Letter from Affiliate Partner

BCIT Graphic Communications
Technology Management Program


Our Graphic Communications Industry in the Lower Mainland is an extremely competitive one, so it is particularly refreshing when one of our professional associations promotes collaboration as a means for developing new shared resources for our industry. This, in a nutshell, is the root of the inception of our Graphic Communications Technology Management diploma program at BCIT. This program was conceived by, developed for, delivered to, and is supported by, the member businesses of PrintForward’s predecessor – the BCPIA. It is a model that should be broadcast loudly to the rest of the world, as it is rare that business owners who compete so avidly in the marketplace are so successful at developing a shared, collaborative resource. There are several reasons for this success and PrintForward embodies them all.

COMMUNICATION is the key to any successful collaboration. PrintForward creates many opportunities for business owners to come together and listen to each other’s successes and challenges.
When the Graphics Program at VCC was shut down, the membership acknowledged that they all had an aging workforce and a desire to attract young people to their businesses. PrintForward organized the task force that developed the original curriculum for the program at BCIT.

COLLABORATION is still the mainstay of the message PrintForward consistently delivers to its membership. Business owners can come together with common goals to develop shared resources. In 2005, the emphasis was on creating a training ground that would attract young people to our industry. Today, PrintForward focuses on helping their membership address the new work safety standards that our Provincial Government is enforcing. Tomorrow, the association is poised to address the next resource that its membership demands.

EDUCATION is the lifeblood of our industry. PrintForward constantly develops new workshops to educate member companies on the fine points of emerging technologies. Our industry changes rapidly, and “disruptive technologies” emerge and completely shift market share – sometimes in a matter of months. When our membership comes together to identify the fine points of adopting an emerging technology, implementation strategies emerge quickly and efficiently.

GENEROSITY has been the hallmark of this professional association and a reflection of the core values that each member business brings to the table. In the 14 years that the Graphic Communications Technology Management Program at BCIT has grown, over $8 million dollars in contributions have flowed into the program from businesses in our community. None of our post-secondary institutions can bring that kind of resourcing to a training program on their own. The success of our graduates in the businesses that hire them has fed this spirit of giving from our community. It is the ongoing commitment from the professional associations engaged in this program that keep it vibrant, growing, and addressing the future needs of our business community.

When considering the level of engagement your business commits to in building PrintForward initiatives, remember the opportunities this association has created for hundreds of young people just entering our industry over the past 14 years. The Graphic Communications Technology Management Program at BCIT has thrived and grown to embrace new technologies due to the industry relationships developed through PrintForward initiatives. This model of industry engagement in post-secondary training, facilitated by community-minded professional associations, is one we can be very proud of in our Vancouver community.


Wayne Collins with achievement award recipients from the 2016 graduating class of BCIT’s Graphic Communications Technology Management Program.

Wayne Collins is the Program Director of the Graphic Communications Technology Management Program at BCIT. He helped grow the program to span four key imaging technologies with a graphics lab that includes over $8 million in contributions from the Graphics Industry alone. You can learn more about the program at https://www.bcit.ca/study/programs/6180dipma.

Each year, industry gives almost $30,000 in cash for scholarships and achievement awards to students studying in the Graphic Communications Technology Management Program at BCIT.