"VCC is a focal point or hub of the community. Both campuses have strategic locations, and relationships should be strengthened and fostered with the surrounding communities."
That's one of the findings from the phase 1 engagement summary recently completed by DIALOG, the design consultant hired by VCC in 2018. The report covers the major Campus Master Plan engagement activities and is the result of several months of consultation with the VCC community.
The next major engagement events are Open Houses planned for 11 a.m. - 1 p.m. on April 2 at the Broadway campus and April 3 at the Downtown campus.
"We're really pleased with the feedback," said Molly Steeves, public engagement associate with DIALOG. "VCC is very passionate about its diversity and the inclusiveness of its public facing services."
Steeves has played a large role in the consultation, attending many of the VCC stakeholder meetings. "You're very hands-on and that's a unique position in the marketplace."
When asked what surprised her during the engagement process, she said VCC's commitment to community was "a pleasant surprise."
"As a client, VCC is very committed to being innovative," she also noted.
Other emergent themes identified in the 18-page report include:
• A strong desire emerged to showcase what VCC does to the outside community - or “turn inside out”.
• VCC is highly accessible to those of different abilities. This includes both internal and external navigability of the physical space, in addition to digital accessibility.
• VCC needs to be highly flexible and adaptable to changing technology, job markets and programming.
• VCC should look to develop and strengthen relationships with partners in industry, culture, hospitality etc.
• VCC should demonstrate sustainability leadership through waste reduction, programs, green buildings, approach to pedagogy and acting as a living lab.
• Staff and students both emphasized the importance of a campus that supports a wholistic approach to wellness.
The summary is the first major report to come from the Campus Master Plan. DIALOG Design aims to have the plan completed by October 2019. You can read the full report here.