Douglas 360°

Stay safe while you’re on campus

First-ad case on white backdrop. Stock image.

By Nancy Constable, Director, Safety, Security and Risk Management

Student safety on campus is a top priority at Douglas College. Read below to find out who to call and where to go in the event of an emergency.

1. Know your Campus Security numbers and save them in your phone.
Coquitlam: 604 777 6254
New Westminster: 604 527 5405
Anvil Centre: 604 777 6666
NOTE: Call Campus Security 24/7 in the event of an emergency. In an urgent or life threatening situation, call 911 first, then please also call Campus Security to notify them of the emergency on campus.

2. Know your closest emergency exits and assembly areas.
Evacuation maps are posted in classrooms and near stairwells and elevators. Familiarize yourself with more than one way in/out of the building.

3. Sign up for emergency notifications.
Subscribe to DC Alerts to receive important notifications regarding emergencies on campus and advisories of campus closures (for example, due to heavy snowfall).

4. Know the College’s emergency procedures.
Review all emergency procedures, including the College’s lockdown procedure.

5. Speak up when you see something unsafe.
Report all safety hazards and incidents to Campus Security, including concerning behaviours.

6. Use the College’s Safer Walk service.
You can receive a security escort to the local SkyTrain station or to your vehicle in a campus parking lot/parkade by requesting a Safer Walk from Security.

7. If you need first aid, go to or call Campus Security.

8. If you need someone to talk to, contact the College’s confidential counselling services.
Counsellors can assist with managing personal challenges, career planning and figuring out how to ease the pressure of college life.
Coquitlam: 604 777 6185
New Westminster: 604 527 5486

Temple Grandin talks animal behaviour at Douglas

By Anasuya Kesavan, Marketing and Communications

At 71, she is a bundle of energy flying between cities and post-secondary campuses, giving talks on animal behaviour and autism. In between, she is reading business and science magazines and answering questions. Meet Dr. Temple Grandin – author, professor, scientist and biologist, who smirks at the idea of retirement and is now dedicating her time to motivating veterinary students to think and be open to new ideas in their field.

The Douglas College community was fortunate to hear Dr. Grandin’s words of wisdom on Jan 10, 2019, as she held discussions with our Veterinary Technology students and spoke to a packed audience at the New Westminster Campus. Her humour, practicality, dedication to animal care and sheer energy had the audience hanging on to her every word.

Grandin’s achievements did not happen by chance. A high-functioning autistic child, she had to break through several personal and social barriers to succeed. Revealing her secret as “perseverance,” she says, “As a young girl, I had a lot of things going on at the same time. At high school I learned how to work. I was running a horse farm, and learning how to work hard was important.”

She began a career in the cattle industry in the 1970s, an area that was, at that time, dominated by men. But Grandin was not deterred. “The thing I have learned is to get very good at what I do,” she says. “I had a very strong motivation to prove that I was not stupid, and that I could do it.”

Grandin’s mantra for success is three-fold: Get really good at what you do, write about your work, and find doors to opportunity and go through them.

Dr. Temple Grandin giving a talk on animal behaviour at the
Laura C. Muir Performing Arts Theatre, Douglas College.

“A lot of students do not see that door of opportunity,” she says. “I wrote in the cattle press and scientific press. Lot of people don’t recognize when there is a door. It’s only open for a few seconds, and you have got to walk through it.”

Grandin strongly believes that theoretical knowledge has to be supplemented with the practical. Doing internships and finding opportunities to try out different careers is her second piece of advice. “Find out what you like and also find out what you hate,” she says. Emphasizing the importance of understanding what is going on in the field, she advises the younger generation to travel and keep grounded in reality.

Owing a major part of her success to being a visual thinker, she believes the world needs both visual thinkers and mathematicians. She encourages parents to motivate autistic children with images of where they can work and what they can be doing. “The person who can do math cannot do what the visual thinkers can do,” she says. “They complement each other. Your iPhone is easy to use because the interface is by an artist and the inside is designed by engineer.

Douglas College first year Veterinary Technology students with #TempleGrandin

“Show the 10-year old with behaviour problems the inside of the Google data centre to find out where he could be working.” Similarily, Grandin encouraged Veterinary Technology students to expose themselves to livestock. “Animal behaviour class can only explain half of it,” she said. Animals, like autistic people, understand images and it’s important to find out what makes an animal calm and what makes it agitated.

From the behavior of cows to dogs, horses, birds and rabbits, to their treatment at the vets, airports, public places and houses, Grandin has a piece of practical advice for everyone. The Veterinary Technology students at Douglas College were immensely pleased with this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity that opened their minds to opportunities beyond their classroom.

The IT crowd: Everything you need to know about CEIT services

As a Douglas College student, you have a variety of services available to you, including those provided by the Centre for Educational and Information Technology (CEIT).

Here’s what you need to know to start your semester with confidence:

1. Student ID card: You’ll need yours to borrow library materials and access our campuses outside regular hours. Also, when taking transit, you must carry your student ID card with your U-Pass BC on your Compass Card. If you don’t provide both when asked, you might get a fine and your Compass Card could be confiscated. Check when and where to get your student ID.

2. College Network Access (CNA) and Blackboard: To log in to the College computers, Wi-Fi, Blackboard, and other network-related services, use your CNA username (nine-digit student number) and password (for first access, your password will be generated randomly and emailed to you after you’re registered for at least one course). For the Wi-Fi, connect to the Douglas College Internal network.
NOTE: for security, change your randomly generated password when you first log in.

Blackboard Community provides one-stop access to online courses and academic resources. Find out what else it offers on the Student Resources section. To access Blackboard from, hover over the Login drop-down menu at the top and select Blackboard-Community. Use your CNA credentials to log in.

3. CNA Password Portal: Register your personal email address (not your College email address) or phone number at If you ever forget your CNA password and use the Portal to reset and create a new password.

4. Microsoft Office 365: This Canadian cloud service gives all registered students free access to Word, Excel, PowerPoint, one terabyte of OneDrive storage and a new College email address. Use this email address and your CNA password to log in to Office 365. The Office 365 address is sent to the personal email you provided to Douglas College. Check more information and the FAQs for details.

5. myAccount: This portal provides essential information such as course registration, waitlists, tuition fees and more. To log in, use your 9-digit student number and PIN – your default pin is your birthdate (DDMMYY).
NOTE: You’ll be prompted to change this PIN upon first login. For security reasons, please create a PIN with 15-20 characters.

6. CEIT Support: Our Service Desk provides assistance with password/PIN resets, login issues and wireless connectivity, as well as technical support.

7. Printing: Every semester you may print up to 300 pages for free from any of the following areas: libraries, computer labs or the New West glassed-in area in the concourse. For extra copies, use the PayPrint stations at both campus libraries, room N6212 (New Westminster Campus) and room A2030 (Coquitlam Campus). Your quota is reset to 300 pages at the beginning of each semester. Consider the environment and print only what’s necessary.

Why you should get involved in College

By Elliott Slinn, Communications Coordinator, Student Life

The college experience is about so much more than classes, books and grades. It’s about discovering yourself through a series of meaningful interactions, experiences and memories that’ll last a lifetime.

At Student Life we want to help you curate your experience through our four pillars: Get Oriented, Get Involved, Get Healthy and Get Experience. We offer events, programming and practical work experience, all to help you grow and learn as an individual in the Douglas College environment. Believe it or not, students who are active participants in campus culture are more likely to do better academically; when you’re invested, you care more.

Here’s a breakdown of what Student Life is all about:

Get Oriented: There are a few key steps that all successful students take to get settled at Douglas College, like New Student Orientation, The EDGE (which stands for Engage, Discover, Grow, Express, and is the annual, three-day frosh week event) and First Year Fridays. Our orientation events will help you build a solid foundation and leave you feeling prepared for the challenges ahead.

Get Involved: There’s a wide variety of activities and events happening all the time at Douglas College. Student Life aims to get you involved, either as a participant or part of a team hosting a program. This is an excellent way to meet new people, make new friends and have fun doing it!

Get Healthy: We all know the phrase “health is wealth,” but this is more than just a slogan for us. We believe maintaining a healthy diet, exercising and taking good care of your mental health will help set you up for academic success. Your student activity fee includes a membership to the fitness centers at the New Westminster and Coquitlam campuses. Fitness classes, including yoga, Pilates, Zumba, core strength and boot camps are also offered.

Get Experience: If you want to graduate with a resumé that grabs attention and gets you hired, Student Life can help provide you with tangible work experience and practical skills; we want to see you succeed! By being a student leader, program assistant, orientation planner or graphic artist, you can develop your skills working in a team and take on leadership roles – all of which will help you stand out to your future employers.

Don’t be the last to know what’s happening at Douglas College: Follow Student Life on Instagram, Facebook and the Douglas 360 blog.

Get help from fellow students at the Learning Centre

By David Guedes, Learning Centre Supervisor

Is philosophy giving you fits? Is APA absolutely agonizing? Is Excel making you enraged? If so, you may want to check out the Douglas College Learning Centre for free help with your courses.

The Learning Centre uses a student-led approach to learning. Our peer tutors are students, just like you, taking classes at Douglas or other post-secondary institutions. They can help you evaluate and improve your writing, coursework and study skills. With locations at both the Coquitlam and New Westminster campuses, the Learning Centre provides free academic support services for all Douglas College students.

Get help with:

  • Writing for all Douglas College courses.
  • Course content for select courses.
  • Study skills to improve oral presentations, note-taking, study strategies, test preparation and time management.  
  • English language tutoring for help with written and spoken English. Tutoring for Douglas College classes is provided by TESL-trained professional tutors.  

Students can book peer tutoring sessions online at or by visiting the Learning Centre.

The Learning Centre also offers online tutoring, where you can send your written assignments for help from an online tutor. It is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. 
New Westminster, Room 2105, in the Library
Coquitlam, Room A1040 beside the Atrium

Find support through Douglas College’s counselling services

By Angela Katsamakis, Counselling Coordinator & International Counsellor

College can be a stressful and confusing time for many students. Often, this has an impact on school performance. It may be helpful to talk to someone who can assist you with managing personal challenges and easing the pressure of college life.

Counsellors, located at both New Westminster and Coquitlam campuses, are trained to provide short-term personal counselling, career counselling and support with academic petitions or appeals. You may want to visit counselling services for free support if you are having trouble in areas such as:

  • Managing personal stress
  • Relationship problems
  • Grief
  • Family related concerns
  • Anxiety or depression
  • Adjusting to college life
  • Setting career goals
  • Making career choices
  • Understanding your rights and responsibilities according to College policy

How do you make an appointment?

Simply phone or visit in-person to make a 50-minute appointment. If you are in crisis, urgent appointments are available most afternoons.

Locations and hours

New Westminster Campus, room S4600
604 527 5486
TTY: 604 527 5450
Open Monday to Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm

Coquitlam Campus, room A1050
604 777 6185
TTY: 604 777 6179
Open Monday to Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm

You aren’t alone – Counselling Services is here for you. More information is available on the Douglas College website.

Top 4 reasons to be a Student Ambassador

By Maia Odegaard, Marketing and Communications 

Do you love Douglas College? Want to help prospective students decide if the College is right for them? Join the Student Ambassadors! Working with the Future Students’ Office, Student Ambassadors play a key role in year-round College events on and off campus, including information sessions, career and education fairs and high school visits. Apply by Jan. 13 to begin sharing your lived experience with other students, all while benefiting from the perks of the program.

Here are our top reasons for becoming a Student Ambassador:

1. Community

While it’s not impossible to make friends in class, once the semester is over, it can be hard to keep in touch. The best way to make lasting connections and potential friends in college is by getting involved.

Joining the Student Ambassadors allows you to meet other students from different programs who share a similar mindset – they want to get involved with the campus community, share their love of Douglas College, all while make lifelong connections and great memories along the way.

2. Professional development

You no doubt came to college for a number of reasons – learning new skills, experiencing college life, making friends – but building an impressive resumé is likely near the top of the list. A degree or diploma from Douglas College is a great addition to your resumé, but in a competitive job market, you need more than an education to stand out from the crowd.

Joining the Student Ambassadors shows future employers that you’re keen to go the extra mile, volunteering your time to benefit your college community while developing important skills, such as event management, professional communication and teamwork.

Former Student Ambassadors have found jobs thanks to the connections they made during their time with the program – a definite advantage when it comes to your professional development.

3. Rewards

As a Student Ambassador, you’ll enjoy some awesome perks for the hours you put in. And the longer you’re a part of the program, the more rewards you’ll receive. After your initial trial period, you’ll be treated to a Student Ambassador polo shirt, name tag and your very own locker. If you continue for another semester, you’ll be granted priority registration for courses, and you’ll get a cool water bottle. Stay with the program for an entire year, and you’ll receive a sweet Student Ambassador hoodie. All this in addition to the invaluable connections and experience you’ll gain from joining the Student Ambassadors.

4. The Douglas College experience

Each Student Ambassador receives training to ensure they can direct new students to relevant resources and services offered at Douglas College. Not only does this allow you to do your job well, it may be information you weren’t aware of yourself.

It’s easy to fall into a pattern of just attending your classes and focusing on your assignments. This is an important part of college – the part that ensures you’ll receive a diploma or degree – but many students find it a lonely and unfulfilling way to experience college life. Joining the Student Ambassadors is an opportunity to make friends, give back to your community and feel a sense of pride in your college. Having fun and learning new skills as a Student Ambassador can enrich your college experience and ultimately make your time at Douglas College the best it can be. Apply today!

Go global with your education

By Sarah Rossi, Marketing and Communications

When Riley Baynton first saw that Douglas College was hosting an information session for its Disney International Programs, it caught his attention right away.

The unique partnership with the University of California, Riverside (UCR) allows Douglas College students to earn a Certificate in Hospitality and Tourism Management or a Certificate in Management from UCR, while gaining valuable hands-on experience at Disney World in Florida.

Once he read up about it, Baynton knew he wanted to sign up. Read about his experience, firsthand, below.

What was it that initially drew you to this program?

Riley Baynton - Global Engagement - UCR3

Riley Baynton at Disneyland in Florida.

“What drew my attention to this program was the ability to travel to – and experience – Florida and work at Disney World. When I was about five years old, my family travelled to Disneyland and I will always remember the excitement I had. I especially remember how all the workers were really polite and nice. It made my experience unforgettable. When I saw this opportunity from Douglas to work for Disney World, it meant everything to me to be a part of the magic to provide other families and guests that same experience I once had. I always look for adventure and this was an opportunity I could not turn down.”

What was your favourite part of the program?

“The people. During the first two weeks at UCR, I met people from all over the world, including France, Spain, the United Kingdom and Japan. Learning about different cultures was cool. Down in Florida, my co-workers, roommates and the guests were great and always happy. I have made friendships that will last a lifetime.”

What was something new you learned while abroad?

“How to effectively communicate with guests. Since Disney is one of the biggest entertainment companies in the world, they taught me how to provide great guest service. One big personal skill I learned is organizing my time well. With working full time and studying, time management is a must.”

How do you think this will help you with your future jobs?

“I gained some key communication skills that I know will be useful in my future jobs. If I ever move away from home (Vancouver) to another city, being a part of this program showed me how I can adapt to a new environment.”

What would you tell someone who is thinking about entering the program?

“I would tell them this is an amazing experience. I had my doubts at first if I should go or not – six months is a long time to be away but trust me, it’s worth it. You will make friends from around the world, enjoy the Disney parks and develop a lot of new skills. If you have the opportunity, take it!”

For more information on Douglas College’s International Opportunities, see here.

Fall 2018: a semester in photos

From a campus extension and amazing theatre productions, to hosting the CCAA Women’s Soccer Nationals and cozying up to Old St. Nick, Fall was a busy semester at Douglas College. As we head into the holiday season, we reflect on this semester – in photos.


‘Tis the season for frightful weather

Picture of legs and feet in brown boots, standing in snow

With winter weather on the horizon, it’s time to start preparing for more treacherous road and sidewalk conditions, and using extra caution when commuting to and from campuses.

Campus closures

Douglas College continuously monitors the weather and makes decisions about operations of its campuses with the safety of students and employees as our primary consideration.

If weather takes a turn for the worse and a campus closure seems likely, Douglas will inform the College community prior to 6:30am for morning closures and 2:30pm for afternoon closures.

The College website homepage is the best source for up-to-date information. Information is also available from the College information line (toll-free 1 877 679 0823) and DC Alerts. DC Alerts subscribers get rapid campus closure updates sent via text, email and/or phone messages. Sign up for DC Alerts now.

What happens if the College is open but I’m unable to travel due to severe weather conditions in my area?

Douglas College serves a large and diverse geographic area. We make decisions based on the impacts to the largest portion of our population, but we understand this will never include every student or employee. It is the responsibility of each individual to make decisions about what is safe for them. If this means you are unable to travel to class, please notify your instructor as soon as possible.

Instructors have been requested to consider weather conditions when making decisions about attendance during winter weather. Ultimately, these decisions are the sole discretion of individual instructors. 

Sidewalk conditions

The College takes all precautions to ensure our campuses are safe. We understand sidewalks can be treacherous when icy, so this year we’ve taken the step of meeting with our business neighbours to request they follow city bylaws (New West Bylaw and Coquitlam Bylaw) and clear the sidewalks outside their businesses in a timely fashion. If you feel sidewalk conditions are unsafe, please contact the appropriate city:

Winter weather preparedness tips

  • Allow extra time to get to campus in consideration of travel conditions (vehicle, bus, SkyTrain, etc.)
    • Translink posts service outages and updates on their website.
  • Wear appropriate footwear and winter clothing, especially if regularly moving between the New Westminster Campus and the Anvil Office Tower.
  • If driving, use caution and ensure you have winter tires that are in good condition.
  • If walking, use caution and consider driving conditions, while watching for vehicles (even at crosswalks).