By Kayla Perry, Editor-in-Chief
In a Feb. 12 news release, the Laurentian University administration confirmed that the Board of Governors has decided to no longer offer Arts and Management programs in Barrie as of May 2017, and to no longer offer Social Work programs in Barrie as of May 2019.
Also as of May 2019, LU will completely withdraw from Barrie.
This decision comes after the province denied LU’s proposal for a stand-alone campus in Barrie in mid-2015, and instead agreed to co-finance and support the creation of a York University campus in Markham.
“We thank Georgian College for its hospitality since 2001. It has outstanding faculty and staff. We wish them well in the future,” commented Dominic Giroux, President and Vice-Chancellor of Laurentian University, in the press release. “Our focus in the coming days is to support our Barrie students, faculty and staff in this transition. Moving forward, Laurentian’s full attention will be on its thriving main campus in Sudbury, where students will soon benefit from more full-time faculty in the Arts, Management and Social Work.”
Moving forward, no first-year students will be admitted to the Barrie campus. Those students who are currently enrolled in programs in Barrie (totalling 696 students) will be able to complete their studies through on-campus, online and distance courses.
The 23 full-time Laurentian University faculty members who are currently working in Barrie are to be offered positions with the Sudbury campus. As for the 11 full-time non-academic staff in Barrie, collective agreement provisions will be applied, although according to the press release the service of 32 Laurentian part-time sessionals will no longer be required by 2019.
Laurentian University has been delivering programs at Georgian College in Barrie since 2001. The push for a stand-alone Barrie campus was one of the 40 desired outcomes of Laurentian’s 2012-2017 Strategic Plan.
Current Laurentian University students studying at the Barrie campus are advised to check their Laurentian email accounts, and contact either LUBarrie@laurentian.ca or 1-855-675-1151 extension 3469 for more information. The Lauretian office on Gerogian College’s campus will be fully staffed on Feb. 13 (between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.) and Feb. 16-Feb. 19 (between 8:30 a.m. and 7 p.m.) for students who wish to schedule meetings.