Hometown: Toronto, Ontario

University: University of Victoria (Bachelor of Social Work), UBC (Master of Social Work)

Julie’s Top 5 Tips for Relieving Stress

  1. Be in the moment and tackle what’s in it.
  2. Self-care! (Whatever that means to you: tend the cactus garden, go for sushi, or if you’re Julie, a wee 25 km run across Black Tusk.)
  3. You know it’s coming…know what works for you. Plan ahead for stress.
  4. Find your strengths.
  5. Don’t compare yourself to others. When we do, we lose track of what makes us great.

Julie’s Top 3 SOS Tips (Supporting Other Students)

  1. Advice not required. Be a good listener.
  2. Remind people of their self-care.
  3. Become a good referral service. Whether that be suggesting your friend take a yoga course or a seat in the (huge and comfy) counselling chair in Julie’s office—it’s not up to you to fix the woes of the world.

What Julie does for the Quest community: Supervises the health clinic, supervises the interns, counsels students, writes (policies and the Stall St. Journal)

What Julie does in fewer than 10 words: Makes sure health & wellness is a priority on campus

Busiest time of year for counselling services: November. Students are deep into Third Block with a long way to go before spring.

Question: How can sport impact body positivity? (Instead of, What does my body look like?, ask yourself, What am I capable of doing with my body?)

Favourite quote: You are braver than you believe, stronger than you seem, smarter than you think, and more beautiful than you could ever imagine.

Passion: Ultras. For those uninitiated, that’s any footrace longer than a marathon. Not necessarily racing for Julie, though. Sometimes it’s just a three-day adventure into the backcountry with a pal, 50 km at a time, and seeing where they end up!

Why Quest, Julie? I love working with university-age people. They are resilient. They are open to learning new tools. They are willing to make changes. At Quest, 60% of students have seen a counsellor. I think that’s a good sign that Quest students prioritize their mental health. With everyone living on campus, we are in a type of family system. We impact each other. We learn to support each other. We find out how to contribute our strengths and value the areas we can grow.

MATH: the bigger picture

At Quest, math isn’t just about memorizing equations and numbers —  it’s about seeing the bigger picture.

Richard Hoshino, award-winning Quest Math Tutor, speaks on his Quest experience, and how mathematics relates to everyday life through communication and problem-solving skills.

Also featured is Quest student and member of the Leaders in Elite Athletics & Performance Program, Jeneva Beairsto, for her creative and valuable Keystone project. Jeneva addressed the issue of travel fare inequality by creating an optimal pricing formula that will be implemented by the Vancouver transit system.

Video created by Quest student Ben Grayzel




Anyone who’s been to the gym lately will notice that it’s busier than ever this time of year. That’s because when it comes to New Year’s resolutions, getting fit is probably one of the most common promises that people make to themselves.

The Squamish Chief featured the Quest Kermodes coaching staff and Quest Athletic Director, JF Plouffe, offering some advice on how to get fit for the New Year.


Congratulations, previous Quest student and member of the Leaders in Elite Athletics and Performance Program (LEAP), Roz Groenewoud, for qualifying for her second trip to the Olympics.

Roz will be competing in the 2018 Olympic Games in PyeongChang.

For more information, visit: https://www.olympic.org/pyeongchang-2018

Quest student and mountain biker on the LEAP team (Leaders in Elite Athletics and Performance Program) Jacob Tooke is a new member of the 2018 Blueprint Canadian Enduro Development team. This is a joint project between the Canadian National Enduro Series and Coach Joel Harwood (Blueprint Athlete Development).

This unique partnership allows athletes many opportunities to contribute to their long-term development as an athlete, and to ensure that these bright young stars become active members of the cycling community. 

For more information about the LEAP Program at Quest University Canada

Follow LEAP on Instagram: instagram.com/questleap

Richard Hoshino’s Adrien Pouliot Award

Accepting his award, Richard Hoshino presented four of his favourite math problems, and shared stories of how they lead to authentic mathematical experiences for both high school students and undergraduates. He presented four key problem-solving strategies that enable mahematicians and educators to impact others’ lives.

Read the story here.

Miguel Chiau is a Mastercard Foundation Scholar in the Program at African Leadership Academy (ALA), pursuing his studies at Quest University Canada. He spoke at the Walrus Talks in Ottawa in September 2017.

Quest Kermodes varsity student-athlete Shakayla Thomas was featured in the Hashilthsa Ntc newspaper. She made the leap from a remote First Nations community to full-time attendance at Quest University Canada and her basketball skills were all part of the package.

Quest Women’s Basketball volunteered again at the 2017 Annual Herring Sale for Fishermen Helping Kids with Cancer at the docks in Richmond. The founding principle is that 100% of the money raised must be spent on kids who are being treated for cancer at BC Children’s Hospital. For more information about the event or how to volunteer for next time, please visit: www.fhkwc.ca

Canada’s talented and skilled workforce is a competitive advantage for our country that attracts investment, drives innovation, and strengthens the economy.

That’s why our government is investing in Canadians—to make sure our students and recent graduates have the skills they need to ensure their future success.

Read all the details here.

Dr. Darcy Otto, professor of philosophy at Quest University Canada, will deliver the 32nd annual Woods Memorial Lecture on Nov 30 at 7 p.m. in the Phillips Lecture Hall located in the Hoyt Science Resources Center. Otto’s lecture, “The Promise of Quantum Computing,” is open to anyone interested in learning more about quantum computing. No knowledge of mathematics or quantum physics is needed to attend.

“Quantum computing is a very timely topic,” added Dr. Robert Knop, associate professor of physics at Westminster College. “In the next few years, you will be seeing more and more news stories about it.”

During his lecture, Otto will lead a conversation on the quantum computing technology currently revolutionizing the computing industry. Otto’s lecture will provide insight into how quantum computers can possibly perform tasks such as cracking some of the most widespread encryption schemes; mapping the interactions between molecules; searching enormous databases; or even discovering how to play the perfect game of chess.

In addition to being a professor and published author, Otto is researching the limits of computation and how those limits are challenged by quantum computing as a visiting scholar at Carnegie Mellon. At Quest University, Otto teaches courses in mathematics, computer science and philosophy. He has published papers that apply formal logic to questions in metaphysics and he also published a translation of Socrates’ speech in Plato’s Symposium.

The Woods Memorial Lecture honors Dr. Robert M. Woods, professor of physics at Westminster College from 1947-1972. The Woods Memorial Lecture is made possible by a gift from the Woods family that has been supplemented over the years by gifts from friends and alumni.

For more information, contact Doreen Matune at matunedm@westminster.edu or 724-946-7284.

Read the whole story here

It’s no surprise that Quest University Canada was ranked #10 by bestchoiceschools.com as one of the most beautiful schools in all of Canada. Quest is especially well-known for its large amount of green space throughout campus that makes it perfect for students to socialize and study.

The schools were chosen and ranked based upon certain criteria: awards and recognition, numbers of notable features, student enjoyment, historical significance and environmental friendliness.

Quest student Aaron Slobodin has been recognized for his perseverance with a Crohn’s and Colitis Canada AbbVie IBD Scholarship worth $5,000. He was awarded this scholarship along with 15 other Canadian students who manage colitis and Crohn’s while attending post-secondary school. Despite the challenges, Aaron plans to study abroad in Hungary this year, complete his degree, and pursue master’s studies after graduation.

Aaron recorded a Facebook video post talking about colitis and his life at Quest, and the Squamish Chief published an article.

Fellow student Arlette Akingeneye had an opportunity to chat with Aaron.

Arlette Akingeneye: Maybe we could start by you telling us a little bit about yourself.

Aaron Slobodin: I have been here for five years now at Quest. I grew up on Denman Island which is a small Island off Vancouver Island. At Quest, I am specializing in math, more of pure math than applied. And I am currently working on graduate applications to do a master’s.

AA: What is your Question?

AS: My Question is “How Do Revolutionary Ideas Change Mathematics?” For my Keystone, I did work with Sarah Mayes-Tang, and it was really due to her area of research.

AA: Why did you choose to come to Quest?

AS: It sounds really funny, but I did not apply anywhere else. I decided that I wanted to come to Quest. At my high school, we had people who came around showcasing universities, and I think Spencer, who was working with Admissions at the time, came by, and I fell in love with it [Quest] and how personal it was. Having access to professors was really appealing to me and being able to form relationships with them. So, I decided that I wanted to come.

AA: Tell us about receiving the Crohn’s and Colitis scholarship. How was the application process? And what does this mean to you?

AS: This is my second year applying. The application process is not too intensive. You have to get a formal diagnostic filled out by your specialist. I got reference letters from Sarah Mayes-Tang and Richard Hoshino. And they also ask you to write a 500-word essay. They give you guidelines of things they are looking for. If you answered everything in the guidelines, it would really be difficult to fit in within 500 words. So, I took it as an opportunity to tell them about my background with colitis and managing it while at university. I think it’s officially given to achieving academic excellence in spite of the conditions. So, I tried to highlight how I am trying to do that.

AA: What does it mean to you receiving this scholarship?

AS: I was really excited to get it. It was a really big relief. I feel pretty fortunate that there is this body of people which is Crohn’s and Colitis Canada. I haven’t met anyone in Crohn’s and Colitis Canada, but they have this foundation that gives scholarship to students across Canada. So, I am really lucky that they saw my application and they were willing to support me without knowing me. That was really huge for me.

AA: Is the scholarship meant to only help you with your studies or you can use in other areas?

AS: It is supposed to go directly to your studies, so tuition, but they make it pretty easy that you can apply it to either fall, summer, or spring semester. You can apply it to blocks or other related materials.

AA: How many people were recipients of this scholarship?

AS: They gave it to 15 people across Canada. Usually, they give 10 scholarships, but this year, they gave 15 in celebration of Canada 150.

AA: If we go back in the story, when were you actually diagnosed with Crohn’s and colitis?

AS: Crohn’s and colitis are actually different conditions. I was diagnosed with colitis end of first year, just over three years ago. And I guess symptoms started to develop when I was here, and then it got worse and I had to take some time off school.

AA: How has your experience at school been like, studying and having to go to the doctor most of the times?

AS: The block program is really good. I do not think I would have finished a semester anywhere else. I have taken either eight or nine blocks off during the four years. I was fortunate I was in the block program. I guess it has not been easy, but everyone has got their own things that make it difficult in university. Treating my colitis has not been straightforward, so I see my specialist once or twice every two or three weeks. I think the faculty at Quest has been really supportive. Often, I would go to a classroom and say “hey …just so you know, I am currently having some medical issues.” I kind of give them a little bit of rundown, and I always receive support. Without that, it would have been harder, you know!

AA: What is one thing that people do not know about you?

AS: I think most people do not know that I have colitis. So, that would be something that people do not know. Friends know, but it does not come across a lot in conversations. I am also hoping to do this international math program in Hungry as an exchange in the spring.

AA: What are your plans after graduation?

AS: I am hoping to go straight into grad school. The exchange I am hoping to do this spring, it will finish off my credits at Quest, and I hope in the fall of 2018 to be at one of the universities I am applying to, to continue my education in math.

I think the funny part I would add is …having colitis, and I think this will fall for Crohn’s as well, there are things you appreciate that other people do not appreciate. It kind of gives you a new appreciation of washrooms – the accessibility to washrooms – which is kind of funny.

Wildfires Aren’t Just a Land Thing

Marine ecologist Dr. Tse-Lynn Loh, a Quest visiting tutor in the Life Sciences, contributed to an article on the impact of wildfires on marine life. The article, published on the Oceana blog, discussed how smoke and ash that billow from a blaze can change water quality in streams, rivers, and oceans, and could have major effects on marine ecosystems.

2015 Quest graduate Julian Grant’s Keystone project has been published in the International Journal of Agricultural Sustainability. Julian surveyed and interviewed small-scale farmers to assess the perceived impacts of a Canadian permaculture non-governmental organization’s (NGO) project in Butula, Western Kenya. This study emphasizes the importance of direct, reciprocal communication between NGOs and project participants for fostering feelings of autonomy and competence, thereby strengthening resilient agroecological systems. Read the article abstract.

While at Quest, Julian received Distinction for his Keystone project. According to Dr. Maï Yasué, Social Sciences Tutor (Geography), who served as his mentor, “This was by far the most challenging and ambitious field-project she had ever supervised.”

Julian is currently pursuing an MSc in Anthropology, Environment, and Development at the University College of London, where he is researching the historical and political contexts motivating the establishment of Tribal Parks in partnership with the Tla-o-qui-aht First Nation in Clayoquot Sound.