Our campus has had a long-standing tradition and commitment to excellence in sport since its inception in 2005. In fact, UBC Okanagan competed for the first time as a Canada West and USPORTS member in volleyball and basketball in 2011, followed two years later by soccer. That transition from the college to the university sport system represented the largest commitment and investment in post-secondary sport at UBCO.
Our campus population today has grown to nearly 12,000 students, nearly tripling in size over the past 20 years. But our devotion to student sport remains. A successful student referendum earlier this month garnered support from 71 per cent of the vote and the UBCSUO will contribute $7M towards a new $21M recreation building—doubling the available gym space on campus.
With over ten years in Canada West and USPORT, and the recent investment into sport infrastructure, it is an excellent time for an external review committee to assess Athletics and Recreation at UBCO to ensure that it continues to meet the needs of our students, athletes and of the broader campus community.
External reviews are an important and regular part of maintaining the academic integrity and quality of a university’s programs. UBCO takes its responsibilities very seriously in that regard. Our students, faculty and staff work hard to deliver an outstanding campus experience and the external review process ensures we can deliver on that promise for years to come.
In this case, the review committee has been asked to consider how we can build on our experiences and successes and how to best position the department over the next five years.
The review committee will consist of three individuals with a wealth of experience in the field of university athletics and recreation. They include:
- Clint Hamilton (lead), former president of CIS and Canada West and athletic director at the University of Victoria and University of New Brunswick.
- Sandy Slavin, former athletic director at the University of Lethbridge.
- Christine Stapleton, director of Sport and Recreation Services at Western University and former director of athletics at the University of Calgary.
The committee will be interviewing the department’s strategic partners across campus as well as reviewing relevant documentation. This will continue throughout December. Those who wish to share their comments or thoughts are encouraged to reach out to firstname.lastname@example.org until December 20, 2023.
As an institution of higher learning, it is in our DNA to draw lessons from our experiences and adapt our practices to better serve our community. Our student athletes, faculty, coaches and staff have seen incredible success over the years and we are absolutely committed to seeing the athletics and recreation program thrive for many more to come.
I am deeply grateful for the time and effort of our external reviewers and look forward to sharing their report next spring.
Associate Vice-President, Students