Like many of you, I have lived my entire life on an academic calendar. I love September and the adrenalin rush that comes with the arrival of a new academic year. It was a privilege to welcome so many students last week at orientation events across our three campuses; I was equally thrilled to welcome back the outstanding faculty and staff who make Sheridan such an exceptional place to work and learn. For me, late August and Labour Day are like the May 24 long weekend: there’s a frenetic energy in the air and the promise of what’s to come looms large.
In the spirit of rebirth and renewal, I thought it might be timely to reaffirm the priorities that will guide me and other members of the President’s Executive Council (PEC) from now through March, 2019. As Sheridan’s Provost, I share accountability with other senior leaders to maintain and amplify Sheridan’s enviable reputation as a post-secondary institution-of-choice for learners and faculty. To that end, our individual and combined leadership should build on Sheridan’s commitment to creativity and innovation, our work to foster student success, our history of strong partnerships with industry and community, our diverse program mix, and our focus on applied research and creativity activities that involve real-world, hands-on learning.
To position Sheridan for continued success, PEC has set its focus on the following three priorities for the next 18 months:
- Supporting the implementation of the Academic Plan;
- Acting as stewards of Sheridan to ensure its long-term operational sustainability; and
- Supporting our people.
By focusing on these three priorities, Sheridan will achieve its exciting vision of becoming Sheridan Polytechnic, a university celebrated as a global leader in career-focused, applied education.
Starting last week and continuing through the fall, Faculties and departments will be working on operational plans that will ‘action’ these priorities. Over time, our commitment to planning will become more integrated, such that it can better support strategic decision-making across Sheridan by providing a comprehensive view of resources and commitments. This is fundamental to ensuring the alignment of our resources and academic priorities. That, in turn, is the key to delivering on the promises we’ve made to the thousands of outstanding students who – in the face of options — chose Sheridan.
Our learning community is a rich, fertile garden with tremendous capacity to fuel growth. It’s time, my friends, to don our gardening gloves. Happy fall!
P.S. To celebrate the impending start of grades 4 and 7 … we spent yesterday at the Air Show. I hope all of you enjoyed the long weekend as much as Bennett, Olive, Ken and I did.