The Okanagan College Coyotes basketball teams will get to see their new home bases on Friday.
Okanagan College trades and apprenticeship students and staff have been busy renovating the spaces at Okanagan Christian School for the past year, and the reveal will take place on Friday afternoon.
“I love it when we can collaborate,” OC’s dean of trades and apprenticeship Steve Moores said in a press release. “When we can partner with the community and on a site like this one, it makes the training that much more realistic.”
The locker-rooms will be unveiled only a few hours before the Coyotes men’s and women’s basketball teams kick off their 2019-20 regular season at Quigley Elementary School on Friday night.
The project began with 13 female students from local School District 23. They completed the initial stages of framing, in a program modelled after the Industry Training Authority (ITA) Youth Explore Trades Sampler. The foundation and walls, pre-existing on the west side of the gymnasium, provided a space for the all-female cohort to hone their newly found skills, some using tools for the first time in their life.
After that various groups of students from the trades and apprenticeship department took over to take care of the wiring, plumbing, carpentry, drywall and flooring.
ITA chief executive officer Shelley Gray said everyone wins in a situation like this. Not only do the basketball teams get new locker-rooms, but other students get actual training, too.
“Opportunities like this bring the learning experience to life for students,” Gray said. “Their hard work materializes in front of them, and they get a chance to experience the value of hands-on training and real world skills.
“We’re proud of the students who took part in this program and hope they came away inspired to consider continuing on in their trades education and exploring the skilled trades as a career path.”
As for the Coyotes, who are in their second season in the Pacific West Conference, they will now have—in addition to their new locker-rooms—a shared team room big enough to have meetings, to watch game tape during the week and to receive treatment.
The Coyotes will kick off their season on Friday night at Quigley against the Camosun Chargers. The women play at 6 o’clock, followed by the men at 8.
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