The new credential received government approval after several years of consultation with the community, submission to government, and curriculum development.

While making the official announcement at the public celebration of the new diploma, Susan Bansgrove, GPRC Vice President Academic, recognized the contributions of the many people whose involvement assured the success of the project. “We are grateful for the enthusiasm and dedication of so many people who helped to make this new credential a reality for the students of our region.”

Among those recognized are: Sukumar Nayar, former GPRC drama instructor and Chair of the Fine Arts department for several years. Nayar, who has been retired for some years, offered his long experience in theatre here and around the world to help lay the groundwork for this diploma – a basis upon which the final submission was built.

Visual art instructor Ian Forbes, an alumnus of GPRC Fine Arts who moved on to new challenges last year, was also noted as having devoted long hours to fine-tuning the submission. Lane Borstad, who is currently on professional leave, gave his enthusiastic support and encouragement to the project as Chair of Fine Arts, and ensured that necessary resources were available to allow development to proceed. Scott McAlpine, Dean of Arts and Science, supported and encouraged the development of the Drama Diploma.

Theatre manager Robert Cole, who has taught drama courses here regularly over the past several years in addition to his role in support of dozens of productions annually, gave generously of his time, his knowledge and his energy.

Most recently, Annie Smith, GPRC drama coordinator, instructor and director, has infused this new diploma program with her great passion for the stage. She has worked tirelessly to develop the final curriculum, and is the proud director of a performance of Burning Vision, which premiered at the College in conjunction with this celebration.

“The development of new programs to serve the communities of our region is an important component of our commitment to our region,” says President Don Gnatiuk. “The occasion we are marking today is a celebration of community, and of the role GPRC is proud to play in the community.”

For further information or comment please contact:

Susan Bansgrove, Vice President Academic
Grande Prairie Regional College


Geoff Whittall, Chair, Fine Arts
Grande Prairie Regional College