The UBC Name Project – Rob


RobPeople that have interacted with me in different times call me different names. When I was young boy, people called me ‘Bobby.’ These people are mostly dead now though. *laughs* Then people started calling me ‘Bob’ in my early teens. The only time I was called ‘Robert’ was when I knew I was in for some shit. But other than that, it was a traditional thing to call me ‘Bob.’

Then at a certain point in life, almost fifteen years ago, I tried to go by ‘Rob’ as an experiment.

Throughout my life, I’ve noticed this change in culture regarding status in late 70s or early 80s. In my early life, it was a positive and traditional thing to call people by nicknames like Joe, and Mike. But then ‘Joe’ started calling themselves ‘Joseph,’ and ‘Mike’ started called themselves ‘Michael.’

I always saw formalizing names as dressing for business or success. Formalization sets in, and the old casualness has become something negative, though I don’t agree with it at all. It’s kind of like when I have a suit and a tie on, people treat me differently, more so for women if they dress differently. I read a book by David Foster Wallace, who wrote about names in an essay in his book, Consider the Lobster. He talks about how names affect your status and influence, you should read it.

Also, here’s a personal example: my sister ‘Jane’ used to be ‘Janey.’ Then at a certain point, she rejected the name ‘Janey,’ claiming that it was not dignified enough. And so, she started to use the more formal name ‘Jane’ as a status symbol. I had to train myself to not to call her Janey. It seems that she wants to go back to being ‘Janey’ as time passes however. Personally, ‘Bobby’ is sounding better and better to me as I get older and older.

See The UBC Name Project on Facebook to see the rest of Rob’s interview.

Introducing Parents Guide, Fifth Edition

By Helena Zhu, Women Students Program Assistant at Access & Diversity

In time for a new season, we have a new edition of the Guide to Resources & Supports for Parents. You can access the guide on the Students who are parents page. Don’t forget to also drop by Access & Diversity’s booth at the upcoming seventh annual Multicultural Family Resource Fair on Friday, March 27 from 10 a.m. to noon at UBC Acadia Commons Block, 2707 Tennis Crescent. We will have various resources available for the taking and interactive activities for you and your child(ren).

Below are some highlights of the updates in the fifth edition of the guide:

  1. We added an interactive map (P. 9) for housing cost by Vancouver neighbourhood from The Ubyssey to allow you to better compare housing options.
  2. We added child subsidy options on P. 12 to include BC Family Bonus Program (up to $111 per child per month) and the Canada child tax benefit.
  3. We added additional food options on P. 19 to include Sprouts, which offers affordable vegan lunch by donation (suggested $1) every Friday, as well as the information on the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society.
  4. We added how and why you should get a UTown@UBC Community Service Card on P. 26, in case you haven’t yet.
  5. We added plenty of tips on activities you can do with your child(ren) on campus, from a stroll in the Nitobe Garden (by donation during winter) to hands-on programs at the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, which is free for students and children age 4 and under (P. 35-36).
  6. As for off-campus activities, you can now read about YMCA camps and skating for free at Robson Square Ice Rink on P. 37-38.
  7. Last but not least, we updated all the links, so they would lead you to the right places!

We hope you find the latest edition useful.

Register for Summer Camps

Swim Lessons

Swim Lessons” by ICMA Photos under CC 2.0, cropped from original.

By Helena Zhu, Women Students Program Assistant at Access & Diversity

Spring break is over and it is never too early to start registering your kid(s) for affordable and enriching summer camps. Below is a selection of camps we handpicked for you:

On Campus

UBC camps

UBC camps offer a lot of flexibility. Since most camps either take up the morning or the afternoon, you can custom-build a full-day camp, as long as you add in “lunch supervision.” UBC camps are tailored to kids of different ages and interests. Camps range from music camp, e.g. Little Mozarts for four to five year olds at $250 for five mornings, to Lego Design Robotics at $135 for five afternoons (eight to 12 year olds).

The camps are more expensive than those hosted by the YMCA, but they are right on campus. For more information, please visit Continue reading

The UBC Name Project – Umang

Umang Pooja Khandelwal:


My name Umang is of Sanskrit, Indian origin, meaning ‘happiness,’ ‘hope’ and ‘enthusiasm.’ I was given this name so that I am always aware that one’s success is defined by their happiness quotient. With graduation round the corner and the dawn of a new chapter in my life, I am beginning to realize now more than ever how my name defines me and the choices that I make.

Today on International Women’s Day, I want to share how my middle name came to be. In the majority of the Indian subcontinent, naming conventions follow that a person carries their father’s name as their middle name. Living in a largely patriarchal society in India, my mother defied the existing norms and put up a strong fight against the resistance she faced by the legal system. This unprecedented act led to my middle name being my mother’s name, something I am very proud of. It is a reminder of who I am and what I stand for, and the reality that we have a long ways to go to achieve gender equality. Umang gives me the hope for a better tomorrow and Pooja inspires in me the tenacity necessary to achieve it.

Affordable, Family-Friendly Activities on Campus

Pacific Spirit Path (2)

Pacific Spirit Park (2)” by Asher Isbrucker under CC BY 2.0

By Helena Zhu, Women Students Program Assistant at Access & Diversity

Ever find yourself wishing that activities on campus were more affordable? Hope these free and low-cost tips could allow you and your family to have fun without hurting your wallet.



Did you know that swimming at the UBC Aquatic Centre is free for current UBC students? All you need is your student card. For other members of the family, the pool includes free access for children under 3 years old, Toonie Swim, and free swimming and aquatic classes for all at the beginning of each academic term. If you have a Community Service Card, which you can apply for if you live in Acadia Park or the University Apartments, single drop-in starts at $2.75. The Aquatic Centre includes a 50m indoor pool, hot tub, steam room, fitness area, weight room, diving boards, among others. To see the drop-in schedule, please visit


From public skating to family hockey, UBC students have access to the Thunderbird Arena for free. Entrance for children and other family members start at $2.75 for drop in with the Community Service Card. Skate rentals are between $3.50 and $4.50. To see the schedule, please visit

After-School Programs

As the weather gets nicer, UTown@UBC is offering a six-week fun and interactive after-school program for your kids and teens. Kids Fit, engages kids 7 to 12 years old in games, sports, swimming, and outdoor activities. It runs on Mondays and Wednesdays from 4 to 6 p.m. from May 11 to June 18 and costs a total of $35. Youth Fit, for youths between 13 and 18 years old, runs on Saturdays from 3:30 to 5:30 p.m. and Mondays from 5 to 7 p.m. between May 9 and June 15 and costs $50. Although Youth Fit activities are subject to participants, they could include rock climbing, bowling, soccer, fencing, and dragon boating.

Both programs give priority to UNA and UTown@UBC residents, but general public will be admitted if spaces are available. Registration for both closes at 4:30 p.m. on May 4. To register, please visit or


In the basement of the Student Union Building UBC Sprouts hosts “Community Eats” every Friday to provide vegan lunch by donation (suggested $1). The doors open at 11:30 a.m and is open until all the food has been served. Be sure to bring a reusable container and utensils. On other days of the week, Sprouts serves food and drinks at affordable prices. For more information, please visit

Take a Stroll

As UBC students, you can visit both the Nitobe Garden and the Botanical Garden for free. The greenery could just be the oasis you need with your family after a busy day. In winter times, Nov. 16 to March 14, the gardens are open to the public 9:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. by donation. For other nature walks, you can consider Wreck Beach if you are ready for 400 stairs down and up, Tower Beach (fewer stairs), or Pacific Spirit Park trails.

Arts and Culture

You can access plenty of museums and galleries on campus: Museum of Anthropology (free for UBC students and children 6 and under), Morris and Helen Belkin Art Gallery (free admission to all), Beaty Biodiversity Museum (free for UBC students, faculty, and staff and children age 4 and under), and Pacific Museum of Earth.

If you enjoy concerts, the School of Music frequently puts on free concerts for all to enjoy. To see the schedule, please visit

The Revolution Starts at Home


maroon” by Humphrey King licensed under CC BY 2.0.

Post by Hannah Barath, Co-op Student Assistant at Access & Diversity

It seems like there are certain acts of violence that someone is always willing to talk about. Murder for example – there is an abundance of books, songs, films and television shows about just this. Other types of violence are deemed as private issues that are best dealt with behind closed doors. This means that even having experienced a particular act of violence can lead to shame and stigma. Sexual violence and intimate partner violence are two examples that fall into this category. However, there are many activists who are doing amazing work in raising awareness about and destigmatizing these issues. This blog post will primarily focus on intimate partner violence, what it is and how it affects different communities.

A few months ago I read an amazing book called The Revolution Starts at Home: Confronting Intimate Violence within Activist Communities. As the title suggests, this is a collection of essays and reflections on intimate violence in feminist, anti-racist, LGBTQ2I, and activist communities. It was an incredibly powerful read and I learned so much about intimate partner violence, allyship, and accountability. The anthology is edited by Chin-In Chen, Jai Dulani and Leah Lakshmi Piepzna-Samarasinha. I was also fortunate enough to attend a talk with Leah during UBC Sexual Assault Awareness Month in January 2015. In this talk, titled Strong Communities Make Police Obsolete Leah talked about the activism that she has been involved with, the importance of self-care, and justice methods that offer an alternative to the police.

Continue reading

Richmond Centre for Disability Ambassador Project

The Richmond Centre for Disability (RCD) is looking for volunteer ambassadors for their RCD Ambassador Project. The goal of the project is to develop a specialized volunteer and citizenship group that will work to enrich the lives of people with disabilities and improve our community while acquiring valuable employment and interpersonal skills.

Training sessions begin in April. For more information or to sign up, email or or call 604-232-2404.


Let’s CampOUT This Summer!

CampOUT 2014 009

By Helena Zhu, Women Students Program Assistant at Access & Diversity

CampOUT! is a UBC-supported summer camp for British Columbia and Yukon’s queer, trans, and allied youth aged 14 to 21. Running from July 2 to 5, 2015 on Gambier Island, the sixth annual CampOUT gives opportunities for youth to become leaders for social change, meet new friends, access resources, and engage in imaginative, critical, and innovative workshops. CampOUT also features traditional camp activities, such as canoeing, campfires, and arts and crafts.

“I feel incredibly accepted and supported at camp, and that really helped me begin to accept myself,” one past participant shared after attending CampOUT.

CampOUT is an opportunity for diverse range of individuals to come together to learn more about themselves and each other. It also enables participants to learn about how they can act as allies across their differences and share their skills, while getting their needs met.

If you or your child is interested in a safe and inclusive space where you/they can develop leadership skills, build self-esteem, inspire each other, foster hope and resilience, and connect with resources that can support your/their health and well-being, give CampOUT a try.

The camp only costs $25 thanks to the generosity of community partners and donors. Application for CampOUT! is open now until Sunday, March 29. You can find more information and apply on CampOUT’s website. Should you have any questions, please contact CampOUT at, 604-822-8298, or toll free at 1-877-678-2267.

Crohn’s and Colitis Canada’s AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program

Crohn’s and Colitis Canada is proud to launch the fourth annual AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program.

The AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program recognizes the obstacles faced by students living with Crohn’s and colitis and supports them in rising above their personal challenges in pursuit of their dreams.

Supported by an educational grant from AbbVie, Crohn’s and Colitis Canada will extend ten (10) one-time scholarships of up to $5,000 to students living with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis who are entering into or currently attending a post-secondary educational institution for the Fall semester of 2015.

The scholarship eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Students diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Students seeking an associate, undergraduate, or graduate degree from a Canadian university; college; or enrolled in a trade school educational diploma
  • Students enrolled in or awaiting acceptance from a Canadian-based post-secondary educational institution for the Fall semester of 2015

For more information, and to access the online application, please visit The application deadline is June 1, 2015.

B.C. Public Service Work-Able Internship Program

The Work-Able Internship Program is a twelve month BC Public Service work experience program for recent post-secondary graduates with disabilities. This unique program provides learning, coaching and mentorship throughout the internship and interns will gain valuable skills and public service experience.

B.C. Public Service Work-Able Internship Program Full-Time
Salary: $1,627.65 Bi-weekly
Locations: Victoria, Vancouver
Length: Temporary Position from September 1, 2015 to August 31, 2016

Successful applicants will be offered extensive training, growth, and development opportunities, a competitive salary and a balance between work and life commitments. 

To be considered for this opportunity, students must submit:

  •  Resume Profile
  •  Personal Essay (750 words or less no less than 500)

To be eligible for the Work-Able Internship Program you must:

  • Self-identify as a person with a disability
  • Reside in B.C.
  • Have an under-graduate or graduate degree from a recognized post-secondary institution within 2 years of Internship start date of September 2015.

Successful candidates may be asked for supporting documentation regarding their disability to assist in providing accommodation supports. They will also be required to submit documentation that verifies their post-secondary graduation date and may be required to undergo a criminal record check.

Candidates selected to move forward in the hiring process may be assessed on the education, experience, knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies as listed in each of the attached job profiles.

For more information on the Work-Able Internship Program and to apply click here:

For any questions regarding this posting, please contact Odette Dantzer at

If you experience technical difficulties submitting your resume, please email for assistance.