A prospective journalism student will soon get a helping hand at Langara College.
The college is fundraising $25,000 to fund the Rob Dykstra Scholarship, to be given to the student who writes the best feature. Black Press has donated $5,000 towards this award.
Dysktra, who retired from Langara College after 32 years of teaching there, has taught more than 1,000 students and helped launched the Langara Journalism Review.
The longtime journalist started as a reporter at the Coast News in Gibsons, a job he earned after sending out a pleading letter to more than 30 newspapers across the country. Dykstra worked at dailies in Calgary and Montreal, and freelanced in Prince Edward Island before heading back to Vancouver.
In the Lower Mainland, Dykstra worked as the business and agriculture editor for the Chilliwack Progress of Black Press, and worked his way up to city editor at the Province newspaper, all while holding a job at the Kent Institution in Agassiz.
In 1984, Dykstra saw a Langara professor job advertised and made the jump. He meant to teach for only a few years, but stuck with it for more than three decades.
“I enjoyed the intellectual stimulation provided by so many keen, intelligent students,” Dykstra said. “There’s a need for good journalism more than ever.”