Saturday, February 24, 2018

Know Your Profs: Camosun dean Dominic Bergeron really misses teaching

October 28, 2015 by Greg Pratt, managing editor

Know Your Profs is an ongoing series of profiles on the instructors at Camosun College. Every issue we ask a different instructor at Camosun the same 10 questions in an attempt to get to know them a little better.

Do you have an instructor that you want to see interviewed in the paper? Maybe you want to know more about one of your teachers, but you’re too busy, or shy, to ask? We can help! Email and we’ll add your instructor to our list of teachers to talk to.

This issue we talked to Camosun dean of Arts and Science Dominic Bergeron about Swiss Army knives, influencing students, and the fact that he’s not actually a prof anymore.

Camosun College dean of Arts and Science Dominic Bergeron (photo provided).

Camosun College dean of Arts and Science Dominic Bergeron (photo provided).

1: What do you teach and how long have you been a teacher at Camosun?

I haven’t taught since I became dean of Arts and Science three years ago, but I really, really miss it! I’ve been at Camosun for the last eight years and I was teaching microbiology.

2: What do you personally get out of teaching?

This will sound corny, but, to me, teaching is an act of love. The interaction with curious minds keeps me young and on my toes. The sophistication of today’s students impresses me quite a bit.

3: What’s one thing you wish your students knew about you?

I want them to know that I felt exactly like they do sometimes. I felt lost and wondered if I could ever get a job. I worried about the future and sometimes felt like I wasn’t good enough. Trust me: you’ll be fine. Work on your people skills. They’re like the Swiss Army knife: they’ll get you places, get you out of trouble, and help you along the way!

4: What’s one thing you wish they didn’t know about you?

I’m pretty open with people. I can’t think of anything, really!

5: What’s the best thing that’s ever happened to you as a teacher here?

Once in a while I have students coming back to me and letting me know that I have influenced them in one way or another. Recently, I had a nice Facebook message from a former student; she told me I influenced her into becoming a teacher. How cool is that?

6: What’s the worst thing that’s ever happened to you as a teacher here?

I once had a lab exam where I was observing students adjusting a microscope (it’s more complicated than you think) and a student broke down, tears and all. I felt like I was humiliating her; I felt horrible.

7: What do you see in the future of postsecondary education?

Great things! I think people are realizing more and more that the concept of lifelong learning is a real thing. Anyone can learn anythingÉ yes, anything! The education we provide in Arts and Science promotes active learning, thinking, and self-reflection. Many studies tell us this is exactly what employers are looking for.

8: What do you do to relax on the weekends?

I’m an avid triathlete, so I’m always training for my next race. You’ll find me riding my bike, running, or swimming. I also binge-watch shows on Netflix. Have you seen Bloodline? I highly recommend it!

9: What’s your favourite meal?

I’m a vegan, and I can make a killer vegan pizza! I also love Indian food; bhindi masala is a fave (Google it).

10: What’s your biggest pet peeve?

Self-absorbed and self-centred people, and broken glass on the roads.

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