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Supporter Story: Steve Vriend - Community and Vision Still Alive

Sep 29, 2016

Community & Vision Still Alive

"To have a conversation with my daughter or her King’s friends about important topics, or maybe just a good-natured debate on issues is a real pleasure. Their perspective is clearly based on sound Christian fundamental principles, while recognizing and appreciating the sometimes very complicated world we live in. I’m learning from them. It's awesome!"

Edmonton-based businessman, Steve Vriend, was a student at King’s for the 1986/87 school year, when the campus was still located on 97th street. Vriend fondly remembers a strong community supported by faculty and staff dedicated to the vision of building a place in Edmonton for Christian higher education. He recalls the many motivating faculty who encouraged students and pursued a vision. Appreciating the importance of athletics in post-secondary education, this also included founding Athletics Director Dr. Robert Day who coached Vriend in hockey.

When he dropped off his daughter, Meagan, to begin her studies it was clear that community was still a vital part of the King’s experience. Vriend remembers this focus being wonderfully demonstrated by the welcoming group of students giving orientation to all the new ones. He saw the dedication of early faculty and staff (some of who are still teaching there) has been carried on, and he was pleased to see that a new group of faculty, staff and supporters were inspired to see King’s flourish.

"To have a conversation with my daughter or her King’s friends about important topics, or maybe just a good-natured debate on issues is a real pleasure. Their perspective is clearly based on sound Christian fundamental principles, while recognizing and appreciating the sometimes very complicated world we live in. I’m learning from them. It's awesome!"

In the 25 years that followed his year at King’s, Vriend worked to build community in business. He began his career in retail consumer electronics then expanding into retail telecommunications as a TELUS dealer. He currently owns and operates five TELUS dealerships in the Edmonton and Spruce Grove areas, serving the business and retail communities.

Vriend has a strong appreciation for King’s Christian education. Dedicated to the mission of King’s, he has served as member of The King’s University College Foundation for many years, and is in his second term as a director.

Vriend lives in Edmonton, Alberta with his wife and three children.