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                                             SELKIRK COLLEGE

Selkirk Overview

Feel at home in our classrooms and communities, nestled within the welcoming West Kootenay and Boundary regions. Since 1966, we’ve been providing innovative and unique learning opportunities both within and outside our classes, through our 60+ nationally recognized programs, ensuring our graduates are career (and life) ready.

Serving over 11,000 students annually in 8 locations across the West Kootenays

Over 125 international students, from more than 20 countries, study in 15+ program areas, and over 100 aboriginal learners study in more than 40 program areas. Selkirk also offers transfer courses that enable students to transfer to a university to pursue their degree. The college is located in a world-class outdoor setting that provides incredible recreational opportunities for students in both their studies and leisure time.

Providing well-rounded academic and life experiences

Selkirk is a leader in environmental sustainability and has implemented initiatives that improve campus life, surrounding communities and the health of the environment. The college is also home to the Regional Innovation Chair in Rural Economic Development, the Selkirk College Geospatial Research Centre, the Rural Development Institute (in partnership with Columbia Basin Trust) and the MIR Centre for Peace. Selkirk College delivers exemplary teaching and outstanding learning experiences.

BC's oldest Community College

Selkirk is not only BC’s oldest regional college but the first created through a community referendum. The very first day of classes at Selkirk College were held in temporary buildings, abandoned bunkhouses to be exact, at Celgar, a local pulp and paper mill. It was September 1966 but the college’s roots trace back to 1964 – 1965, during which discussions and forums finally resulted in a regional vote in favour of funding BC's first regional college.

Many of our trades programs have been in continuous operation on the present day Silver King Campus of Selkirk College since 1964 when the facility was then called the British Columbia Vocational School. It was the first such institute in BC and it officially became part of Selkirk College in 1975.

Sustainability Initiatives

Our students, staff and faculty are working hard to make Selkirk a greener place. By demonstrating and developing sustainability best practices and helping coordinate all the great ways individuals contribute to sustainability every day, significant, positive change will happen!

Environmental Benchmark Study on Selkirk College

Our Environmental Sustainability Committee at Selkirk College in 2008 struck a project to  create an action plan to reduce it's overall environmental impact. As a result, an Environmental Impact Baseline Report was created, to benchmark Selkirk College against a set of indicators of environmental sustainability such as energy consumption, emissions, effluent, and waste, water consumption, biodiversity and land management, products and services, and environmental compliance.


Creating a Culture of Sustainability through education

Selkirk College operates under Policy 4300: Environmental Sustainability, which outlines how the college will implement practices to promote a healthy environment and create a culture of sustainability through education. Further, Selkirk follows a Land Use Plan which guides future land development on the Castlegar and Silver King (Nelson) campuses, while protecting important land use characteristics.


We're Changing How We Print

Printer Cartridges: Kerry Young, Selkirk Clerk, is working with staff members on the Trail Campus who are saving used printer cartridges and photocopier toner cartridges for pickup and recycling by the local Salvation Army. Funds go to the Sanctuary Youth Centre to provide food and after school care for kids.
Paper Recycling: Ray Brock, Transitional Training Instructor, has had his class managing the paper recycling for over 10 years on the Silver King campus. They class visits collection points, including offices, to ensure that recycle bins are emptied regularly.

We're Improving Our Infrastructure

Double Glaze Windows: The Facilities Department has replaced single-glazed windows on the Castlegar and Silver King campuses with high efficiency double-glazed windows.
Residence Recycling Bins: Students Alex Cole and Fraser Hayes purchased 100 recycling bins for the campus residences with funds provided by the Selkirk College Student Union.
Recycling Stations: The Heritage Credit Union recently donated two Recycling Stations to the Castlegar Campus of Selkirk College. The recycling stations, made of recycled plastic, will create awareness of environmental sustainability initiatives undertaken by the college and encourage staff, students and the community to recycle their cans, glass, plastics and mixed paper. The Kootenay Society for Community Living has had the contract to manage recycling at the college for the past twelve years and is responsible for managing the units.

We're Encouraging Responsible Food Practices

Coffee Cups: To encourage reduce, reuse and recycle the Castlegar campus cafeteria provides a 20¢ discount on beverages if you bring a Selkirk College travel mug (or a ceramic mug), and a 10¢ discount for other travel mugs. If you’ve forgotten your mug their disposable cups are 99% post-consumer paper and 100% biodegradable.
Cooking Oil: Tim Thurston, Environment and Geomatics instructor, is working with Castlegar kitchen staff to collect used cooking oil for conversion to biodiesel. This will divert approximately 20 litres of oil per week from the landfill.

We're Working Towards Becoming a Fair Trade Campus

Chair of the Mir Centre for Peace & School of University Arts and Sciences Peace Studies instructor, Randy Janzen, is working with two students on a process to certify Selkirk College as a designated Fair Trade Campus. 

Fair Trade is an alternative approach to conventional trading methods. Based on a partnership between producers and consumers.
Fair Trade works with disadvantaged farmers in the developing world to provide opportunities to help improve their lives through empowerment, fair wages, and safe working conditions.
By choosing to purchase Fair Trade products, you are choosing a powerful way to help reduce poverty.
It gives producers more resources, knowledge, and access to global markets
Communities with Fair Trade producers have access to funds that they can use to improve their health, education, or infrastructure.
How does Fair Trade do all this? Products are certified by a third-party to ensure that the standards of Fair Trade are met.
You will know that a product is Fair Trade because it has a specific logo.

We're Helping to Change the Culture of Substance Use

"Changing the Culture of Substance Use" is a two-year project within Healthy Minds/Healthy Campuses that will develop local capacity at BC's campuses and a provincial support infrastructure towards changing the culture of substance use.
Robin Higgins and Leslie Comrie submitted a proposal to have Selkirk College be one of the campuses involved in this project and we were chosen along with 5 other campuses in BC.
Robin and Leslie recently attended a retreat in Abbotsford with representatives from the other campuses where they began to map out the next two years.


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