I hope that you all had a wonderful holiday break with your friends and families. With all that we achieved in 2018, you earned it.
This past year we began the process to implement our new academic structure, including filling some key roles on campus. With our new Provost joining us shortly, that work is expected to complete this year. 2018 also saw the launch of new programs and significant work towards our first new full degree program in quite some time, the proposed Bachelor of Bioinformatics degree.
Applied research successes
Langara has been working towards improving our applied research efforts on campus and 2018 saw the fruits of those labours. We added three new part-time staff to support research efforts. Together our amazing researchers earned more than $750,000 dollars in research grants this year from funding partners such as NSERC, SSHRC, The Canada Council for the Arts, and Innovate BC. Applied research efforts on campus have created opportunities for 34 students to enhance their learning through participation in research.
Campus Master Plan
In 2018 we also took important steps towards a new vision for our campus and its facilities. The Campus Master Plan has been updated based on input from many of you. Town halls and an open house were held to share this new plan with our campus community and neighbours. This year we will continue our work with both the provincial government and City of Vancouver on next steps to move this new plan forward.
Langara officially launched its first-ever anniversary celebration, alumni engagement and fundraising campaign – Beyond 49. That was such an amazing day for many in our community, including a number of retirees and original Trekkers who were able to join us. 2019 is our 49th anniversary year, and we will be celebrating with two key events. Be sure to save Saturday June 15th for Community Day presented by RBC and get your nominations for 49 Langarans in soon.
For the first time Langara held its convocation ceremonies off campus this past year at the Orpheum. This beautiful venue allowed us to host a record number of graduates and their families in style. Thanks very much to the organizing committee for their extra efforts this year.
A Better Way – Workday@Langara
2018 also marked some major milestones towards our goals to improve administrative efficiency on campus to better serve our students, faculty, and staff, and transition our core IT systems to a more modern and sustainable solution. We completed the negotiated request for proposal process, selecting Workday as our new ERP solution, and Deloitte as our implementation partner. The implementation process began this past fall and will continue throughout 2019. Thank you very much to all of you who have contributed to this project, as I know it has been a significant time commitment.
Langara also took important steps forward last year to improve the well-being of our students, faculty, and staff. We launched our new mental health framework, signed the Okanagan Charter, and went smoke-free.
2018 also marked some important celebrations with institutional partners. In September we raised our beautiful new House Post carved by Brent Sparrow. The Post welcomes visitors to campus on Musqueam unceded traditional territory, and commemorates the late sie?m Henry Charles.
We also celebrated the 40th anniversary of The Canadian School of Takudai program, the longest-running concurrent program between a Japanese and Canadian institution. Run in partnership with Takushoku University, the program has brought more than 800 students to Langara to learn English.
As we start 2019, there is so much to look forward to this year. The continued success of our students. The launch of our new internationalization strategy. The Men’s Basketball National Championships in March. Beyond 49 Celebration events. Progress on ERP and our Campus Master Plan. None of this important work could happen without the commitment and effort of our remarkable faculty and staff. Thank you for a very productive 2018. I can’t wait to see all that we will accomplish together this year.
President and CEO