Peter Devlin highlights growth and innovation at annual President’s Breakfast

Peter Devlin speaking at an event at Fanshawe College. CREDIT: GRACIA ESPINOSA
Peter Devlin at the annual President’s Breakfast, Aug. 30, 2023.

On Aug. 30, Fanshawe held its annual President’s Breakfast. The event is held before the beginning of each school year. Hundreds attended to hear from Peter Devlin, the president of Fanshawe College. In his speech, Devlin highlighted three essential points: Growing and Evolving, the College Community and Innovation. He also noted the importance of the international community at Fanshawe, stating that over 40,000 students from Ontario and across the globe attended Fanshawe last year.

“I am super proud of that international community; they come from over 100 countries. Fanshawe College has the most outstanding diversity in our international student body than any college in Ontario, if not Canada,” Devlin said.

On the topic of growth, Devlin highlighted the 13 new programs that are launching this academic year, as well as the 31 programs currently in the planning stage. One is the Green Vehicle Technology Program, set to launch in fall 2024. Furthermore, a new portal page, FanshaweOne (empowered by Workday), will soon replace Datatel and WebAdvisor. Another large project is the Campus Energy Centre, an integral part of the College’s Greenhouse Gas (GHG) Reduction Roadmap and Action Plan, which will reduce the College’s GHG emissions by 30 per cent and 50 per cent below 2013 levels by 2030 and 2050 respectively in support of Canada’s Climate Action Plan and to reduce the College impact on climate change.

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“There are real environmental benefits from the Central Energy Project,” Devlin explained.

In terms of partnership, Devlin highlighted a collaboration with Diane Blake, the founder and lead sponsor of Myseum of Toronto, who recently donated $5 million to the Centre of Excellence for Extended Reality (XR) in Health Care.

Devlin reminded the audience that Fanshawe College has launched a $1 million innovation fund whose biggest recipient is Innovation Village. Innovation Village, a massive new building at Fanshawe’s London campus will open officially in January 2024, with a preview tour for employees to be held Dec. 14.

The event ended with the presentation of the President’s Distinguished Achievement Awards. The winners this year were as follows:

  1. Part-Time Staff: Sydney Proulx (Customer Service Representative, FanCard Office).
  2. Part-Timer Teacher Award: Lauren Ryan (Faculty, Community Pharmacy Assistant and Pharmacy Technician programs).
  3. Program Award: IgniteHER (WomXn in Tech, Corporate Training Solutions).
  4. Administrator Award: Senada Glavas (Operation Manager, Faculty of Business, Information Technology and Part-Time Studies).
  5.  Staff Award: Judith Bell (Customer Service Representative, Woodstock/Oxford Regional Campus).
  6. Teacher Award: Wendy Sperry (Faculty, Design Foundation, Fashion Marketing and Management programs)
  7. Team Award: InSPIRE mentorship Team.
During the awards ceremony, Devlin also stressed the importance of artificial intelligence (AI) and joked that he logged on to Chat GPT and asked what Fanshawe College was. Its answer: “Fanshawe is where innovation meets education.”