A match made in heaven: 56 years of love sparks three generations of BCIT alumni

“BCIT was my first love story; Jim was my second,” says BCIT alumna Peggy Waldbauer, Medical Lab Technology, ’67. Peggy recalls that she loved her classes and the memories made with friends on the BCIT Burnaby Campus.

Little did she know, her affinity for BCIT would lead to finding her future soulmate, sparking the next two generations of alumni pride.

In 1967, Peggy met future BCIT alumnus Jim, Civil and Structural Technology, ’73, at a BCIT curling bonspiel, which was a tournament event held annually at the time.

At one of the curling matches, Peggy says she noticed Jim instantly: “I was on a date with someone else, but I slipped my phone number to the shy, handsome fellow who caught my eye.”

By the next weekend, the pair were officially dating—and the rest is BCIT alumni history.

Now, 56 years, two children, and five grandchildren later, with a total of 13 alumni family members, the Waldbauers are dedicated BCIT alumni ambassadors.

Meet the Waldbauers

“It’s clear that BCIT runs through our family,” shares the eldest Waldbauer son, Cameron, Mechanical Design, ’95, who was nominated two years in a row for Best Visual Effects at the 87th and 88th Academy Awards in 2015 and 2016. Cameron married BCIT alumna Karen Kley on the BCIT woodlot, where Karen’s father, Roald Kley, also an alum, worked as a BCIT instructor.

four students, the Waldbauer grandchildren, stand smiling in BCIT sweaters
The Waldbauer alumni grandchildren

Kevin Waldbauer, Machinist, ’03, used BCIT to advance his career while working as a CNC Machining apprentice.

The Waldbauer grandchildren—Riley, Mechanical Engineering, ‘21; Brisa, Mechatronics and Robotics, ‘20; Mateo, Metal Fabricator Foundation, ’23; and Marcus, Mechanical Engineering ’23—are carrying the BCIT torch remarkably. Young Maddison, while not an alum yet, says to save a spot for her.

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Alumni love stands the test of time

“BCIT is a great place to meet people with common goals and ambitions,” shares Peggy, who worked most of her career in the medical field after graduating from her medical program at BCIT.

Vintage photo of Peggy Waldbauer and her husband Jim on a boat in the water
Peggy and Jim boating in 1971

For Peggy and Jim, common interests of hiking, camping, boating, and scuba diving have made for a beautiful life together, rich with shared experiences and fond memories.

After 56 years together, the couple shares how to make a relationship last: “You must remember that everyone does things differently, so have compassion, understanding and forgiveness. Love is a balancing act. Don’t dwell on the little things.”

“We have been so rewarded throughout all these years,” shares Peggy. “We may not always know the answers or make perfect decisions, but we always have each other.”

Read more alumni love stories.

Peggy and Jim Waldbauer smiling in front of water and a mountain
Peggy and Jim Waldbauer


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