Malaspina University-College receives AUCC approval for membership

November 19, 2000 - 4:00pm

On October 5, 2000 Malaspina University-College president Rich Johnston received confirmation that Malaspina had been accepted for membership in the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) at their Annual General Meeting.

"All of us at Malaspina University-College are very proud of our acceptance into AUCC," said Johnston. "This recognition by the university and colleges' national association solidifies Malaspina's reputation nationally and internationally."

Achieving membership for Malaspina in the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada (AUCC) has been one of the top priorities for Dr. David Thomas, Malaspina's Vice-President of Instruction.

Thomas has been working with an Advisory Group on AUCC Membership since he started his new position in August 1999.
"AUCC membership is crucial for us in a number of ways," said Thomas. "We first applied in 1998, received conditional approval in 1999, and have completed the process over the past year by addressing AUCC's remaining concerns."

While Canada has no formal system of institutional accreditation, membership in AUCC, coupled with a provincial charter, is deemed generally the equivalent.

According to Thomas the advantages of AUCC membership to Malaspina include the following.

  • The fact that AUCC is the national association that represents Canada's universities and university colleges, at home and abroad. It currently has 90 members including the University College of the Cariboo, Okanagan University College and the University College of the Fraser Valley.

  • As a participating member of AUCC, international affiliations and agreements open to Malaspina that are not available to institutions not recognized by AUCC.

  • AUCC itself is heavily involved internationally, works with numerous governmental agencies, and fosters and facilitates international experience for Canadian academics and students. AUCC also administers international exchanges.

  • Our reputation as a University-College is essential to our marketing and to our image. Our reputation affects our ability to attract students, hire faculty, develop our Foundation's resources, and attract revenues and research funding.

  • Membership in AUCC brings us into regular and routine contact with other universities and with the AUCC's bureaucracy, which will help us obtain key information, and which will help enhance the reputation of all the university colleges in the Province.

  • AUCC acts as a clearinghouse for university information, and lobbies on behalf of all universities and university colleges.

  • AUCC administers student scholarships, travel grants and work placements on behalf of more than 130 corporations, and other organizations, and offers assistance to Canadian scholars.

  • As an AUCC member, Malaspina can apply for research funding and for the allocation of research chairs and it gives graduates from certain programs portability in terms of their credentials.

  • Membership in AUCC confirms that we have adjusted to the new demands of university college status, and have put in place the structures necessary to support our faculty appropriately.

As a part of the AUCC application process, significant improvements have been made to Malaspina's Library, as follows:

  • 1,500 sq. ft. has been added to the Library for collections and 40 new student study spaces;

  • an Electronic Research Centre has been created with 16 workstations for instruction in library research skills;

  • the Education Curriculum Lab has been expanded;

  • 9,000 monographs and audiovisual items have been added to the collection;

  • a new full-text database has been added;

  • 2 new index/abstracts have been added.

The LET's Campaign, Malaspina's major capital campaign for the Library is now entering an important planning and preparation stage. It will enhance not only the Library's collection, but also its ability to function as an integrated learning and research centre for faculty and students. In addition, the Library's operating budget needs are being addressed with the Ministry and in our budgetary planning process.

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