Selkirk College held an open house on Wednesday, Nov. 4, welcoming the public the learn more about the programs it offers.
Faculty and current students were on hand to talk about their programs, and in some cases to give live demonstrations of some of their skills.
Daphne Bingley and Parabhsimram Gill are both first year students in the professional cook training program at the Tenth St. campus in Nelson, and demonstrated their crepe-making skills. Attendees got the chance to see the two students fire up some flames and to taste their creations.
“It’s a great program. I’m blown away by what I’ve learned already this year,” said Bingley.
Students from the program run the cafeteria at the Tenth St. campus.
“There was an article in an Alberta newspaper, and they said that the best place to eat in BC is the cafeteria of Nelson Selkirk College,” said Gill.
Nearby, esthetics students from the Silver King campus were offering free manicures.
Jordan Pollard and Hailey O’Handley have both been enrolled in the eight month program since September, and were kept busy shaping, buffing and painting nails.
Pollard is from Haida Gwai and plans to return to her community to work in her mom’s hair salon when she’s done. She’s been wanting to learn esthetics for some time.
“I love it. I’ve been waiting five years for this so I’m pretty excited I’m finally here,” she said.
Elizabeth Lund, coordinator for the rural pre-medicine program said the purpose of the open house is “to expose the students in the area and maybe their parents to hopefully just all the variety of programs that we have at the college available, not just trades programming and technical programming, but also university studies.”
Lund said the college needs to work against stereotypes to let people know they offer more than what are thought of as typical college courses.
First year rural pre-med students Hannah Bauman and Adib Malas certainly know that Selkirk offers more than trades programs, and they both think it’s great that a small community like Castlegar offers the opportunity for pre-med studies.
“I love it. I mean it’s a lot of work, but it’s very rewarding and being able to study medicine and being able to do it at home too and like in a small community, it’s great,” said Bauman.
“I think it’s a wonderful program. They’re allowing people in such a small community to get into something that they like and this is a great opportunity for a lot of people around here to explore that thing that they like, which is medicine. I came all the way across the world basically to come here and I think it’s a very wonderful program,” said Malas, who came from Syria.
The open house was also a chance to highlight some of Selkirk’s extracurricular activities.
The Selkirk Saints invited attendees to take slap shots at a mini net to win tickets to one of their upcoming games, and encouraged potential students to try out for the team.
“We have open tryouts every year, and hockey’s a sport that everyone should play,” said Steven Pantazopoulos, a second year Saints player.
The open house was well attended, and there were a number of younger children in the crowd, getting a head start on checking out what Selkirk has to offer.