Photo: NYIT students pose on a bridge over the Fraser River.
This semester, more than 45 graduate students at NYIT’s Vancouver campus temporarily put their books aside to take in the sites of Canada. The students, many of whom are new to the country, learned about Canadian history and culture, including First Nations native to British Columbia (B.C.). The trips also helped strengthen bonds among the students. “We shared personal experiences,” said M.B.A. student Anahi Cabrales, “and this has helped us to build better relationships inside the classroom and to work better in our day-to-day school activities.”
The first trip took place in October. Together with Academic Support and Student Life Coordinator Logan Lorenz, 23 students explored the Fraser Valley, a site about two hours east of Vancouver by car. The day’s activities included a visit to a former Canadian Pacific Railway station converted into a small museum; a picnic on the shores of Harrison Lake; a ride on the Hell’s Gate Airtram (a cable car that carries riders in a steep descent over a section of rapids in the Fraser River—a favorite among many of the students); and a stop at B.C.’s Bridal Veil Falls.
In November, students traveled the mountain resort town of Whistler, famous for hosting many of the events at the 2010 Winter Olympics. The group stopped at two provincial parks in addition to the famous mountain resort. Many of the students were most impressed by the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre, a collaboration between two First Nations groups in the Whistler region that features cultural displays on Lil’wat and Squamish history, traditional wood carvings, and First Nations architecture.
For M.B.A. student Niyta Pabbathi, learning about First Nations cultures was a highlight. “We made bracelets out of cedar roots using a traditional First Nations method,” she said.
Students, most of whom don’t own a car, agreed that getting out of Vancouver is an opportunity not to be missed. “There is a lot of beautiful scenery in Canada,” said Pei Han (Patricia) Su. “This experience made me relax, and the museums helped us learn about Canada’s history and environment.”
Photos by NYIT student Miranda Cabiladas.