Jack Basha and his family fled war in Syria, but the NIC alumnus is now using his training to pursue a bright future in computer programming. (Photo submitted)

North Island College alum goes from refugee to full scholarship winner

Submitted by NIC

North Island College alumnus Jack Basha is preparing to study computer science and pursue a future in programming, thanks to his head start at NIC.

Basha graduated from NIC’s mobile app certificate program in 2019 and was accepted into the University of Victoria on a full scholarship.

A few years ago, his future was less certain. Basha and his family were among the thousands of Syrians who fled war in their home country to seek refuge in Canada.

Basha had already spent two years studying computer science in Syria, but the situation in the country had become perilous.

“It was getting worse by the day,” Basha recalls.

Basha, his sister and their parents eventually arrived in the Comox Valley, thanks to support from their sponsor family.

Within a few months, both siblings applied to NIC and were accepted into programs; Basha began in the mobile application development certificate through the school of DIGITAL Design + Development, while his sister enrolled in NIC’s bachelor of business administration.

With support from his family and his instructors, Basha was able to thrive in his new studies.

Basha and his classmates delved deep into the fundamentals of web and mobile application development and programming, exploring HTML and CSS, JavaScript, iOS and Android app development, among other skills.

The program gives each graduate a solid foundation to pursue employment in the fields of iOS and Android application development, game development and computer programming, or continue their studies with NIC’s Web + Mobile App Development Diploma or Communications Design Diploma.

The program also gave Basha the opportunity to augment his existing knowledge of computer programming with new fundamental skills, including best practices for typography and graphics.

“Before I came to NIC, I didn’t have a strong grasp of design,” he said. “But the training has pushed me much further and I really have a huge head start in the world of mobile application development now.”

Basha says he is most of all thankful for the support of his classmates and his instructors as he adjusted to a new life in Canada.

“The college staff have been really considerate,” he said. “The instructors always listen and give you a chance to speak and rephrase questions if needed. And the other students are the same. It was a welcoming place to learn.”

NIC offers five DIGITAL Design + Development programs, including a web design and communication design stream that focuses on graphic design and front-end development, plus a web and mobile application development stream that focuses on computer programming for mobile apps and the web. To learn more, visit www.nic.bc.ca/digital-design-development

College

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event at Sid Williams Plaza was part of province-wide event on Friday

Buy a Valley Vonka bar, support a good Comox Valley cause

All proceeds go to support YANA, and you might even win a golden ticket

One person dead in two-vehicle accident near Courtenay

Highway 19A was closed for several hours following the crash

Long-term care need pressuring acute care in Comox Valley, Strathcona

Region could use a couple of large facilities for seniors on the north part of the Island

Regional roundtable tackles Comox Valley air quality

Group includes a range of government and community members

3 new deaths due to COVID-19 in B.C., 139 new cases

B.C. confirms 40 ‘historic cases,’ as well

Courtenay event protesting old-growth logging part of a province-wide rally

Similar rallies in communities throughout B.C. on Sept. 18

Comox Valley Beefs & Bouquets, week of Sept. 15

Beef to the gnome thief; bouquet to dental hygienists

Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg dies at 87

The court’s second female justice, died Friday at her home in Washington

Comox Valley protesters send message over old-growth logging

Event in downtown Courtenay was part of wider event on Friday

Application deadline for fish harvester benefits program extended

Those financially impacted by the pandemic have until Oct. 5 to apply

Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Emaciated grizzly found dead on central B.C. coast as low salmon count sparks concern

Grizzly was found on Gwa’sala-‘Nakwaxda’xw territory in Smith Inlet, 60K north of Port Hardy

Most Read