September 22, 2020

NorQuest College takes steps to sustain success of black students

EDMONTON – Carolyn Campbell, President and CEO of NorQuest College, and Yodit Tesfamicael, Convener, Students4Change, have come together in collaboration to create successful outcomes for Black students in the College. Students4Change met with Ms. Campbell in August, shortly after Ms. Campbell became President, to discuss barriers Black students face.

NorQuest has committed to working in collaboration with Students4Change to identify barriers for Black students and co-create solutions, beginning with four initiatives:

  • Supplement NorQuest’s existing mental health supports with community-based supports for Black students who have experienced racial discrimination.

  • Analyze disaggregated student outcome data to address challenges Black students face.

  • Implement a racial-equity assessment for student awards and scholarships to ensure equitable outcomes for Black students who are disproportionately financially disadvantaged.

  • Work with past and current students to ensure practical assessments in NorQuest’s health programs are equitable.

 “At a time of heightened attention in Edmonton and around the world that #BlackLivesMatter, I champion a NorQuest that is committed to equity, diversity, and inclusion—a place where we honour being Difference Makers by helping to change our students’ lives for the better,” says Ms. Campbell. “NorQuest acknowledges that we particularly need to commit to improving the lived experiences of Black students.”

“We are eager to continue our conversation to address individual and systemic barriers to the success of Black students,” says Ms. Tesfamicael.

NorQuest’s Board of Governors has prioritized supporting anti-racism efforts. In June, the College announced a renewed commitment to anti-racism. The first step of this initiative includes listening and learning and providing a safe and brave space for dialogue and discourse. The College has engaged in discussions with its students to better understand the barriers they face and to find solutions that are created in collaboration with NorQuest students.

A recent graduate of NorQuest’s Practical Nurse program said, “I am pleased that NorQuest College and SANQC are listening and taking a collaborative approach with Students4Change.” Janill Burton, a representative from NorQuest’s student’s association, SANQC, said, “We look forward to working with NorQuest staff, Students4Change and NorQuest students on these and future initiatives.”
 

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For media inquiries, please contact:
 
Yodit Tesfamicael
Students4Change
students4changeyeg@gmail.com
780.938.6228

Mike Reeves, Media Relations Consultant
NorQuest College
Mike.Reeves@norquest.ca
780.288.3651                                                                     
 
About NorQuest College: NorQuest College is Edmonton’s community college serving more than 19,000 students annually throughout the province with full-time, part-time, online, and face-to-face learning options. NorQuest helps learners with diverse educational backgrounds complete or further their studies through foundational programs. Our post-secondary diploma and certificate programs and continuing education options offer rewarding career paths in health, community studies, business, environment, technology, hospitality, firefighting, and diversity and inclusion training. Our suite of customized and corporate training options ensures organizations and their workforces are prepared for the demands of the future. By collaborating with business, industry, government, and communities, we ensure our learners receive workforce relevant, inclusive, and transformative educational experiences.
 
About Students4Change: Students4Change is a group of current students, graduates and allies of students of NorQuest College. Students 4Change formed in January 2020 to address racial discrimination faced by students. Students4Change has prioritized attention to the education experiences of Black students. Research and experience indicate that improving the lives of Black students usually results in benefits to all students; but that the converse – attention to improving the lives of all students - usually does not result in benefits to Black students.
 

Media Enquiries

Mike Reeves

External Media Consultant

Phone: 780.288.3651

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