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April 4, 2014

April 4, 2014

CEO on the Move

On April 1, 2014, ACCC appeared before the House of Commons Standing Committee on Finance on the topic of Youth Employment in Canada. We recommended targeted measures to increase employment opportunities of disadvantaged youth. ACCC believes this could be achieved by enhancing the Post-secondary Student Support Program, the Canada Student Loans Program and strengthening capacity of Aboriginal organizations supported by the Aboriginal Skills and Employment Training Strategy.  We highlighted the interest of the ACCC-led industry-college coalition to address employment and innovation challenges, and the need for better labour market information and the importance of dispelling the myths about the value of college and institute certificate, diploma, degree and post-graduate programs.

On Wednesday, I flew to Washington, D.C. with VP Paul Brennan to attend the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP) Board meeting and retreat. We met to discuss and develop the first-ever 5-year WFCP strategic plan and to craft an international declaration of excellence in technical education for national associations of colleges, institutes and polytechnics. The declaration will focus on issues such as technical education; applied research; international development; access to education; education for employment; and contributing to the development of international peace, which are no small tasks!

In next week’s Inside ACCC, you’ll learn more about my meetings with Alister Smith, Executive Director for Canada, Ireland & the Caribbean, World Bank; and Dr. Walter G. Bumphus, American Association of Community Colleges (AACC), and about the AACC Annual Convention, which starts on Saturday, April 5th.  You can also follow my Twitter feed @DAmyot to see photos and updates on ACCC’s trip to Washington.

CIIP Hosts Minister Alexander

On March 21, Citizenship and Immigration Minister Chris Alexander met with Canadian Immigrant Integration Program (CIIP) graduates in Hong Kong and, via videoconference, joined a CIIP session in Beijing.  During his address to the group, he referred to the new $1.9 million agreement between Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) and ACCC to cover 6-months more of pre-departure services for economic immigrants.  He also described CIIP as an initiative with a strong record of helping newcomers achieve success in Canada.  With the encouragement and support of CIC, ACCC is committed to developing new ways of providing pre-departure services to ensure that economic immigrants are prepared for work and life in Canada.

International Program Funding

Activities for the Skills Training for Employment  in Mozambique (STEM) Program and the Improving Skills Training for Employment Program (ISTEP) in Tanzania began this week.

With funding of $18.5 million over six years, STEM will help create skills training Centres of Excellence in the coal-rich province of Tete and the gas-rich province of Cabo Delgado, helping as many as 4,000 qualified Mozambicans enter the workforce and get good jobs in the mining and extractive-related industry.

The five-year ISTEP, developed in partnership with the Tanzanian Ministry of Education and Vocational Training and key employer associations, will support the Tanzanian government’s objective of a TVET system that will serve as the driving force for a productive and competitive workforce capable of contributing to the country’s socio-economic development.  The Program will build capacity of technical and vocational institutions to deliver effective skills training programs, leading to Tanzanian youth with the right skills sets to find or create employment in the extractive and tourism sectors.

There will be opportunities for Canadian college and institute involvement to support curriculum and leadership development, teacher training, development of student and career services and outreach and publicity strategies. We will share more details with you as they become available.

ACCC Annual Conference | May 25 – 27, 2014 | Ottawa, ON

Don’t miss out on theApril 15 early registration deadline for the ACCC Annual Conference!

Hosted by ACCC, in partnership with La Cité and Algonquin College, the Annual Conference takes place from May 25 to 27 in Ottawa. Preparations are in full swing, with an exciting lineup of engaging sessions for leaders, learners, teachers and influencers from colleges and institutions from across Canada.

You will have an opportunity to hear:

  • The Honourable Jason Kenney, Minister of Employment and Social Development and Minister for Multiculturalism – Sunday, May 25
  • Jeff Selingo, author and columnist – Sunday, May 25
  • Rex Murphy, Host of Cross Country Checkup, Rex Murphy contributes weekly TV essays on diverse topics to CBC TV’s The National – Monday, May 26
  • Lise Paiement, acclaimed author and educator – Monday, May 26
  • Wab Kinew, former Host of the acclaimed CBC Television series “8th Fire”, recipient of an Aboriginal Peoples Choice Music Award – Tuesday, May 27
  • Chantal Hébert, Toronto Star national affairs writer and political columnist – Tuesday, May 27

Join the Canadian Forces plenary on Monday, May 26. Colonel Dalton Coté, Director of Individual Training and Education for the Canadian Defence Academy and Brigadier-General Louis Meloche, Commander of the Canadian Forces Recruiting Group are looking forward to addressing the membership during a plenary on partnership and opportunities that exist between the Canadian Armed Forces and colleges and institutes. The Commander of the Canadian Defence Academy, Major-General Eric Tremblay will also be in attendance.

New this year! On Tuesday, May 27 from 7:00 am to 8:30 am join Perrin Beatty, President and Chief Executive Officer, Canadian Chamber of Commerce and members of the business and industry community at the first annual Business and Industry Power Breakfast. Joining Perrin Beatty are Joanne Lefebvre, President and CEO, Regroupement des gens d’affaires (RGA) and Jeff Westeinde, Co-Chair, Invest Ottawa and President, Quantum Environmental Group.

Visit the Conference website for more information or to register today!

Situating Science Summer School

Applications from students across Canada and across humanities and social science disciplines are invited for a no-fee, 5-day Situating Science summer school, which will provide advanced training in the fields of History and Philosophy of Science (HPS) and Science and Technology Studies (STS).  It is an excellent opportunity for graduate students interested in learning about general issues and key areas in these fields. The deadline for applications is Monday April 14, 2014.

Visit the Situating Science website for more information.

Copyright Workshop

We held a copyright workshop on April 1 in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan for ACCC member institutions. The event was part of a series of workshops and services offered to members to assist them with Copyright Act compliance.  Contact Michèle Clarke for additional information.

CARICOM Education for Employment

An Industry Linkages Forum was held in Trinidad & Tobago March 17-18 2014 as part of our CARICOM Education for Employment Program (C-EFE).  Caribbean employers, educators, National Training Agencies (NTAs) and Ministry officials worked with the Canadian Tourism Human Resource Council to build capacity to ensure technical training programs meet industry needs.  Participants showed a strong interest in the development of a ‘model’ mechanism to share with the Caribbean Association of National Training Agencies (CANTA) and CARICOM.

The Forum was also an opportunity to review the updated CARICOM Regional TVET Strategy for Workforce Development and Economic Competitiveness and to promote awareness of the Caribbean Vocational Qualifications (CVQs).

DAIR for Colleges and Polytechnics Program

CANARIE offers colleges and polytechnics powerful cloud resources, free of charge, to support applied research activities. CANARIE’s Digital Accelerator for Innovation and Research (DAIR) program provides cloud-based compute and storage resources to enable students working with business community partners to test, develop, prototype and demonstrate applications and services, accelerating development timelines and strengthening the value proposition of applied research initiatives.

This partnership leverages the college’s relationships with the small business community and provides students and small business clients access to today’s most advanced technologies to promote highly marketable skills, and the development and pre-commercialization of innovative products.

Cloud technologies drive a meaningful competitive advantage for small businesses by providing computing resources that can quickly scale up or down to meet changing business needs. For colleges and institutes and their business partners, DAIR’s made-in-Canada cloud resources are quickly deployable, significantly reducing ramp-up time to 2-3 days versus several weeks using traditional deployment and test methods. Students engage in meaningful experiential learning, while small businesses benefit from accelerated product development at no additional cost. SMEs can seamlessly continue testing and development of their applied research project for at least one year on the DAIR cloud without any downtime or incurring additional costs. They have also the added benefit of employing highly trained students who are already trained on cloud technology.

To find out more, please contact CANARIE’s Susan St. Maurice.

Knowledge Synthesis Grants on Skills Development for Future Needs of the Canadian Labour Market

The Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council (SSHRC), in partnership with Employment and Social Development Canada (ESDC) and other key stakeholders, funded sixteen reports evaluating the current state of knowledge about the skills needs of the Canadian labour market and identifying the most promising policies and practices for better meeting future skills needs. 

The reports include: Crowdsourcing Métis Research; Integrating International Students; Investing in Human Capital; Leveraging Mentoring; Supply and Demand of Skills; Identifying Gaps With Skillshed Analysis; Employment Skills in Northern Canada; and more.

Visit the SSHRC website for additional information or to read the reports.


Congratulations to Robert Rousseau, who was named the new Director General at Cégep de Thetford, effective June 23, 2014. Robert joined the Cégep in 1992 as faculty in electrical engineering then physics, before moving to the role of Associate Vice President Academic and Vice President Academic.

Congratulations to Dr. Vincella Thompson on her appointment as the new Dean for the School of Health, Wellness, and Human Services at Keyano College. Vincella has been with the College for 10 years, most recently as the Chair of University Studies Arts, Education, and Social Sciences.

Congratulations to Therese Greenwood, who was appointed Vice President, External Relations and Advancement at Keyano College.  Therese brings 25 years of experience to Keyano in communications, marketing and foundation support roles from her work at Queens University’s Office of Advancement, and the City of Kingston and the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo in executive communications positions. 

Congratulations to Jocelynn Meadows, who was named Vice President, Teaching and Liberal Arts at Cégep de Sherbrooke.  Jocelynn has over 25 years experience in education and knows the college system well, through a number of years working at Cégep de Rimouski, as a member of the Association pour la recherche au collégial (ARC) and the board of the Association québécoise de la pédagogie collégiale (AQPC).

Staff Changes

Welcome to Thierry Hardy, who joins ACCC as Program Officer, Communications and Translation, International Partnerships. Thierry is originally from Brussels, where he studied translation in English, French and Spanish, adding Portuguese a few years later. He has experience in event planning and administration, and worked for an Ottawa-based association management company.

Welcome also to Sabina Mihaescu, who has volunteered her time to work with Bernard Lachance (see last week’s Eureka! Moment) on initiatives related to the World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP) and the WFCP World Congress in Beijing. Sabina is fluent in English, German, French, Spanish and Romanian (her mother tongue) and could probably hold a conversation in Italian too. Sabina has worked in both accounting/payroll and policy analysis roles at Service Canada, in monitoring and evaluation for an NGO, and in event coordination with the Economic Club of Canada.

Logo Contest – Enter NOW!

ACCC has put out a call to students of design across our member institutions. We’re looking for a student to create a new logo and wordmark to go along with the Association’s new name. The winning student will be awarded $5,000 for their design!

Get more information at!  The contest deadline is April 22, 2014.

Eureka! Moment

I continue to be impressed by the variety of college applied research projects.  Environmentalists express concern over contaminated sites – with good reason- and most people would view bacteria in a negative light.  What do you get when you marry contaminated mine sites and bacteria?  Research that stinks, but in a literal sense, and in this case, it’s a good thing.

Researchers at Yukon College are studying the use of bacteria to clean up contaminated mine sites. Local materials, such as spruce chips and bio-char, are being used to grow bacteria that remove heavy metals from water. The project has received support from the Yukon Government and mining company Alexco Resources Corp. 

While the idea of using bacteria to clean up contamination has been studied for almost 30 years, the challenge for Yukon College researchers is to find a way to use it in the frigid northern temperatures. Success would mean that bioremediation could be used as a cost-effective way to clean up mine sites across the North.

Kudos to all of the researchers working in Canada’s colleges and institutes!

Did You Know

Did you know that there are over 13.3 million volunteers in Canada?  Please thank the volunteers in your community during National Volunteer Week (April 6 to 12).  You can call the Volunt-Hear Hotline to participate in the national conversation about volunteer recognition by leaving a message to share how a volunteer has impacted your life or that of a loved one, and to thank them for their efforts. You can also join the conversation on Twitter, using #nvw2014.

You can also nominate an individual, a business or a forward-thinking not-for-profit organization that makes a difference in their community for the Prime Minister’s Volunteer Awards (PMVA). Nominations are accepted until May 9, 2014, for a total of 17 awards – two at the national level and 15 at the regional level. Visit the PMVA website for additional information.

For more information on National Volunteer Week, visit the Volunteer Canada website.

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