Denton replaces Scott McAlpine, becoming eighth president
By Angela Espinoza, News Editor
Douglas College’s newest president is Kathy Denton, previously vice president of the college. The announcement came on January 5 via press release.
Denton took over as interim president after Scott McAlpine suddenly left the position last June after nearly five years as president. Denton has been with Douglas College for 20 years, having taken on numerous roles, and holds a PhD in psychology.
“[Denton’s] been a professor here, she’s been a chair of a department, a dean, and as well as the vice president, so she knows the college extraordinarily well,” Dave Taylor, director of marketing and communications, said last June.
Although only a week has passed since Denton’s inauguration, she went on to explain some of the longterm goals for Douglas College.
“So far, I would say that a lot of what we’re doing is going to stay exactly the way it is because we’ve got many things about the college that are working great,” said Denton. “But we want to develop more pathways into degree programs, expanding what we call the Certificate in Academic foundations. The Foundation program enables students to explore their interests and then go into one of our degree programs.”
Denton added that improvements to “learner pathways,” such as the Foundation program, have provided more flexibility for students to earn certificates and diplomas of their interest prior to committing to degrees at Douglas.
“It really creates a very welcoming place for new students,” said Denton. “Putting a lot more support for those first-year students is something that we see value in and helping students find that program that’s right for them.”
Denton added a potential plan for the college included “sample courses,” allowing students to see what specific program courses can offer prior to committing to the full program, such as Douglas’s nursing and business administration programs.
More degrees are planned for Douglas, such as criminology and social work degrees, but Denton stated confirmation for future degrees takes time based on ministry of education needs and approval.
Returning student opportunities are also being expanded with one-year post-degree programs in applied areas for those wishing to change their career paths.
As for who will be taking over for Denton’s previous position as vice president, Denton said that the official “search” hasn’t begun yet. Executive director of research and academic administration Thor Borgford will continue holding the role of interim vice president, which he took on last June, until further notice.