Recognized as one of BC's Top Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Mar 8, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why British Columbia Institute of Technology / BCIT was selected as one of BC's Top Employers (2017):
- BCIT encourages employees to continue their education and keep their skills sharp with full tuition subsidies for courses both related and indirectly related to their current positions
- BCIT helps employees balance work and their personal lives with a variety of alternative working options including flexible work hours, telecommuting and an earned days-off program
- BCIT employees can take advantage of a variety of onsite amenities, including free access to a fitness facility (with state-of-the-art exercise equipment, sauna, racquetball courts and a climbing wall), a quiet room for meditation and religious observance, an Aboriginal sweat lodge, and a cafeteria with healthy and special diet menus
There's a sense of belonging at BCIT
As a shop foreman at an automotive dealership for many years, Mubasher Faruki worked closely with young apprentices and technicians-in-training. So when he was approached by the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) to be an instructor, Faruki saw it as an ideal opportunity to harness his practical experience to help shape the next generation of automotive technicians. Twelve years later, as Associate Dean of BCIT's Automotive Department, Faruki is doing just that.
Faruki's story is a common one at BCIT, a polytechnic institute that works closely with industry to equip career-ready graduates in a wide range of fields, including applied and natural sciences, business and media, computing and IT, trades, and health sciences. For students, BCIT offers practical, hands-on studies that deliver an immediate benefit: 91 per cent of employed degree graduates are working in their fields of study. For faculty and staff, BCIT provides an opportunity to make a positive contribution while also growing and thriving as individuals and professionals.
"One thing I quickly realized is that the sky's the limit in terms of where you want to go professionally and personally," says Faruki. "This is such a diverse organization and there is a deep pool of endless possibilities of where you can take your career. At the same time, you are able to see your students excel and contribute back to your industry. That's incredibly gratifying."
BCIT encourages employees to continue their education and keep their skills sharp with tuition subsidies for courses both related and unrelated to their current positions. It also allows employees to balance their work and personal lives through initiatives such as flexible work hours, telecommuting and an earned days-off program.
Ana Lopez, BCIT's Vice President of Human Resources and People Development, joined the school last July after many years as a human resources leader in the transportation sector. "It was a unique opportunity to bring my experience to another field," says Lopez. "In many workplaces, it's about 'did you just deliver on time?' Here it's about shaping future careers and leaders. That gives people a real sense of belonging and passion around what they do."
Central to BCIT's success is its strong connection to industry, which has direct input into curriculum through advisory committees. "We rely on our industry partners to keep us informed about current and future needs," says Lopez. "We are also continuously looking for employees with industry-specific expertise to ensure we remain cutting-edge leaders in our field."
Recognized as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2016)
By Kristina Leung and Richard Yerema, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Feb 23, 2016)
Here are some of the reasons why British Columbia Institute of Technology / BCIT was selected as one of Canada's Best Diversity Employers (2016):
- BCIT maintains a diversity and inclusivity committee comprised of representatives from all employee groups -- the committee works to create awareness and education on diversity in partnership with the BCIT Student Association, "Qmunity", the college's disability resource centre and the Aboriginal services department
- BCIT offers training on a variety of topics including queer competency, mental health and cultural awareness -- and presents Inclusivity Awards of up to $1,000 to employees who champion diversity and inclusion within the workplace
- BCIT established a Women's Leadership Council to provide female employees with opportunities for networking and mentoring, and recently appointed its first female President -- the organization also manages a women in trades program to provide skills training to unemployed or disadvantaged women
"Thinking back to my post-secondary days when l graduated in 84' and it was the last thing on my mind to wear my traditional regalia for fear of being made fun of. This was a time when l was the only one graduating from my community with a grade 12 diploma and receiving a college diploma. At BCIT, I get to welcome our graduates in their regalia. It's extraordinary." Joanne S., Iy'imelwit, Coordinator for Aboriginal Services