by Greg Klimes, Teaching Faculty Member, Faculty of Science and Technology, VIU

I never considered myself a “teacher” nor was it ever a career aspiration of mine to become a teacher. That word implied someone who taught in the K to 12 environments, many whom I have the utmost of respect and admiration for.

I enjoyed following my childhood dream of conservation and protection with our natural resources. As this progressed, an unexpected opportunity came up when my supervisor asked me to assist him instructing our department’s trainees. I was hooked after that week. The following year, Ed my supervisor, backed out and informed me I would be leading the full 2 weeks of training. That was 40 years ago now and the start of another rewarding aspect of my job, to help newly hired staff find and test their wings. It continues today.

Working here at VIU and helping our students fulfill their own dreams follows that passion. Now I share what working outside post-secondary looks like, what they might expect to experience in their careers. The experiential model we embrace and use here is what our students most enjoy. I’ve never sugared coated any stories, never embellished on what hard realities might be waiting around the corner.

Some of my greatest rewards come back regularly from alumni who thank us for the time we invested in them. They really are enjoying what they are doing and sincerely appreciated that their education here at VIU has opened new doors.

Comments like; “Remember when we discussed such-in-such in class”? “Well it happened the other day, just like we talked about. You were right!”

Those will be my fondest memories of VIU and the many great people who have passed through our program.