In a few months’ time, UFV will begin a very exciting move into the new facilities at the Canada Education Park in Chilliwack.
As we prepare for this move, Provost and VP Academic Eric Davis has been working with the Deans on a review of where we offer our programs.
As President Mark Evered noted in an earlier announcement:
“As we try to match student demand with available resources, we must also consider the distribution of course and program offerings among our campuses and centres. To the extent that our resources permit, we should continue to provide entry-level programming for students as close to their homes in the Valley as possible. Beyond that, however, we are limited in our ability to duplicate offerings. Our challenge is to build a network of regionally differentiated campuses and centres that takes into account student demand, availability of regional resources, community needs and opportunities, and program synergies.”
Health Sciences and Kinesiology
The new building on the Chilliwack campus at the Canada Education Park will have a special focus on health and wellness, and will be home to the Faculty of Health Sciences. This Faculty currently includes programs in nursing (BSN and LPN), dental assisting and dental hygiene, and health care assistant, as well as the most recent addition to the faculty — kinesiology and physical education, which moved from the Faculty of Science.
In order to take advantage of the potential for interdepartmental partnerships and cooperation with the Faculty of Health Sciences, UFV will begin to transition a significant portion of Kinesiology and Physical Education programming and faculty to the new Chilliwack campus at CEP when it opens this spring.
As part of this transition, UFV will offer a special grouping of first-year courses in kinesiology and related subjects to 36 students in Chilliwack this fall. Students who are accepted into this group will be guaranteed spots in a full load of classes, giving them a significant advantage over other first-year students. This will not be a traditional ‘lock-step’ cohort but rather an integrated grouping of courses that enables the students to gain access to key first-year courses.
By being part of this group, the students will be able to take the prerequisites for most second-year kinesiology courses.
UFV’s state-of-the-art Human Performance Centre research facility will also move to the Chilliwack campus at CEP.
As the campus develops and other kinesiology labs are outfitted, UFV will begin to offer more kinesiology programming at the second-, third-, and fourth-year levels in Chilliwack, but will also continue to offer kinesiology classes in Abbotsford and online.
“Any changes we make will be phased in, and we will continue to be conscious and mindful of the fact that we have students at different stages of the degree program who need access to courses,” notes Kinesiology program head Chris Bertram. “Our kinesiology faculty members are very much in support of being part of the Faculty of Health Sciences, and being in geographical proximity to the other programs in the faculty will lend itself to collaboration and synergies between the programs. It will allow us to start conversations about what we could be doing in addition to what we are currently doing in the allied health care field.”
Bertram is also excited about partnership possibilities with the RCMP, whose regional training centre is also on the CEP site, and about the opportunities the new campus and its location near the Chilliwack River Valley offers for campus recreation and outdoor education such as courses in adventure tourism.
In tandem with the transition of a significant part of the Kinesiology and Physical Education program to Chilliwack, the Teacher Education program (TEP) will move to Abbotsford, in a swap of classroom and lab space. UFV’s Teacher Education program is a one-year post-baccalaureate certificate program that prepares students to teach at the elementary and middle school level. A secondary-school cohort is also in the planning stages.
Moving the Teacher Education program to Abbotsford will bring the program closer to the other programs in the Faculty of Professional Studies, thus allowing for better collaboration with programs such as Adult Education, Early Childhood Education, and Library and Information Technology.
“We have been having discussions over the past two years to establish a School of Educational Studies that will bring all these programs together under one umbrella,” notes Dean of Professional Studies Rosetta Khalideen.
Locating TEP on the Abbotsford campus will also provide more accessibility to students from Maple Ridge and places west of Abbotsford.
Although Teacher Education is moving to Abbotsford, Khalideen notes that UFV intends to maintain the very strong relationships the university has built with the Chilliwack and Fraser-Cascade School Districts (as with all the other school districts in the Fraser Valley).
UFV’s long-range plan is to maintain theatre courses and productions in Chilliwack, as well as expand the program to Abbotsford, if resources can be secured to do so. This will enable students in complementary programs such as English and Visual Arts to more easily take theatre courses.
The new building at the Canada Education Park in Chilliwack houses a 100-seat studio theatre, classrooms and faculty offices for the Theatre program.