Happy holidays!

Posted on Tuesday, December 21, 2021

Team photo

As we approach the holidays, I get the sense that I’m repeating things I’ve been saying over the last 21 months. What’s unwavering is that I’m proud of your personal successes and our joint accomplishments. You’ve continually performed at a high level while dealing with the challenges of your personal obligations. 

We're stronger than ever and more resilient. We continue to overcome the challenges and disruptions caused by the pandemic. Although it’s been a whirlwind, let’s take a moment to celebrate our joint achievements of the year! In looking at our progress on the Digital Campus Transformation Plan, we are leading digital transformation. These accomplishments have been glimmers of hope in building the university of tomorrow, a place in which, I hope we will be back together soon.

Our collective strength is how we deliver change when we work together. We have helped build a highly effective model for the future of learning, working and research at the University. Our migration of over 144,000 student email accounts and delivery of new online services such as remote mentoring, and virtual fairs meant students could continue to connect with us from near or afar. We worked collaboratively towards modernizing our administrative systems while industry collaborations provided Internet improvements to our region (a blessing when we’re working remotely!) In the area of research, our CANARIE grant meant opportunities for research software development and our ORION partnership bolstered a cutting-edge research infrastructure. With many resources and services online, it’s been imperative to increase security for our online environments by expanding MFA coverage to new students and implementing other cyber defenses. Although this is a small sampling of our collective efforts, they demonstrate how we are involved with so much at the University.

We are supporting the safe continuity of university activities, but more that, we are leading changes that will allow us to return safely to the vibrant campus we remember. The queue managementdaily assessment tool and 47,000+ vaccination declarations are a testament to ways we try to keep the community safe. 

I want to express my gratitude for all your achievements. Well done! We are approaching 2022 from a position of agility, innovation, and resilience. We’ve shown that we make an impact where it matters. 

For some, this time of year can be difficult. The holidays bring joy, but also feelings of stress and anxiety, especially in today's environment. We can navigate this challenge by working together, caring, and encouraging each other. Take the time to recognize the accomplishments and the work of your colleagues. Most importantly, take care of your family and friends who may need your support and encouragement. 

On behalf of myself and the IT executive team, have a wonderful and re-energizing holiday season! We look forward to seeing you on campus again in 2022.

Best wishes for a safe and joyous holiday, and all the hope that the new year brings. 

Martin Bernier

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