Oct. 3, 2019

‘UCalgary is a bright light and we continue to shine brightly’

Community gathers to celebrate Community Report 2019: a snapshot of 2018-19 achievements
Community Report 2019
Community Report 2019

Sept. 26 saw the UCalgary community come together and celebrate some of the past year’s highlights — the enriched learning experiences, the transformative innovations and the countless partnership and community building efforts — at Community Report 2019.

Emceed by Students' Union and Graduate Students' Association leaders and with more than 1,000 people on hand at Foothills, MacEwan Conference Centre and those watching online, this year's theme Creating Impact illustrates the latest progress towards the goals presented in Eyes High and the Academic and Research Plans 2018-23 that serve as its roadmaps.

Celebrating his first Community Report as president, Dr. Ed McCauley challenged everyone to "take a look around you. These achievements are because of the work that you do every day. Everyone in this room and across our university has played a role in our success."

He also emphasized an important take away. "Community Report is not about dollars or stats. Community Report is about each of you and the ways that you have stepped up this year to help the University of Calgary make a difference."

He proudly went on to say, "UCalgary is shining brightly because of the people in this room."

Creating Impact: Echoed in the voices of UCalgary students

The day's highlights for many, though, were the strong student voices. The events featured several students who took the stage and shared their experiences as innovators and community leaders, while also paying tribute to the UCalgary community who supported them: Sunand Kannappan (Health Sciences) and Kim Stewart (Veterinary Medicine) at Foothills and Julianna Lyon (Arts), Max Eisele (Kinesiology), Laura Rios Carreño (Engineering) and Teddy Seyed (Computer Science) on main campus.

As the students exited the stage, President McCauley reflected on how these students best illustrate the university’s impact and acknowledged their development from 'consumers to creators of new knowledge'.

Throughout October, learn more about these students' and their inspiring stories through a six-part, video series. So, if you missed them at Community Report, you will have an opportunity to learn how they are already making an impact as young leaders on campus, in the community and around the world.

Making progress

Here are select highlights from Community Report 2019. Refer to ucalgary.ca/report for the full list.

Enriching the quality of learning:

  • Launched a Faculty of Nursing one-year graduate certificate – the first program of its kind in Canada.
  • Offered new international research opportunities for students through a three-year agreement and generous support from Mitacs.
  • Expanded enrolment for 80 more veterinary students over the next four years, helping us meet the need for veterinary care in rural and remote communities.


  • the Interdisciplinary Science and Innovation Centre, which will be a centralized facility for students to explore environmental and life sciences, and an incubator for startups.
  • the Trico Foundation Social Entrepreneurship Centre – a remarkable initiative to help students apply business principles to solve social challenges
  • W.A. Ranches - the new facility that is transforming veterinary education and research to meet the needs of communities across our province and beyond.
  • The pending transfer of the University Research Park from the Government of Alberta – a dynamic hub for innovations in business, science and technology.
  • Introduced the new embedded Certificate in Mental Wellbeing and Resilience – another  first-of-its-kind in the country, with a focus on understanding mental health and resilience from multiple perspectives.

Leading the way in discovery and innovation:

  • A UCalgary spin-off company, Parvus Therapeutics founded by Pere Santamaria, announced a worldwide licensing deal to develop an innovative treatment for autoimmune diseases.
  • Sheri Madigan led a study on the impact of excessive screen time in young children and the link to learning delays in preschool.
  • The NFL invested in Carolyn Emery and her team to lead a national program to reduce concussions in youth sport.
  • Beatriz Molero Sanchez and Paul Addo co-founded a tech startup that converts waste carbon dioxide into useful materials.

As a community partner and leader:

  • Grew our alumni family to 185,000-strong – of whom 100,000 live and work in Calgary
  • Launched a new satellite location for the School of Architecture, Planning and Landscape in downtown Calgary. The City Building Design Lab creates unique opportunities for SAPL students to conduct research and develop their ideas for sustainable and resilient cities
  • Raised a record-breaking $701,000 for the United Way of Calgary and Area
  • Achieved 97 per cent of our goal for Energize: the Campaign for Eyes High

Community showcase makes a popular return

Based on the throngs of people lined up two to three deep at some exhibits, the community showcase proved once again to be a popular addition to Community Report. More than 20 campus faculties and administrative services were featured, inviting attendees to learn more about many of the programs, services and events on campus; perhaps collect some recognition cards; or enjoy a few spirited games of Plinko or spin the wheel to earn some swag like a water bottle.

Congratulations to Rebekah Jarvis for winning the Apple Watch. Jarvis made the rounds collecting some treats and great swag from places like the Bookstore and receiving stamps from IT, Risk and Recognition on her way to the big win.

Take the survey

Share your thoughts about Community Report 2019, whether you attended or reviewed and read the report online. Take a short survey.

Check out Community Report 2019 online

If you didn’t attend or forgot to pick up one of the printed versions of Community Report, check it out online at ucalgary.ca/report as well as many more highlights not captured in the report. Everyone on campus should feel tremendously proud as a valued part of these celebrated accomplishments.