I’m struggling to find the adjective that best describes the past few weeks in the life of Medicine Hat College. If the word ‘interesting’ can be considered both a blessing and a curse, that one might do the job.
Among the events and interesting news is confirmation that Medicine Hat College students are strong leaders, whether they be competing at provincial business and entrepreneurship competitions or advocating for social change.
Anthony Merkel, a young business owner honed through our Entrepreneur Development Centre, was named champion at the 2013 Student Entrepreneur Regional Champions for Western Canada in early March. Anthony now travels to Toronto to compete at the 2013 Enactus Canada National Exposition May 8. I’m sure everyone on campus will be cheering for him.
Another student group placed third at the regional Capital One Financial Education Challenge, competing against 18 colleges and universities from across Western Canada. This is an amazing outcome as this was the college’s rookie year at that competition. It speaks well of our students, but I hope their mentors on campus also take the time to celebrate this success.
Meanwhile, a few of our nursing students met with local and provincial government representatives – even traveling to Edmonton to meet the Honourable Fred Horne, Minister of Health – as they advocate for a provincial organ donor registry. The challenge they’ve accepted is a tribute to our students and those who work on campus to support their career goals.
The most interesting contrast in college news came over the span of just a few days. On a Thursday afternoon we learned that our grant funding has been significantly reduced for next year. Four days later we celebrated a new partnership that will bring a Mount Royal bachelor of education degree to campus.
A few hours before the MRU announcement we hosted the Honourable Lynne Yelich, the federal Minister for Western Economic Diversification, who announced funding that will bring state-of-the-art 3-D printing technology to the community.
So in a just a few days, campus leaders found themselves alternately celebrating successes and fretting about budgets and plans as we look to the future. “Interesting” can indeed be both a blessing and a curse.
However, I believe there are two common threads in this broad range of news that I’m sure will help your college survive and thrive in the months and years ahead.
First, we will always put the needs and goals of our students at the core of our plans and actions. The recent successes of our business and nursing students are just three examples of the amazing community of learners that comprises Medicine Hat College. Their accomplishments motivate us to do even more in the future.
Second, there is no doubt that partnership and collaboration will be a key part of our future success. Mount Royal University has emerged as a collaborative and visionary institution that is genuinely interested in helping us meet student and community needs. The new additive printing technology on campus also comes thanks to the support of engaged partners.
Yes, Medicine Hat College is experiencing interesting times, but I have confidence that our best years are yet to come.
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