Selkirk College Smarts Program

Selkirk College SMARTS Program – Call for Proposals

Selkirk College Smarts Program

SMARTS: Connecting small- and medium-sized businesses with research expertise in the fields of geospatial technology and digital fabrication.

The Selkirk-SME Applied Research and Technology Solutions (SMARTS) Program connects businesses with Selkirk College faculty and student expertise in the fields of geospatial technology and digital fabrication. It aims to help small- and medium-sized enterprises use advanced technologies to develop new or improved products and services. The Program is supported by the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC IRAP). As a result of this support, financial assistance is available to cover a portion of research costs associated with successful proposals.

Submissions are accepted on a continuous basis. The SMARTS programs end in March 2019.

Selkirk College’s SMARTS Program invites small and medium-sized businesses to submit proposals for technology-oriented research and development projects.

Proposed projects should make use of Selkirk College research expertise in a way that helps the applicant develop new or improved products, services, or business processes that are anticipated to drive the growth of the enterprise. Projects should be experimental or innovative in nature.

Note that services without a research or innovation component (e.g., cartography) are not offered through the SMARTS program. Potential applicants are encouraged to contact the SMARTS team in advance of the proposal deadline to confirm their eligibility, discuss their project idea and its fit with Selkirk College researcher expertise, and get help to scope a proposal.

Submissions are accepted on a continuous basis. The SMARTS programs end in March 2019.

SMARTS Program Project examples

SMARTS researchers have broad expertise in the fields of geospatial technologies and digital fabrication. Past SMARTS projects have involved the following R&D services:

Digital Fabrication

  • Rapid Prototyping (producing prototypes, researching and testing prototype designs and materials)
  • 3D Modeling (scanning 3D objects for reproduction, generating 3D models for analysis and production)
  • Advanced Manufacturing Process Optimization (building custom digital fabrication equipment, improving productivity with new workflows and equipment configurations)

Geospatial Technologies

  • Web Mapping (developing innovative mapping platforms for data sharing and communications)
  • 3D Visualizations (generating static and dynamic visualizations of 3D geospatial data, developing augmented reality and virtual reality applications)
  • Remote Sensing and Unmanned Aerial Systems (collecting data via UAV, testing sensors, analyzing remotely sensed data from UAV or satellite, developing workflows and algorithms)
  • Spatial Modeling (modelling landscape impacts of environmental change)
  • App Development and Customization (building customized mobile tools for geospatial data collection and sharing, researching and testing technology options)

If you have a technology-focused project idea that does not fit in the categories or digital fabrication orf geomatics, contact the SMARTS project team to discuss options. Faculty from other fields such as engineering, health and natural resources may also be available to provide research services depending on your project needs.

Eligible Applicants

The program is open to small- or medium-sized enterprises (up to 500 employees) in Canada. Businesses must be growth-oriented.

Application deadline

Submissions are accepted on a continuous basis. The SMARTS programs end in March 2019.

Available Funding & Eligible Expenses

The SMARTS program provides up to $5000 per project in research funding and proponents are required to contribute at least 25% of project costs. Projects with a larger budget may be proposed with the understanding that costs over the $5000 contribution will be the company’s responsibility. Eligible expenses for SMARTS funding are limited to Selkirk College research services, contractor fees and certain fees for access to specialized equipment. Selkirk College research services are expected to make up the majority of each project’s budget.

Apply Now

Please contact the SMARTS program facilitator, Lauren Rethoret, for the application form and to discuss your project idea.

Better Equipped for Connecting to the World

Basin-Boundary Rural High Speed Internet: Better Equipped for Connecting to the World

Better Equipped for Connecting to the World

Over 12,000 Basin-Boundary households can look forward to better high-speed Internet access

After more than three years of hard work, residents in over 12,000 rural households, in more than 62 communities in the region, will have access to new or improved high-speed Internet.

“Rural Columbia Basin and Boundary residents love their communities for many reasons, including the remoteness, but being able to rely on the Internet to connect with the larger world—and within our own region—has become essential,” said Johnny Strilaeff, Columbia Basin Trust President and Chief Executive Officer. “The new high-speed service means residents in these areas can now access resources and enjoy opportunities that increase their quality of life.”

Partnerships with 14 Internet service providers to secure funding from the federal Connecting Canadians program, the provincial Connecting British Columbia Program and regional districts, in addition to its own funding, allowed the Columbia Basin Trust to improve access to high-speed Internet in rural communities.

Additionally, from planning to implementation, it was the Trust’s collaboration with a Regional Broadband Committee comprised of the regional districts of East Kootenay, Central Kootenay, Kootenay Boundary and Columbia Shuswap, and the Village of Valemount and the Ktunaxa Nation Council that helped make it happen.

“Improving access to high-speed Internet in our rural communities was a key priority for the Regional Broadband Committee,” said Rob Gay, Regional Broadband Committee Chair and Regional District of East Kootenay Electoral Area C Director. “We’re excited to see the completion of this project and all the benefits that it brings to rural area citizens.”

Important improvements allowing for significantly better connection

The project’s $8-million budget allowed for two significant improvements: the ISPs were able to expand or improve their infrastructure, most of which is wireless; and, the Trust was able to expand or improve its existing fibre optic broadband network so that ISPs could better connect to it.

The new equipment now enables a download speed of at least five megabits per second to rural households with higher speeds available in most communities.

“It’s vitally important for smaller communities throughout B.C. to have reliable, high-speed access in order to grow local economies, create jobs, access education, health care, emergency services and connect with friends and family,” said Jinny Sims, Minister of Citizens’ Services. “These significant accomplishments are the result of collaboration between many parties and serves as a model for other regions wanting to expand connectivity in B.C. Congratulations to everyone involved on this important achievement.”

Read more about the story HERE.

Bringing the Latest Technology to Basin Communities

Bringing the Latest Technology to Basin Communities

Bringing the Latest Technology to Basin Communities

The Columbia Basin Trust’s new Community Technology Program helps create tech-enabled spaces.

Much of life today revolves around technology. More and more people are seeing new opportunities in the areas of video and music production, creating digital art and animation or recording their own podcasts. Yet not everyone has access to the technology required to participate or thrive in this digital world.

Soon, more Columbia Basin residents will be able to access digital equipment and software, with support from Columbia Basin Trust’s new Community Technology Program.

The two-year, $1.5-million program will provide grants and support to registered non-profits, and First Nations and local governments that operate public spaces like libraries and community centres. These organizations will be able to outfit their public space with sophisticated digital equipment so that residents can access the latest technology to help bring their creative ideas to life.

“It’s easy to say that everyone should be online these days, or using state-of-the-art digital equipment, but not everyone has the means to do so,” said Johnny Strilaeff, Columbia Basin Trust President and Chief Executive Officer. “This new program will help level the playing field so that Basin residents can enhance their digital literacy and get creative. They can try out things like 3D printers, robotics kits or receive training to learn, connect and create using technology for free at community spaces.”

Creating a tech-enabled community space may include purchasing equipment such as desktop computers with specialized software, video cameras, and digitization and recording studio equipment. The program will also support renovations to house the equipment, or acquiring suitable furniture. Educational and training components that teach the public how to use the equipment will also be supported.

Interested organizations must submit an Expression of Interest by December 17, 2018.

Selected organizations will work with a program advisor to develop the concept and write the application. A second intake will be held later in 2019. Learn more at

This program is one of the ways the Trust helps communities address their priorities. It also supports community efforts through several other programs, including its Community Development Program and Community Initiatives and Affected Areas Programs. Learn more at

Women in Technology & Indigenous Women in Technology Scholarship

Women in Technology & Indigenous Women in Technology Scholarships

Women in Technology & Indigenous Women in Technology Scholarship

Ten female BC students have been awarded $10,000 Women in Technology and Indigenous Women in Technology Scholarships from the Irving K. Barber British Columbia Scholarship Society.

Premier John Horgan announced the scholarships in May 2018 at the BC Tech Summit to inspire and support more women considering these fields.

Women are under-represented in tech-related disciplines such as sciences, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). Women receive about 37% of STEM credentials awarded by the B.C. public post-secondary system, compared to 59% of non-STEM program credentials.

“We want to open the doors for more women in the tech sector because they’re underrepresented in tech businesses throughout the province. Women have the knowledge, skills, and tech talent to launch successful careers in a dynamic sector and we are committed to supporting them to get ahead,” said Melanie Mark, Minister of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. “These scholarships are an important first step to giving more women opportunities to succeed in the tech sector.”

To be eligible, students need to demonstrated commitment to pursuing a career in computer science, engineering or mathematics. Read the full press release here.

The tech sector in B.C. is one of the fastest growing sectors of the economy generating about $29 billion in revenue, supporting over 106,000 good-paying jobs. The province is home to more than 10,200 tech businesses.

Innovate BC Ignite Program

Innovate BC Ignite Program: Ignite Round 7

Innovate BC Ignite Program

Innovation doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It happens with ideas, insights, time — and money.

Innovate BC’s Ignite Program provides up to $300,000 to fund innovation projects in the areas of natural resources, applied science and/or engineering.

Teams made up of industry and academia come together to solve real-life business problems in a 3-year time frame. From helping get clean drinking water into third world countries to diagnosing eye diseases faster than ever before, Ignite is bringing technology to life in BC.

Program Eligibility

Focus area: Proposals must involve the areas of natural resources, applied science and/or engineering, and must outline the business problem you and your team is attacking.

Teams: Applicants must be a BC-based team comprised of two or more companies, organizations and academic researchers. All teams must include an academic member and an industry partner.

Matching funds: Projects must secure matching funds from industry or government sources at a ratio of 2:1 matching dollars to Ignite dollars.

Timing: Projects must plan to move a proposed innovation to market within a 3-year timeframe.

Key dates – Ignite Program Round 7:

  • Deadline to submit Letter of Intent (LOI) to Innovate BC: January 28, 2019
  • Deadline for invited applicants to submit a full proposal: April 8, 2019
  • Anticipated notice of decision: Late June 2019
  • Anticipated start of funding: July 2019

Your Application

Steps to apply:

  1. Read the Program Guidelines.
  2. Download an Application Form.
  3. Contact Innovate BC to discuss your project and apply via

View past winning Ignite projects here.


Digital Arts & New Media at Selkirk College

Digital Arts & New Media at Selkirk College

Digital Arts & New Media at Selkirk College

For people looking to explore and/or expand their skills, combining technology with creativity and artistry, the two-year Digital Arts & New Media program at Selkirk College is specifically geared to provide the skills necessary to gain a solid foundation in graphic arts, website development, video and sound production, animation and digital media.

A Solid New Media Foundation

This intensive program provides students with hands-on experience in:
  • Graphic Design
  • Digital Photography
  • Digital Video and Audio Editing
  • Mobile Application Development
  • Motion Graphics
  • 2d and 3d Animation
  • Web Design and Programming

Program graduates leave with the skills required for advanced production techniques, effective project management and the new media business environment.

Digital Arts & New Media at Selkirk College

Maximizing Employability

The program addresses rapid technological changes in the new media industry and encourages creative solutions in the production of original materials for the interactive education and training, advertising and marketing, and entertainment industries. Using skills acquired in this program, you will be able to maximize employability using a broad range of multimedia production skills.

Small class sizes allow excellent accessibility to instructors and equipment.

Many graduates of this program have gone on to become professionals in the multimedia field, while others have found this program useful as a stepping-stone towards further education in the digital arts.

Learn more!