Significant investments in people, programming, and process improvements to support continued growth and development
(BRAMPTON/ SAULT STE. MARIE/ TIMMINS- April 28, 2022): Earlier this evening, the Algoma University Board of Governors approved an $89.6 million operating budget for the 2022-23 fiscal year. The budget injects significant investment into people, programs and process improvements to support key strategic initiatives including the continued development of world class academic programming for students as outlined within the institution’s five-year Academic Plan. Investments in stated commitments to truth, healing and reconciliation, including the Mukwa Waakaa’igan project, student supports, a new continuing education division, and the modernization of IT infrastructure are also incorporated into the budget.
“This is a ‘great news budget’ – we are extremely proud of our continued growth and development over the past year. Our strategic focus throughout the pandemic has helped build considerable momentum as we move forward. This has been a true community effort and, thanks to record investments, we are continuing this upward trajectory,” said President and Vice-Chancellor, Asima Vezina.
Vezina acknowledged the Federal and Provincial Governments investments as well as the Cities of Brampton and Sault Ste. Marie, the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation, and FedNor for their ongoing support and investment in Algoma U. Their belief in Algoma has contributed to this moment of celebration as we share a budget that is making record investments of $5M in people including 11 net new full-time faculty hires and 3 new deans that will help lead a newly Senate approved academic structure for the University.
The budget presentation highlighted new investments in faculty, research, and innovation and prepares Algoma for the introduction of Master’s degree options currently working through the final stages of academic approval processes. The budget also allocates $2.7M for scholarships and bursaries and additional student supports.
Given Algoma’s special mission, and the history of the Shingwauk Site on which the University’s Sault Ste. Marie campus is located, the 2022-23 budget includes the largest-ever commitment to Indigenization, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion that provides the resources and supports and new investments to address and implement the actions outlined in “Honouring our Commitment”, a framework established in 2021 to guide these important efforts. While the Mukwa Waakaa’igan project, generously supported through $13M in Federal and Provincial funding and $5M in University capital funding, will be a focal point of Algoma’s efforts, a range of other activities tied to decolonization, Indigenization and equity, diversity and inclusion will also move forward.
Capital investments in the amount of $26.5M will support a number of key initiatives including the further development of multi-year tri-campus master planning to guide Algoma’s continued efforts to increase access to top-quality university programming to students in Brampton, Sault Ste. Marie and Timmins. The budget also allocates $9.6M over five years to support the modernization of IT infrastructure to support academic and administrative operations, including the adoption of a comprehensive new Student Information System.
The operating budget is based on an enrolment forecast of 3,120 full-time equivalent (FTE) students. A key new revenue stream involves the development of a new Professional and Continuing Education (PACE) division. PACE will allow Algoma to offer new certificate and micro-credential programming for lifelong learners on all three campuses. Continued expansion of Algoma’s Brampton campus, and further diversification of international markets, including expanded recruitment activity in South Asia is also supported and currently underway.
“The Board of Governors fully supports the strategic investments and sound financial planning outlined within the budget presented this evening,” said Michael Moraca, Vice-Chair of the Board of Governors who chaired the meeting in the absence of the Board Chair who sent regrets. “The adoption of new technologies, such as the student information system, and further improvements to campus facilities and infrastructure, help ensure our students, faculty and staff have the tools and world-class learning environment critical for their long-term success. The investment in academic programs and innovative research facilities will take the University to its next level of maturity, I am excited about this University’s future and grateful to all who are helping contribute to its success.”
The Algoma University Board of Governors will next convene on June 23rd, 2022, for their Annual General Meeting.