Why did you choose UBC?
I always considered UBC as an option because of its great reputation and location in beautiful BC. After visiting the Okanagan campus, my choice was easy. I was attracted to its smaller size and rural location and I thought it would be an easier transition for me coming from super-rural Manitoba.
What are you studying — and why?
I am studying visual arts as part of the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies. I am a visual person that likes to learn things hands-on. UBCO offers a very studio-based visual arts program.
How would you describe UBC to someone thinking about applying here?
I would describe UBCO as a great place to develop into yourself. The interdisciplinary nature of the programs opens your mind to a multitude of concepts and I have seen many students pursue a different path than the one they started. I began my degree in psychology, for example. The cohort is small enough that you get to know peers from multiple faculties and the school is very accommodating to those who decide change their direction or try a class outside of their field.
What’s been your best day on campus so far?
My best days on campus are usually nights. Those of us in the Visual Arts program get 24-hour access to our building and often work all night together painting and finishing projects. My favourite night was this past April, when many fellow students and I stayed up all night to install our fourth-year exhibition. Every April the Fine Arts building is cleared out and turned into a gallery space for graduating students. In the Fine Arts faculty, you really get close to your peers and you spend a lot of time working beside — and learning from — each other.
How was your transition to university life?
Pretty good actually. I lived in residence my first year and UBC provided many events and activities to help new students develop a community with their peers. I had a group of friends quite quickly and soon felt very comfortable on campus.
Most memorable moment at UBC?
My painting class with former faculty member Sean Serfas. He taught me what it meant to be a real painter, from building my own stretchers in the wood shop, stretching canvas, layering paint, and developing the work ethic needed to get better. Occasionally he would get us to pack up all of our painting gear and climb the mountain behind the school. We would sit out there for the day telling stories and painting the landscape.
What do you hope to achieve in the future?
I majored in both New Media and Painting and I plan to continue with both. Currently I am working as a web/graphic designer while painting in the evenings and submitting my work to shows. Eventually I would like to apply for grad school.
Would you recommend UBC to others considering coming here?
I would. UBC is a very inspiring and supportive environment. The faculty are talented and passionate about their subject matter, which is contagious. It is also a beautiful place to live and study. I made a good choice.
Favourite place to hang out?
Either the painting studios or the trails behind campus.
What do you do for fun?
Hike, drink coffee, and mix colours.
What makes you smile?
Pastel colours and seeing people working together to make art.