The Show Must Go On

While all departments suffered from online and distanced learning during the academic year of 2020-21, VIU’s Theatre Department was struck a unique blow when the university was closed in March 2020. Students performing to live audiences from Malaspina Theatre’s stage could not be easily replicated over a Zoom call. Despite the circumstances, the department rose … Continued

Lessons From the Trees

We rummaged through slash piles, meticulously picking the biggest, most sturdy logs. We grabbed boulders and discarded culverts—anything that would hold them off for even a minute longer. Quintessential Pacific Northwest clouds settled low among the towering western redcedars and Douglas fir. At the other end of the valley, clearcuts nagged the mountainside like an … Continued

Counselling Through COVID

A new school year is stressful at the best of times. During a pandemic, it’s especially challenging. As classes resume at VIU for the 2021-22 academic year, both in-person and online, the focus is on mental health—especially for students.  Prior to the pandemic, counselling was available in-person through Student Affairs and the former faculty of … Continued

What is Self-Care, Anyways?

The other day I opened Instagram on my phone and on a whim searched “selfcare.” I was surprised to see that 44.1 million posts had tagged #selfcare, and 1.4 million posts tagged #selfcaresunday. While scrolling through the vast array of photography associated with these hashtags, I found a post offering virtual healing (20 minutes for … Continued

A Fair Shot:

The elegant boardroom on the fifth floor of VIU’s library is where the school’s board of governors usually meets. It’s empty these days, but on February 27, 2020, the room was packed. The board members sat in their usual places at the long table, ready to begin. At the back of the room stood concerned … Continued

Batten Down the Hatches

The southern Salish Sea is a network of sounds and channels weaving in and out of craggy islands. Forests of Douglas fir and native arbutus trees sweep over mountains big and small. Above, bald eagles glide through salty air. In the water, pods of orcas search for schools of Pacific salmon to fill their bellies. … Continued

Food for Thought

No matter who you are or where you come from, food is a part of life—a big part. Everybody, everywhere, eats. Some people have too much food, some not enough. Some people die because of its unavailability, and food production is one of climate change’s leading causes. In fact, the primary driving force behind the … Continued

Danielle Groenendijk:

A single marathon is equal to 42.195 km. Over the course of 30 days, Danielle Groenendijk ran 250 km—roughly six marathons—to bring awareness to, and raise money for, Parkinson’s disease. Groenendijk is a fourth-year Bachelor of Science student at VIU with plans to become a veterinarian following graduation. She is very passionate about animals, and … Continued

Roots to Thrive

BC’s need for mental health support has never been more critical than during the COVID-19 pandemic. People are struggling with fear about their own health and the health of their loved ones, financial anxiety, the social isolation that comes from gathering and physical distancing restrictions, and working on the frontlines. COVID-19 has only exacerbated this … Continued

Spenser Smith:

“People who choose to take this stuff can die. The answer is to choose not to take them. It’s a choice.” —R. D. This is a comment on a CBC story written late last year on the overdose crisis in BC. Of the 554 comments the piece received, the one calling for the death of … Continued

The Vault Bazaar

If I could name only one place that really screams “Nanaimo,” that place would be The Vault Café. Before moving to this city, I never thought I would step through the pink walls of what used to be an early twentieth-century bank and emerge into a bohemian paradise. The space is eclectic to say the … Continued

Lost and Found in Translation 

Language is all too often taken for granted here in Canada. It’s easy to grow up in British Columbia and learn English by immersion—just by living in English-speaking communities and going to school. But learning a new language is difficult, daunting, and requires consistent effort.  It’s always impressed me that many of my VIU classmates … Continued

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