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RBC Foundation continues support for UFV peer mentoring program

The RBC Arts Peer Mentoring program will continue for the 2014/15 academic year at the University of the Fraser Valley, thanks to another generous donation of $20,000 from the RBC Foundation, for a total donation to date of $40,000.

RBC Cheque 2014 Arts Peer mentorStarted in 2012 as a pilot project stemming from support provided by the RBC Foundation, the RBC Arts Peer Mentoring program was renewed as a result of the new grant and positive response from students, both mentors, and those who are mentored (mentees). Identified by UFV senior academic leaders as an important initiative, the RBC Arts Peer Mentoring program benefits both first-year and upper-level students. 

The program pairs senior students with newcomers for support, guidance, and friendship during the critical transition phase into university.  Mentors meet with their assigned student on a weekly basis to help  them with  academic skills such as time management, study skills  and note-taking, and to inform them of campus services such as counselling, academic advising, Student Life, and the Writing and Math Centres; they also encourage the mentees to  make good program choices and explore career options.  

Pilot project results affirm that the model of peer support is needed, valuable, and produces results. 

Success indicators for the mentees include:

  • Reduced isolation- Greater confidence and skill related to studying
  • Greater ability to problem-solve and seek support when needed
  • Improvedo Grade point averageso Time management and project planning skillso
  • Volunteerism and involvement with university.

Mentors benefit too — they engage in a paraprofessional role where they gain the opportunity to increase organizational and leadership skills.  
“This semester has been tough, but having my peer mentor helping me through it was wonderful. The transition from high school to university is always a little bumpy,” said first-year student Holly W. “I am so thankful to the RBC Arts Peer Mentor program and for the generous donations of the RBC Foundation.”

“Being a mentee has shown me how the simple acts of organization and talking things through can make an enormous difference in my school work and plans for the future,” said Francesca M.

“UFV gratefully acknowledges the RBC Foundation and thanks them for their continued support of the RBC Arts Peer Mentor program for 2014/15,”said Hilary Beard, director of university advancement. “RBC Foundation continues to make a significant difference in the lives of students, and also should be recognized as a key supporter of education throughout the university, and into the Fraser Valley community.”


Community Development class choose to help students - By students, for students!

SOWK 380, Reimer, Bingert, MarkOn behalf of the Community Development class, Nicole Stevenson, Kelly Ridder, Heather Crach and Amy Mark presented a cheque for more than $1,500 for the UFV Student Emergency fund  to Lorraine Bingert of Financial Aid and Awards and Sheila Reimer, University Advancement. 





Funds were raised through a Burger & Beer night hosted at the Phoenix Lounge on March 22nd.  Students organized the fun event which included guessing games, a raffle and a “toonie-toss.”

SOWK 380








Dr. Dhami, a man of "firsts," establishes the first endowment by an Indo-Canadian family 

March 27, 2014

Dr Dhami, Dr Evered and Ms. Beard

As a man of “firsts”, Dr. Malwinder Dhami is no stranger to taking the lead role in his philanthropic giving. Dr. Dhami is a keen supporter of the University of the Fraser Valley and recently established his first endowment, the Dhami Family Endowment Leadership Award. This is the first UFV endowment established by an Indo-Canadian family, and it is from a family that is well known within the local community for its high regard for education and love of UFV.

Dr. Dhami is an ideal friend for UFV: his warmth and friendly nature is particularly noted at the public sessions of the Board meetings, where he is a frequent attendee. Dr. Dhami’s original ideas and eagerness to make a positive impact in students’ lives is a shining star of encouragement and support for UFV’s University Advancement team.

“The University of the Fraser Valley is deeply grateful for our long-time friendship and support from Dr. Dhami,” says Hilary Beard, director of university advancement. “From his generous financial support in early 2003 and active participation in development of the Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies, to his latest family endowment, we at UFV acknowledge Dr. Dhami’s unwavering support and generosity with deep appreciation and thanksgiving for one of our finest neighbours and friends.  Dr. Dhami is sharing his story to encourage others to also give…so that each person can share in changing lives and building the community’s future here at UFV.”

Dr Dhami, Dr. Evered and Dental Assisting studentsFrom Dr. Dhami’s perspective, giving is natural and simply a way of life. He has found satisfaction in helping others, and is well known in UFV’s Dental Assistant program for extending a helping hand through his openness to students in assisting them gain valuable hours in his professional dental practice in Abbotsford. In a recent visit to UFV’s Dental Clinic, Dr. Dhami selflessly agreed to give a day of his time to help screen children, so they are permitted to be examined by the students.

 “I am always so warmly greeted by UFV President Mark Evered — often it is a hug — and by all the staff and faculty at the university. Whenever I attend Board meetings, I am greeted like a friend,” he says.  In addition to extending an on-going helping hand to individual students, Dr. Dhami was influential in the establishment of the Centre for Indo Canadian Studies at UFV. He warmly reminisces on bringing the first donation to the university’s then-president, Skip Bassford:  this gift was to kick off the fundraising to establish the Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies and was a catalyst for others in the community to stand behind the Center’s vision with their financial support.  Dr. Dhami has served on the CICS Advisory Council since its inception.

Dr. Dhami was also the first donor to the development of the Peace and Conflict Studies program at the university in September 2012. And part of Dr. Dhami’s recent giving includes a symbol to represent ongoing giving: his endowment is $25,001 that extra dollar is the first step to continuous growth.

“I know that Dr. Dhami’s generosity, his personal investment in the future of others, is driven by his gratitude to those who helped him”, added UFV President Dr. Mark Evered. “I am deeply and personally inspired by his visionary leadership, volunteer service, financial support and especially his friendship.”

 Dhami family establishes first endowment from an Indo-Canadian family.


The UFV Horticulture program thrives with recent donation from PoCo Garden Club

June 17, 2013

PoCo Garden Club donation

Gifting $950 toward the Horticulture Equipment Endowment is Shirley Keski-Hynilla on behalf of the PoCo Garden Club. 

On June 17, Christopher Duffin and Brent Bailey (pictured on left) did an “informative and engaging” presentation to the gardening club, which is located in Port Coquitlam. Brent shared about our new BC School of Agriculture facility and the equipment that the club helped us purchase for use by UFV students in the Horticulture program. 

The non-profit organized is committed to benefitting their local community and designate one third of the proceeds from their annual spring plant sale to support the UFV Horticulture program. 

The club was founded in 1990, and has about 100 members that meet monthly to share and learn about gardening.  You can learn more about the PoCo Garden Club here



Chetna International delivers on promise to support awareness about the Dalit population 

June 17, 2013

Chetna International

Hand delivering a cheque for $2,000 towards the UFV initiated Dalit Poetics and Politics conference is Mr. Surinder Ranga ji, president of Chetna International.  

On April 12th, Dr. Prabhjot Parmar, faculty in the Department of English and an Associate of the Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies brought together social activists, historians, scholars, community members and students to discuss Dalit Poetics and Politics: a conference of academics, creative writers and activists.

The keynote speaker was Arun Mukherjee of York University. The panelists as well as other speakers included: Dr. Nandi Bhatia of Western University, Dr. Rajneesh Dhawan of UFV, Dr. Prabhjot Parmar of UFV, Dr. Garry Fehr of UFV, Professor Sadhu Binning, Ajmer Rode, Paramjeet Kainth, Jai Birdi and Gurpreet Singh.

Learn more about this conference and other areas of study at UFV's Centre for Indo-Canadian Studies. 

UFV celebrates Jean Scott’s 101st birthday, scholarship

By Darren McDonald on April 22, 2013

Jean Scott & Dr. Mark EveredFriends, fans and family gathered at Lynnwood Retirement Residence April 19, 2013, to celebrate Jean Scott’s 101st birthday while fundraising almost $5,000 for UFV’s Dr. Jean Scott Endowment Scholarship.

Scott joyously met each of the 50+ guests with genuine appreciation, offering handshakes, hugs, and her famous kisses to all who filed into Lynnwood’s banquet room (see the photo gallery here)

A leading advocate for education and a passionate learner, Scott was celebrated by MC and UFV theatre student Rebekah Brisco; the inspirational grandmother/granddaughter duo of Bobbi Spark and Nikki Dionne; and Amanda Preston, the 2012 recipient of the Dr. Jean Scott Endowment Scholarship.

Christopher Duffin, Advancement Officer, Community Initiatives and Awards for the University Advancement and Alumni Engagement Office, provided a humorous look at a fictitious course being considered for next semester entitled Jean 101 that outlined, among other things, Scott’s lifetime of hard work and advocacy recognized with a person’s medal from the federal government and an honorary doctorate from UFV, as well as the fact she’s a hopeless romantic who was married three times, had numerous other loves and liaisons, and is still a flirt.

UFV President Mark Evered spoke to Scott’s unwavering support of women’s rights and her relentless passion for providing education for all, calling her “a true inspiration”.

Scott then took the microphone, entertaining the crowd with an engaging speech intersecting her own tales with the biblical stories of David. The woman of the hour then played a lively set on the piano, singing along with her son, Spencer.