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Financial Sustainability

A game-changing investment in innovation

Investment to support creation of Innovation and Wellness Centre, biomedical research facility renovations.

  • Member of Parliament Mark Gerretsen announces that Queen's will receive $31 million from the Government of Canada's Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Infrastructure Fund on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Member of Parliament Mark Gerretsen announces that Queen's will receive $31 million from the Government of Canada's Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Infrastructure Fund on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • Member of Provincial Parliament Sophie Kiwala announces that Queen's will receive to support two on-campus infrastructure projects, on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Member of Provincial Parliament Sophie Kiwala announces that Queen's will receive to support two on-campus infrastructure projects, on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • Principal Daniel Woolf discusses how the SIF-supported projects will improve the campus learning experience for Queen's students. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Principal Daniel Woolf discusses how the SIF-supported projects will improve the campus learning experience for Queen's students. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • Kimberly Woodhouse, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences, describes the new learning, innovation and research facilities that will be featured in the Innovation and Wellness Centre. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Kimberly Woodhouse, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences, describes the new learning, innovation and research facilities that will be featured in the Innovation and Wellness Centre. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • Rector Cam Yung discusses how students will benefit from the program offerings in the new Innovation and Wellness Centre. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Rector Cam Yung discusses how students will benefit from the program offerings in the new Innovation and Wellness Centre. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • Principal Woolf and Provost Benoit-Antoine Bacon tour the site of the Innovation and Wellness Centre. The new facility will be built on the location of the former Physical Education Centre - maintaining a number of elements of the old building's facade. October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    Principal Woolf and Provost Benoit-Antoine Bacon tour the site of the Innovation and Wellness Centre. The new facility will be built on the location of the former Physical Education Centre - maintaining a number of elements of the old building's facade. October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • (From L-R) Rector Cam Yung, Dean Woodhouse, Principal Woolf, Provost Bacon and Mr. Gerretsen tour the Innovation and Wellness Centre site. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    (From L-R) Rector Cam Yung, Dean Woodhouse, Principal Woolf, Provost Bacon and Mr. Gerretsen tour the Innovation and Wellness Centre site. October 11, 2016 (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
  • (From L-R) Mr. Gerretsen, Principal Woolf, Rector Yung, Caroline Davis (Vice-Principal (Facilities, Properties, and Sustainability), Dean Woodhouse, Ms. Kiwala and Provost Bacon at the Strategic Infrastructure Fund announcement in Beanish-Munro Hall on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)
    (From L-R) Mr. Gerretsen, Principal Woolf, Rector Yung, Caroline Davis (Vice-Principal (Facilities, Properties, and Sustainability), Dean Woodhouse, Ms. Kiwala and Provost Bacon at the Strategic Infrastructure Fund announcement in Beanish-Munro Hall on October 11, 2016. (Photo Credit: Bernard Clark)

On Oct. 11, Queen’s announced that it had received a $31 million investment from the Government of Canada, under the Post-Secondary Institutions Strategic Investment Fund (SIF). The investment, in addition to a $4.9 million investment from the Government of Ontario and the contributions of a number of benefactors, will support two capital projects on campus– the creation of the Queen’s Innovation and Wellness Centre and a revitalization of on-campus biomedical research facilities.

[Innovation and Wellness Centre]
Architect's rendering of the Innovation and Wellness Centre, as seen from Union St. and Division St.

“We are incredibly grateful to the federal and provincial governments, as well as the countless generous donors who have made this investment in the future of Queen’s,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “The projects their investments support will enhance innovation programming at Queen’s and strengthen the university’s position in world-leading research. We look forward to continued future partnership with the government in strengthening innovation, research and economic development in Kingston and Canada as a whole.”

The Innovation and Wellness Centre, located on the site of the former Physical Education Centre, will feature expanded engineering facilities, makerspaces and experiential learning spaces funded by the SIF investment. The centre will be home to an Innovation Hub – centered around the successful Queen’s Innovation Connector – and state-of-the-art interdisciplinary laboratories. These facilities will increase opportunities for research, student design and learning, while also strengthening the university’s position in world-leading research. 

[Collaborative Learning Spaces]
The Innovation and Wellness Centre will bring collaborative and experiential learning spaces, state-of-the-art laboratories and mental health and wellness services together in one convenient location at the heart of campus.

The innovation and engineering facilities will be co-located with space for Student Wellness Services and the Chaplaincy. The wellness centre, funded entirely by philanthropic gifts, will also feature athletic and recreation facilities, the Queen’s University International Centre, and a new Exam Centre. The co-location of innovation and wellness services, a recommendation of the Principal’s Commission on Mental Health, will blend academic, recreational and other student life activities, and will emphasize to our students the important relationships that connect mental health, physical well-being and academic success. The project will also provide both a short-term and long-term economic stimulus to the Kingston community – through construction jobs and ongoing research and innovation, respectively.

“Today's investment from the Strategic Investment Fund is evidence of the Government's commitment to excellence in research, and understanding that we need to support our students, both in and out of the classroom,” says Mark Gerretsen, MP for Kingston and the Islands. “By investing in our educational facilities, universities and colleges across the country can foster the development of skilled and successful workers, who will help Canadian companies compete and grow in a global market.”

The SIF investment will also allow for the revitalization of campus biomedical research facilities that support research by a number of top-level research groups at Queen’s. The investment will strengthen Queen’s and Canada’s position in world-leading biomedical research – providing Queen’s researchers with the facilities necessary to expand their translational research in areas such as neurological, cardiovascular and cancer research.

“Improving post-secondary facilities is part of our government’s plan to build Ontario up, grow our economy and create jobs, so I’m incredibly pleased that we are able to work cooperatively with Queen’s University and our Federal counterparts,” says Sophie Kiwala, MPP for Kingston and the Islands. “Through this investment, we foster excellence, build our capacity to train the highly-skilled workforce of tomorrow, and to create knowledge and insights that will fuel discovery.”

“This is truly a game changing addition for the faculty and the university as a whole."  - Michael Norris (Sc’75), volunteer chair of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences fundraising campaign.

Nearly $37 million was donated by Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences alumni to support the innovation component of the revitalization project. Michael Norris (Sc’75), the volunteer chair of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Sciences fundraising campaign said donors were inspired by the vision put forth by Dean Kim Woodhouse to promote entrepreneurialism within the faculty, and build on Queen’s standing as the premier engineering program in Canada.

“This is truly a game changing addition for the faculty and the university as a whole,” says Mr. Norris. “This campaign focused on reconnecting our alumni with the faculty and inspiring them with the vision put forth by Dean Woodhouse. This was a grassroots program that will hopefully have impact on the Queen’s community for generations to come.”

Kimberly Woodhouse, Dean of the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science, says the new facility will play a vital role in the lives of students and the university as a whole.

“This generous funding from two levels of government, combined with the passionate support of dedicated Engineering alumni like Mike Norris, helps the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science remain a leader in engineering education and research,” says Dean Woodhouse.

The total cost of the two projects is approximately $119 million. In addition to the government funding announced today, Queen’s is contributing nearly $45.8 million towards the projects. Construction on the Innovation and Wellness Centre began in September and is expected to be completed in spring 2018. More information will be made available on the Queen’s Gazette website as the project progresses.

 

Learn more about employee benefits plan

Staff and faculty are encouraged to attend an education session to learn more about their employee benefits plan. The sessions are part of a comprehensive review of the Queen’s Employee Benefits Plan announced this past May.

Presented by Human Resources, the 90-minute sessions will take place over several weeks from Oct. 19 to Nov. 1. The content for the education sessions was developed in partnership with the Multi-Employee Group Employee Benefits Committee, which is comprised of participants from university employee groups, and the university’s benefits consultant, Mercer.

Employee Benefits Plan Education Sessions
* Wednesday, Oct. 19, 9:30-11 am, Jeffery Hall Room 126
* Thursday, Oct. 20, Noon-1:30 pm, Haynes Hall
* Tuesday, Oct. 25, 9:30-11 am, Kinesiology Building Room 101
* Tuesday, Oct. 25, 4-5:30 pm, Ellis Hall Room 327
* Tuesday, Nov. 1, Noon-1:30 pm, Jeffery Hall Room 127
* Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2:30-4 pm, Jeffery Hall Room 127

Following the education sessions, a confidential survey will be emailed in November to employees who are eligible to receive benefits. The survey will also be available in paper form for those who do not have access to a computer at work.

“I would encourage all faculty and staff to attend one of the sessions. Not only is it a great way to get a better understanding of the benefits plan, but it will help staff and faculty be better informed when it comes time to complete the survey,” says Dan Bradshaw, Interim Associate Vice-Principal (Human Resources). 

At each session, participants will receive an overview of Queen’s insured benefits plan for active members, including plan details and how they compare to the market. The sessions will also cover group insurance fundamentals, consumer tips, and broader trends in benefits.

Registration for the sessions is not mandatory; however, it is appreciated in order to ensure that all attendees can be accommodated. To register for an employee session, visit the Learning Catalogue

For more information, please email Diane Pointer diane.pointer@queensu.ca or call ext. 74173. Questions about the project can be sent to benefits.project@queensu.ca

Queen’s releases 2015-16 financial statements

University committed to supporting academic mission despite financial challenges. 

The university’s draft financial statements for 2015-16 are now available online, and will go before the Board of Trustees for approval at the Board’s Sept. 30 meeting.

The statements, which outline the university’s consolidated financial results for the fiscal year ending April 30, 2016, report a surplus of revenues over expenses of $39.5 million, even as the university continues to face a number of financial challenges.The surplus represents 4.5 per cent of the university’s total expenses.

“The university is committed to achieving long-term financial sustainability and maintaining our position as the quintessential balanced academy,” says Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration) Caroline Davis. “The operating fund surplus will provide important flexibility for future strategic priorities and a reserve for future pension payments. In addition, surpluses accrued by the faculties have been set aside in departmental reserves in support of academic priorities.”

The primary reasons for the surplus are actuarially defined pension expenses lower than pension contributions, significant utility savings, and an increase in tuition revenue.

Despite the surplus, the university continues to face a number of financial challenges, including low interest rates, an unsustainable pension plan with a $285-million solvency deficit, a $253-million deferred maintenance backlog, and reliance on government controlled grant support and tuition, all of which continue to be a part of the financial landscape.

“As has been the case in previous years, a significant portion of our surplus is non-cash and therefore not available for operations. We cannot count on continued surpluses in the years to come, and must prudently manage our reserves to help address our financial challenges,” says Vice-Principal Davis.

In May 2016, the Board of Trustees approved the 2016-17 operating budget, which is balanced after a $16.4 million drawdown of reserves.

2015-16 financial statements 

Work continues on employee benefits review

Learn more about your employee benefits plan at one of a series of education sessions hosted by Human Resources.

The 90-minute sessions, which will take place over several weeks beginning Wednesday, Oct. 19, are part of a comprehensive review of the university’s employee benefits plan announced last May.

These sessions will take staff and faculty through an overview of the Queen’s benefits plan, including plan details and how they compare to the market. The sessions will also cover group insurance fundamentals, consumer tips, and broader trends in benefits.

Dates and further information on how you can register for one of these sessions will be announced early in October. 

For more information, please contact Diane Pointer, Director, Total Compensation, diane.pointer@queensu.ca, ext. 74173. Those with questions about the project may submit them to benefits.project@queensu.ca

Queen's announces VP appointments

[Caroline Davis]
Caroline Davis, Vice-Principal (Facilities, Properties, and Sustainability)

Principal Daniel Woolf announced today the appointments of Caroline Davis as the inaugural vice-principal (facilities, properties, and sustainability), and Donna Janiec as the new vice-principal (finance and administration).

Ms. Davis’s appointment is for a two-year term, while Ms. Janiec’s is a continuing appointment. Both appointments are effective Oct. 1.

“Ms. Davis possesses the skills, knowledge, and experience necessary to launch this important portfolio and ensure our facilities and properties are managed in a cohesive and strategic manner,” Principal Woolf says. “Furthermore, Ms. Janiec is well-suited and prepared to step in to the vice-principal role after developing her talents and leadership skills as the associate vice-principal over the past seven years.”   

The new portfolio, created in April 2016, will oversee Campus Planning and Development, Physical Plant Services, and leased property such as Innovation Park. Ms. Davis will play a leading role as Queen’s advances institutional priorities such as classroom renewal, major capital projects, deferred maintenance, and sustainability initiatives including the Climate Action Plan.

[Donna Janiec]
Donna Janiec, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration)

Ms. Davis joined Queen’s in January 2010 as the vice-principal (finance and administration) after a successful and wide-ranging career in the federal public service. In her last position as assistant deputy minister, resolution and individual affairs, at Indian and Northern Affairs Canada (INAC), she oversaw the implementation of the Indian Residential Schools Settlement Agreement.

In 2009, Ms. Davis became a fellow of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Ontario, which is awarded for outstanding career achievements and service to the community and the accountancy profession. Ms. Davis has volunteered with several community organizations. She currently serves as chair of the board of directors for the United Way serving Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington.

Ms. Janiec was appointed associate vice-principal (finance) in 2009. Prior to that appointment, she held various positions in the Faculty of Arts and Science, the Office of the Vice-Principal (Academic), and Risk Management and Audit Services.

Before joining Queen’s in 1994, Ms. Janiec worked nearly 10 years in public accounting. She articled with PricewaterhouseCoopers after earning her undergraduate degree from the University of Waterloo, obtaining her chartered accounting designation in 1987. In addition to her work at Queen’s, Ms. Janiec is vice-chair of the Kingston General Hospital’s board of directors and chair of the board’s governance committee.

Queen's prepares for Residences move-in day

New coloured zones should help speed up the move-in process.

On Sunday, September 4, more than 4,000 first-year students will move into university residences. The university has been planning for months to make Move-in Day run as smoothly as possible for students, their families and local residents.

This year, the campus residence areas have been divided into coloured zones. Incoming students can find their residence building on the move-in map and download specific driving route instructions along with a coloured zone card to put on their windshield. This will help volunteers place vehicles in the right lineup to speed up the move-in process.

“There’s always a great deal of excitement and energy as we welcome new students to campus,” says Ann Tierney, Vice-Provost and Dean of Student Affairs. “We have worked closely with the City and Kingston Police who are helping us ensure the arrival process runs as smoothly as possible.”

Residence staff have been working throughout the summer preparing bedrooms, answering a myriad of questions, and organizing staff and upper-year students who will greet new students and their families as they arrive.

Move-in starts at 8 am, when the university will welcome students living in rooms on odd-numbered residence building floors (e.g. 1, 3, 5,).   All students moving into even-numbered floors (e.g. 0/ground, 2, 4, 6, etc.) are assigned to afternoon move-in (12:30 – 4 pm).

Parents can attend one of four Parent Information Sessions being held throughout the day: 10 am – Grant Hall, main campus; 11 am – Grant Hall, main campus; 12:30 pm – Duncan McArthur Auditorium, west campus or 2:30 pm – Grant Hall, main campus. These sessions provide family members with important information to help their students as they transition to university life and connect them to student support service providers to get their questions answered about a broad array of topics and issues to support student academic and personal success.

Staff are being encouraged not to park on campus on Sunday. Area residents can expect lineups eastbound along Union St and southbound on University Avenue.

There will be several street re-directions, road closures and overnight parking restrictions in effect.

Bader Lane will close Saturday, September 3 at 6 pm to provide for one-way traffic westbound.

As of 7 am on Sunday, September 4:

  • Albert Street will be southbound from Queen’s Crescent to King Street
  • Stuart Street will be designated one-way westbound from University Albert
  • St. Lawrence Avenue will be designated one-way southbound from Stuart Street to King Street
  • Queen’s Crescent will be closed at Beverly Street and Collingwood Street.
  • Collingwood Street will be designated one-way southbound from Union Street to King Street.
  • Arch Street will be closed at Union Street
  • George Street will be closed
  • O’Kill Street will be designated one-way eastbound from George Street to Barrie Street.
  • University Avenue will be designated one-way southbound from Union Street to Stuart Street.

There is no parking in the immediate move-in zones. Families are encouraged to “stop, drop and park” at designated lots on campus (for a maximum of 3 hours).

For more information on move-in day, visit the Queen’s Residences move-in webpage.

Water conservation work at Jeffery, Ellis halls

As part of the ongoing energy conservation project under the banner of CAPit, crews from Honeywell are scheduled to initiate the following water conservation measures:

  • Jeffery Hall: replace 20 of 25 toilets and all sink aerators between July 28 and Aug. 4
  • Ellis Hall: replace all toilets and 13 of 29 sink aerators on Aug. 3-4

Any concerns about this planned work should be directed to Kyle Whittle, Honeywell Site Coordinator, by email.

More information about CAPit can be found on the sustainability website.

Procurement made easy

By this time next year, procuring goods and services at Queen’s will be as simple as ordering a book online.

The university is implementing an electronic procurement system in spring 2017 that will modernize the current manual, paper-based processes.

“The e-procurement system we are introducing will offer a similar online shopping experience many Queen’s community members have become familiar with in recent years,” says Andy Green, Director, Strategic Procurement Services. “We are confident the e-procurement system will make it easier and quicker for faculty and staff to acquire the products they need to support their research and teaching activities.”

Name the system, win an iPad
Want to leave your mark on Queen’s new e-procurement system and win an iPad Mini at the same time? Just come up with a unique name and send it to eprocure@queensu.ca by Aug. 17.
Strategic Procurement Services will award an iPad mini to the person who submits the winning idea.

Queen’s will implement SciQuest, an e-procurement system that several Ontario post-secondary institutions have adopted, including the University of Ottawa, Western University, University of Toronto, York University, Carleton University and Wilfrid Laurier University.

Some of the major benefits of the e-procurement system include:

  • Eliminating the need for multiple usernames and passwords for different vendors.
  • Allowing users to place orders from multiple vendors but only having to check out once.
  • Making it easier for shoppers to find, compare and make their selection of products from suppliers.
  • Reducing the wait time between placing an order and having it filled by the supplier.

“I am excited to sponsor the launch of a system that has helped so many other universities realize efficiency and cost savings,” says Donna Janiec, Associate Vice-Principal Finance and project sponsor. “The e-procurement system will also give us additional data that will help inform our negotiations with suppliers in the future.”

Work on the project is underway, with the phased rollout of the new system beginning in spring 2017. The project team will conduct focus groups and testing with system users over the next 10 months. Questions or concerns about the project can be sent to eprocure@queensu.ca.

 

Campus Electricity Demand Reduction for the week of July 18-22

In order to reduce electricity costs and contribute to the sustainability of the province’s energy system, Queen's University is once again participating in an electricity peak demand management program this summer.

Based on current projections, Friday, July 22 is the only day this week with the potential for a demand response. A separate notice will be issued on Friday morning to either confirm or cancel this response.

More information about the electricity peak demand management program is available on the sustainability website. Those with questions may also contact Fixit at extension 77301 (internal), 613-533-6757 (external) or email.

Two capital projects conditionally approved by Board of Trustees

The Queen's University Physical Education Centre would be revitalized to create a new Innovation and Wellness Centre.

The Board of Trustees has conditionally approved two major capital projects that would revitalize space on campus for research and innovation, as well as student services and teaching and learning.

One project would see the Physical Education Centre (PEC) revitalized to create a new Innovation and Wellness Centre, and is expected to cost $87.5 million. The other project, valued at $31.8 million, would renovate a biomedical research facility. Approval for both projects is conditional on securing full funding from a variety of sources, including philanthropy and government funding for capital projects.

“These two important projects will benefit students, staff and faculty by enhancing facilities for the delivery of student wellness services and innovation programming, as well as space for teaching and leading research,” says Daniel Woolf, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “Queen’s is pursuing additional funding for these projects and hopes to secure the resources necessary to allow both of them to proceed in the near future. In particular, I would like to thank the alumni and friends of Queen’s who have already generously committed their philanthropic support to the Innovation and Wellness Centre.”

The Innovation and Wellness Centre will feature expanded engineering facilities to increase opportunities for research, student design and learning. It will also house a number of student services and innovation programming.

Should full funding for the Innovation and Wellness Centre be obtained, construction could start as early as September. The university is currently exploring a number of contingency plans to address the temporary closure of the PEC during the construction phase of the project and will continue to work with the student groups and community partners who use the facilities as it develops these plans.

The renovation of the biomedical research facility will create a state-of-art research facility that will build Queen’s capacity in key research areas such as neurological, cardiovascular and cancer research.

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