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Bachelor of Law Enforcement Studies Justice & Public Safety Division Justice Institute of British Columbia Law Enforcement Studies Diploma

JIBC exchange programs give global perspective to students


Diana Hon joined students in enjoying the Irish countryside while on a JIBC exchange to the Waterford Institute of Technology in 2013. Being a foreigner in Ireland helped her relate to newcomers she encounters in her current job as a police officer in Greater Vancouver.  (Story by Wanda Chow)


Diana Hon knows a thing or two about being a stranger in a strange land.

But having grown up Asian in a major Canadian city, it’s not like she wasn’t used to the diversity. Rather, for Hon, a graduate of the Law Enforcement Studies Diploma (LESD) program at the Justice Institute of British Columbia (JIBC), her eye-opening moments of cultural differences came while participating in a JIBC foreign exchange program. In Ireland.

“The most difficult part for me was understanding the accent because the Irish accent is so thick over there,” she said with a laugh of her time studying at the Waterford Institute of Technology (WIT) in the fall of 2013. “They’d say ‘the pub’ but I would hear ‘the Pope.’ ”

Add to that the fact that the only other Asian people she met were other international students at her WIT student residence, and Hon definitely felt far from home.

Since January 2013, 10 JIBC LESD students have spent their last semester on an academic exchange at WIT in Ireland. The program helps students gain an international perspective of law enforcement and learn about the different opportunities and challenges faced by those working in law enforcement in other parts of the world. The JIBC Foundation, the Peter and Joanne Brown Foundation and the Irving K. Barber British Columbia Scholarship Society, administered by the Victoria Foundation, generously provide financial support for students participating in this unique experience.

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