Message from the President

Dr. Laurie Waye

Message to the CMTN Community 

January 3, 2023

Welcome back, CMTN community, to a new semester and a new year. Today I want to both celebrate how much was achieved by each of you in the fall semester and to look forward to what the next few months hold.

This fall, 1,302 people took courses with Coast Mountain College, across all our campuses as well as in communities and through Contact North BC access centres. Of these 1,302 people, 887 were domestic students, 339 of whom self-identified as Indigenous, and 415 were international students—about 32%. We endeavor to balance our international student population at 20% of overall enrolment and are increasing our efforts to recruit more domestic students in 2023 and beyond. You can hear more about these local recruitment efforts at the upcoming townhall, on January 19th.

This fall, 10% of our domestic students received financial awards through the CMTN Foundation and Financial Aid office. This will grow in the months ahead. Yvonne Koerner is now a few months into her tenure as Executive Director of the CMTN Foundation & Executive Education and is in a position to give this important agency the focused strategic support it requires. Our students and our communities will benefit greatly from the financial supports the Foundation can provide.

This is the semester when Waap Sa’mn (Spruce Building) renovations will be completed on the Terrace campus and that will be something wonderful to celebrate in the spring. Your patience and creative problem-solving during construction have been a testament to the teamwork and determination of our staff and faculty, qualities I truly appreciate.

The Lunch and Listen sessions that I told you about in September will be happening at all campuses in March, April, and May. While I would have liked to start these sooner, I’m glad they are now on the calendar and I appreciate your patience with the time it took to develop this initiative. It will be worth it.

With the recent change in Premier, we have a new Minister and Ministry name. Minister Selina Robinson will be heading up the Ministry of Post-Secondary Education and Future Skills. This means that the Ministry will be closely tying post-secondary education to labour market needs and future industries. We look forward to showing Minister Robinson all that CMTN has to offer this unique region of the province.

Working towards the dream of student housing in Smithers and Prince Rupert will be an ongoing project. We have learned a great deal from the success of Wii Gyemsiga Siwilaawksat about what our communities need and how to provide that. We hope to take that learning forward into new projects. In addition to housing, we have asked the Ministry for funding for a new building to house the Frieda Diesing School of Northwest Coast Art. I will keep you posted as things evolve with these funding requests.

These are exciting times for the Northwest and all of you play an important role in preparing this region for the future. We are well-positioned to make big strides in the year to come and I look forward to working alongside each of you to achieve those goals.

With thanks and best wishes for 2023,