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Work of Game Development students to be showcased

Niagara College’s Game Development program will host its annual GD Launch event, which is an exhibit of student work. GD Launch takes place on April 14, 2016 from 7 – 9 p.m. at The Core pub located at the Welland Campus.

This interactive gaming showcase, featuring Game Development program student’s game environments, character designs and gaming worlds is all highlighted by original game productions created by the program’s graduating class.

Students will also be recognized for their academic achievements with an award ceremony taking place during the event.

Students and faculty from Niagara College’s Game Development program

GD Launch – a showcase of student work and awards ceremony

The Core, Welland Campus, 300 Woodlawn Rd., Welland

Thursday, April 14 from 7-9 p.m.
-30 –

Media inquiries, please contact:

Michael Wales
Senior Communications Officer
Niagara College
905 735-2211 ext. 7773
905 328-4101 (cell)

Julie Greco
Communications Specialist
Niagara College
905 735-2211 ext. 7368
905-328-2532 (cell)

NC students, grads shortlisted for 2016 Emerge Media Awards

Niagara College students and recent graduates are zooming in on success, after have being shortlisted for the 2016 Emerge Media Awards.

The awards, organized by the University of Guelph-Humber, aim to showcase the talent of students attending Canadian colleges and universities, who entered their work in eight different categories: Written Word, Multimedia Production, Photography, Advertising, Videography, Graphic/Digital Design: Editorial, Audio Storytelling and Public Relations.

Semifinalists were announced on March 22 for the second annual awards: 39 submissions representing 95 students from 13 post-secondary institutions across Canada.

Niagara College entries were among semifinalists announced in the Videography and Digital Photography categories.


In Videography, two of the five semifinalists were from Niagara College:

Darryl Sherk, “YouTube Comments” and

Kalyna Taras, Jenna Silta, Mac Kropf, Brad Curran, Mark Ventresca (third-year BRTF) for “Inspiring Potential.”

View story on Inspiring Potential here.


In the Photography category, two out of five semifinalists were from Niagara College:

Lorie Peacock, Series of Original Advertisement Photos; and

Oliver Hannak, Series of Emulated Advertisements.

Both Peacock and Hannak graduated from the College’s Digital Photography program in 2015.

This year’s semifinalists were selected among nearly 150 entries in eight categories.

Although the program is organized by fourth-year Media Studies students at the University of Guelph-Humber, all 49 judges are independent industry professionals. The entries are judged according to originality and creativity, audience appeal and professionalism.

The winners will be announced on April 25. For more information visit

This is the second year in a row that Niagara College entries were among those shortlisted for Emerge Media Awards. Last year, Digital Photography grad (2014) Katie Wyatt won first place in the photography category with her entry “Karsh emulation of George Bernard Shaw.”

View previous articles on InsideNC:

NC students shortlisted for 2015 Emerge Media Awards

NC grad wins first in Photography at Emerge Media Awards

Niagara College PR students studying youth engagement

Students in Niagara College’s Public Relations (Graduate Certificate) program are trying to identify what motivates youth to become involved in their community.

As part of a marketing research project, the students are conducting a study on behalf of the Niagara College Student Administrative Council (NCSAC) and the United Way of South Niagara (UWSN). The research focuses on the engagement and motivation of community involvement in youth, specifically post-secondary students.

As part of their research project, each group of PR students is targeting different demographics within the student body such as first-year, returning, international, and post-graduate students, through a variety of methodologies including group administered, personal interviews, focus group and a web survey. The survey is now underway and runs until mid-November. The findings will be presented November 25.

“What we’re looking forward to most from this study is to garner a greater understanding of what motivates a student to give their time and money, and also identify any potential barriers,” said NCSAC President, Shane Malcolm.

“This is another example of providing our students with real-world experience in a way that benefits the community,” said Linda Warren Camus, marketing research instructor in the Public Relations program. “For the students, it’s an opportunity to create and implement a real-life research project, and for the United Way and NCSAC, it’s an opportunity to use data to better understand a key demographic.”

Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Niagara Falls; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit


A student-created documentary that focuses on missing and murdered aboriginal women and girls will soon be in the spotlight at Niagara College.

The College’s Centre for Student Engagement and Leadership (CSEL), and First Nations Inuit and Metis Student Services (FNIMSS) are hosting a special public screening of the documentary, Our Sisters in Spirit. The screening, to be held at the College’s Welland Campus on Nov. 30, from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m., will be followed by a question and answer period with the student filmmaker.

Writer, director and producer Nick Printup – who is a recent graduate of the College’s Broadcasting: Radio, Television and Film program and currently enrolled in the International Business Management post-graduate program – need aimed at exploring the question of calling a national public inquiry to Canada’s missing and murdered indigenous women and girls, or whether there may be a better approach. He launched the idea in his scriptwriting class in spring 2014. That fall, he pitched the idea of creating the documentary in his Film Production class, gaining support of his peers. While the College provides $1,600 for each film project in that class, Printup and his crew raised more than $12,500 after 30 days of online fundraising, to enhance the quality of the project, which was completed in July 2015.

The Welland resident, who is originally from Ottawa, is passionate about the topic due to his personal connection to nine victims, through his family, friends and communities. “It is an issue that directly affects everyone around me and it is a very real and scary subject,” said Printup. “I wanted to educate people on the issue and, most importantly, educate those who never heard of the issue before or have just come to learn about it.”

The College’s FNMISS department was involved in the project from its inception. Aboriginal student success advisor Bernadette O’Grady-Bomberry recalled preparing for the first Sisters in Spirit vigil held at the College, when Printup counted nine women he had known that had become statistics. “That is nine women removed from their families – nine sisters no more, nine grandmothers no more, nine mothers, nine daughters-no more,” she said. “We listened when Nick was discouraged, disheartened, and needed a sounding board. We encouraged, we sympathized. We heard.”

Now that the labour has come to fruition, she noted that the screening comes with a sense of vicarious accomplishment and a sense of something just being realized. “This movement to recognize our missing and murdered women has become noticed by mainstream Canada,” she said. “The inquiry has been promised and is awaited. But we are still, missing our Sisters in Spirit.”

“The issue of our missing and murdered Aboriginal women is important for our local communities as well as Canada, and it is great to see Niagara College students addressing this issue in a profound and deeply meaningful way,” said Jeff Sinclair, community engagement coordinator for CSEL. “The Centre for Student Engagement and Leadership is proud to provide support to the student filmmakers and First Nations, Métis and Inuit Student Services to bring this film to our on-campus and broader communities.”

The experience of documentary filmmaking led Printup to pursue education in business after graduating from the College’s Broadcasting program earlier this year. “The most rewarding experience about this project, for me, has been the ability to utilize my education as a tool to help my communities, my people and my family; and the opportunity to do more and take physical action to make a change, create awareness and educate the general public on a serious human rights issue,” he said.

Those interested in attending the screening on Nov. 30 may reserve seats online at or contact Jeff Sinclair at 906-641-2252 ext. 4610 (leave a message with your name and number of attendees).

For more details about the film visit

Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Niagara Falls; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit


Curtain rises on student-created documentary Oct. 31

Five Niagara College students will soon see a film they created premiere on the big screen.

Inspiring Potential, an autism awareness documentary they created for Autism Ontario – Niagara Region Chapter, will be featured for a one-time screening at Landmark Cinema in St. Catharines on Oct. 31. The 30-minute documentary aims to help viewers understand autism spectrum disorders (ASD) by explaining it through the personal stories of five local families.

Representatives from Autism Ontario – Niagara Region Chapter approached Niagara College earlier this year with the idea of making a short documentary as part of its autism awareness campaign. A team of students in their third year of the College’s Broadcasting: Radio, Television and Film program, took on the project with enthusiasm as part of a class corporate video project. The team included Kalyna Taras (producer), Jenna Silta (director), Mark Ventresca (camera operator), Brad Curran (audio) and Mac Kropf (editor).

Taras, 23, said the experience was an amazing opportunity for her and the team of students. “We always knew the goal was to have this shown on the big screen which raised our standards and expectations for ourselves and this doc,” said Taras. “I’m most looking forward to the reactions from the five families in the film but also how this will affect the community – both ASD community and local community.”

“This is exactly the type of project we like our students to become involved in; working with members of the local community and creating a production that, in this case, wonderfully documents the lives of children and their families as they address autism,” said Broadcasting professor Bill Boehlen. “This project is a perfect opportunity for our students to create a high quality production for a real-world client and to work with local families whose lives have been affected by autism.”

Taras, a St. Catharines resident, noted that the project not only offered valuable experience in her chosen field but gave her an opportunity to make a difference in her hometown. “Being local, I love contributing and giving back to my community, and this has been a great way to do so,” she said. “I am so proud of my whole team and the work we’ve been able to do for the Autism Society. Doing the project and meeting these families has inspired me to be more involved in non-profits in my community, and to continue creating content that is meaningful to me and has an impact on lives.”

Jordan Shaw, communications and volunteer coordinator for Autism Ontario – Niagara Region Chapter, said the final product exceeded their expectations. “The team of students who created this documentary were amazing to work with on this project. They have been professional and kind, and right from day one they have put their heart and soul into this film,” said Shaw. “We are so grateful for their dedication and enthusiasm and appreciate all the work they have done to help raise awareness about ASD in the Niagara region.”

The documentary premiere wraps up National Autism Awareness Month, and Autism Ontario – Niagara Region Chapter’s Burst the Bubble: Understanding Autism campaign. According to Shaw, more than 5,000 people in the Niagara region have been diagnosed with ASD – a lifelong neurological disorder that affects the way a person communicates and relates to people and the world around them.

“We want people in the community to see this film and come to better understand the lives of families that have been touched by ASD,” said Shaw. “We want people to be aware of the challenges families face on a daily basis, but also to realize that with support, these challenges can be overcome and every individual can have the opportunity to realize their potential. One in 94 people in Canada are diagnosed with ASD and it is by learning about autism that our community can become a more accepting and supportive place for all individuals.”

To learn more about ASD or support the work of Autism Ontario – Niagara Region Chapter, please visit

The premiere of Inspiring Potential will be held at Landmark Cinema, St. Catharines on Saturday, Oct. 31 at 10:45 a.m. It will begin with brief opening remarks and end with a presentation to the families and students who created the film. The movie is free for the public to attend, due to Landmark Cinema’s sponsorship of the screening.

For tickets visit:

Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Niagara Falls; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit

Niagara College helps industry embrace e-business solutions

With support from the Ontario Centres of Excellence (OCE), Niagara College’s Research & Innovation division is ready once again to offer small- and medium-sized businesses (SMEs) access to the College’s resources to provide e-business and technology adoption solutions.

Niagara College will work with as many as 20 local companies, thanks to $50,000 from OCE. Six vouchers are available for companies to access Technology Adoption projects that will focus on technology development and testing/validation activities to support innovation. The remaining 14 vouchers will focus on e-business solutions such as website development, online sales process, digital and social media, and customer relationship management.

“Our new website has greatly improved overall traffic to our retail store and is a huge asset for us,” notes Amy Bond, officer manager with Industrial Pump Solutions ( Bond’s Niagara Falls-based company worked with Research & Innovation last year to enhance its e-commerce capabilities. “Our customers can navigate through our website with ease, which has helped increase our overall sales.” As Ontario’s largest aftermarket and surplus pump inventory supplier, this new easy-to-navigate e-store is essential to their business, she adds.

“There are so many factors that are often affected by change, especially in keeping up with the competition,” says Jaqueline Waspe, executive chef and proprietor at Spring Manor Bed and Breakfast ( “Spring Manor’s website needed updating to showcase our amenities and what sets Spring Manor apart from the others.”

For each project, the Research & Innovation team – which includes Niagara College students, recent graduates, and expert faculty members from the New Media Web Design program – met with the industry partners several times during the project, assessing the business’s needs, proposing solutions, and then populating the pages with the relevant content.

“For the past few months we have been exchanging photos and text, and the team has been training me how to manage the site on my own. The site is linked to social media and has a reservation link for guests to inquire about booking a room,” says Waspe.

“Every company needs a strong web presence and e-business tools to compete in today’s increasingly digital world. Our research team has the right tools and talent to work with local companies to provide them with that competitive edge,” notes Marc Nantel, associate vice-president, Research & Innovation.

More information about the funding program, including details for potential industry partners, is available here: Companies interested in partnering with the Research & Innovation team may contact Kristine Canniff, industry liaison officer,, or 905-735-2211, ext. 7172.

Ontario Centres of Excellence’s Voucher for E-Business and Technology Adoption (VEBTA) program connects eligible companies with the expertise and resources available at Ontario colleges to help their business scale up the development, adoption and implementation of online tools and other technologies to drive innovation. These college projects will lead to new market opportunities for the business, which may include exports.

Niagara College’s Research & Innovation Division provides real-world solutions for business, industry and the community through applied research and knowledge transfer activities. They conduct projects that provide innovative solutions, such as producing and testing prototypes, evaluating new technologies, and developing new or improved products or processes for small- and medium-sized businesses. With funding support from various regional, provincial and federal agencies, students and graduates are hired to work alongside faculty researchers to assist industry partners leap forward in the marketplace. For more information,

Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland, Niagara-on-the-Lake, and Niagara Falls; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit

NC-Brock partnership a game-changer

Niagara College and Brock University have agreed to launch a unique partnership that will allow students to earn a Bachelor’s degree and an advanced diploma in game development in the space of four years.

Under the GAME program students will study at both institutions concurrently and earn both an advanced diploma in Game Development from Niagara College and a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) degree in Game Design or a Bachelor of Science (Honours) degree in Game Programming from Brock University.

Students in both the design and programming streams of the program will benefit from an educational partnership that combines the theoretical with the applied. The bachelor’s degree portion will provide a broad understanding of the creative and cultural context and history of games and the programs game platforms and design and production paradigms. The advanced diploma portion provides hands-on experience and applied skills in programming and design. As part of the shared curriculum students from both streams will work together in their fourth year on a team-based game development project.

“This is a great example of Niagara’s two postsecondary institutions coming together in a way that will benefit students and industry” said Niagara College’s vice president academic Steve Hudson Ph.D. “Students will acquire the theoretical knowledge and applied skills required to succeed in this burgeoning industry and these well-rounded graduates will drive further growth and innovation in the world of game development.”

“We’re extremely pleased to start offering this collaborative program. Niagara has established itself as a great place to do business for video game developers and that has meant a constant need for skilled designers and programmers” said Brock University Vice-President Academic Neil McCartney. “This new program will give students the best-possible training and set them up for a career in a growing industry.”

Both credentials will be earned over four years – a process that would normally take seven. The program has been in development since 2008 and will welcome its first cohort in September 2016.

Niagara College offers more than 100 diploma bachelor degree and advanced level programs at campuses in Welland Niagara-on-the-Lake and Niagara Falls; as well as more than 600 credit vocational and general interest Continuing Education courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences advanced technology media applied health and community safety supported by unique learning enterprises in food wine beer horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit