Twelve former College of the Rockies students who are continuing their education at British Columbia universities are benefiting from Ike Barber Transfer Scholarships of $5,000 each, including Roberts Creek native Taylor Whittall, a first-year Bachelor of Education student.
Whittall, an Avalanche volleyball player, is enrolled in the University of Victoria Bachelor of Education program, held at College of the Rockies’ Cranbrook campus. After completing her first year of College of the Rockies University Studies courses, she transferred her credits to UVic and became a UVic student while physically remaining at the College.
“There are many financial and educational benefits for students starting their university education at College of the Rockies,” said Pat Bowron, vice president, partnership and advancement. “College of the Rockies transfer students have the highest completion rate of transfer students from any BC institution and tend to have higher grade point averages (GPAs). Through highly-personalized instruction and dedicated support services, College of the Rockies students are primed to succeed in the next stage of their academic journey. This Ike Barber Transfer Scholarship is perhaps a reflection of that, and it will support our valued alumni in their ongoing academic aspirations.”
“Receiving this scholarship was extremely exciting for me,” Whittall said. “Due to my class schedule, I am not able to travel on the bus with my Avalanche teammates. In order to remain a part of the team while they’re on the road, I need to fly to away games. This scholarship will help immensely with supporting my volleyball travels as well as my schooling.”
The Ike Barber Transfer Scholarship program has the goal of increasing educational opportunities for students from public colleges across BC. Funds are generated from the returns on a $15 million endowment established by the province in 2006 and is named after philanthropist Irving K. Barber who had a long history of supporting public education and research projects in British Columbia before his death in 2012.
The scholarship is open to students who, after completing two years of study at an eligible institution are transferring their credits to another post-secondary institution in BC to complete their degree. Applicants must demonstrate academic merit as well as significant involvement in their community and/or school.
Whittell has always taken an active role in her community. Prior to coming to College of the Rockies she was a student and a coach at Elphinstone Secondary in Gibsons. She often filled the role of assistant coach for school and club volleyball teams and was proud to be a part of the incredible athletics volunteer community on the Sunshine Coast.
“I am also thrilled to say that this year I will be coming back home to complete my first practicum at West Sechelt Elementary School,” Whittell added.
After earning her B.Ed., Whittall hopes to teach abroad before returning to school to complete her Master’s degree, hopefully while working on the Sunshine Coast.