~ Abbotsford, BC~
Representatives from Columbia Bible College and University of the Fraser Valley met yesterday morning to sign a two-year block transfer agreement that will allow graduates of Columbia’s new Diploma of General Studies to move directly into Year 3 of UFV’s versatile Bachelor of General Studies.
Dr. Bryan Born, President of Columbia Bible College; Dr. Mark Evered, President of UFV; Dr. Ron Penner, past President of Columbia Bible College
Yesterday’s ceremony was the culmination of over two years of collaborative efforts between the two institutions. What started as an idea sparked by informal talks between Dr. Mark Evered and Dr. Ron Penner later became a full-fledged academic project spearheaded by Dr. Alisa Webb, College of Arts Associate Dean of Students for UFV, Dr. Doug Berg, Columbia’s Academic Dean, and Ken Esau, Director of Biblical Studies at Columbia. It was this team who put together a curriculum that would satisfy the academic requirements of both colleges, and Dr. Webb, in particular, was instrumental in working with many levels of UFV’s administration to move the process forward.
Dr. Alisa Webb, College of the Arts, Associate Dean of Students for UFV; Dr. Eric Davis, Provost and Vice-President, Academic for UFV, and Dr. Doug Berg, Academic Dean for Columbia Bible College
Motivating both UFV and Columbia was a strong desire to provide students with more flexibility in planning their education, especially in the area of credit transfers. The fruit of that desire – the two-year block transfer agreement – is being held up as an example of the kind of partnerships that can be achieved.
An upcoming strategic management enrollment conference in Ontario, led by Jody Gordon, UFV’s VP – Students, will showcase the agreement as one of many such partnerships now developing between BC’s colleges and universities.
“There’s interest in it,” commented Dr. Webb, who incorporated the collaborative process between Columbia and UFV into a recent academic article. “I’ve had a paper accepted at the Pan Canadian Consortium of Articulation and Transfer, on synergies between private and public institutions and different ways of looking at how to assess for partnership as well. That’s exciting.”
UFV’s president, Dr. Mark Evered, agreed, commenting on the level of confidence and trust that developed between the two institutions. “It has been a real pleasure working with such talented and caring colleagues. The beneficiaries of our partnership will be our students, both at CBC and UFV. We have significantly increased their options through partnership.”
Dr. Doug Berg, Academic Dean of Columbia Bible College, concluded the ceremony by expressing deep appreciation to UFV for recognizing the quality of Columbia’s education, for their generosity in sharing resources with a smaller college, and for their tireless work in forging the new agreement.
Celebration following the signing, including Jody Gordon, Eric Davis, Mark Evered, Bryan Born, Alisa Webb, Doug Berg, and Ken Esau.
“Students win,” responded Jody Gordon, summing up the spirit around the table. “That’s what it’s all about.”
Columbia Bible College is now accepting applications for the new Diploma in General Studies.
Learn more about UFV’s Bachelor of General Studies.
[Photos courtesy of Stephanie Jantzen]