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Annual Report 2016–17


Seneca’s 2016-17 Annual Report includes a summary of our yearly activities, achievements and initiatives; End-of-Year Business Plan Report-back; fast facts; a Board of Governors and senior executive listing; directory of new program offerings and consolidated financial statements.

Message from the Chair and President

In 2017, colleges across Ontario are celebrating the 50th anniversary of the birth of our province’s college system.

As we recognize Seneca’s many accomplishments and map our path forward, we are reminded of the vision of our founding president, Dr. William T. Newnham: “The Seneca graduate will make an informed and perceptive citizen, well-fitted to give much of himself to others and to derive much from life’s experiences.”

Dr. Newnham would be delighted with the informed and perceptive citizens Seneca continues to produce. To pick just one, Erin Grant, a Bachelor of Aviation Technology Degree graduate and former student mentor, who returned to Seneca in 2016 to honour the mentors who have followed in her footsteps. Erin, the 2013 Seneca Cup recipient and valedictorian, served as a first officer with ‪Jazz Aviation LP and has now joined Air Canada. She also gives back as a flight instructor at Seneca’s School of Aviation and at the Central Ontario Gliding Centre.

In the last year we have also seen the creative work of our students in the Animation Summer Institute culminate in the production of the animated movie, “DAM! The Story of Kit the Beaver.” This short film is a collaboration between Seneca’s School of Creative Arts and Animation and the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, which performed the original score live during screenings, including the premiere at Roy Thompson Hall.

Last spring, Seneca and Royal Bank of Canada brought together community and social agencies, mental health practitioners, researchers, scholars and students to focus on the ever-important topic of mental health at the inaugural RBC Mental Health Symposium at King Campus. The theme of the symposium was “trauma and practice across the life span” and included panel discussions that drew on the expertise of the faculty and alumni from programs in the School of Community Services.

During the summer, as construction of the King Campus expansion got underway, we learned that Seneca would receive $27.3 million in government funding to build a new Centre for Innovation, Technology and Entrepreneurship at Newnham Campus. This community-facing facility, infused with Indigenous design elements, will provide a new front door at Newnham and become a hub for innovation and entrepreneurial activities, as well as an expanded location for our mechatronics program and mechanical engineering technology programs.

As news of this extraordinary investment came, we also learned that Magna International Inc. made a $3 million donation in support of the Campaign for King Campus. The new building at King will now be known as “Magna Hall.” This commitment speaks to the positive impact that King graduates in community and health services have as caring professionals.

Our dedicated faculty continued to support students inside and outside the classroom. We were honoured to see professors and programs recognized with Colleges and Institutes Canada Awards of Excellence. Seneca staff members were also recognized by The Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council for their contributions to a mentorship program for new Canadians.

We also saw, once again, how deeply our community’s generosity runs, with another year of record-breaking contributions to United Way and the Campaign for Students. It is clear that everyone who works and learns at Seneca is dedicated to helping those in need and building a better future for our students and the broader community.

As we celebrate 50 years, building on the vision and hard work that has resulted in Seneca’s strong foundations, we also look with confidence and optimism to the future. A new Strategic Plan is in the works, as is a new strategic mandate agreement with the government.

Our vision for Seneca is to be Ontario’s leader in high-quality postsecondary education, offering an outstanding polytechnic education and a great student experience, equipping our graduates to thrive in the new world of work.

This commitment will be realized through a collective effort by those who are dedicated to our students and our mission. All who are a part of this effort have our gratitude and steadfast support.


Donna Duncan
Chair, Board of Governors

David Agnew