The Government of Canada provides nearly $1.9 million to the University of Sudbury

News release

SUDBURY, April 29, 2022

Our two official languages are an integral part of our identity as Canadians. French is the first official language of nearly one quarter of the Canadian population, and the Government of Canada is committed to protecting and promoting this language, which is at the heart of our history and many communities across the country. To support official-language minority communities and maintain the vitality of the French language, it is essential that we invest in the French-language education system, particularly post-secondary institutions.

Today, the Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency, announced nearly $1.9 million in funding for the University of Sudbury. The Minister was accompanied by Marc G. Serré, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Official Languages and Member of Parliament for Nickel Belt, and Viviane Lapointe, Member of Parliament for Sudbury.

The University of Sudbury wishes to return to its Francophone roots as an autonomous French-language university based on the principle of governance “by and for” the Francophone community. To do so, it will undertake a study of its institutional and organizational capacities in order to meet the training needs of students, the job market, and the Mid-North community.

The funding will allow the institution to prepare its application to the Ontario Postsecondary Education Quality Assessment Board (PEQAB) for an organizational assessment. This will allow the University of Sudbury to define its place within a network of French-language universities, as well as to train the next generation of Francophone leaders and to develop a business plan outlining the role the university could play in Ontario’s network of French-language universities. This two-year investment will allow the university to take its first steps in fulfilling its mandate as an institution governed “by and for” the Francophone community in Northern Ontario.

The project is funded under the Canada–Ontario Agreement on Minority-Language Education and Second-Language Instruction (2020–2021 to 2022–2023).

Quotes

“Today’s announcement is very important for Francophones and Francophiles in Northern Ontario. This two-year investment will allow the university to take a decisive and necessary step. Our government is committed to supporting minority-language post-secondary institutions and providing them with the necessary resources to foster the development of the student population, which will then be equipped to succeed in the labour market.”

—The Honourable Ginette Petitpas Taylor, Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency

“Developing a business plan that outlines the role the University of Sudbury could play in Ontario’s network of French-language universities is necessary to demonstrate its institutional capacity to succeed. Today’s announcement by the Government of Canada will allow the university to achieve its goals. This funding is in addition to several other recently announced investments in post-secondary institutions in Ontario. All this funding will give the Franco-Ontarian student population a major boost. This is good news for the province and for Northern Ontario!”

—Marc G. Serré, Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Official Languages and Member of Parliament for Nickel Belt

“Today’s funding is great news for the Sudbury community. It is a much-needed investment that will make a huge difference to the university and strengthen its institutional capacity. For the region, the university and its students, this contribution will serve as a springboard to reach new heights. On behalf of myself and the Greater Sudbury region, thank you!”

—Viviane Lapointe, Member of Parliament for Sudbury

“If the Franco-Ontarian flag is flying higher and prouder on its founders’ flagpole this morning, it’s because the dream of several generations of Francophone builders and visionaries over more than a century is being realized. Today’s announcement confirms to the Francophone and Francophile students of Greater Sudbury and the Mid-North that a university ‘by and for’ the community has taken yet another important step: its roadmap is now concrete. To students who are looking for a university to which they can entrust their dreams and hopes, the University of Sudbury will be an institution that matches your image and your aspirations.”

—Serge Miville, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Sudbury

Quick facts

  • Founded as Collège du Sacré-Coeur in 1913, the University of Sudbury was the first and, for many years, the only institution in Northern Ontario to offer university-level instruction.

  • On March 12, 2021, the University of Sudbury announced that it was returning to its Francophone roots by becoming an autonomous French-language university under the principle of governance “by and for” the Francophone community.

  • On September 15, 2021, the Board of Regents of the University of Sudbury unanimously passed a resolution to transform the institution into a university governed by and for Francophones.

  • Budget 2021 provides $121 million over three years (2021–2022 to 2023–2024) to support high-quality post-secondary education in a minority language. These new investments will be made primarily through existing intergovernmental collaboration mechanisms to help provinces and territories address pressing needs and help stabilize the minority-language post-secondary sector.

  • Funding for this project is provided through the Official Languages Support Programs, whose overall goal is to enhance the vitality of English- and French-speaking minority communities and promote the English and French languages in Canadian society.

  • The project is funded under the Canada–Ontario Agreement on Minority-Language Education and Second Official-Language Instruction 2020–2021 to 2022–2023.

  • On March 1, 2022, the Government of Canada introduced an enhanced bill promoting the substantive equality of Canada’s official languages, in order to adapt the Official Languages Act to a changing society. Among other objectives, the bill aims to address the decline of French in Canada, clarify and strengthen the section of the Official Languages Act dealing with the promotion of official languages, and support official-language minority communities.

Associated links

Contacts

For more information (media only), please contact:

Marianne Blondin
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister of Official Languages and Minister responsible for the Atlantic Canada Opportunities Agency
343-543-8853
marianne.blondin@acoa-apeca.gc.ca

Media Relations
Canadian Heritage
819-994-9101
1-866-569-6155
media@pch.gc.ca

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