Shane Williams and Michelle Baseden: Easing the burden for student athletes

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Business partners Shane Williams and Michelle Baseden share a vision for their company – and a strong belief in giving back to the community. The leaders of Vipco Group Ltd. see any financial contributions they can make as an investment in the next generation’s growth and opportunities.

Vipco Group Ltd. has operated two manufacturing related businesses for the past 50 years: Vipco Industries which focuses on the lamination of pre-finished panels and mouldings, and Vipco Visual Boards which produces whiteboards and tackboards.

Though based in Calgary, Alberta, Shane and Michelle were inspired to contribute to College of the Rockies’ Adopt an Athlete program.

“We are both large supporters of the athletic community,” Shane said. “This, paired with the fact that my son is embarking on his first year as a volleyball player at the College, helped us decide which part of the school to focus our investment on.”

College of the Rockies’ Adopt an Athlete program is the result of the recognition that being a student-athlete requires a significant time commitment and does not allow much opportunity for part-time work. The program aims to help relieve the financial burden of being a student-athlete, allowing the focus to be where it should be – on academics and athletics. Funds raised directly benefit student-athletes and are used for travel to provincial championships, equipment, and apparel, costs which typically fall to athletes to cover.

“Our hope with this sponsorship is that the team, and the individuals associated, will have access to as much success and as many opportunities as possible,” Shane added. “We feel College of the Rockies is the heart of the community.”

Michelle strongly agrees with Shane.

“The College is a wonderful school in a breathtaking location,” she said. “It offers the young population an education and options for the future while also giving them a home and a place to build new connections. We are excited about our own new relationship with the College and are looking forward to many more years of association.”

Learn more about College of the Rockies’ Adopt an Athlete program.