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President’s welcome – Fall 2021

Posted on September 7, 2021


I acknowledge that Vancouver Community College (VCC) is located on the traditional, unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəyəm (Musqueam), Sḵwx ̓ ̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səl̓ilw̓ətaʔɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) peoples who have been stewards of this land from time immemorial. 

As VCC president, I have the distinct honour of welcoming all new and returning students, faculty, and staff to the 2021-22 school year. Over the past 18 months, we’ve endured many things and accomplished many more. Now, we get to come back together and I could not be more excited.

Above all, VCC is about community. Supporting our students, our city, and our province is what we do best. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, I am proud to say VCC never closed – never stopped providing the quality education and responsive support that our students count on, or the critical skills our community needs. This is the “VCC Effect” we’re known for. 

I want to personally thank and acknowledge every member of the VCC community who contributed to COVID-19 prevention and relief, whether by administering tests and vaccines, fundraising for bursaries, or by simply adapting to working or learning remotely. You have made this return to campus possible.

What to expect on VCC campuses

Following numerous talks with public health professionals in recent weeks, I want to share my full confidence that returning to campus is safe, and that our entire community will be better for it. Please remember that masks will be mandatory in many indoor public spaces until further notice, and this includes most spaces on VCC campuses, including classrooms.

Please also be prepared for new BC Vaccine Card requirements to come into effect Monday, Sept. 13, when everyone 12 years old and over will need to provide proof of vaccination to access many services and events in B.C. This will include some publicly available services on VCC campuses. 

For anyone who is still hesitant about getting the COVID-19 vaccine, I want to stress that vaccination is not only safe, but also the best tool we have for ending the COVID-19 pandemic. To anyone who is eligible and able: please visit your local clinic and get vaccinated.

After being distanced for so long, I realize that everyone will have different levels of comfort about returning to in-person learning. I urge you all to practice kindness, courage, and respect as we navigate these changes together, and as we continue to be the leaders our community needs.



Ajay Patel
President and CEO
Vancouver Community College

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