College of the Rockies. File photo.

College of the Rockies. File photo.

International travel back on for COTR students, staff

Students and staff can now enjoy international educational experiences following COVID-19 travel hiatus

International travel is now back on the educational slate for College of the Rockies student and faculty, following a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Learning across borders is an important part of a 21st century education,” said Kerry Brinkert, Manager, International Partnerships. “Students, employees, and other young Canadians are better able to develop the cross-cultural skills that can enhance their career options in today’s global marketplace.”

International educational experiences have already gotten underway this spring, according to the College.

As part of the federal government’s Youth Internship Program, COTR coordinated the participation of f six young Canadians to Kenya and Dominica for six months to support partner institutions.

Four of these interns will assist Kenyan institutions in developing and implementing gender equality strategies while the two interns placed in Dominica will either support Dominica State College with student affairs efforts or assist a community-based organization in developing training opportunities for at-risk populations.

Four College employees are also set to travel to Kenya to support Kenyan partner institutions in introducing new competency-based programs as part of Young Africa Works in Kenya, a five-year program funded by the MasterCard Foundation and administered by Colleges and Institutes Canada.

Anna-Marie Rautenbach, Hospitality Management instructor, will travel to the Maasai Mara region to assist the Maasai Mara Technical and Vocational Institute in introducing a new tourism and hospitality program. Jack Moes (Dean of Trades & Technology), Mike Vallee (Plumbing instructor) and Tracey Brenton (International Projects and Partnership Development Officer) – along with colleagues from BCIT and Lakeland College – will visit Kenya’s North Rift Valley to assist four partner institutions in courses related to plumbing, electrical installation, and agriculture.

“This will be my fourth trip abroad and with each experience I gain a better understanding of other cultures and ways of doing things,” Moes said. “Though we are assisting other institutions with getting programs up and running, we receive at least as much benefit in return.”

In another exciting learning opportunity for students, eight College of the Rockies students will travel to Andorra in the Pyrenees Mountains of Europe for two weeks to participate in a Mountain Sustainability Field School. Led by Tourism and Recreation instructor Becky Pelkonen, students will spend five days trekking through the mountains of Andorra, a country that serves as a living laboratory to explore sustainability issues. Participating students represent programs as diverse as Tourism Management, Bachelor of Science in Nursing, University General Studies, and Environmental Sciences.