proportional, 26 percent rural-urban proportional, and 24 percent dual-member proportional.

The large number of undecided voters reveals more public information is needed about the benefits of first-past-the-post versus proportional voting systems. As part of this informational campaign, the Department of Political Science and the Faculty of Humanities and Social Sciences at Douglas College are sponsoring a public talk by Simon Fraser University political scientist Eline de Rooij on the upcoming referendum.

Professor de Rooij will discuss the motivation behind the referendum, what is at stake and the differences between the options on the ballot. She will present some data on the values B.C. citizens want reflected in their electoral system, and on their preferred options. Finally, she will try to debunk some commonly held misconceptions about the different electoral systems, and explore the ways B.C. politics might change should proportional representation be adopted.

The discussion will be held on Oct.23 at 6:30pm in the Aboriginal Gathering Place (room 4650, New Westminster Campus). Students, staff, faculty and the public are all invited to attend this important talk. Coffee and tea will be provided.

Take a course. Skip the tuition.

Image shows woman logging on to computer with a black screen, white coffee mug, white note pad and white ballpoint pen.

By Nicole Chiu, Communications Coordinator, CEIT

Ever wanted to learn a new skill or beef up your resumé – but didn’t have the time or know where to start?

Thanks to, you can (once you log in) start learning new skills in less than 30 seconds. is an online, subscription-based learning platform with thousands of video courses taught by industry experts on everything from software development, to design, to web development, to photography, to business.

And now, it’s free for all Douglas College students.

Enrolling in a course is easy – just click “Play.” Once you’ve chosen a course on the platform, you can access it on your desktop computer, smartphone or tablet 24/7. You can also download your courses if you’re going to be accessing lessons when you don’t have an internet connection.

With, you can learn whatever you want, wherever you want, at a pace you’re comfortable with. When you’re confident in the new skill you’ve learned, show it off by printing off a Certificate of Completion or adding it to your resumé.

Login instructions:

  • Go to
  • Click “Sign In” at the top of the page.
  • Click on “Sign in with your organization portal,” enter “” and hit “Continue.”
  • If you are directed to the Douglas College Centralized Login page, enter your College Network Account (CNA) ID & Password – these are the same credentials you use to log into College computers.
  • If you are directed to the “Welcome to!” page, select “No, I’ve never had an account” to register for an account or “I’ve had an account” if you want to merge your history from a previous account with the Douglas College account.
  • Start exploring!

For tips on getting started, watch this video.

Campus Events: Oct. 15-20

Don’t miss out – here’s what’s happening around campus this week!

Monday, Oct. 15

  • Finance Recruitment – Oct. 15, 5-7pm, New Westminster Campus, Aboriginal Gathering Space, Room S4650. Recruiters from Westminster Savings Credit Union will be at the New Westminster Campus to hire Douglas College students and alumni. Click here for details.
  • University of California, Riverside – Disney International Programs information session – Oct. 15, 10-11am, Room S2801 (New Westminster Campus) and 12:30-1:30pm, Room A2070 (Coquitlam Campus). Learn about the program from a UCR representative. Details on the program here.

Tuesday, Oct. 16

  • Making Your Net Work – Oct. 16, 5pm, New Westminster Campus, Lower Cafe. Connect with alumni and learn about co-op.

Wednesday, Oct. 17

  • Balancing Act: Revitalization Without Gentrification – Oct. 17, 6:30-8pm, New Westminster Campus, Room 2201.  The physical landscape of New Westminster isn’t the only thing changing. With a boom in development, the city is also going through a cultural metamorphosis – one that isn’t welcomed by all. How can a community evolve to appeal to new buyers and businesses without pushing longtime residents out of the very place they call home? For more information, click here.
  • Women in Politics: Intersectional Representation – Hosted by the Douglas College Student’ Union, Oct. 17, 2:30-4pm, Coquitlam Campus.  DSU Women’s Collective Presents Women in Politics: Intersectional Representation as part of the Women’s Coffee Houses.

Let’s not love this place to death

Image shows city graphic on white background in black box with text to the right that says: Balancing Act: Revitalization Without Gentrification

By Shaun Tyakoff, instructor, Douglas College, Humanities and Social Sciences
and Peter Hall, instructor, Urban Studies, Simon Fraser University

As academics who live happily in New Westminster, we constantly marvel at our good fortune to live in a city that seems to offer so much to so many different people. It is a city of neighourhoods, with heritage areas that range from colonial estates to now-valuable worker’s bungalows. It has solid rental stock and much-needed social housing, alongside gleaming towers similar to Vancouver. Its schools are public and private, and social services range from employment agencies to yoga studios. Even its rapidly changing waterfront remains a mix of industrial, residential and commercial, and it includes public spaces, such as parks.

By moving here and gaining access to this community wealth – Peter in 2007, Shaun in 2018 – we hope that we’ve also added something to this rich milieu. But did we instead take something away from anyone? In a recent blog post, our colleague, Dr. Rini Sumartojo, asked the following challenging questions about the transformation of New Westminster: “Is it possible to prevent the displacing effects of gentrification that may accompany redevelopment? … And ultimately, what vision is the city crafting, and for whom?”

Did we price out someone who grew up here? Did we subtly change the mix of restaurants, shops or services in ways that others might not welcome? Are we supporting the valued local institutions – the festivals, libraries, small businesses, recreation facilities, waterfront industry and more? Or are we detracting from them because we don’t understand where they came from, and why some residents love them so dearly?

The train clattering, the noise on the Fraser River from the pile-driving machine on an otherwise quiet Sunday morning – these are all reminders that this is shared space and we are the newcomers. It is so tempting to see homeless people with shopping carts around the Salvation Army and Front Street as problems needing solutions. Even small fixes that would make the area just that little bit nicer for strolling and walking the dog in the early evening might inadvertently make those spaces less friendly to others.

The literature on gentrification is vast, and it is multiplying as we recognize new forms of gentrification, which depart from the original definition of gentrification as ‘the gentry’ – or people of high social class – moving into decaying neighbourhoods of single-family homes. These new forms include master-planned gentrification, artist-led gentrification, studentification, eco-gentrification, retail gentrification and more. We are also seeing progressive alternatives to these new forms of gentrification, such as the “just green enough” strategies identified by academics Winifred Curran and Trina Hamilton. These strategies are designed to meet the environmental clean-up and health concerns of local residents, without leading to their displacement.

Our interim conclusion is that to sustain this diverse and inclusive place, we have to do something that humans seem to find incredibly difficult: We have to recognise our own role in changing the city, and we have to keep a vision of the city beyond ourselves in mind at all times. Let’s not love this place to death.

Join the discussion about how to have urban change without displacement at the next Urban Challenges Forum – Balancing Act: Revitilization Without Gentrification, Oct. 17 at the New Westminster Campus in room 2201, 6:30-8pm.

This is a free event and open to the public.


Campus Events: Oct. 8-12

Don’t miss out – here’s what’s happening around campus this week!

Tuesday, Oct. 9

DSU Pride – Coming Out Day, Oct. 9, 5:30-7:30pm, New Westminster Campus, DSU Room 110. Join the DSU Pride Collective to share stories and support our the community. Click here for more.

Wednesday, Oct. 10

Greece Field School Information Session, Oct. 10, 3:30-4:20pm, Coquitlam Campus, Room A1170. Find out more about the Greece Field School offered by Douglas College and SFU.

Thursday, Oct. 11

Greece Field School Information Session, Oct. 11,4:30-5:20 pm, New Westminster Campus, Room N4213. Find out more about the Greece Field School offered by Douglas College and SFU.


Looking to make bank? Attend a finance recruitment event.

white text on blue background with image of computer and hands. text says on-campus recruiting hiring Douglas students and alumni.

Looking to launch a career in the financial industry? Douglas College will be hosting a number of Canadian financial institutions that are looking to hire current students and alumni through a series of recruitment events.

The events will be held Oct. 1, 15, 22 and 29. For details, see here.

Bachelor of Business Administration – Financial Services student Indu Deivendran attended last year’s event, featuring representatives from TD Canada Trust. Within a few months, he was officially hired as a customer service representative.

We caught up with Indu to ask him about his experience.

Why drew you to the recruitment event?

I’ve always wanted to work at TD Bank, but never succeeded in getting a job. I received emails and saw postings on campus about the event, and felt like attending the recruitment fair would heighten my chances at landing a position and it sure did.

 What did you take away from the event?

I learned what TD Bank was all about – including the culture, how they approach work and their customers, how involved they are with the community, and also how they really do care about their employees and the growth of their employees. This event also helped prepare me for a potential face-to-face interview, as the employees who were there asked us several interview questions to help us for the future.

How do you think it helped you land your position?

Following the event, I completed my online application with a Douglas College-specific link. I received an email from an HR representative with TD Bank asking me to complete an assessment online. I received a phone interview, and then after that an invite for a face-to-face interview within the branch. The initial event was on January 31, 2018 and I was officially hired on March 7, 2018.

My ultimate career goal is still undecided but I feel like the next position above mine – a financial service representative – will help me determine what aspect of banking I most enjoy and want to pursue as a long-term career. As of right now, my career goal is to be a wealth advisor or a risk manager. There’s a long pathway to get to the top, but I am keen on growing within TD Canada Trust and building and figuring out my interests.

What would you say to other students considering attending a recruitment event?

I would recommend other students attend these recruitment events as they really do help if you want a career in banking. If you have a rusty resumé, you aren’t sure what questions are going to be asked or how to answer interview questions, or what to expect in general, this event will answer all your questions and even help get you a job, which can be the beginning to your future career!

By Sarah Rossi, Marketing and Communications