Kwantlen students complete first year in BC's only policy studies program

Tue, Jun 12, 2012



For immediate release

June 13, 2012

Kwantlen students complete first year in BC's only policy studies program

(Metro Vancouver, BC) – The end of spring semester marked the completion of the first year for students enrolled in Kwantlen's policy studies degree program. Offered at the Surrey campus, this program has students learning the research, information literacy, and critical thinking skills necessary to be successful in the growing field of sustainability policy.

"The City of Surrey has a strong relationship with Kwantlen and is proud of this ‘made-in-Surrey' program that is designed to fill an important need in our communities," says Dianne Watts, mayor of Surrey. "The students are given a unique opportunity to work on real sustainability projects in Surrey, and be mentored by an expert currently working in the field of sustainability policy."

Policy identifies who is responsible for change and how change will happen. Governments, businesses and the public are beginning to recognize the limits of our ecosystems have been reached, and that looking for new, sustainable methods of operation needs to be a priority. This program is the only degree of its kind in BC devoted to sustainability policy. It includes an applied seminar that involves a partnership with the City of Surrey and focuses on issues facing the South Fraser Region. Graduates of this program will qualify for jobs in the growing fields of policy research, and as sustainability officers in government, not-for-profit organizations, and private companies.

"This program gives students an opportunity to use their education to work in a rapidly emerging field of employment," says Heather Harrison, policy studies coordinator at Kwantlen Polytechnic University. "We realized there was a need for a program like this because there are many students who want to help solve some of the environmental and social justice problems we are facing, and will continue to face, unless change happens soon."

A key aspect of the program is a semester-long course that provides students with critical work experience. This past year students worked with the City of Surrey to complete a project on "Green Economies: What does this mean and how can Surrey build one?" Students provided valuable research to further the city's goals laid out in the Sustainability Charter, a comprehensive framework for implementing a progressive, long-term 50 year vision for a sustainable city.

For more information about this program please visit:, or contact Heather Harrison at

Kwantlen Polytechnic University has been serving the Metro Vancouver region for 30 years, and has opened doors to success for more than 250,000 people. Four campuses—Richmond, Surrey, Cloverdale and Langley—offer a comprehensive range of sought-after programs, including business, liberal arts and science, design, health, trades and technology, apprenticeships, horticulture, and academic and career advancement. Over 17,500 students annually have a choice from over 200 programs, including bachelor's degrees, associate degrees, diplomas, certificates and citations.


For more information about Kwantlen, contact: 
Joanne Saunders
Director, Marketing and Communications
Tel: 604.599.2243