Red River College’s downtown dormitory is home to more than just students this summer. The rooftop patio at Paterson GlobalFoods Institute is also the new seasonal home of our very own buzz-worthy urban beehives.
A fixture at PGI since early July, the three hives each house between 40,000 and 50,000 European honeybees, a docile but still industrious breed expected to produce up to 75 kilograms of honey by this fall.
Until that time, they’re being tended to by Beeproject Apiaries’ Chris Kirouac (shown above) and Lindsay Nikkel, a husband-and-wife team of former nurses who describe their sticky venture as a DIY hobby gone wild, and with whom RRC’s Sustainability department struck a honey of a partnership earlier this year.
The resulting initiative is a perfect match with the College’s mandate on sustainable practices, offering environmental benefits (via the pollination of nearby greenspaces) and the opportunity to add another locally sourced food product to RRC’s menu — one that arrives at the table in very nearly its natural state.
“Honey is one of those amazing foods that’s better the less refined it is,” says Kirouac, noting the harvested honey is bottled in a CFIA-inspected facility, but not pasteurized or refined in any way. “The quality and safety of honey — right when you crack the hive and stick your finger in there — means it’s good to go, just the way it is.”
Once extracted, the honey will be used by students in PGI’s culinary labs (including in the kitchen of restaurant Jane’s), and by Food Services departments at all three Winnipeg campuses. It’ll also be available for purchase at College events throughout the year, including a new farmer’s market planned for the Notre Dame Campus this fall. Read More →
In the northwest corner of Red River College’s Notre Dame Campus, there’s a peaceful retreat students and instructors can explore when they need a break from the hustle and bustle of classes. A loop of trees, small boulders and benches encloses another circle of coloured bricks, the quarters of which align with the four points of a compass.
The College’s Medicine Wheel Garden isn’t just a quiet pavilion, however. The Indigenous symbol at its heart emphasizes different concepts for different people — the four seasons, the journey from birth to old age, and the meeting of different nations. It’s a familiar image for young people who may have moved hundreds of miles from their home communities in order to attend College.
“The medicine wheel is certainly an important symbol to Indigenous people of North America,” says Dr. Mark Aquash, RRC’s Dean of Indigenous Education, who uses the medicine wheel as a tool for teaching students from any cultural perspective. “The Indigenous worldview is an important perspective today, as we are now feeling the impact of disrespecting Mother Earth and damaging our fragile ecosystems. Understanding the Indigenous worldview is learning about respect.”
In keeping with RRC’s strategic priority to advance Indigenous achievement over the next five years — weaving knowledge, philosophy, perspectives and content into programming and campus culture — a sweat lodge and change rooms will be installed at the same site this summer, marking the first step in the College’s ceremonial grounds expansion plan.
“There are several phases,” says Mark Wills, the project manager overseeing the build and a 17-year veteran of previous RRC expansions. “The committee involved has plans to extend the ceremonial grounds for powwows, and to set up sites for tipis and other structures.”
“The change rooms will be permanent, but the actual sweat lodge structure will be erected per use. They’re relatively simple, just a structure made of willow branches lashed together to create a shell. That’s covered by canvas, which I understand the elders will set up and take down themselves.” Read More →
Looking for a place to stay this summer that’ll put you in close proximity to the city’s best shops, restaurants and nightclubs?
Or do you know of someone who’s travelling to Winnipeg, and wants to be close to the bustling summer festival scene?
Red River College’s downtown student residence units — located in the Paterson GlobalFoods Institute at 504 Main St. — are available for short-term bookings from May 24 to Aug. 14.
The fully furnished units include a microwave, mini-fridge, bed and linens, desk and chair, wardrobe, and private bathroom with towels and toiletries. The two-bedroom suites have a shared kitchenette with a full-sized fridge and sink, plus a table and chairs.
The building’s common areas feature lounges with couches and an entertainment system, as well as laundry facilities and 24-hour bike storage. Weekly cleaning service is available for both single and double suites, and the building has 24-hour security. Read More →
For the sixth year in a row, Red River College has been named one of Canada’s Greenest Employers, a designation that recognizes RRC’s environmentally friendly policies and programs that engage staff in their sustainability efforts.
The listing comes courtesy of Mediacorp Canada’s ongoing Top 100 Employers project, and coincides with Earth Day activities and events throughout the globe.
“Red River College continues to be a champion of sustainability,” says RRC President Paul Vogt. “We’re honoured to continue to receive this honour each year for the past six years. This is something every member of our College community can take pride in.”
“There’s a real culture of sustainability at Red River College,” adds Sara MacArthur, RRC’s Manager of Sustainability. “Our staff do more than just ‘know’ about sustainability — they also embrace the values of sustainability in their day-to-day actions.”
Over the years, RRC has taken a lead role in a number of sustainability-related initiatives, including: Read More →
Congratulations to the 47 Red River College students who scored medals in last week’s Skills Canada provincial competition.
Hosted by Skills Manitoba at RRC’s Notre Dame Campus, the Olympic-style competition drew more than 500 high school and post-secondary students from across Manitoba for an impressive display of hands-on expertise, talent and determination.
The April 14 event also showcased the diversity of skilled trades and technology in the province, not to mention the many promising futures that can be found in these occupations. Students competed in over 40 different categories; the gold medal winners from each will form Team Manitoba, and will go on to compete at the 21st annual Skills Canada National Competition, taking place in Moncton, N.B., from June 5-8.
A full list of RRC’s winners is below:
Read More →
Want the latest campus safety features and resources — all at your fingertips? There’s an app for that!
Red River College recently launched a free Mobile Safety app that provides users with direct access to RRC Security and 911, as well as specific instructions on what to do in case of an emergency, among other valuable features.
The app — which works on most smartphone platforms — can be used to access RRC’s Safe Walk resource, or to send photos or emails directly to Security. It also provides instant alerts in case of campus closures, lockdowns or emergency situations, even when the app isn’t running.
The Mobile Safety app was released in collaboration with AppArmor, a developer of custom mobile safety applications and emergency notification systems for post-secondary and private institutions in Canada, the U.S. and Australia. AppArmor also partnered recently with the University of British Columbia, Georgian College, Centennial College and the University of Florida on similar safety resources.
“Their staff worked with us every step of the way to design exactly what we were looking for,” says Dave Clarke (shown above), Emergency Preparedness Coordinator at RRC.
RRC’s Mobile Safety app can be downloaded for free from the App Store, Google Play and BlackBerry World.
Learn more at the College’s Safety and Security Blog.
Red River College helped make history last week, joining with every post-secondary institution in Manitoba — as well as the Manitoba School Boards Association — in signing the Indigenous Education Blueprint, an unprecedented commitment to advance Indigenous education in the province.
The transformational framework is the result of a new partnership between Manitoba’s public school boards and the post-secondary education sector, now united in their efforts to enhance Indigenous education and reconciliation, and to make Manitoba a global centre of excellence for Indigenous education, research, languages and culture.
The Blueprint takes action on recommendations made by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada, and will translate into success for Indigenous students and their families, thereby enriching the lives of all Manitobans.
“Indigenous youth are one of the fastest growing populations in Canada,” said RRC President Paul Vogt. “They are our future — our future leaders, entrepreneurs and builders — and the next generation of our country. As colleges, we have a responsibility to work with other partners to continue to build upon our diverse range of post-secondary programs that support Indigenous learners on their educational journey.”
Next steps include such action items as establishing a steering committee with all signatories, creating a collaborative website and social media platform, and hosting a conference on Indigenous education.
The partners who met Friday to sign the historic Blueprint include RRC, the University of Manitoba, the University of Winnipeg, Brandon University, Université de Saint-Boniface, Canadian Mennonite University, University College of the North, Manitoba Institute of Trades and Technology, Assiniboine Community College and the Manitoba School Boards Association. Read More →
Red River College will again operate on restricted holiday hours, effective noon on Thursday, Dec. 24, 2015.
During the break, general access to the Notre Dame and Exchange District Campuses will be limited to the following hours:
- Dec. 24, 2015: Regular hours until 12:00 pm
- Dec. 24-26, 2015: Closed (no access)
- Dec. 27-31, 2015: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Jan. 1, 2016: Closed (no access)
- Jan. 2-3, 2016: 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
- Jan. 4, 2016: Resume regular hours, effective 7:00 a.m.
Lab access on the Notre Dame and Exchange District Campuses during the above hours will be limited to the classroom labs listed below. Students who are in one of the designated labs prior to closure will be given a four-hour grace period (until 4:00 p.m. or 8:00 p.m., depending on the day) to complete their studies or projects before being asked to leave. Read More →
Red River College has been recognized for excellence in building management with a 2015 Earth Award from the Building Owners and Managers Association (BOMA) of Canada.
The award went to RRC’s Heavy Equipment Transportation Centre (HETC), and was presented in conjunction with BOMA’s national conference in Quebec on Sept. 17.
“We have an excellent Facility Management team and this award further demonstrates our hard work and dedication to sustainability,” says Tom Skraba, director of Facility Management at RRC. “I wish to congratulate the team for their tireless efforts.”
BOMA’s Earth Awards recognize excellence in resource preservation and environmentally sound commercial building management. During the selection process, BOMA evaluates a building’s ability to reduce overall environmental risk, provide good indoor air quality, practice green cleaning, recycling, and energy conservation.
HETC is one of the largest industrial training facilities in Manitoba, and one of the province’s most environmentally friendly buildings. Read More →
For the second year in a row, Red River College has been recognized for its efforts to mark North American Occupational Health and Safety (NAOSH) Week on campus.
On Sept. 15, RRC accepted a provincial NAOSH award for Best Representation of a Theme from SAFE Work Manitoba, the Workers Compensation Board, and various occupational safety and health professionals from across the province.
Held each spring, NAOSH Week finds employers, staff and partners throughout the continent promoting injury and illness prevention in the workplace. The theme of this year’s NAOSH Week, which ran May 3–9, was “Make Safety a Habit for Your Career.”
As always, the College planned a full slate of activities, including library and hallway displays, a lockdown awareness session, SAFE Work on Wheels demos, contests and a staff barbecue.
“While we are excited to have won this award, our main focus is building and maintaining a safe and healthy work environment for our staff, students and visitors,” the College’s Environmental Health and Safety Services team said this week. “Meeting this goal is the true award.”
Last year, the College won a NAOSH Award for “Most Innovative” event programming from the Manitoba chapter of the Canadian Society of Safety Engineering. In 2011 and 2012, RRC’s NAOSH Week activities earned awards at both the provincial and national levels.