In a historic convocation for UBC Okanagan amid COVID-19, a record 60 current and former members of the university’s Heat teams were among the more than 1,900 students graduating on June 17.
In addition, 27 of the 60 Heat graduates were on rosters during the 2019-20 season, while the remaining 33 Heat grads competed as a part of a Heat team at some point during their time earning their UBC degree.
The convocation was held virtually and took the place of a traditional on-campus ceremony.
By the numbers, the Heat graduated 16 Management degrees and 14 each in Human Kinetics and Sciences. The rest of the breakdown goes as follows: Arts (8), Applied Science (5), Education (2), Science in Nursing (2), and Fine Arts (1).
Looking ahead to next season, UBCO’s athletic program has already begun recruiting.
After hitting the jackpot with his first-ever recruiting class, Heat women’s basketball head coach Bobby Mitchell has been able to recruit another promising crop of freshmen to continue moving the program forward.
Focusing on the local talent, Mitchel has inked commitments from the Kelowna Secondary School, Okanagan Mission Secondary School and Vernon powerhouse high school squads. From the provincial AAA finalists Huskies, Mitchell secured point guard Melania Corrado, and from the Owls, he is bringing in a long-range threat in Kassidy Day. From Vernon is another speedy guard in Kelsey Watts. All three of these Okanagan players are well known to Mitchell after having played their way through the Junior Heat Club program.
Adding to the local talent, Mitchell has also brought in some top players from across the country for his third Canada West season.
The 6-foot-2 post Abby Smith will join the Heat from Winnipeg, while Lauren Foullong a national championship-winning guard playing for Team Ontario as the two non-B.C. bred players. Neelam Rai, another versatile scoring threat, joins the squad from the basketball hotbed of the Fraser Valley.
“We are excited to bring in the 2020 class,” said Mitchell.