Local governments in McBride and Valemount have a new intern, and she’s not afraid to jump into work. On her first weekend in Valemount, Katy Fabris took part in the logger events at Valemountain Days.

Fabris is from Ottawa, but she chose to go to school at UNBC because of their Bachelor of Planning program. Valemount and McBride chose her because of her Bachelor of Planning.

Fabris is one of the first group of UNBC graduates taking part in a new program offered jointly between Northern Development Initiative Trust and UNBC – Local Government Management Internship. She arrived in Valemount June 3rd after a month spent training with Northern Development, learning about and becoming an ambassador for their programs. She will be working in the Valemount Village Office until November, and is scheduled to work in McBride from November until April.

UNBC is one of only a few schools that offer a planning program at the undergraduate level, and that combined with her love of the mountains and the beauty of the UNBC campus made Fabris chose Northern BC. When asked if she is planning to stay in BC, she said she would like to, but is open to being anywhere.

“The nice thing about being in the North is all the opportunity here, and in small places there is even more opportunity to be involved in local government.”

Why did she choose to take a degree in planning? She says she liked the idea that the profession is future-oriented, and involves a bit of everything.

“As I went through the program I began to see the value and the need for planning,” she adds. “I really like that it’s about positive change and finding what is in the best interest of the public.”

Fabris says that part of the reason that Valemount and McBride picked her is because of all the planning that is happening here. She says it was really exciting to be in Valemount in time for the information session around the approval process for Valemount Glacier Destinations that happened last week.

Prior to this program, Fabris had only spent about four hours in Valemount, as part of a Youth Engagement program while working as a summer student for Service Canada. What does she like best so far about being in Valemount?

“I cannot get over the mountains. No matter where you stand, you can spin around and there’s mountains around you; that is unbelievable. I don’t think I will ever get tired of that.”

McBride and Valemount are two of six communities that are participating in the program this year and Fabris says that NDIT hopes many more communities and graduates will apply next year. Check out http://www.northerndevelopment.bc.ca/internship/local-government-management-internship/ for more information on the program.

By: Korie Marshall