A message from Dr. Annette Trimbee, president and vice-chancellor.

It was wonderful to welcome our community members as we gathered at the many events throughout September. These events have brought to mind the dedication of our community, and the boldness and energy of our Strategic Vision, Teaching Greatness.

We connected with new community members at the new faculty and student orientations, and a very busy, successful Downtown Campus Block Party made clear the vibrancy we bring to downtown. We gathered to raise the Ukrainian flag and mark Ukrainian Canadian Heritage Day as an important reminder of our commitment to building community support.

State of the university

Thank you to those of you who joined me in person and online for my State of the University Address. Through the difficult times of the pandemic, we created a vision of the future for our university. And our strengths shone through. Teaching Greatness demonstrates we know who we are, what we excel at, and who we want to be in the next decade. I am so very proud of the progress we are making on implementing our new vision.  

A collage of images - students working on a project, a Distinguished Alum speaking to an audience, a student in kihew waciston and students working on a group project

Teaching Greatness will guide us to a new decade. As I mentioned in my address, we will be developing a dashboard and markers of success to measure our progress. What is clear is that we are ready to take the next steps in being an exceptional undergraduate university.

We are starting from strength with our quality undergraduate education being recognized by the Campus Alberta Quality Council, which will soon determine if MacEwan will move to audit status. Once this is achieved, we will benefit from an expedited review when creating new degree programs. There was significant effort to bring us to this stage, and I thank all of those involved in this foundational work.

We are pursuing our goal of doubling student financial aid and the MacEwan community has demonstrated its commitment to getting us there. I am so grateful to our internal donors whose participation in our Students First campaign has soared from 2.5 per cent to 13 per cent.

We are building on not only the quality of our undergraduate experience, but on flexible pathway options. We are growing our capacity for micro-credentials, exploring opportunities to enable students to finish four-year degrees in three years, and exploring hybrid modes of delivery.

We are expanding work-integrated learning opportunities through partnerships. And the quality of our student experience is enhanced by the passionate commitment of our faculty. MacEwan’s faculty are having a real impact in the community. They have excelled at securing Tri-Council funding this year.

We are nominating two Tier 2 Canadian Research Chairs and we secured CIHR funding for the first time in our university’s history. I am amazed and inspired by the scholarly activity we have achieved, and I can’t wait to see what comes next. MacEwan is ready to build solutions for our community and contribute to global conversations.

As part of my address, I was thrilled to announce the launch of our capital fundraising campaign, MacEwan Means Business, to raise money for our new School of Business building. We are moving forward with an aspirational growth plan, the cornerstone of Teaching Greatness. We plan to grow to 20,000 full-load equivalents (FLEs), that’s about 30,000 students.

The new building will help us with that. Slated for the corner of 109 Street and 105 Avenue, the building is in a space to help bring the energy of our campus to Columbia Avenue (also known as 105 Avenue.) Throughout the next few months, you will see images of the MacEwan spirit –bold, maverick and inclusive – on social media and across the city.

Our downtown location means we are integrated with businesses and social services, giving our students and researchers easy opportunities to collaborate. As part of our place in the heart of O-day’min it is incumbent upon us to build partnerships that reflect our commitment to reconciliation and diversity.

I also shared the results from our Fall 2021 demographic survey. I reviewed the progress we have made to build our understanding of our community and how that information will help us to build resources to support growing diversity. Ultimately, we want our faculty and staff to be representative of our students.

National Day for Truth and Reconciliation

We continue our efforts to support reconciliation. September 30 marks the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. A day to honour and acknowledge the important work of reconciliation. We encourage those who wish to spend the day with their community to take the time they need. There will be no classes on September 30, but we remain open as a university to provide a space for education and reflection.

I hope you will take the opportunity to participate in events across campus or access the many kihêw waciston online resources. The kihêw waciston Indigenous Centre will be closed in order to allow staff to participate in wellness activities and join their communities. I encourage you to wear your Orange Shirt, and campus will be lit up orange as a visible symbol of our recognition of the harm caused by the residential school system and our support for survivors.

An Orange Shirt Day t-shirt design with a stylized dreamcatcher that includes an inukshuk, the infinity symbol from the Metis flag and a small heart. The 2022 Orange Shirt Day t-shirt design created by Edmonton Public Schools student Bianca Ilceus, selected by kihêw waciston staff.

In closing

September has been full of new connections and a renewed energy that will carry us through the upcoming months.

I am excited about the year ahead. I encourage you to continue to find ways to implement our Strategic Vision in your daily work and as we advance our progress to a new decade.

Dr. Annette Trimbee
President and Vice-Chancellor

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