Selkirk College and UBC Renew Commitment to Rural Education

By Contributor
May 4th, 2009

Selkirk College and the University of British Columbia (UBC) have renewed their commitment to meeting the educational needs of students and families in rural areas.

Dr. Rob Tierney, Dean of the Faculty of Education at UBC, and Marilyn Luscombe, President of Selkirk College, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) (April 29th) in Castlegar, securing the continuation of UBC’s West Kootenay Teacher Education Program (WKTEP) at the college.

“We are engaged in a range of efforts that are directed at the development of rural education,” explained Dr. Tierney. “By working in partnership with educators in the West Kootenay and Boundary regions, we are able to provide the best possible program for students in the area.”

An afternoon meeting was held between Selkirk, UBC and the four school district superintendents in the West Kootenay Boundary Region for the purposes of outlining the terms of the MOU and discussing the renewal of a Regional WKTEP Consortium Advisory Committee.

Dr. Tierney and Ms. Luscombe indicated that they share a conceptual commitment to explore further joint educational offerings that will serve learners in rural British Columbia. They acknowledged the potential for academic and learning synergies and share a common view with regards to building upon existing academic expertise while respecting institutional autonomy.     

Both parties plan to work together to encourage the integration of WKTEP students as part of Selkirk College’s student community and also to enhance the marketing efforts for the program.

WKTEP focuses on preparing teachers for K – 12 classrooms in rural and small school settings in recognition that rural communities offer exciting educational challenges for teachers. Graduates are found teaching in BC schools, across Canada, and overseas. Others become educational leaders in public schools, alternative schools, or informal education settings such as museums and galleries. For more information on WKTEP, visit www.teach.educ.ubc.ca/bachelor/wktep.


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