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December 20, 2013

Inside ACCC | President's Update

December 20, 2013

Building Partnerships

This week, we met with Ted McKechnie, CEO of Canada’s Technology for Food (CTFF). CTFF is the brainchild of Waterloo’s Economic Development Committee (WEDC), an initiative to marry the city’s technology expertise with its food processing sector in order to produce innovative technology solutions for food and beverage processors. As the former President of Maple Leaf Foods, McKechnie brings much knowledge and experience to the relatively new CTFF.  We discussed possible partnerships and areas of interest in light of the great work colleges do in food technology across the country, from Canada’s Smartest Kitchen at Holland College to CTFF founding member Conestoga College’s Craig Richardson Institute of Food Processing Technology to BCIT’s Bachelor of Science in Food Technology and Operations Management.

We spoke with Penny Gardiner, CEO of the Economic Developers Association of Canada (EDAC).  EDAC is Canada’s national organization of economic developers and offers its members professional development, networking opportunities and resources. We were pleased to learn that many of EDAC’s members are college graduates. This is another good, potential partnership on the horizon.

We met with Jim Ghadbane, the new President and CEO of CANARIE.  CANARIE is a vital component of Canada’s digital infrastructure and supports research, education and innovation. Many people know CANARIE for its broadband, but not always for its other offerings such as the Digital Accelerator for Innovation and Research (cloud-based computer and storage resources); the Canadian Access Federation (making sharing protected resources easier, safer, and more scalable), Eduroam (roaming wireless network access for students, staff and faculty at partner institutions) or even its suite of software services. This meeting raises the need for a network of college CIOs that could meet and share best practices.

CIIP to Continue Services

ACCC has been informed by Citizenship and Immigration Canada that a six-month extension has been granted to the Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP). We are pleased the Department recognizes the important contributions CIIP is making to the lives of newcomers, as it considers its future priorities. ACCC expects federal investments in CIIP and other overseas pre-departure programs will remain in place until the end of September, 2014, which will allow the Association to continue its activities at the current level. This is wonderful news for ACCC, its clients and many partners.

Recently, a jury panel of senior public sector executives from across Canada determined that CIIP is in the winners’ circle of the IPAC Deloitte 2013 Public Sector Leadership Award, in recognition of its pioneering program for economic immigrants. The gold, silver and bronze award winners will be announced at the IPAC Deloitte Public Sector Leadership Award Gala on February 13, 2014. Stay tuned.


Congratulations to Konrad Jonasson, who was been named President of the University College of the North. Konrad is a member of the Cross Lake First Nation, and knows the College well, having been with UCN and its predecessor, Keewatin Community College, since 1989, serving as vice-president of community-based services from 2002 until his appointment as interim president in January 2011.

Congratulations to John B Woudzia on his appointment to the position of Vice-President, Education and Student Services at Vancouver Community College (VCC), effective February 3, 2014. John brings a wealth of educational experience to the role from his previous position of Superintendent for School District No. 40 (New Westminster, BC) and a number of leadership positions within the K- 12 system, including Director of Instruction, District Principal, and Elementary Vice-Principal.

Eureka! Moment

The innovations that colleges bring to learning never cease to impress!  During my visit to the Saskatchewan Indian Institute of Technologies (SIIT), I learned of their two Mobile Career Coaches.  Developed in partnership with Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada to provide Saskatchewan First Nation communities with career support services, these custom-built RVs are equipped with Internet capability, servers, laptops, and facilitation screens. The Coaches can be booked to visit Saskatchewan communities where trained career coaching staff will administer career assessments and identify local training needs, helping prospective students discover their skills, abilities, values and interests related to careers by listening to their personal stories or conducting assessments.

Did You Know?

To address the ongoing and increasingly severe shortage of rural doctors in Canada, medical schools and various levels of government have developed a wide range of programs and strategies.  Selkirk College believes much more can be done at both the undergraduate and high school levels to encourage and support talented rural and Aboriginal students who wish to become physicians, and recently launched its Rural Pre-Medicine Advanced Diploma and Associate Degree Program.

Selkirk worked with the UBC Faculty of Medicine, the Rural Coordination Centre of BC (a joint venture of the BC Medical Association, the Ministry of Health and the UBC Faculty of Medicine), Native Education College, the Interior Health Authority, Columbia Basin Trust, local physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners and other health care providers to develop the program for rural and Aboriginal students, who face real and perceived economic, social and educational barriers to becoming a physician.

Holiday Hours and Happy New Year!

Please note that ACCC offices will be closed at noon on December 24 and will reopen again on January 2, 2014. Whether you have already celebrated a holiday or are still wrapping your Christmas cheer, please have a safe and happy holiday season.

From all of us at ACCC, please accept our most sincere holiday wishes. We hope you enjoy our personalized holiday greeting. We look forward to working with you and promoting your successes and innovations in 2014. Happy New Year!


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