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

I trust this edition of SpeakingBiz finds you all well and safe and hopefully having experienced a smooth and successful start to your semester. It seems like only yesterday that we started the 2021-2022 academic year. Yet here we are in week five, approaching the mid-way point of the fall semester and already deeply engaged in planning for Winter 2022.

As shared during our PSB community meeting on Sept. 3, we welcomed 1,350 first-year, first-semester students and 2,500 returning students this fall. Anecdotally, I hear that many of our students and faculty colleagues who are back on campus are excited to be learning in a face-to-face context. While the campus environment is notably and understandably quieter than usual, those with whom I or our ADs have connected have shared how good it feels to be back and socializing in-person.

Our return-to-campus hasn’t been without bumps along the way. This is expected as we continue to navigate and respond and adapt to the shifting landscape of COVID-19 and living, working and learning through a pandemic. I am tremendously grateful to community members who have connected with me, our leadership team, and/or our allied partners in Occupational Health and Safety, Facilities Management, Human Resources and others to share their observations, make suggestions for improvement and to appreciate and acknowledge all of the work that has and continues to be invested in the safety and well-being of our community. A community update from our partners in Occupational Health and Safety is included in this edition of SpeakingBiz.

As a reminder, the Oct. 15 deadline for uploading vaccination records is just around the corner. Anyone who has not submitted proof of full vaccination (or has a vaccine accommodation from Sheridan) by that date will be denied access to campus. As shared in an email on Sept. 30, a fulsome communication strategy is being implemented to inform and remind students of the deadline dates through SLATE announcements, text nudging, social media and the student newsletter, Your Sheridan Weekly. Should any of your students reach out to you with questions, please direct them to the Sheridan Central COVID-19 and Return-to-Campus Updates or have them email registrar@sheridancollege.ca if they are at all concerned about their vaccine compliance or access to college after Oct. 15.  

I shared during the Dean’s Welcome address at our PSB community meeting that Sheridan has engaged an outside firm to work with us on a research project in support of our efforts to “define, differentiate, and effectively communicate the Pilon School of Business’ unique character and value proposition.” Preliminary work has started with the Strategic Counsel and our internal partners. We will be moving into the stakeholder engagement portion of our discovery over the next few months. First stop will be a discovery and engagement meeting with our PSB community. A “Save the Date” calendar invitation was sent out recently for our upcoming PSB community meeting scheduled for Oct. 27. This meeting is being earmarked for our PSB community to collectively explore, discuss and finalize our draft value proposition statement(s). Given our community’s robust engagement during the academic planning process, I am very much looking forward to hearing your perspectives, ideas and insights on our value proposition. More details will follow as plans crystalize.

On a final note, and as mentioned in my last Dean’s Message, coffee chats will return in November. I have missed our conversations and look forward to the opportunity to reconnect. Calendar invitations will be forthcoming. In the meantime, I am blocking off time in my calendar on Oct. 15, 22 and 29  for colleagues who would like to connect and chat one-on-one. I welcome the chance to listen and learn about how your semester is going, receive feedback and explore ideas you may have. Should you be interested in connecting over coffee on one of these Fridays, please contact Tommy Sian at tommy.sian@sheridancollege.ca and she will gladly book a time to connect. If Fridays do not work for you and you would like to meet with me at another time, please reach out to Tommy and she will work with you to schedule a time that is mutually convenient.

Thank you all again for your continued persistence, hard work, and commitment to our PSB community.

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