April 2021 - DC is committed to providing students with a high-quality academic experience. During the provincial emergency and stay-at-home order, in-person learning activities and campus operations may be impacted. For a full list of what is open or operating virtually, please visit our COVID-19 spring semester page.
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DC students find innovative solutions to local challenges at City Idea Lab showcase

On April 5, TeachingCity partners the City of Oshawa, Durham College (DC), Ontario Tech University and Trent University Greater Toronto Area gathered together for the spring City Idea Lab student showcase. The City Idea Lab is a collaborative, course-based initiative that offers experiential learning opportunities via credit courses at the TeachingCity Hub in downtown Oshawa.

Highlighting the results of City Idea Lab courses across the three post-secondary institutions, the showcase focused on a variety of City-focused challenge questions, with students representing a variety of fields of study, including child and youth studies, information technology, media, art and design, and social science and humanities.

Second-year DC students from the Fine Arts – Advanced program translated stories shared by Child, Youth and Family Program patients at Lakeridge Health Oshawa into art, whereas Journalism-Mass Media students explored how the City could include intangible cultural assets on their Cultural Map, leading to a project aimed at elevating Oshawa’s cultural reputation locally, provincially and nationally.

Other questions addressed through the program included how the City might engage youth in priority neighbourhoods, engage residents to help build community pride, design a Wi-Fi network in the downtown core, and more. Over 200 students from seven courses across the three post-secondary institutions, worked together to develop posters to display their innovative solutions.  

Posters presented at the student showcase will be on display at Oshawa City Hall from Monday, April 8 to Friday, April 12.

City Idea Lab has been generously supported by RBC Futures Launch.


Durham College opens first-of-its-kind Esports Gaming Arena

On April 2, Durham College (DC) officially opened a first-of-its-kind Esports Gaming Arena. Located in the Student Centre at the college’s Oshawa campus, the 3,000-sq-ft. venue is unique from any other collegiate gaming space in Canada thanks to its extensive broadcast capabilities and lounge area that can hold up to 120 spectators for esports tournaments.

“With this venue, DC is establishing itself as an undisputed leader in one of the fastest-growing industries in the gaming market,” says DC president Don Lovisa. “In addition to being the campus gaming hub and training ground for the Durham Lords Esports varsity team, the arena will also be a living lab. Its industry-grade design will provide students with vital hands-on experience to prepare them for career success in the global esports market, which is on track to exceed $1.6 billion by 2021.”

Developed in partnership industry leaders Lenovo (Canada) and Monster Energy, the DC Esports Gaming Arena features include:

  • 46 Legion by Lenovo gaming PCs with added Nvidia GEForce RTX 2080 graphics cards, 12 of which sit behind a glass partition and are reserved for esports varsity players’ training.
  • Streaming capabilities at each gaming station so that players can broadcast their play live on Twitch.
  • Monster Energy DX Racer ergonomic gaming chairs that feature adjustable backs, arms and seats to provide support and comfort and mitigate repetitive stress injuries.
  • Five 55” display monitors and a 110” projector for in-house tournament broadcasting.

“We’ve taken to calling it a gamers’ paradise and it truly is,” says arena manager Sarah Wagg. Unlike other schools’ gaming spaces, the DC arena is designed specifically with the student experience in mind. The lounging and gathering spaces encourage relaxation, connection and fun, and make it a space that welcomes and embraces gamers of all kinds.”

The Esports Gaming Arena is part of DC’s four-part esports plan which also includes the Durham Lords esports varsity team, which began competing with teams across North America in 2018, a recreational gaming club and integration of esports into the college’s post-secondary program curricula.

While use of the gaming stations is reserved for DC students, alumni and employees during regular hours of operation, the Esports Gaming Arena is available for public bookings to host birthday parties, corporate events and gaming tournaments.

Booking inquiries can be made by emailing esports@durhamcollege.ca.


DC participates in Future of Transportation and Mobility Series to discuss self-driving cars and increased safety

On March 28, Durham College (DC) participated in the Future of Transportation and Mobility Series: Self-Driving Cars & Increased Safety alongside Ontario Tech University, Spark Centre, and the Centre for Integrated Transportation and Mobility (CITM), a division of Innovation Factory in Hamilton, Ont.

Supported by the Autonomous Vehicle Innovation Network (AVIN), the one-day event allowed attendees to network with industry, entrepreneurs, government and academia while hearing from speakers who focused on the safety and mobility freedom and the importance of considering accessibility and inclusion in the realization of autonomous vehicles.

DC was pleased to have Ali Hirji, project manager of DC’s Hub for Applied Research in Artificial Intelligence for Business Solutions (the AI Hub) sit on the Smart City Panel to explore how digital infrastructure can impact public safety. During the panel, Ali and other industry panelists discussed the idea that smart cities should include rural communities and spoke about the need to contextualize digital infrastructure by thinking about compliance, security and other related issues.

Participants also had the opportunity to get up close and personal with the 2019 Hyundai Nexo, which was on site thanks to the strong relationship between Hyundai and DC’s Corporate Training Services, who manage, design and deliver multiple product training tours per year for Hyundai. The Nexo is one of only a handful of hydrogen-fueled autonomous vehicles available on the market and is equipped with an extensive sensor array consisting of both mass-produced and specific autonomous sensing devices, including front and rear LIDAR.

As a partner in AVIN’s Regional Technology Development Site (RTDS) located in the Durham Region, DC will continue to contribute to future events and projects by helping to support and enable small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) to develop, prototype, test and validate new technologies, access specialized equipment, and obtain technical and business advice in developing transformative automotive technologies. DC’s current role focuses on the human machine interface (HMI) and user experience by providing technology companies access to faculty expertise, student talent and state-of-the-art research facilities, thus helping them develop autonomous vehicle capabilities in a safe and controlled environment.


Spring Open House welcomes more than 3,700 prospective students to DC

On March 23, Durham College (DC) opened its doors to more than 3,700 prospective students and their families at the Oshawa and Whitby campuses and Pickering Learning Site for the college’s annual Spring Open House.

The event gave visitors the opportunity to explore DC’s extensive facilities, take guided tours, check out support services, including Financial Aid and Awards and the Access and Support Centre, and learn about the college’s more than 140 full-time programs and hundreds of continuing education offerings.

At the Oshawa campus, prospective students were the first to preview the new Esports Gaming Arena in the Student Centre, while visitors at Whitby attended cooking demonstrations in the W. Galen Weston Centre for Food and learned about exciting upcoming plans for expansions to the campus.

On hand throughout the day was DC president Don Lovisa, dean and principal of the Whitby campus Rebecca Milburn, as well as current students, alumni, faculty and staff who eagerly connected with community members and shared their first-hand knowledge and experience related to all things DC.

Spring Open House also gave curious students the opportunity to learn more about DC’s first degree program, the Honours Bachelor of Health Care Technology Management – which welcomed its inaugural class in September 2018, and the Artificial Intelligence Analysis, Design and Implementation graduate certificate, a new offering beginning in 2019.

Anyone who missed the Spring Open House can still learn more about all that DC has to offer. Campus tours and information sessions can be scheduled online, via email or by calling 905.721.3126.

DC will hold its Fall Open House on Saturday, November 2.


DC students participate in 2 Minute Speed Speech Competition

On March 25th, 2019, students across all programs were invited to prepare a 2-minute speech and deliver it at a seated one-on-one speaking event. This opportunity was available to any student willing to share their speech on the topic “This is My Community”.

The event enriched the student voice through experiential learning while encouraging students to speak freely from their experiences. Rather than speaking at people, students were encouraged to speak with people. This set up allowed students to exercise vital interpersonal communication skills that will help them with any future career path they choose after graduation.


Omar Allam inspires future DC entrepreneurs

On March 11, Durham College’s (DC) entrepreneurial training partnership program FastStartDC, held a presentation with award-winning entrepreneur, management consultant and former diplomat Omar Allam, Founder and CEO of Allam Advisory Group (AAG). The theme of his presentation was ‘Turning Your Vision into Reality.’

The DC community had the opportunity to tap into Omar’s vast experience and hard-won insight he gained from 20 years of leading and guiding international business and consulting engagements across the public, private and social sectors. His worldwide leadership extends to the Americas, Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Asia-Pacific.

Students and staff had the opportunity to listen an engage with him in a question and answer-style fireside chat as he touched on many topics including:

  • Knowing when to take a risk and leap into entrepreneurship.
  • Global citizenship and international business.
  • The importance of fostering a great corporate culture.
  • The importance of a shared culture, and the building of trusting relationships in business, both with clients and partners.
  • Work-life balance is different for everyone but family comes first.
  • What AAG is all about and how he created the company.

After his presentation Allam kindly volunteered his time, meeting one-on-one with a number of FastStartDC’s students offering them strategic mentorship advice and guidance for their businesses. He has supported many young entrepreneurs over the years and one of the simple but vital messages he left the future entrepreneurs with, was the importance of being surrounded by a good team of people with the same goals.


Paramedic students volunteer at the Durham Region 2019 Ontario Parasport Games

From February 8 to 10, Durham Region hosted the 2019 Ontario Parasport Games in partnership with the Ministry of Tourism, Culture and Sport, welcoming over 500 athletes, coaches, guides, and support personnel.

As athletes competed in 11 parasports at eight different venues across the region, 18 Durham College (DC) students and alumni from the Paramedic program in the School of Justice & Emergency Services stepped up to volunteer as first aid providers during the games.   

“The paramedic student and faculty volunteers from DC were professional, friendly, and inclusive throughout the games, and were excellent ambassadors for our community,” said Don Terry, co-chair of the Games Organizing Committee.   

“This was a wonderful opportunity for our students to participate in experiential learning while also giving back to the community,” added Jen Walker, a faculty member in the Paramedic program at DC. “It was terrific to see our students having fun, whether they were meeting athletes, cheering them on in their sports, or collaborating with other medical professionals to provide services as needed.”

Alongside experiences like this one, students in the Paramedic program are exposed to ongoing clinical and field placement opportunities during their time at DC, helping them become highly skilled first responders and compassionate caregivers who meet community members’ emergent and non-emergent health needs.

For more about the Durham Region 2019 Ontario Parasport Games, please visit their website or watch their 2019 celebration video.


Enactus DC hits milestone with Girls EnPower project

On March 7 and 8, the Enactus Durham College (Enactus DC) team placed third in the Scotiabank Youth Empowerment Challenge at the annual Enactus Canada Regional Exposition event in Mississauga. This was the first time in Enactus DC’s three year history that they have placed at the competition. The team was up against a competitive field of 39 colleges and universities from across Ontario and Quebec.

The award-winning project, Girls EnPower, was conceived by Enactus DC and is committed to transforming young women in vulnerable circumstances into smart, strong and bold entrepreneurs, instilling in them confidence and positive decision-making skills. The group project was presented by second-year DC students, Alexandra Gillis in the Horticulture – Food and Farming program and Sedona Randall, in the Culinary Management program.

Through this mentorship program girls learn the fundamentals of entrepreneurship and are given the chance to thrive within a positive peer community of DC students and faculty role models. This year the project’s focus is leveraging DC’s award winning W. Galen Weston Centre for Food. By working with young women in a professional, state of the art culinary teaching facility the belief that a post-secondary education is unattainable is dispelled.

Enactus is an international non-profit organization dedicated to creating social change through entrepreneurship. DC’s chapter was introduced to the college in 2016 through FastStartDC, the college’s entrepreneurial centre, to create a club of student leaders looking to make a positive economic and social impact on society.


Students’ strength and program pride shine at DC Justice Games VII

Students from the School of Justice & Emergency Services (JES) put their strength, speed and teamwork on display at the seventh annual Durham College (DC) Justice Games. Held at the Oshawa campus on March 13, the friendly competition brought together contenders from 10 JES programs, including alumni, to represent in seven events.

Beyond bragging rights, the Justice Games gives students the opportunity to showcase their training and network with professionals from Durham Regional Police Service, York Regional Police, Toronto Police Service, Town of Whitby Fire and Emergency Services and regional paramedics.

The event also brought the JES community together to remember and commemorate former Firefighter – Pre-service, Education and Training students Adam Brunt and Tasha Nickelchock. Most valuable player awards in each of their names were awarded to the students identified as demonstrating the highest levels of performance, leadership and sportsmanship over the course of the event.

This year’s MVP winners were Joel Campbell and Melanie Hope.

Students also took home prizes for first and second-place finishes in each event.

The winner of the Justice Cup, which is awarded based on the number of first and second-place finishes by competitors from the same program, was Police Foundations.

Students from following DC programs took part in this year’s event:


Fun on the ice with DC’s president in support of United Way

On March 12, the lobby of the Campus Ice Centre was filled with the smell of fresh popcorn and hot chocolate, for the enjoyment of all who came out in support of United Way Durham Region at the family skate with Durham College (DC) president Don Lovisa. He was joined by DC employees, students and members of the community.

The college has a longstanding history of supporting United Way through its annual campus campaign. This important organization provides funds to the network of health and social services agencies serving our community’s most vulnerable individuals and families.

The event saw Lovisa lace up his skates for the first time in 16 years as he led the way for a fun evening on the ice. While there were some first-time wobbly moves and impressive expert spins, the ultimate winner was United Way.