President Loreman’s report to GFC, September 8, 2017Posted on: Sep 8, 2017
We are going into this fall semester with record student enrolments, with 2048 headcount being the most recent number.
Meeting with the Deputy Minister of Alberta Advanced Education.
On August 22 our Board Chair Mike Wade and I met with Deputy Minister Rod Skura. During this meeting Mr. Skura updated us on priority projects in the Ministry, which included the tuition review, the funding review, and the Alberta Boards and Commissions Review. We highlighted Concordia’s desire to move towards being a fully public institution, with Mr. Skura indicating that further discussion on that matter could be expected towards the end of this calendar year.
Canadian University Survey Consortium results
We are now in receipt of the 2017 CUSC results. The survey this year was conducted on middle-years students, with a response rate of 30.7%. Consistent with past years Concordia was superior to the Canadian average on every measure that really matters. These included high levels of satisfaction with the quality of teaching and education at Concordia, the quality of our student services, and the friendly and welcoming atmosphere that we are known for.
A review of our budget has revealed the potential for a significant deficit at the end of the 2017-18 financial year if we do not take action now. With that in mind I have implemented:
- A freeze on all unbudgeted travel
- A hiring freeze
- A review of planned renovations
- A review of all budget lines
These measures may be lifted once our financial situation becomes clearer, with the receipt of additional information such as final enrolment numbers being key to moving forward.
We are working hard behind the scenes during the ‘quiet phase’ of our capital campaign for the CSRI. It is clear, however, that our fundraising efforts will not be successful without the support of our entire community. Please assist us by considering a gift to Concordia, and also by providing us with access to your connections who might be interested in supporting our capital campaign. Please contact Rhonda Newman for details: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Research Office is leading, with the RFDC, a comprehensive restructuring of our internal research grant procedures and aligning them with Tri-Council procedures in order to provide a more efficient process.
CUE’s most promising student entrepreneur competed in Calgary against 15 other post secondary student entrepreneurs. Irshad Shariff won his division and placed within the top 5 most promising student entrepreneurs in the province. The CIAR along with an A100 member continues to provide mentorship assistance to Irshad who will officially launch his business on Sept. 1, 2017.
The CIAR has begun to strategically market customized training solutions to industry. AHS has expressed interest in Advanced HACCP (Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point) and Enterprise Risk Management Training.
This summer we had two student groups visit our partners in Brazil (5 students in May, 4 students in June). Dr Xin Chen and his group are true pioneers in Faculty led Study Abroad and had the best enrichment possible, allowing for interaction with another culture, and a learning experience that could not be had elsewhere. Such connections between the partners allow for new research and teaching opportunities. We also hosted a group of almost 40 students from China over the summer, who had a positive experience interacting with Canadian students in their classes.
We now have a partner in the University of Southern Queensland. Australia is not one of the regions we are emphasizing in our international efforts (those areas are Brazil, Europe, and China) but nevertheless there is demand from students to study there and this agreement facilitates that.
State of the University address
Following practice at universities in the United States I plan to give a ‘State of the University’ address at noon on September 13 in the Trish & Al Huehn Theatre. I want to provide the Concordia community with an overview of our institution, including the work of our Board, our financial situation, enrollments, academics, student services, and research and international efforts as a context for our focus moving forward into the 2017-18 academic year. I think this is part of transparent administration and improved communication. Please attend if at all possible.