Bright Minds in BC Recognized -BC Technology Industry Association Announces 2010 Scholarship Winners

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Building tech talent for BC. Eight students received a combined $11,000 in scholarship grants from the BC Technology Industry Association (BCTIA). The scholarship awards were presented by the Honourable Iain Black, Minister of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development, at the BCTIA's annual Technology Impact Awards (TIAs).

Minister Black with 2010 BC Technology Scholarship Winners

Supporting higher education is critical to creating a knowledge economy

Building tech talent for BC. Eight students received a combined $11,000 in scholarship grants from the BC Technology Industry Association (BCTIA). The scholarship awards were presented by the Honourable Iain Black, Minister of Small Business, Technology and Economic Development, at the BCTIA's annual Technology Impact Awards (TIAs).

"Supporting higher education is critical to creating a knowledge economy”, stated Pascal Spothelfer, President and CEO of the BCTIA. “British Columbia has built a reputation for producing and attracting great talent. We are happy to assist in the continued development of great talent through this scholarship program”, Spothelfer added.

The BC Technology Scholarship program is designed to support hard-working and accomplished young people in their pursuit of technology-related education. Applicants must be enrolled in either business or science programs in a technology-related field and are selected on a basis of both merit and need.

Illustrating the continual need for knowledge-based talent, the recent 2010 TechTalentBC Labour Demand study commissioned by the BCTIA showed that despite the recent economic downturn, the British Columbia’s technology industry can expect to re-enter a talent crunch situation within the next 12 to 18 months.

Two grants valued at $2,500 were awarded to post-secondary students currently studying either business or science in a technology-related field. The recipients were:

Mr. Scott Hirsch – Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC
A straight ‘A’ student all his life, Scott is currently pursuing a dual major in Business and Computer Science specializing in Managerial Information Systems. To help put himself through school; Scott has founded his own tutoring service and instructs students on a variety of academic subjects.

Mr. Jonathan Kehler – Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC
A top student in Engineering Science at SFU, minoring in Computer Science, Jonathan is pursuing his interests in Artificial Intelligence, Robotics and Machine Learning. A mature student, Jonathan continues to achieve academic excellence while also supporting a young family.

Six $1000 grants were awarded to high school graduates who are pursuing technology education at a BC post-secondary institution. The recipients were:

Ms. Colleen Chau – Mount Douglas Secondary School in Victoria, BC
While balancing an active school life including field hockey, badminton, Chinese school and volunteering, Colleen has also managed to keep a 5.0 GPA. With a desire to put innovative technology to practice, Colleen will be pursuing an Engineering degree in anticipation of becoming an Environmental Engineer.

Mr. Scott Jennings – Correlieu Secondary School, Quesnel, BC
Intending to pursue a degree in Automation and Robotics from Thompson Rivers University, Scott seeks to use his knowledge and resources to create prototypes and functional machines that make a difference in the world, particularly in the area of alternative energies.

Mr. Dhruva Nathan – Ballenas Secondary School, Parksville, BC
Fascinated by nanoscale technologies, Dhruva intends to further his academic excellence at the University of British Columbia. There he also intends to extend his education through co-operative work terms. A blackbelt in Taekwon Do, Dhruva will be graduating high school with a bilingual diploma having participated in his school’s French immersion program.

Ms. Christina Noel – Sa-Hali Secondary School, Kamloops, BC
The record holder at the Thompson Rivers University Popsicle Stick Bridge Building Contest, Christina is planning to attend the University of British Columbia to complete a degree in both Engineering and Science. At UBC, Christina intends to partake in the Co-operative Education program and hopes to establish her own engineering firm one day.

Mr. Michael Peters – Glenlyon Norfolk School, Victoria, BC
With a solid experience in Science Fairs, including a recent second place finish at the Taiwan International Science Fair, Michael intends to pursue undergraduate and doctoral degrees in Biomedical Engineering. Working with the University of Victoria’s CanAssist program, Michael has already invented his first technology, a solution to prevent deep vein thrombosis in wheelchair users.

Ms. Riana Sartori – Delta Secondary School, Delta, BC
Currently completing high school, Riana desires to become an Engineer having watched her father deliver projects around the world for MDA. Riana intends to complete a Bachelor of Applied Science in Electrical Engineering at UBC with a minor in Commerce. During her undergraduate, Riana intends to participate in the Co-op education program and intends to pursue her MBA in the future.

"Scholarships like these help students to continue developing their abilities, and prepare them for successful and creative careers in BC's growing technology industry," says Minister Black. "I congratulate all of the students for their accomplishments – and the BCTIA for its foresight in establishing and funding these scholarships."

The BCTIA launched the Technology Scholarship Fund at its 2005 Technology Impact Awards dinner, seeding the fund with a donation of $10,000. Since then the fund has grown to over $250,000 with all contributions coming from industry.

About the BCTIA
Growing BC’s technology industry…one company at a time.

The BC Technology Industry Association is an industry-funded organization supporting the growth of British Columbia’s strong knowledge economy. Our network of 2700+ member companies are all sizes and from all technology sectors and collectively employ over 60,000 workers in BC.

We deliver programs and services that directly influence the growth and success of our companies, such as PODIUM, our industry promotion program, Xcelerate, our executive education program, and PEER2PEER groups, where our members connect to share and learn.

As the voice of the technology industry, the BCTIA is committed to the ongoing growth, sustainability and prosperity of the technology industry and the transformation of British Columbia to a knowledge-based economy. http://www.bctia.org

For further information or interviews please contact:
Cindy Pearson
BC Technology Industry Association
T: 604-683-6159
F: 604-683-3879
cpearson(at)bctia(dot)org

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