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Charting (y)our road to 2022

Thu. Nov. 12, 2020

javier

“There is no ‘I’ in team” is a phrase often used to highlight the importance of teamwork as opposed to the efforts of lone individuals. At The University of Winnipeg Foundation we plan to alter this common phrase to reflect our optimistic vision of the future, we want YOU, now more than ever, at the centre of all our actions. There is a ‘y’ in University and that ‘y’ is you.

Since joining the Foundation a little over 3 weeks ago, I have been spending time meeting stakeholders to learn about their expectations, as well as the needs and hopes of our community. Let me share with you some of those conversations, and how the Foundation team is going to work to ensure we create a future that aligns with the fundamental beliefs that guide your expectations.

Through numerous phone and Zoom meetings—and many more yet to come—there has been a very strong and recurring theme: both The University of Winnipeg and the Collegiate provide students with the critical building blocks allowing graduates to pursue their careers and passions.

The gratitude of our alumni is the greatest connector between the University and former students, it is also a source of great pride for the both the staff at the University and the Foundation. We know the impact The University of Winnipeg has in shaping the lives of its students as well as the future workforce of our city and province. Individuals who graduate from our institution go on to become successful researchers, professionals, business leaders and entrepreneurs. The University and the Collegiate play a crucial role in forming individuals whose work has the potential to make a significant impact not only in their communities but in science, business and society around the world.

That common narrative, the pride to be part of this unique institution translates into a strong desire to support The University of Winnipeg through the Foundation. Five themes have emerged from my discussions to date:

 

  1. Making sure any person can afford the quality education the University and Collegiate provide,
  2. Awarding scholarships to deserving students,
  3. Supporting the University’s commitment to indigenization, truth and reconciliation,
  4. Improving the financial resilience of the University through the Foundation endowment
  5. Connecting more with alumni no matter where they are

These are five topics that YOU told me will matter in the foreseeable future. We are listening, and we also know that some infrastructure needs urgent renewal. We are working with our Foundation Board and the University team to address these challenges in the not so distant future.

The University of Winnipeg Foundation was legally incorporated in August of 2002, so we will be celebrating our 20th anniversary in 2022, a mere two years from now. Milestone celebrations are a great opportunity to assess the work done to date, and evaluate our ability to respond to the needs and expectations of the University, friends and supporters.

Over the next few months we will be reaching out to even more stakeholders as we chart a new, exciting path in our continuous quest to support the needs of the University of Winnipeg while remaining open, transparent, and cost-efficient as a Foundation. A series of community surveys will be released early in the new year, and I hope we can count on you to respond and help us chart our way forward.

Our goal is to have a new strategic plan ready by April of 2021. In the meantime, I am and always will be open to one-on-one conversations with anyone interested in our Foundation. Your ideas, your expectations, your concerns... they all matter. Simply contact us at foundation@uwinnipeg.ca and I will get back to you as soon as possible.

Thank you for reading the blog. I plan to continue our conversation and update you on our progress through this page. Feel free to bookmark this page and visit whenever you like.

Be well and stay safe.

In service,

Javier & the University of Winnipeg Foundation Team