Focus on People Updates

UBC named one of Canada’s Top Employers for Young People in 2023

UBC is recognized today as one of Canada’s Top Employers for Young People in 2023.  

This award recognizes employers that offer the nation’s best workplaces and programs for young people starting their careers.  

As we strive to make UBC a great place to learn and work for all, many programs and services are designed to welcome young employees and those who are new to the workplace, and help them grow in their careers. These programs include university-wide orientation and in-house apprenticeship programs, as well as coaching and career navigation services, workplace learning opportunities, tuition waivers and professional development funding 

As part of the university community, faculty and staff are invited to mental health training and workshops and encouraged to foster workplace wellbeing and take part in wellbeing initiatives. In addition, faculty and staff have access to a range of physical health options, including athletics and recreation facilities, which complement UBC’s many attractions at our Vancouver and Okanagan campuses.   

Three reasons why UBC is named one of Canada’s Top Employers for Young People this year:  

  • UBC’s Postdoctoral Fellows Office is a resource centre that provides support, advocacy, and professional development for postdocs — the Office’s flagship initiative, the Foundations of Career Planning program, aids participants in transitioning to the next stage of their careers through the creation of a development plan, support in assembling a professional portfolio, and help with interviewing and negotiation.
  • The office also manages a Postdoctoral Fellows Teaching Internship, a teaching development program to provide post-docs with an opportunity to develop and deliver guest lectures with a faculty mentor — the program includes a teaching-intensive workshop and a one-term mentorship program. 
  • UBC manages a Red Seal culinary apprenticeship program, enabling chefs to earn their certification while immersed in a full range of culinary experiences at the university.  

This marks the 11th consecutive year UBC is awarded this honour.  Read more about Canada’s Top 100 Employers awards at  


See also:  

  • Looking to join UBC? View our careers and job postings 
  • Visit UBC Today for the latest news, events, and useful dates from across UBC, curated for faculty and staff by UBC Internal Communications.  
  • Visit Focus on People 2025 to learn how we’re striving to make UBC a first-choice place to learn and work. 

Discount programs encourage use of public transit


A number of pilot initiatives help reduce emissions during employees’ commute to campus by offering discounts for local transit.

ProPASS Pilot Program

UBC Okanagan faculty and staff are eligible to enroll in the ProPASS program to receive 15% discount off regular adult monthly bus passes for a minimum of one four-month Pass Period.

Initially launched in fall 2021 and continuing through fall 2022, the pilot aims to reduce the number of vehicles being driven to and from campus daily by encouraging and incentivizing employees to use transit. UBCO has partnered with BC Transit and their regional partners to offer the ProPASS to employees.

BC Transit has also announced they will be launching a new electronic fare collection system, Umo, in BC in late 2022. UBCO will be working closely with BC Transit and their regional partners on the modifications to the ProPASS Program to align with the new Umo system in 2023.

Learn more about the ProPass Pilot Program.


Program for CUPE 116 members

In June 2022, a new Discounted Transit Pass Program became available to eligible CUPE 116 members to support the use of transit to get to and from work. This initiative helps mitigate transportation costs in a meaningful way for as many CUPE 116 members as possible, with a deliberate focus on those who need it most.

The program provides eligible members with a 50% discount on a monthly transit pass for zones 1, 2 or 3. Information has been shared directly with eligible CUPE 116 members to encourage participation.

Members of CUPE 116 typically include trades, food services and hospitality services, technician/research assistants as well as in a variety of diverse positions at the Vancouver campus.

Details on eligibility, instructions for participating in the pilot, FAQs, and other supporting documents are available in the Sustainable Transportation Initiative Pilot Project – Information Package.

If you have any questions or comments, please contact your Employee Relations representative.

Resources to support effective performance conversations

At UBC, we have shifted from the traditional model of performance review to ongoing performance conversations — thoughtful and productive two-way conversations focused on helping employees to grow in their careers, tapping into the employee’s strengths and adding new skills, and looking ahead.

A performance conversation is largely driven by the employee, with the supervisor as coach and partner.

To support both employees and leaders in having effective conversations, the Connect, Open, Explore and Close (COEC) approach was developed in partnership with UBC Human Resources, Coaching Services and Extended Learning.

Available as a guide on the UBC HR website, the COEC approach provides a structure, questions and prompts that can be easily applied to your annual and ongoing performance and development conversations. The COEC model helps to build trust and safety, co-create intent and purpose, discover options and possibilities, and determine a plan with next steps.

Learn more about how to prepare, have, and reflect on performance conversations at UBC.

UBC’s leadership development initiative

UBC is committed to the ongoing development of faculty and staff leaders at every level of the organization.

Leadership is a shared responsibility where we live the vision and values that lead to excellence in teaching, research, learning and engagement for a better world.

Informed by this leadership philosophy, UBC has articulated a leadership framework with six competencies – and related behaviour statements – that all leaders can work toward.

The competencies and behaviours were arrived at through a careful mapping of the skills, knowledge and attitudes expected of senior UBC administrative leaders. They were further validated through internal consultations and a review of other leadership frameworks and competency models in Higher Education.

By uniting under a common philosophy and framework, everyone can take part in building the shared vision for leadership at UBC – a vision that holds us accountable to our strategic commitments and organizational values and enables us to embrace the complexity of our times.

Learn more about UBC’s leadership framework (CWL required).