A Kamloops man who dedicated a large portion of his life to education and public service is being recognized with a Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal on Friday.
In his 33-year career, Duncan MacRae was a driving force in establishing career-technical centres, which provided dual credit opportunities for high school students to complete entry-level trades training and other bridging programs leading to employment.
Most notably for Kamloops, he helped draft a plan for the NorKam's trades and technology centre more than a decade ago.
He also helped develop the bachelor of technology in trades and technology leadership degree program at Thompson Rivers University.
That earned him an honorary doctorate of technology from TRU in 2005.
Among MacRae's proudest achievements is the part he played in keeping kids in school by allowing students to earn high school credits in conjunction with post-secondary apprenticeship program credits.
"There's a lot of young people in high school who, for various reasons, get disenchanted and they're quite often wanting to drop out," he said. "A number of them, given this opportunity for program diversity and the potential for transferring, it keeps them in school. I think that's a real benefit."
Several bursaries in his name are awarded by Northern Lights College Foundation, TRU, University of Saskatchewan and the Kamloops Foundation.
Minister of Advanced Education, Innovation and Technology John Yap joins Kevin Krueger, MLA for Kamloops-South Thompson to confer the award at the TRU trades building main entrance rotunda at 4:30 p.m.