DC is committed to providing students with a high-quality academic experience. All scheduled academic activities and services, including on-campus learning through classes and labs, continue as planned while Durham Region is under red-zone restrictions. For a full list of what is open on campus or operating virtually, please visit our COVID-19 winter semester page.
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DC Advertising students create buzz with wins in national creative competition

Several students in the Durham College (DC) Advertising and Marketing Communications program walked away from a national creative competition with more than bragging rights; they also secured prestigious paid apprenticeships with award-winning agency, Grip Limited (Grip). 

Teams of DC students competed in Grip’s annual Orange Juicer competition, which challenges students from across North America to put their creative chops to the test solving a real creative brief from a real client. Teams must create an innovative advertising pitch, all in less than two weeks, before presenting their fully integrated plans to a panel of senior industry professionals.

Grip’s participating client for the 2020 competition was a cannabis company and the brief required teams to create awareness for new forms of cannabis while promoting responsible consumption in a highly regulated market.

DC’s students rose to the challenge, vying against 19 other teams. Two DC teams made the Top Seven, advancing to the Big Pitch, and eventually taking second and third place honours.

In their decision, the panel noted that this was “the closest race in the competition’s eight-year history.” The students praised the competition for being “an amazing opportunity to apply classroom learning in a professional setting,” and allowing them to experience the intense realities of agency life. 

Congratulations goes to all of DC’s competitors, including winners Christian Buraga, Brad Cea, Madelyn Clarke, Alecia Forgeard, Jackie Hartman, Eyuel Markos, Lauryn Mills, Abigail Reynolds, Cassidy Rochford-Seager, Pietro Sales and Claire Smith.

For anyone who thinks they’ve got what it takes to create award-winning ideas worthy of attention, DC’s Advertising and Marketing Communications program can certainly start them on the path to becoming an advertising professional!

For more information, contact Dawn Salter, professor and program coordinator, for more details or DC’s Recruitment team.

DC puts 3D printers into action making PPE for donation to workers on frontline of COVID-19

Working out of their garages and basements, Durham College (DC) students, employees, alumni and community members are using 3D printers to create the frames for face shields used by the healthcare workers on the frontlines of the COVID-19 pandemic. The initiative launched on March 26 and within 48 hours the first donation of personal protective equipment (PPE) built with the college’s 3D-printed parts were delivered to Northumberland Hills Hospital in Cobourg, Ontario.

“Ontario PPE manufacturer InkSmith put out a call for support to the 3D printing community and Durham College immediately answered that call,” said Chris Daniel, a professor with the college’s School of Science & Engineering Technology. “Six of DC’s 3D printers are now relocated to my garage and a group of our Mechanical Engineering Technology students and alumni who have their own 3D printers are on board with this initiative and printing furiously too.”

There are currently 20 DC community members using 30 rapid prototyping machines across Durham Region to create the face shield frames. With community outreach being led by DC’s Office of Research Services, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, the college is currently working with two partners to see the parts put to use:

  • DC is shipping frames to InkSmith, where the parts are used to create the company’s community shield, a sanitized single-use shield which InkSmith is donating quantities of to underfunded hospitals and healthcare providers.
  • The college is also collaborating with a team from Ontario Tech University that is also creating one-time-use face shields for donation to local healthcare teams.

“I am always proud to count myself among DC’s more than 90,000 alumni but it’s in moments like this that I’m grateful to be part of a community that is so committed to supporting our greater community, especially the brave men and women who are working tirelessly on the healthcare frontline,” said alumnus Brent Lessard, who is currently using his 3D printer at home to contribute to the college’s face shield frame production. Lessard also sits on the DC Alumni Association board of directors.

On March 28, Chris Daniel launched a GoFundMe page with a goal of raising $1,000 to purchase more polylactic acid, or PLA, the printing material used to 3D print the face shield frames. In less than a day, more than $8,000 was donated, 100-per-cent of which will be used to purchase more PLA for the DC project and to purchase more face shields from InkSmith that will also be donated to healthcare providers.

Chris Daniel is a professor in the Mechanical Engineering Technology program at DC as well as a faculty advisor with the college’s FastStart entrepreneurship team. Two of the 3D printers he is currently using to create PPE parts are on loan from DC's 360insights Entrepreneurship Centre, located at the Oshawa campus. He is joined by the following team members who are also working from home to print the parts:

Marlon Alleyne
Paul Burgess
Jonathan Cusack Striepe
Rumedh Cyril
Shane DeSilva
Andrew Kay
Kyle Laughton
Adeshpal Singh

Donald and Sarah Bark
Ankit Bhat
Brent Lessard
Harshit Patel
Mitchell Russell
Blake Smith

Chris Daniel 

Community members
Jane and Todd Ferguson
James and Debbie Fraser
Nora and Jeff Stevens
Jaydev Chauhan

DC journalism student Tara Sottile earns double work-integrated learning awards

Tara Sottile, a second-year student in the Durham College (DC) Journalism – Mass Media program, has been named a Work-integrated Learning (WIL) Student of the Year at both the provincial and national level.

On March 11, Education at Work Ontario (EWO) announced Sottile as their 2019 WIL Student of the Year. EWO awards the honour to students “who have showcased exceptional job accomplishment, extra-curricular involvement, academic achievement and a strong contribution to work-integrated learning.”

On March 16, Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning Canada (CEWIL Canada) announced Sottile as the WIL Student of the Year in the category of Other Forms of WIL – College. She was one of only four students to be honoured by CEWIL Canada out of more than 40 competitive nominations.

Sottile was put forward by DC’s Experiential Learning team with the support of partner organization Students Offering Support (SOS). Among the highlights flagged by the college were her leadership skills, professional expertise, initiative and creativity, which she demonstrated in particular while participating in an education abroad opportunity in Guatemala, where she worked on a digital storytelling project with local youth.

“Tara has demonstrated the transformative influence that work-integrated learning can have on students,” said Amanda Brown, manager, Experiential Learning, with the college’s Office of Research Services, Innovation and Entrepreneurship. “Through service learning experience, she has transformed from a passive-observer to an engaged learner and confident student journalist. She now takes advantage of every opportunity to try new experiences and expand her skills.”

Sottile was also commended for being a champion of WIL at DC, especially international service learning, through her advocacy for expanded WIL opportunities and mentorship of first-year students.

“Tara’s support of work-integrated learning is now contributing to the expansion of similar experiential-learning opportunities between SOS and DC in other areas of study,” said Jamie Arron, executive director of SOS.

In each of their announcements, EWO and CEWIL Canada highlighted Sottile’s passion for writing, broadcast and video production. In addition to her regular studies, she is a radio tech at the student-run campus radio station, Riot Radio, as well as a regular contributor to DC’s campus newspaper, The Chronicle.

Inspired by her WIL experiences gained through her academic program, Sottile is focused on pursuing a career in radio broadcasting after graduating.


Four DC alumni working abroad talk sports and law enforcement during DC Talks: Global Graduate

On March 11, four Durham College (DC) alumni from across North America spoke via video conferencing in the Global Classroom for DC Talks: Global Graduate, an event organized by the Office of Development and Alumni Affairs. Co-hosted by DC President Don Lovisa and Global Class professor Lon Appleby, students and employees had the opportunity to attend the class in person or join via livestream, taking advantage of the Global Classroom’s state-of-the-art facility and teleconferencing capabilities.

During the event, the alumni, who are all graduates from one of DC’s sports business programs, spoke about their career path in the sports entertainment and law enforcement industries and what it’s like to live and work abroad.

Guest alumni included:

  • Stew MacDonald – Currently executive vice president of revenue for Oilers Entertainment Group, Stew has also worked for the Regina Pats and the Saint John Flames and has been part of Stanley Cup Championships in 1987, 1988, and 1990, a Calder Cup Championship in 2001 and a Memorial Cup Championship in 2014. A native of Ottawa, Stew holds a diploma in Sports Administration from DC and is currently based in Edmonton at Oilers Entertainment Group headquarters.
  • DJ Mackovets – A 1980 Sports Administration graduate, DJ has spent 40 years in event marketing and operational planning in the sports entertainment industry. He has been involved in the World University Games, the Goodwill Games, two US Olympic Festivals and two Super Bowls. Most recently he was the CEO of the 2021 World Games Birmingham Organizing Committee, and the CEO of the 2015 World Police and Fire Games. DJ currently lives in Alabama with his wife Christy.
  • Judy Pal – After graduating from DC’s Sports and Entertainment program in 1983, Judy started her career in PR and sports marketing, working for the Edmonton Oilers, and as a television anchor for Global Television. She then took her communications experience and applied it to law enforcement, working as chief of staff for numerous police organizations and as director of operations for the FBI Law Enforcement Executive Development Association. Today, Judy lives in Knoxville, Tennessee and works as a consultant, training public information officers and police leaders about how to better communicate.
  • Philip Pritchard – A 1985 graduate of DC’s Sport Administration program, Phil travels the globe to promote the game of hockey and the Hockey Hall of Fame. He has visited more than 35 countries and attended a number of key amateur and pro hockey events, including the Olympic Games and World Championships. Part of his duties include being the “Keeper of the Cup”, travelling with and walking the Stanley Cup out onto the ice to be presented to the National Hockey League’s champion.

To watch a recording of the class, please visit www.durhamcollege.ca/globalgrad.

Durham College and partners win Pacific Alliance Education for Employment call for proposal

Durham College (DC), in collaboration with Vancouver Island University and Fanshawe College, wins the Pacific Alliance Education for Employment A.08 call for proposal which will see the Canadian consortium lead the technical assistance for the development and implementation of a national and regional promotional campaign of the entire Pacific Alliance program in Chile, Colombia and Mexico.

Funded by Global Affairs Canada and administered by Colleges and Institutes Canada, the program will see more than 1,500 employers and learners benefit from a dialogue on educational best practices; capacity in leadership and institutional management strengthened; and 105 trainers trained in pedagogical strategies. Focus areas will include: training approaches, competence-based education, and leadership training.

The Pacific Alliance Education for Employment A.08 contract further reinforces DC’s commitment to quality education, not only here in Canada, but all over the world. To learn more about DC’s international initiatives, visit the International Education office website.

EnactusDC embarks on first international project

EnactusDC is celebrating the launch of its first international project, Project G.R.O.W.(Generating Real Opportunities Worldwide), and a fantastic first trip to South Africa!

EnactusDC is the Durham College (DC) chapter of Enactus, an international organization of student entrepreneurs who develop businesses that make positive social, economic or environmental impacts in their local communities or internationally. The EnactusDC team is a part of the FastStart SHIFT program at the college, a business start-up accelerator designed for social enterprises.

Project G.R.O.W. is one of the team’s six active projects for 2020 and the first to introduce impactful international work into the mix. It is a welcome addition to EnactusDC’s 2020 competitive project roster, which also includes Girls EnPower, True Grit, Money Makes Cents, M03 Solutions and 3eehive.

During the college’s winter break, EnactusDC team leaders traveled to rural community schools in South Africa’s central region, known as Midrand, where they performed a formal needs assessment for a new food literacy and education-based garden project. Project G.R.O.W. is working with Canadian partner Rainbow Plate to design custom curricula around an experiential learning-based garden project for South African students, ages 0 to 5. The team will work with teachers at participating disadvantaged schools to implement curricula, build gardens and provide an entrepreneurial training opportunity to generate income through sales of the surplus garden yield.

The project is led by three students from DC’s Marketing – Business program: Chin-Ting Sherwin, Jonathan Bayne and Christian Lopers. These students forged a fantastic connection with their in-country host, celebrated DC alumna Cailey Hart. Since graduating from DC’s Early Childhood Education program in 2010, Cailey has become the principal of Botshabelo Urban Kids Educentre in South Africa.

The students were joined by EnactusDC faculty advisor Chris Daniel, a professor with DC’s school of Science & Engineering Technology.

“It was amazing to watch the impact that Durham College’s ECE teaching methodologies have had on increasing the skills of the local urban and rural preschool teachers around Midrand, South Africa,” says Chris.  “It’s a true credit to Cailey’s leadership and since she has clearly shown great success at helping her colleague replicate her skill set, I’m confident that her ability to manage the creation and duplication of a garden and the Rainbow Plate nutrition methodology throughout the region will be successful as well.”

Team member Chin-Ting Sherwin adds, “Being able to visit communities in South Africa has been a life-changing experience. The warm welcome from the people within the schools and the overall lifestyle have opened my eyes to how happiness comes in many forms. This opportunity has changed my perspective and was unforgettable.”

Cailey Hart hosted the EnactusDC team onsite at her school and introduced members to several rural schools in disadvantaged areas, which are to become the focus of the project work. In addition to their gratitude to Cailey, EnactusDC is thankful to the college for its ongoing support, the DC Alumni Association, DC Students Inc. and DC’s International Office for helping make this new initiative possible.

High school students get taste of campus life as DC hosts FIRST® Robotics Competition

While competing in the FIRST® Robotics Competition (FRC) Ontario District Durham College (DC) event on February 29 and March 1, high school students from across the province also got a first look at where they could be headed next while visiting the college’s Oshawa campus.

For the sixth year in a row, DC hosted more than 1,000 of the province’s brightest young minds, along with their mentors, family, friends and fellow robot enthusiasts, at the annual event. Competitors demonstrated their technological and engineering skills as they operated complex, 140-pound robots they had designed and built in only six weeks.

During the competition’s opening ceremonies DC president Don Lovisa shared additional campus highlights with attendees, including the recent launch of two new applied research centres: the Mixed Reality Capture Studio and the Centre for Cybersecurity Innovation.

After two days of intensive battles, organized with the help of numerous, dedicated volunteers, the following teams comprising the Red Alliance were declared district champions:

  • Alliance Captain: Team 188 – Blizzard (Toronto)
  • Team 2200 – MMRambotics (Burlington)
  • Team 8089 – Rockway (Kitchener)

Also notable was the winning team of the Chairman’s Award winner, Team 4039 – MakeShift Robotics (Hamilton), which is the most prestigious award a team can win. The Chairman’s Award honours the team that best represents a model for other teams to emulate and best embodies the mission of FIRST. It was created to keep the central focus of FRC on the ultimate goal of transforming the culture in ways that will inspire greater levels of respect and honour for science and technology, as well as encouraging more of today’s youth to become science and technology leaders.

See all awards winners and results.

Students had a lot of fun while gaining real-world engineering experience, developing leadership skills and learning to work as a team under pressure and tight timelines. 

Winners of the DC event now move on to the FIRST® Ontario Provincial Championship at the Paramount Fine Foods Centre in Mississauga, April 10 and 11, where they will compete for a spot at the World Championships that will be held in Detroit, Michigan, from April 29 to May 2.

Learn more about FRC.

DC culinary students compete in Student Chef Challenge 2020

On Thursday, February 27, three Durham College (DC) Culinary Management students competed in the Student Chef Challenge 2020 against five teams from post-secondary institutions across Ontario at the W. Galen Weston Centre for Food in Whitby.

Organized and sponsored by Ontario Sheep Farmers, Mushrooms Canada and DC, the annual competition aimed to showcase the complementary flavours of Ontario mushrooms and lamb while testing students on their skills and knowledge in butchering, recipe development, cooking and food presentation.  

DC’s team included second-year students Amira Cunha and Soo Hea Woo and first-year student Ethan Tate, alongside faculty mentors Dave Hawey and Josh Heuvelmans, professors in the School of Hospitality and Horticultural Science. In the morning, the team was tasked with butchering a lamb into specific retail cuts. They then used the protein to develop a recipe and cook three separate, original dishes that incorporated Canadian mushrooms and Ontario lamb. A reception took place later in the day, and key members of the culinary and DC community attended to taste samples of the final recipe in the competition.

Student dishes were judged by a team of industry professionals from organizations, including Foodland Ontario, Ontario Sheep Farmers, Gordon Food Service, Restaurants Canada, and Windmill Farms. The butchery portion of the event was judged by Nicholas Matusiak from Halenda’s Meats.

Although DC’s team did not place, it was a close race and the experience for students went above and beyond regular classroom learning, giving them the opportunity to receive valuable feedback from judges and begin building a name for themselves in the industry.

After the event, more than 200 lbs of raw lamb, provided by Ontario Lamb Company and Ontario Sheep Farmers, was frozen and donated to Feed the Need Durham.

Dragons’ Den auditions return to DC Wednesday, March 11

Calling all entrepreneurs! The hit CBC television show Dragons’ Den will return to Durham College (DC) on Wednesday, March 11, to hold auditions in the search for Canada’s best new businesses.

The show’s producers are embarking on a nation-wide tour in search of the country’s best new business concepts and products in need of a Dragon investment. During its stop on campus, aspiring DC entrepreneurs and members of the general public are invited to pitch their concepts in five minutes or less. If they show producers they have what it takes to pitch in the Den, they could be invited to Toronto to face the Dragons.

DC is committed to enhancing entrepreneurship in the community and encourages anyone with an innovative idea to apply. DC students may also contact FastStart – an entrepreneurial training partnership aimed at students – for assistance in preparing their pitch.

Prospective pitchers are encouraged to apply online and bring a completed application form to the audition.



Wednesday, March 11
11 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Durham College, Oshawa campus
Student Services building, Room SSB 116 AB
2000 Simcoe St. N.
Oshawa, Ont. 



DC students test their skills and collaborate in emergency simulation

On February 29, 195 Durham College (DC) students, faculty and industry partners collaborated on an intense, large-scale emergency simulation exercise at the Oshawa campus that let students put their classroom and lab training into action.

Bringing together participants from the schools of Justice & Emergency Services, Health & Community Services and Media, Art & Design, as well as peers from Ontario Tech University’s nursing program, the exercise followed a detailed script that saw volunteers simulate a mass-casualty emergency stemming from a sports-racing situation.

Unfolding in real-time, the exercise provided students with valuable experiential learning as well as a better understanding of how members of emergency services, health and social services, legal services and the media work together during an emergency. A second simulation exercise focused on mock legal proceedings in connection with the emergency will be held Saturday, March 7.

Students from the following DC programs participated: