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VIDEO: New student housing at 3 Okanagan College campuses

The Kelowna campus will have space for up to 216 students

Okanagan College staff, elders, and government officials gathered on the Okanagan College Kelowna campus on the morning of March 27 to get a sneak peek inside the new student housing building.

Come this fall, 216 students at the college will be able to live directly on campus inside what is now the largest building at the college.

“We are building a home for these students. A place where they can feel welcomed, feel safe, and excited about their time at Okanagan College,” President Neil Fassina said.

Similar projects are being constructed at the campuses in Vernon and Salmon Arm. The three campuses will offer over 350 beds to college students.

Minister of Post Secondary Education Lisa Beare made the trip to Kelowna to see the build.

“Between the three campuses, the government is investing $69.1 million to expand the housing and improve affordability for increasing access to post-secondary education for students here in the region.”

Applications are already available online for students interested in living in the new dorms for the upcoming fall semester. The rooms are open to anyone studying at the college, not just first year students.

“We know how stressful it can be for students to find housing that not only works with their budgets, works with their schedules, and that works to be close to post-secondary campuses,” Beare said. “Which is why our government takes it very seriously and we’ve been focused on investing in student housing throughout the province.”

According to Beare, in the last seven years, 7,766 student housing beds have been built, with another promise to create 4,000 on-campus beds.

As OC sites are located on the traditional territory of the Syilx, Secwépemc, Ktunaxa and Sinixt Nations, Okanagan College works with Indigenous communities and artists to acknowledge the Nations through unique artwork at all of its campuses.

For the new student housing in Kelowna, artist Les Louis, an Okanagan College alumnus who was born and raised in the Lower Similkameen Band, has created story pole designs near the interior entrance.

Syilx artist Clint George’s feather sculpture is built into the building’s exterior solar shades. George is a member of the Penticton Indian Band.

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Brittany Webster

About the Author: Brittany Webster

A video journalist with Black Press Media. I recently made the exciting move from my radio anchor position at AM 1150 to this new venture.
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