New West campus devotes a day to renewable energy
By Angela Espinoza, News Editor
On April 3, Douglas College’s New Westminster campus will be hosting a renewable energy event entitled Generating Opportunity from Renewable Energy. The event will include information booths and presenters, followed by an interactive speakers forum. To find out more about “Generating Opportunity,” the Other Press interviewed community connections coordinator Jennifer Henderson on what to expect.
The role of community connections, Henderson explains, is to bridge the gap between the college and the community and facilitate partnerships that have educational benefits for students and the community. Henderson adds that connections are built by “working to facilitate partnerships and linkages between the college and its community,” such as with FortisBC in regards to Generating Opportunity.
“[The event is] sponsored by FortisBC, and during the day we’re going to have a number of groups setting up in the concourse,” says Henderson. “These are organizations that are working in the field of renewable energy, sustainability, [and] conservation.”
Along with FortisBC are other groups, such as Douglas College Building Energy & Resource Management program, the Douglas Students’ Union’s (DSU) Green Team, New West Environmental Partners, BC Hydro, BC Women in Energy Network, just to name a few organizations.
“I think [the event will] be of particular interest to business students and science and tech students, but not limited,” Henderson says. “Presenters will be talking about the economics of alternative energy options, environmental impacts as well as opportunities for students and others.
“The goal of this forum is to try and engage students on the topic of renewable energy,” Henderson adds. “We really… encourage students to come out and chat with these folks, and get an idea [of] the initiatives that they’re involved with. Maybe students are looking for a way to connect with organizations in an area that they’re interested in, volunteer opportunities, potential employment opportunities, and… gain a greater understanding of some of the work… these organizations [do].”
The Speakers Forum includes representatives from several alternate energy companies who will be introduced by Thor Borgford, executive director of research and academic innovation at Douglas College. Brian Chapell, Interim Dean of Science and Technology, will say a few words about [the] Science and Technology program here at the college.
“Jeff MacAulay, [vice president of distributed energy solutions at] Endurance Wind Power, will be talking about the local [wind-turbine] company that they operate out of Surrey,” Henderson says. “Jeff’s going to be followed by Jason Wolfe, [director of market development] at FortisBC, and he’s going to be talking about biogas and… innovative ways that Fortis is using natural gas in British Columbia. Then Norm Connolly and Mark Allison are, [officials] from the city of New Westminster, will be talking about some renewable heating initiatives for the Sapperton area.”
Henderson encourages students and guests to engage in discussion afterwards as a way to learn more about the subject of renewable energy, and share thoughts and information they may have as well. The event will end with a reception outside the Laura C. Muir Theatre.
Henderson adds: “We’re really grateful to FortisBC for sponsoring this event and giving students, employees, and members of the community a chance to come together and have a conversation about renewable energy. We’re [also] doing a draw for an Android tablet at the [forum], so everybody that attends the event has a chance to win!”
If you’re interested in attending this free event, please register through douglascollege.ca/connections. The event will run throughout the day, starting at 11 a.m. in the concourse with information booths, and moving into the speakers forum from 4:30-6:30 p.m. in the lecture theatre in room 2201.