Kaela’s story

UBC grad finds plenty of opportunity in Okanagan's booming technology industry.

Kaela’s story
CategoryAlumni
NameKaela Loffler
FromRegina, Saskatchewan, Canada
ProgramBiology, Management

A convert to the technology industry. Open-minded advocate of volunteerism. Excited about the Okanagan’s future.

What opportunities do UBC grads have in Kelowna’s tech industry?

The technology industry in Kelowna has been gaining momentum for the last couple of years, and when I discovered my own interest in tech and started looking into the different tech companies in Kelowna, I was really blown away by the sheer number of opportunities that are available here. There are a large number of tech entrepreneurs and start-ups springing up all over the Valley in a variety of different industries, like education, media, gaming, and even high tech. Many of the entrepreneurs and tech professionals have come out of UBC programs and decided to start their companies and careers in Kelowna due to the number of talented people here and the great quality of life.

How has Accelerate Okanagan helped the Kelowna tech industry?

So many great start ups in Kelowna have gone through Accelerate Okanagan‘s programs and it’s great to be able to develop relationships with their very interesting and imaginative founders—we are all rooting for each other’s success. I work for a great company called Procera Networks, and we are very active in the local and tech communities. Procera, headquartered in the Silicon Valley, acquired a successful start-up from Kelowna (Vineyard Networks) and they have maintained the great team and office here. It’s a real Kelowna tech start-up success story! Procera sponsors Gennext and Digital Okanagan, and we often have fundraisers or events for the local food bank, the Terry Fox Run, and the Arthritis Society, to name a few. Everyone is willing to go above and beyond to develop the tech industry here—something that is very promising for those coming out of UBCO and interested in starting a career in the field.

How did you end up working in the technology industry?

The Master of Business Management degree really opened my eyes to the career opportunities that I never even knew were a possibility for me—I would have never ended up in technology, or even have been able to picture myself there, had I not entered this program.

What do you like about living in the Okanagan?

Kelowna is a great location for an active lifestyle. As a Biology undergrad with an interest in healthcare and personal health, I thought that ski patrolling would be a great opportunity to take on a different role within the community and kind of expand my skill set. Volunteerism is very important in career development, but it is also a great way to network and make a difference. There are so many different outdoor activities that you can enjoy here that you will never be bored! Whether it is mountain biking, hiking, or one of the many water sports, there really is something for everyone all year round.

What would you say to students considering UBC Okanagan?

UBC Okanagan provides you with a great education and excellent networking and relationship building opportunities. The school has a variety of options, but it also has small enough class sizes that you can really develop relationships with your peers and professors that are lasting and meaningful. Developing those relationships helped me to find an Honours Biology project that interested me, a great mentor (Svan Lembke), and discover the career that I am now in.

Latest Stories

Previous
Zahra F at Stanford

UBC International Scholar to Stanford Medical School

An aspiring Epidemiologist, Zahra advocates for first-generation and low-income students
alumni

UBC International Scholar to Stanford Medical School

“[The International Scholar] awards are so impactful in changing the realities of students who come from backgrounds in which higher education is not the traditional pathway to success.” - Zahra F., BSc in Global Resource Systems

From Brazil to the Okanagan

How a volleyball player from Brazil found her place at UBCO
student

From Brazil to the Okanagan

“I feel the instructors at UBC Okanagan are actual mentors if you give them the opportunity to help you and give you advice based on their own experiences.” – Hellen L., Civil Engineering

Experiential learning in Applied Animal Biology

By choosing a degree program that prioritizes hands-on learning Afnan is prepared to take on any challenge
alumni

Experiential learning in Applied Animal Biology

“In my third year I was a field research assistant in northern BC. We lived in camper vans, caught sapsuckers, took DNA samples and released them back into the wild. It was an incredible experience.” Afnan A., Applied Animal Biology

From Applied Science to engineer at Tesla

How UBC gave Andrew the skills he needed to become an engineer
alumni

From Applied Science to engineer at Tesla

"UBC allowed me to have conversations with a large variety of people from different backgrounds and with widely differing perspectives. I made sure to engage in these conversations as often as I could." - Andrew K., Bachelor of Applied Science

Building a strong foundation

As a UBC Commerce student from Slovakia, Andrej is confident about his future
student

Building a strong foundation

"The high quality of education, strong support network, and a myriad of opportunities to get involved in at UBC makes me very confident about my future." - Andrej G., Bachelor of Commerce

A passion for international justice

By getting involved in human rights projects Danilo made UBC is own experience
alumni

A passion for international justice

"UBC’s motto is Tuum Est, which means: It’s Yours, and It’s Up to You. Throughout my time at UBC I have strived to become the best version of myself, to grow, and to make university my own experience." – Danilo A-M., Honours Political Science with International Relations

A home away from his Indonesian home

How Jason has found success within UBC Okanagan’s diverse community
student

A home away from his Indonesian home

"Being able to share ideas in both a classroom and community setting allows me to gain new perspectives." - Jason Samuel Suwito, BSc in Data Science

Finding community at UBC Vancouver

How the Media Studies program helped Jayden discover her place
student

Finding community at UBC Vancouver

"The Media Studies community is a tight-knit group of friends, and I’m exposed to a lot of extremely creative people with an abundance of intriguing ideas and knowledge to share." - Jayden E., Bachelor of Media Studies
next