Comox Valley Eldercollege Search Results

When ElderCollege registration opens for the semester, web links will appear under each course title and connect you to the registration system to enroll.


On Campus

CV ElderCollege Membership

ElderCollege membership is an annual membership from September 1, 2021 to August 31, 2022. CVEC does not run courses during the period of May 1 to August 31. By requesting membership with ElderCollege, I understand the membership fee is non-refundable; I consent to NIC releasing my personal information to the ElderCollege Executive Committee and its subcommittees, for the purposes of course registration/notification, and in supporting ElderCollege volunteer activities.

Section Location Dates Cost
CVEC-0001-DLS1 CV Apr 30 $10.00



Knights and Needlework

It has been said that there is only one aspect of the Battle of Hastings on which historians agree--the Normans won! At some point after this undisputed victory, an embroidery known as the Bayeux Tapestry was created. This course will provide a background to England before and during 1066. It will then delve into the mystery and adventure surrounding the making and survival of the Bayeux Tapestry.



Creative Art Box

This course is designed for artists and non-artists to open up their creativity with an introduction of simple art techniques to develop an artist's eye, gain confidence in creating art, and develop new skills to create original art on canvas. The eight sessions will include art videos, demonstrations and interactive discussions. Participants are invited to present their work in a final show and tell online.



Painting Our Salish Sea

Build knowledge of the land, sea and sky of our Salish Sea area. Follow with an examination of related paintings of Impressionist, Neo-Impressionist and Post-Impressionist painters. Then use this knowledge to create your own acrylic paintings with Terri's guidance. There is a balance of theory and hands-on painting and both experienced artists and beginners will have fun learning together. All levels are invited - experience the joy of creativity!



Escape from Colditz Castle

Reichsmarshall Hermann Goering visited Colditz Castle early in WW2. He declared the castle to be "escape-proof," one of many prognostications Goering got wrong. See how the presenter's uncle and a bookkeeper from Manitoba pulled off one of the most famous and successful WW2 escapes. The Dutch did the same a few days later and only got caught when the plan was used a fourth time.



Magic Music Box

Each of the four sessions will feature indepth interviews, performances, musical tips and interactive discussions with some of the best musicians from the Comox Valley. The genres will include blues, jazz, and contemporary, to name a few. Sit back and enjoy, or mix it up and talk to the performers.



All That Jazz

Learn about jazz: the songs,artists, styles and recordings that make up the story of this great music. No musical ability needed; good ears recommended. "Stop playing all those weird notes. Play the melody" T.S. Monk.



Themes in Medieval and Renaissance Art

The course will involve viewing and discussing a variety of images of medieval and Renaissance art. It will be organised into topics related to the worldviews of the period, including Christian belief, naturalism, individualism and classical humanism. All participants will be encouraged to participate in the discussion.



Potlatch, Then and Now

We will explore the origins of the potlatch, its historical development (pre-contact), colonial disruption (1884-1930s) and the emergence of the contemporary potlatch (1969 - present). You will gain a new understanding and appreciation of the cultural significance and complexity of this unique Northwest Coast First Nations tradition. Wedlidi Speck is a hereditary chief who has been active in many potlatch roles, and is a recognized cultural teacher.



Drama and Dictatorship

Shakespeare's time was troubled with war and insurrection and he had to tread a careful path with what he put on stage. Comparing Julius Caesar to Death of a Chief, a contemporary adaptation by Indigenous playwright Yvette Nolan, offers lots to think about in terms of gender, culture, history, and systems of governance. We will read the plays (in PDF format) out loud together and discuss our questions and insights.



Writers' Workshop

This is an interactive class in which writers and would-be writers may share their work and have it gently appreciated and critiqued by others. No formal instruction.



Spanish for Beginners

This course seeks to provide basic skills for everyday communication to seniors with no previous knowledge of Spanish. They will be confronted with real life situations, with an emphasis on those encountered when travelling (introducing themselves, giving or asking for information, ordering a meal, etc.). Oral communication and acquisition of basic phonetics will be priorized so students learn to understand and be understood. Interaction will be encouraged.



Intermediate Spanish

This course will expand vocabulary and communication skills for seniors with an intermediate level in Spanish. They will already be able to describe experiences and give brief reasons for opinions, plans and courses of action, provided that the subject is familiar or of personal interest. The focus will be on oral communication, and interaction will be encouraged. Open discussions will focus on suggested topics, particularly those useful for travellers.



Looking Forward, Giving Back

You will learn how to leave a legacy that benefits students, your family and the community. You don't have to choose between supporting your family and the community you love. We will cover tax laws and estate planning. A lawyer and an accountant will be available to answer questions on using tax savings to benefit future generations and worthy community initiatives.



Downsizing and Organizing for Elders.

You have accumulated a lifetime of "stuff." What is to happen to it now and when you are gone? With guidance, you will explore your relationship with your "stuff" and to organize and let go of some of it. You'll learn what to do with things like old love letters, collections, photos, and gifts. And you will find ways to talk to family about the "stuff" you may leave behind.



Role of the Executor

You will learn the role of the executor in BC estate administration law from a practising estate administration lawyer. We will discuss factors to consider before you accept or assign the appointment as an executor. We will also address practical steps to be taken upon a will-maker's death, and the executor's rights and responsibilities in fulfilling their wishes. Optional printed materials to help with document organization will be available.



How the Internet Works

When you use emails and web browsing, does it seem akin to magic? What happens when your computers, tablets and phones connect and use the internet? This short course is for those who are curious about how things work behind the curtain and will be presented in high-level, layperson's terms.



Music for Aristocrats and Comrades

The music of Russia has an honoured place in the classical repertoire: compositions by Mussorgsky, Rimsky Korsakov, Tchaikovsky, Rachmaninov, and Prokofiev grace our concert stages and opera houses with welcome regularity. During this six-week course we will consider important works by major composers that demonstrate various stages in the development of Russian music, from the first tentative experiments with imported ideas to the creation of confident, distinctly Russian masterworks.



Digital Safety for Seniors

The TELUS Wise for Seniors Program engages Canadian seniors in a discussion about getting the most out of participating in our growing digital society, safely. Topics include Internet, smart phone, and social media safety tips as well as protecting yourself from identity theft.



Rails to Trails on Vancouver Island

The disused E&N rail corridor: a unique opportunity! Why convert this right of way? Why not a train? How can we achieve a continuous trail connecting Vancouver Island communities from Victoria to Courtenay? Join us for a discussion of this exciting proposal.



Sustainable Railways on V.I.

We will discuss the sustainability and need for passenger rail service on the Island, compare greenhouse gas emissions of rail travel and other means of transport, and examine the economic benefit to Island communities and the province. We'll also explore the roadblocks to this project, and what can be done to ensure the rail line is used and kept as a continuous corridor for now and future generations.



Doughnut Economics and Wellbeing

Our current economic system is arguably the greatest threat to human health and societal stability we face, generating massive inequality while devastating the environment. The instructor will provide some background on this threat to our wellbeing and discuss new directions we need to pursue, with a particular focus on the concept of doughnut economics, a new model related to concepts such as a wellbeing economy and a steady state economy.



Yogic Energy Techniques

This course introduces non-physical yoga techniques that benefit both body and mind. We will explore the yogic energy systems of prana (life force), nadis and chakras. In particular, we will learn techniques for moving energy through breathe work and mudras (hand positions). These techniques are suitable for all physical abilities.



Universal Devotional Chanting

The educational and devotional benefit of this course is the realization, through actual experience, that all traditions are based in the same spirit. Like yoga, devotional chanting unites us with the essential energy of the universe. That may be called God, Tao, Voice, Great Creator, or the re-creative energy found in nature. All are encouraged to participate and all levels of singing ability are welcomed.



Tai Chi

Tai Chi Chuan (also written as Taijiquan) is an ancient Chinese form of exercise originally created as a fighting art. Today it is recognized as much more than a martial art. Research shows how TaiChi improves balance and cognition in the aging population, has a meditative and relaxing effect, and has health benefits as well. Research on fibromyalgia and Parkinson's has resulted in physicians recommending TaiChi to their patients.



Ride Right: Cycling Road Skills

Learn the rules of the road and helpful tips for cycling in traffic. Class will include both theory and discussion. It is highly recommended that participants also register for the two-hour in-person parking lot skills and group ride complement to this theory course. The in-person component can be arranged through the Comox Valley Cycling Coalition ( following this course.



Medical Assistance in Dying

Medical Assistance in Dying (MAID) has been available since June 2016. The law has since been challenged in court on various occasions, leading to changes in the law as well as changes in clinical practice. This course will review the basics of MAID, the challenges, the resulting changes and anticipated future changes.



Your Microbiome - Both Good & Bad

Over the past decade there's been a scientific revolution in our understanding of the human microbiome - the trillions of Bacteria, Archaea, Yeasts and other microbes that live in/on us and are now known to be essential for normal development and function of our Brain, Immune systems and Metabolism. Learn how medical science is taking the early steps toward powerful new approaches to Obesity, Diabetes, Asthma, Allergies and - perhaps - Alzheimers.



Making Your Dreams Come True

Learn skills to use your innate abilities and passions to create a rewarding and purposeful life. Explore your dreams and then design a blueprint you can follow. By learning more about yourself in this interactive course, you will feel empowered and encouraged to move forward.



Biofilia: Our Connection to Nature

Is Nature intelligent? How closely related are we to other living species? Molecular biology is allowing us a peek at molecules at work in living cells, revealing that all cells function with the same protein molecules and genetic code, and the same molecules that energize all organisms. Come and learn the importance of bacteria, plants, animals and humans, in the natural systems and cycles of the Biosphere. A non-technical course.



Travel Insurance In A Changing World

In this course we will review the new realities associated with travelling, both during and after the current pandemic. The instructor, who is a travel and health insurance specialist, will focus on the important things to consider when securing travel insurance. Plan your trip with peace of mind!



Travelling and Technology

An introduction and overview with demonstrations of how to use various internet sites and your personal devices (smartphones, tablets, laptops) to improve your travels. Using these puts a different spin on more effective globetrotting as you plan, tour, and wrap things up on your return. Open sharing by participants of related experiences will also be encouraged during the course.



Great Trip to Compelling Story

Discuss components of meaningful travel memoir and develop our creative nonfiction writing skills. The importance of journalling, blogging, photography, steady writing practice, professional editing and publishing options are explored. Participants will bring a favourite adventure tale and begin the process of creating a compelling written account. For those wishing to share, we will peer review short homework writing challenges each week.



Ghost Ships and Ship Wrecks

The list includes historical ships and legends, land-locked ships and canals, lighthouses, dive wrecks, ships frozen in ice and at the bottom of the Mariana Trench. Witness the building of ships and their demise by nature or misadventure.



Solar Panels and Energy Storage

Considering a solar panel array for your home? As an owner of a large full system array, Dale shares experience and insight into this alternative energy source, its cost and consequences as well as the benefits for you and the planet.



Electric Cars: Are they for you?

Break the myths about today's electric cars and autonomous driving, and find out about the latest advancements. Learn how EV cars can fit into your lifestyle: the benefits, risks, consequences for tomorrow. Interactive with Q & A.



Invigorate Your Book Club!

Want to liven up your book club meetings? Learn how to apply the language of literary analysis to the work you read, and sound informed as you comment on what you liked or disliked about the book selection.



Mad Hatter: UK WW2 Internment

Mad Hatter is a fictionalized account of the presenter's family's WW2 experience following her father's three years of internment as a member of Oswald Mosley's British Union of Fascists. The presentation will include information about the political climate of the day; how Hale came to write this novel; her research; characters, settings, and plot points in the story, supported by a short reading. There will be time for questions.



How to Argue About Ethics

This class will introduce you to the topic of applied ethics, giving you the basic tools to be able to argue about the rights and wrongs of most moral dilemmas. It is presented in an entertaining and informative manner, teaching practical ethical analysis without the sermon.



History of the Comox Valley

An overview of the history of the Comox Valley during the 19th and 20th centuries, including early settlement, agriculture, forestry, military, and social history. We will also highlight the valley's many colourful characters. Questions and discussion will be welcome.



The 1798 Lyrical Ballads

The 1798 poetry publication Lyrical Ballads is often seen as the start of the Romantic period. Published anonymously, we later found out the authors: Samuel Taylor Coleridge and William Wordsworth. We will discuss this collection, which includes well-known poems such as The Rime of the Ancient Mariner (Coleridge) and Tintern Abbey (Wordsworth), as we identify the elements that made the works "Romantic". Required text: Lyrical Ballads (1798)(free at



Founders of Religions (Judaism, Christianity, Islam)

Every religion has DNA. This course considers Abrahamic religions: Judaism; Christianity; Islam; and their offshoots. Knowledge of the tenets of another belief system allows us to converse and develop relationships with those who have different religious convictions. This course investigates the founders, their life conditions, and motives as they related to their founding efforts. We will undertake this through lectures, readings, and positive respectful dialogue.



How Did We Get Here?

The course considers the interplay between Christianity, Christendom, and secularism. Beginning with Jesus of Nazareth and his Sermon of the Mount, the sessions will consider the implications upon Christendom and today's secular society. Considerations include the Crusades, the Inquisition, Enlightenment, and humanism. The sessions will combine lectures, readings, and respectful dialogue allowing the participants to draw their own conclusions.



Comox Valley Geological Prehistory

The course's two sessions will cover the geological journey that Vancouver Island has taken over the eons. Topics include volcanic origins, plate movements and earthquakes, prehistoric fossils, and newest finds and discoveries.



Applied Systems Thinking

Find out what is meant by applied systems thinking and how it affects every aspect of our daily lives. Examples will be discussed. Learn about the digital generation gap and the work of Marc Perensky as it affects you and your grandchildren. Don't be left behind.



Courtenay's Official Master Plan

Most Canadian municipalities have master development plans. In B.C., it is called an official community plan (OCP). It describes the long-term vision of communities as relates to land-use planning, transportation, housing, greenhouse gas reduction, servicing and other community priorities. Are you interested in learning how Courtenay's OCP is developed? Join City staff as they discuss the public engagement and technical analysis that goes into creating a community plan.



The Legal System of Pre-Modern China

The philosophical origins of Chinese legal thinking pre-date Confucius (551-479 BC). We address the most influential schools of philosophy: Confucianism; Daoism; and Legalism. We trace Chinese legal theory, institutions, and practice from the classical period to the Republican Revolution in 1911. Adolf Hitler's bestiality emerged from the rich civilization of Germany; a Chinese civilization without parallel produced the barbaric mass murder for organs industry in today's China. How and why?



The Cold War and Its Aftermath

We will discuss the Cold War and how the rivalry between the United States and the Soviet Union for ideological and political hegemony shaped world history in the Alt half of the twentieth century. When the Cold War eased in the 1990s, it was followed by the emergence of China as a big power and a resurgent Russia as rivals to American influence in world affairs.



Living Meditation

This program is intended for those with some meditation experience who long to deepen their practice and make it part of their daily life. Meditation is not just what happens when you sit in silence. It is about how that ripples into your daily existence. Lucas will guide you into meditation while offering inquiry into what it is to be alive and how we show up on a daily basis.



Foundations of Contentment

Within us lies a boundless source of inner peace and contentment. This course is aimed at people who feel a longing to experience this source. The course is largely experiential. Simple meditative and heartfulness practices are used to turn within to the deeper reaches of our being. We'll examine seven foundational elements of contentment: clarity; inner peace; awareness of self, gratitude, choice, living consciously, and getting support.



Property Values: Who Owns the Earth

Property holds a significant value to us as individuals and to our society at large. We often don't think much about property other than what it might be worth. This course will use a moderated discussion/seminar format to explore how we might broaden our understanding of property and how it affects our lives and those with whom we must share the land.



Strata: The Good the Bad and the Ugly

Downsizing to a strata property has positives and negatives. Thinking of buying, or already a strata owner? This course will guide you through the things you need to know, the questions you need to ask, and where to find answers. Topics covered: owners' rights and obligations according to strata legislation; governance; privacy; human rights; managing during COVID (if still applicable); who pays for what; insurance; and the Civil Resolution Tribunal.



Backyard Composting

Composting makes use of waste and livens up soil. And it's easy to do! Come learn the secrets of safely and quickly making rich nutritious compost out of your kitchen and yard waste. Learn why, how, where, when, and what. Bring your questions for this fun discussion with a Master Composter. Feed the soil that feeds the plants that feed us!



The Fourth Border

Canada has the most extensive maritime borders in the world and the longest "undefended" land border - 8,890 kilometres. This lecture series provides snapshots of life along the 49th parallel, whether a Point Roberts resident, a movie star, an RCMP officer, or an environmental activist. We have 20% of the worlds fresh water, much of it along this border. How are we "standing on guard" with respect to our heritage?



Dividing Lines: The impact of borders on Indigenous People

The borders we recognize today separating countries, provinces, and communities are all colonial constructs that did not exist prior to European contact. Recently, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled against the Province of British Columbia in a case involving a Sinixt hunter from the Kootenays. This is just one example of the impact of the dividing lines imposed on Indigenous people. Adam will share his experience in the W_SÁNEC territory.



Canada, China & the United States: The Unsettled Triangle

As an emergent superpower, China has influenced our traditional "best friends" relationship. Three individuals symbolize this imbalanced triangle of power, interest and perception: the two Michaels and Meng Wanzhou. The Biden administration may produce a partial reset, but can Canada navigate a US-China strategic competition and make decisions based on its own values and interests? What should be done in the area of technology including Huawei and our 5G networks?



Is Point Roberts American Or Canadian?

Point Roberts, Washington is a border anomaly: part of the USA because it is below the 49th parallel. This five-square-mile peninsula attached to Delta, BC has 1,100 permanent residents, mainly Canadians who own 75 per cent of the land. All potable water and electricity are supplied by British Columbia. The local economy is 90 per cent dependent on Canadian support. It is time to review the entire governance.



Canada USA Governance- Common Roots Different Practices

In this lecture we will look at the development of the governmental structures of Canada and the USA from their common roots in Great Britain to present practices. We will have an opportunity to look at particular events in their shared history to illustrate where co-operation or tension existed. The course material will include portraits, photos and political cartoons of the period to illustrate the issues.



Water, Reconciliation and Our Common Future

We often hear "water is life" but what does that mean in the face of climate change, our history of colonisation, and our relationships within Canada and across the border? These are diverse but connected issues. From a strong background in environmental issues and her work with the International Joint Commission,  Merrell-Ann will discuss how water ethics are a critical underpinning to a secure water future.



The RCMP - Still Defending the Border

The historic mission of the RCMP was to maintain order and security along the 49th parallel. Vince Foy will focus on its federal priorities pertaining to border security, such as the Integrated Border Enforcement Team, ShipRider (Integrated Cross Border Maritime Law Enforcement Operations), and the US-led Border Enforcement Security Task Force. In addition, their work with other security agencies such as the Armed Services, Canadian Border Security Agency, and CSIS.



What Are You Watching Now? The Push For Motion Picture Content

Vancouver is Canada's largest, and North America's third-largest, movie and TV production "hot spot." Each province supports agencies for business attraction, grants, production, and policy services to maximize mutual benefits for businesses, productions, and hosting communities. Cross-border supports include work permits, locations, logistics, supply company advice, and tax credits for this segment of the creative economy. We learn of B.C.'s remarkable growth and industry changes over this last decade.



The Canadian and USA Health Care Systems: A Senior's Perspective

North American health care systems are either tax funded (Canada: social) or a market model (the US). Who is included and what one gets is determined by who funds and delivers the systems; therefore, outcomes vary. The most expensive care does not necessarily mean the best quality. Dr. Noseworthy compares both systems, followed by Q&A hosted by Ottawa-based based journalist and Parliamentary Press Gallery member Chris Guly.