Using the simple power of pedal, Selkirk College President Angus Graeme is connecting communities across the region and around the world.
Now serving in his final year of a career at Selkirk College that spans three decades, the local college’s president will spend six days in July on his road bike pedaling 500 kilometres of mountain terrain to raise funds for Indigenous supports and a global humanitarian effort. On July 5, Graeme will push off from the Grand Forks Campus to visit six communities and ten facilities in the West Kootenay and Boundary.
Selkirk President Angus Graeme at Nelson’s Silver King Campus as he prepares to pedal 500 kilometres of mountain roads to raise funds and awareness for post-secondary accessibility. His journey will begin on the Grand Forks Campus on July 5 and take six days complete with stops in Trail, Castlegar, Nelson, Kaslo and Nakusp.
“I love biking in the West Kootenay Boundary and even more so when I get to camp along the way,” Graeme says of his kick-off to summer. “My ride is an opportunity to get out and complete a few human-powered kilometres along a spectacular route, re-connect in person with Selkirk College locations and our amazing employees there, and hopefully raise some funds to support students and help our humanitarian partnerships.”
With stops in Trail, Castlegar, Nelson, Nakusp and Kaslo, the president will complete his journey at Nelson’s Tenth Street Campus on July 10. Students, staff, alumni, retirees, donors and college supporters can ride along with Graeme virtually with a daily live video stream and social media updates from the road.
Building Access and Opportunity
Funds raised through pledging-per-kilometre, a one-time gift or coin donations at campus locations will increase accessibility for students.
Working with Selkirk College’s Indigenous Services, a portion of the money raised will be used to enhance supports for Indigenous students who make Selkirk College their choice for post-secondary. In his time at the college, Graeme has provided a dedicated push in the work to increase opportunity for Indigenous learners and outreach with Indigenous leadership across the province. Some of the highlights over his years of work include the building of the Gathering Place on the Castlegar Campus in 2012 and the launch of the Indigenization Plan Our Journey Together: Land, Life, Learning.
A graduate of the Resort & Hotel Management program in 2015, Dr. Celine Magneche Nde Sika (left) first met President Angus Graeme when she arrived for the Nelson-based program in 2013. Now the head of an NGO in rural Cameroon, the president's bike ride will raise funds to enhance a relationship between Selkirk College and Affamir.
Additionally, funds collected from the ride will go towards building a partnership with Affamir, an alumna-run NGO in rural Cameroon with a mission of building potential in children through education. Run by Dr. Celine Magneche Nde Sika, a graduate of Selkirk College’s Resort & Hotel Management program, Affamir has built primary and secondary schools in the African nation’s rural areas. Selkirk College and Affamir is actively working to bring a student from Cameroon to study in the West Kootenay for September 2022.
“Accessibility is a cornerstone of what we do at Selkirk College and something that I have worked to increase over my last 30 years in post-secondary education,” Graeme explains. “Having a chance to pedal through our region and experience the connection between all of our campuses helps put it all into perspective. I hope people join me in the enthusiasm for making the future for students more hopeful and remarkable.”
Find more information and ways to donate here.