Message from the Dean, Dr. Anne-Liisa Longmore – June 2021

Moments of reflection and time for celebration

June is typically a time for celebration in educational circles and this June we have much to celebrate. And while we celebrate the many accomplishments of our students and PSB community, there is also a sombreness and sadness that weighs upon us through the very recent news of the shocking attack in London, Ontario and the discovery of the bodies of 215 indigenous children at a former residential school in Kamloops, BC.  My heart goes out to our community as we process these recent events. In particular, I stand with our Muslim and Indigenous community members with compassion and love. In the wake of these events, members of our community – students, staff, and faculty alike may experience overwhelming emotional responses. Please know that support is available through our counselling services for students, or Sheridan’s Employee and Family Assistance Program for employees.

As we mourn with our Muslim and Indigenous community members, it is important we continue to live our commitment to work towards equity, diversity and inclusion each and every day. Critical to our work and learning is uncovering hidden bias, stamping out racism and celebrating diversity.

A few immediate ways to celebrate diversity is to join Sheridan’s Centre for Indigenous Learning and Support (CILS) for Resilience and hope: Recognizing National Indigenous History Month.  In addition, for those who may be interested in learning more about Indigenous Peoples of Canada or Truth and Reconciliation reports and specifically Canada’s Residential Schools consider visiting our Centre for Indigenous Learning website, our Library and Learning Services – Indigenous Studies resources, or the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation where many links to resources may be found. 

In addition to honouring National Indigenous History Month, June is also Pride Month – a time to celebrate diversity and intersectionality of the 2SLGBTQ+ community here at Sheridan and worldwide. Several events are being planned as part of Sheridan’s Pride programming with a full event listing being found in “Sheridan kicks off Pride Month”. In addition to Pride programming, our Library and Learning Services colleagues have prepared a number of resources such as Celebrate Pride, Connect to Community, Connect to Support and Connect to Stories.

We have many announcements and news stories to share in this edition of SpeakingBiz, two of which I would like to acknowledge here are the BBA Consent Renewal and our PSB Academic Awards.

BBA Consent Renewal

I am thrilled to announce the Ministry of Colleges and Universities have provided their consent to renew all five BBA Degrees for seven years as of May 6th.   Many of you may remember, the BBA Degrees were launched in 2014 and underwent a rigorous quality assurance process based on a proposal that resulted in approval to deliver the degrees for seven years, subject to renewal. The recent renewal process evaluated the actual delivery of the program and Sheridan’s implementation of policies and procedures to support program delivery. Being granted a seven-year renewal is outstanding because the renewal period can be granted for a five-year or seven-year timeline.   

The BBA Degree Consent renewal process began in the Winter of 2019 under the stewardship of Karen Booth, working closely with our Centre for Teaching and Learning (CTL) partners, the Associate Dean team, Program Support Specialists and the BBA Program Coordinators including Lorraine Alyea, Carol Bureau, Maryam Hafezi, John Hardisty, Sathy Sritharakumar and Mark Weaver.   The renewal process included the team having to submit a full written application against the Ministerial Business Degree Standards. The written application was followed by a site visit by an expert panel, an independent assessment of student work in the final years of the program to determine that the degree level learning outcomes are being achieved, a written report by the expert panel, Sheridan’s response to the final report, and then formal consent by the Minister.   

The site visit by the Post-Secondary Quality Assessment Board (PEQAB) expert panelists, was quite unique as it was conducted virtually over a one-week period last October, where some of our BBA faculty and students participated, along with a variety of other internal and external stakeholders and partners.   Reviewing five degrees simultaneously and virtually was a new experience for Sheridan and the PEQAB expert panelists.  Through the extraordinary efforts of CTL and our team it was delivered smoothly and collaboratively.  

Our BBA degree program is unique in it’s class, providing learners with the opportunities to discover their passions, deeply learn about themselves as emerging professionals and leaders, actively engage in applying their learning in live contexts, and work towards mastery in their chosen disciplines. 

I would like to congratulate and thank Karen and every one of you who contributed to this process for your hard work and commitment.  The milestone of achieving a seven-year renewal for all five BBA degrees simultaneously was a monumental achievement and each of you should be very proud of your efforts!

PSB Academic Awards

Although we are not in person to celebrate the achievements of PSB students, we look forward to a virtual ceremony again this year. The PSB Academic Awards ceremony will take place at the end of June and is being produced with the assistance of the Sheridan Production House.

We are grateful to our donors for their generous support of 71 academic awards with a value of upwards of $ 42,000. PSB Program Coordinators and Professors nominated and selected students to receive awards based on academic excellence in their program of study and/or other criteria as specified by our donors.

I am also very pleased to announce the introduction of the PSB Dean’s Leadership Award to recognize a BBA Degree student for outstanding leadership, combined with high academic standing to assist them as they move into their final year in the program.  All award recipients will also receive a digital PSB Academic Awards certificate in recognition of their achievement.

We are also pleased to announce that the 2021 PSB Hall of Fame recipients have been selected and will be recognized at this year’s PSB Virtual Academic Awards ceremony.  Stay tuned for an announcement with exciting Hall of Fame Recipient details.

As you read through this edition of SpeakingBiz, please be sure to visit the PSB Faculty and Staff Announcements section and take a moment to congratulate and honour the work and service of those PSB colleagues who are either transitioning into new roles, transitioning back to faculty, retiring, or are continuing their career journeys at other institutions.

Thank you all for your continued work and efforts on behalf of our learners and our community. Your contributions and commitment is what makes a difference each and every day.  As always, please feel free to reach out to me directly should you wish to connect for a coffee chat, share an idea, or if you have a question. I can always be reached via email at anneliisa.longmore@sheridancollege.ca, or if you wish to book a coffee chat, please contact Tommy Sian at tommy.sian@sheridancollege.ca.

Wishing each of you, and those you love, peace, good health and an enjoyable summer.

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