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Jessie Ravnsborg

$32,539.00 (raised so far)

About Jessie Ravnsborg

Jessie Ravnsborg was a UBC Okanagan alumna, and a staff member at the Okanagan campus for more than ten years. She was diagnosed with ALS in March 2018, and passed away on November 2, 2019. Jessie was a beloved member of the UBCO community who, prior to her passing, asked that donations in her memory go to support UBCO students.

Jessie moved to Kelowna in 2003 to attend what was then Okanagan University College. She graduated from UBC Okanagan with a BA in 2009, majoring in English and minoring in History. Jessie said that a combination of the smaller classroom sizes, the engagement with other students and professors, and the other amazing community opportunities that UBC Okanagan provided helped to shape her into the person she became.

As a student, Jessie loved the small campus feel of the Okanagan. She worked in various roles as a student and, upon graduating, became a full-time employee who loved the atmosphere that the UBC Okanagan community represented. She worked in various roles over the following ten years, most recently in the Development Office.

As she learned to live with a terminal diagnosis, Jessie kept a personal blog in which she regularly posted her experiences and feelings as the disease progressed. After the disease forced her to leave her job with Development, she shared that “I miss the people I worked with (both within my immediate team and everyone else around campus that I worked with in some capacity or simply had become friends with), I miss challenging myself, and I miss the atmosphere. Working at a university provides such a vibrant and engaging atmosphere.”

UBC Okanagan was an important part of her life, but Jessie was equally an important part of UBC Okanagan. She was a wonderful, positive person who, even after such a devastating diagnosis, still brought light and love to everyone who knew her. She will be sadly missed by family, friends, and the entire UBC Okanagan community.

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The impact of your support

Before she passed away, Jessie asked that a fund be created in her name to support students in need. In accordance with her wishes, her family and friends have created the Jessie Ravnsborg Memorial Fund at UBC Okanagan.

Jessie said, “UBC Okanagan has provided me great opportunities both as a student, as an alumna, and as a staff member. With this memorial award my wish is that I support another student who is contributing to the university community. Students in need will have the opportunity to engage more deeply with the university community, because some of their financial burden is gone.”

Your gift will pay tribute to Jessie’s life by supporting undergraduate students pursuing a major, combined major, and or honours in English History or English at The University of British Columbia, Okanagan campus who have demonstrated classroom leadership and are in financial need.

Please click here to read about the first recipient of the Jessie Ravnsborg Memorial Award.

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Messages of Remembrance

All Messages
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  • This time of year at UBCO was always very special for Jessie … convocation! Whether it was her own convocation (2009) or the years she volunteered at the ceremonies Jessie felt the excitement & pride for graduates, parents, family & friends. Congratulations 2024 graduates!

    Heather Lucier, Jessie’s Mom
  • Jessie is so friendly and engaging. We had numerous chats about almost anything. One day we were talking and the conversation went on for a while. She actually missed her bus, but did not think anything of it. I felt very bad. This was at a time when I drove my truck more often so I gave her a ride home...... while we continued conversation. Such a great young lady and I will miss her.

    Brian, Friend coworker
  • Jessie was one of the first people I met when I first arrived at UBCO. I remember her warm personality and sharing her love of the campus with me. I often ran into her and we shared the most wonderful, heartwarming conversations that made me feel part of this community and she made it feel like home. She was a wonderful lady! Her family and friends are in my thoughts and prayers at this difficult time. She will be missed.

    Carole Miller, UBCO colleague
  • Jessie always had the brightest smile.

    Paula Lambert, Colleague at UBCO
  • Jessie was one of my most encouraging and influential friends at UBCO. She introduced me to so many student leadership opportunities and truly was a role model. I will miss her dearly.

    Lauren Gaudet, UBCO friend
  • Jessie was a valued and talented performer in Youth Singers of Calgary. She loved music and performing. Jessie will be missed by many friends at Youth Singers and she will not be forgotten. Our thoughts and prayers are especially with Heather and also the entire family.

    Shirley Penner & Don McLean, Youth Singers of Calgary
List of Donors
All Donors
  • Marilyn Hannay

  • Janice and Shaun Janzen

  • Louise Marcotte

  • Marilyn Hannay

  • Heather Lucier

  • Marilyn Hannay

  • Shaun and Janice Janzen

  • Louise Marcotte

  • Kathy

  • Sue and Dan Jennings

  • Wilson family

  • Virginia Archer

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