Celebrating outstanding Mohawk College alumni Reply

Congratulations to our newest Alumni of Distinction recipients.  Front row (left to right): Megan MacLeod, Brian Jonker, Vanh Kalong, the Hon. Ted McMeekin and Barbara Shea. Back row (left to right): Rocco Passero, Mayor Fred Eisenberger, Derek Doyle and Daniel Popowich

Congratulations to our newest Alumni of Distinction recipients.
Front row (left to right): Megan MacLeod, Brian Jonker, Vanh Kalong, the Hon. Ted McMeekin and Barbara Shea.
Back row (left to right): Rocco Passero, Mayor Fred Eisenberger, Derek Doyle and Daniel Popowich

I had the privilege last Friday of shaking the hands of our newest future-ready graduates during our Fall Convocation ceremonies.

Last night, I had the honour of personally congratulating our newest Alumni of Distinction recipients. We inducted nine outstanding graduates before an audience of family, friends, colleagues, faculty and staff. In addition to receiving an award, each recipient will have an entrance scholarship named in their honour.

Congratulations once again to:

  • Derek Doyle, co-founder of Ambitious Realty Advisors and Mezcal Tacos & Tequila (Small Business Entrepreneurship, 2007)
  • His Worship Mayor Fred Eisenberger(Community Planning and Development, 1983)
  • Brian Jonker, Parts and Facility Manager for Tiger Cat Industries Inc. and coach of the Mohawk Mountaineer men’s varsity basketball team (Radio Broadcasting, 1993)
  • Vanh Kalong, Owner of the My Thai Group (Information Systems Technician, 1991)
  • Megan MacLeod, Development intern at McMaster University and organizer of Warm Up For Winter, Feet First for Haiti and Glitz, Glamour and Graduation (Fundraising Development Associate Certificate, Leadership and Management in the Not-for-Profit Sector, Volunteer Management, Event Management, 2013-14)
  • The Hon. Ted McMeekin, Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing and MPP for Ancaster-Dundas-Flamborough-Westdale (Social Studies, 1970)
  • Rocco Passero, Assistant Deputy Minister and Executive Lead with Infrastructure Technology Services, Treasury Board Secretariat, Government of Ontario (Engineering Technology, 1980)
  • Daniel Popowich, Professor and recipient of a 2014 Mohawk College Award of Excellence (General Arts and Science, 1992)
  • Barbara Shea, Network Coordinator of Public Health Ontario’s Central East Infection Control Network (Medical Laboratory Technology, 1980)

If you want a job done right, give the job to a Mohawk graduate or student. Special thanks to Mohawk Alumni of Distinction recipient Jim Tatti for serving as MC of our event, Mohawk grad and former Mohawk Students’ Association president Dan Clark for performing during dinner and Mohawk student Billy Stefanidis for producing the videos of our distinguished alumni.

Special thanks to the Alumni team of Kelly Dunham, Meaghan Drury, Kristy Hurley, Kim Shaw and Wendy Makey for organizing a great night for our award recipients and their family and friends.

Mohawk College among national leaders in applied research Reply

Congratulations to all our students and faculty who working with industry partners to bring innovation solutions to market. Mohawk ranks 17th in the just-released Research Infosource’s annual ranking of Canada’s top 50 research colleges. Mohawk ranks 6th among Ontario’s 24 colleges.

Research Infosource measures college research activity based on research income, research intensity and research partnerships.
Mohawk ranked 22nd last year. We moved up five spots due to a 43.5 per cent increase in research income and the growing number of faculty who are involved in applied research projects.
Mohawk has three centres of excellence for applied research:
  • Our mHealth and eHealth Development and Innovation Centre (MEDIC)
  • Our Additive Manufacturing Resource Centre (AMRC), and
  • Our Mohawk Energy Research Centre

We’ve also launched an Applied Research and Innovation in Education Fund to promote and support applied research projects carried out by faculty and staff.

Applied research projects give our students invaluable real-world learning opportunities and further strengthens our college’s connections with industry and government partners.

Consultation & collaboration key to City School by Mohawk expansion plans (remarks) Reply

city schoolI gave Hamilton City Council an update on our City School project and previewed our plans to expand to two more lower city neighbourhoods in the near future. To make a college education accessible to all Hamiltonians, City School by Mohawk is bringing our college into priority neighbourhoods.


Thank you Deputy Mayor Murella:

Back in February, I came before Council to announce Mohawk’s welcoming communities project. It’s a project aimed at recruiting more international students to Mohawk and then encouraging them to live and work in Hamilton once they graduate.

Work is well underway on our welcoming communities project.  We’ve assembled a steering committee of business and community leaders, including Sarah Wayland with the City’s Global Hamilton initiatives. We’re bringing 30 thought leaders to Mohawk next week for a two-day summit.  We’ll have an action plan ready to roll out early in the new year. While Mohawk is an academic institution, this will not be an academic exercise.

This morning, I’d like to update you on another major project for Mohawk and the city we serve.  With our welcoming communities project, Mohawk is helping to import talent to Hamilton. With our access project, we’re developing the talent in our own backyard.

Specifically, the wealth of talent in priority neighbourhoods across the lower city and on the Mountain.

We launched City School by Mohawk earlier this month as part of our access project. We were honoured to have Councillor Matthew Green and Minister Ted McMeekin officially open our first City School at the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre in North Hamilton.

During the opening, we also recognized an incredibly generous leadership gift from Dundas residents Dr. Douglas Barber and his wife June.  In supporting City School with a donation of $100,000, the Barbers have brought a college education to an entire North End neighbourhood.

City School marks the evolution of Mohawk’s access project.

We launched our access project six years ago to make a college education accessible to all Hamiltonians.  Leading our access project is Jim Vanderveken who is with us this morning. You would be hard pressed to find anyone in Hamilton or the Province of Ontario who has more passion for improving access to postsecondary education.

Jim and our college believe that education is Hamilton’s best poverty to prosperity solution. We see the evidence every day in our hallways and classrooms. We’re committed to replicating that success in the neighbourhoods in your wards.

We started our access project with a College in Motion team. Every year, our team connects with thousands of young people in more than 30 local high schools and community centres in every ward.

Over 800 of those young people have since enrolled at Mohawk. Our team demystifies college and marks a clear path to earning a postsecondary education.

Our College in Motion team will continue to work with high school students from across Hamilton.

City School builds on the success of College in Motion and brings Mohawk into the community in a way that we’ve never done before.

To the best of our knowledge, no other college in Ontario is taking community engagement to this level.

City School aligns with both the Province’s Community Hubs Action Plan and the City’s Neighbourhood Action Strategy.

We plan to open six City Schools over the next three years, with five City Schools in the lower city and one on the Mountain.

Right now, we’re working with community leaders to open our next two City Schools in the Gibson-Landsdowne and McQueston neighbourhoods.

Consultation and collaboration are Mohawk’s guiding principles for City School.

To open a City School, Mohawk needs to be invited into to a neighbourhood by the leaders, champions and residents in that community.

We will not arrive in any neighborhood uninvited and unannounced, with assumptions about what’s best for residents.

Instead, we’re counting on the people in each neighbourhood to tell us what programs and services they need from Mohawk.  City School will be customized to meet specific community needs.

In some neighbourhoods, the focus for City School will be on serving at-risk youth. In other neighbourhoods,  the greatest need could be serving single moms or newcomers.

At the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre, we have been asked to deliver job search and career prep workshops, computer skills training, general interest college courses and a mentorship program.

All of the workshops, courses and services we offer are tuition-free and delivered by faculty, staff and students. The quality of the programs we offer at City School will be equal to the quality of the programs we offer at our three Hamilton campuses.

Consultation is absolutely critical to the success of City School. So to is close  collaboration with our college partners.

Much of the success of our College in Motion team rests on the strength of our partnerships we have forged with both school boards.

We plan to replicate that approach with City School by Mohawk.

We look forward to working in collaboration with the City of Hamilton and with our partners from the public, non-profit and private sectors.

We need partners to provide a home for City School in each neighbourhood. With this project, Mohawk is investing in people rather than bricks and mortar. We’re investing in programs and services rather than rents and mortgages.

I had the privilege of taking part in the City’s Our Future Hamilton – Communities in Conversation back in September.

During my talk, I quoted former U.S. President Harry Truman who once said “it is amazing what you can accomplish if you do not care who gets the credit.”

Mohawk shares that philosophy. And it’s the approach we’re taking with our community-building invitiatives, whether it’s importing talent to Hamilton or developing the talent in our own backyard.

We look forward to working with you and city staff to bring our college into your communities in the months and years ahead.

Thank you.

Kudos: Mohawk College team brings City School to North Hamilton Reply

Dr. Douglas Barber and his wife June have donated $100,000 in support of City School by Mohawk. Everyone at Friday's opening signed a ceremonial ruler made from a 100-year-old church pew. The ruler, like the classroom, was refurbished by our Building Renovation faculty and students.

Dr. Douglas Barber and his wife June have donated $100,000 in support of City School by Mohawk. Everyone at Friday’s opening signed a ceremonial ruler made from a 100-year-old church pew. The ruler, like the classroom, was refurbished by our Building Renovation faculty and students.

We officially opened our first City School by Mohawk at the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre in North Hamilton last Friday morning. City School further strengthens our connections with, and commitment to, the communities we educate and serve. City School is part of Mohawk’s access strategy and builds on the success of our College in Motion Team.

I’d like to thank the City School by Mohawk team who’ve taken community engagement to a whole new level at our college:

  • Jim Vanderveken
  • Emily Ecker
  • Sarah Harvie
  • Lisa Aflano
  • Karina Arias
  • Carla Labella
  • Nair Lacruz
  • David Wearing
  • Alison Horton
  • Lauren Soluk
  • Natalie Shearer
  • Warren Gresko
  • Wayne Ostermaier

And a special thanks to Dan Collins, Travis Pede and their Building Renovation students for restoring a 100-year-old classroom at the former Robert Land School. You’ve created a special place to learn in the heart of North Hamilton.

Have your say. The 2015 Employee Survey starts Monday, Oct. 5 Reply

When you check your email on Monday, Oct. 5 please keep an eye out for a message from CCI Research Inc. CCI will be inviting all employees at Mohawk College to complete the 2015 Employee Engagement survey.

In the 2013 survey you told us we could do a better job on things like: recognition, performance management, information sharing and professional development. Many of those concerns have been acted on and more improvements are planned for the year ahead. You can find out more about them in the Employee Engagement Progress Report.

One of the items on that to-do list will be checked off this coming Tuesday with the opening of a new staff lounge in room C062b (downstairs next to Subway in the cafeteria) at the Fennell Campus. If you’re at the Fennell Campus between 10 – 10:30 a.m. on Tuesday, please drop by and check it out.

Your responses to this year’s survey questions will tell us what else we need to do to make Mohawk an even better place to learn and work. The survey is quick and should only take 10-15 minutes to complete, and you can do it while at work using a computer, tablet, or smartphone.

It’s also confidential. CCI will not share your survey responses with anyone at Mohawk. As with the 2013 survey, only a summary of the results will be given to the College and that information will be shared with all employees.

The survey runs from October 5th to October 16th. Your opinions matter and they do make a difference, so please take a few minutes to share your opinions, good or bad.

Celebrating the opening of Mohawk College’s City School Reply

It will be a day of firsts for Mohawk tomorrow morning in North Hamilton.

We’ll be at the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre at Robert Land to officially open our first City School at Mohawk. We’ll also be recognizing our first City School donors and celebrating with our first City School student.

City School is part of our ongoing commitment to make a Mohawk education accessible to all Hamiltonians. Building on the success of our College in Motion team, we will be offering tuition-free courses, lectures and workshops in priority neighbourhoods where there are significant barriers to participating in post-secondary education.  Our goal is to open City Schools in six priority neighbourhoods over the next three years. We believe no other college in Ontario has taken community engagement to this level and City School aligns with both the Government of Ontario and City of Hamilton’s focus on community hubs.

Consultation and collaboration will be critical to the success of City School. What we offer at each City School will be decided in consultation with the neighbourhoods we serve. At the Eva Rothwell Resource Centre, we’ll be focusing on academic upgrading, college preparation, general interest courses and supports for finding work.

We will be working closely with community partners to help us run City Schools. We need partners who are well-respected and connected with neighbourhood residents. Our partners also need to provide space where we can deliver programs and services.  The Eva Rothwell Resource Centre has generously offered us a classroom at the former Robert Land elementary school. Our investment will be in the people we serve and not in bricks and mortar.

We will also be looking to funders and donors to support City School. Tomorrow, we will be recognizing the first donation to City School by Dr. Douglas Barber and his wife June. The Barbers have established two $15,000 scholarships for Mohawk students who serve as peer mentors at City School and an additional $70,000 for programs and services. The Barbers’ donation gives the gift of a Mohawk education to an entire North Hamilton neighbourhood.

City School further strengthen our ties and our commitment to the communities we serve. For youth and adults living in priority neighbourhoods, Mohawk can seem a world away and a college education can appear beyond reach. City School bridges that divide and allows us to do what we do best – building hope and transforming lives through the power of education.

If you’re interested in learning more about City School or getting involved, please contact Emily Ecker at emily.ecker@mohawkcollege.ca.

You can also read more about City School on the front page of today’s Hamilton Spectator.