WHITEHORSE, YT—The Selkirk College Board of Governors announced this morning they have named Dr. Maggie Matear as their next president.

Dr. Matear joined Yukon University in 2019 as vice president of university services. She led the university as interim president and vice chancellor from September 2020 to August 2021 as it navigated the uncertainty of the pandemic.

“Dr. Matear will be a wonderful addition to Selkirk College and their communities. She brings strong experience in community development and post-secondary leadership, as well as an informed understanding of the unique value that a multi-campus model brings to a region,” said Dr. Lesley Brown, president and vice chancellor, Yukon University.

Dear students,

In recognition of the news yesterday from Williams Lake First Nation in BC of confirmation of 93 potential burial sites at the location of the former St. Joseph’s Mission Residential School, the four flags that can be lowered at Ayamdigut campus will be lowered for seven days from today, January 26, and raised again on February 2.

My message from December 16 provides more information on the decision to raise the flags on December 22 and actions we will take to ensure we remember and honour residential school survivors, the many children who did not return home and their loved ones.

Water system operator trainees can now obtain hours required for certification with the new mobile water treatment plant at Yukon University. YukonU is offering the first ever Small Water System Operator Lab thanks to support from the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor) who funded the mobile water treatment plant.  

Water operators are trained and certified to ensure that drinking water is safe and reliable for our communities. The mobile water treatment plant offers learning opportunities that prepare students for working in real-world situations. Students learn to operate treatment plants by troubleshooting, completing daily checks, calibrating analysers, interacting with automation systems, and adjusting chemical dosage; all made possible in the mobile water treatment plant.  

Guelph ON/Whitehorse YT, 11 January 2022 - Canada’s only university north of 60 is joining forces with Canada’s largest food and agri-tech accelerator to advance innovation and commercialization services for the agricultural sector.

Yukon University’s Innovation & Entrepreneurship (I&E) and Bioenterprise Canada, Canada’s Food & Agri-Tech Engine, have signed a Memorandum of Understanding. The partnership between Bioenterprise and I&E’s business incubation program, IncubateNorth, will foster collaboration by providing innovation support, resources and commercialization services to start-ups, entrepreneurs, research organizations and businesses in the food and agriculture sector in the Yukon.

WHITEHORSE, YT—Generous Yukoners have raised $7429 to nourish YukonU students across the territory by purchasing 2600 reusable YukonU Together We Thrive tote bags at the Wykes’ Your Independent Grocer check out. The fundraising campaign and tote bags have proved so popular that owner/operator Mark Wykes has decided to keep it rolling into 2022.

Many donations were of the minimum $2 but the largest single contribution was $200.

The money raised has gone toward fresh fruit, pantry staples and holiday treats for all students in Campus Housing and students at community campuses across the territory. Funds will also contribute to stocking and maintaining the Ayamdigut Campus Student Food Bank through the next semester.

Dear students,

On October 15 we shared the Presidents Council’s decision to keep the Yukon University flags lowered until further notice in recognition of the confirmation of the many unmarked graves of Indigenous children found on Canadian Residential School grounds across Canada. Many other organizations and governments did the same. There was a national debate in November on when was the appropriate time to raise the flags of the Federal Government, they were then raised during Remembrance Day ceremonies and have remained up.

WHITEHORSE, YT—For the continued health and safety of students, employees and visitors, Yukon University will soon require all employees, contractors, students and visitors attending all 13 YukonU campuses in-person across the territory to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

However, to allow current students to complete the Fall Semester, this requirement will come into effect next semester.

Employees, contractors and students have until February 18, 2022, to become fully vaccinated. This means they should get their first vaccine dose by December 10, 2021, and their second dose by February 4, 2022, to allow the vaccine to fully take effect by February 18.

More details will be shared by the end of this month about the implementation of this vaccination requirement.

Yukonstruct, YukonU Innovation & Entrepreneurship, and Creative Lab North are launching Yukon Innovation Week 2021 to engage Yukoners with the theme of building sustainable communities. Yukon Innovation Week offers a week-long series of free events across the territory to spark the spirit of innovation and support Yukoners to tackle tough issues in the North. Following the success of the inaugural event in 2020, Yukon Innovation Week 2021 will run from November 15 to 21.

Dear students and colleagues, 

For anyone who may not be aware, there are two important days of remembrance this week. We are invited to remember those who served Canada in two world wars as well as smaller conflicts and peacekeeping missions, those who did not return and those who continue to serve today. 

Today is National Indigenous Veterans Day, which began in 1994. It is only since 1995 that Indigenous veterans have been allowed to lay wreaths at the National War Memorial in Ottawa to remember their fallen comrades. During WW1, WW2 and the Korean War, Indigenous people were exempt from conscription laws of the time as they were not considered citizens. They volunteered to fight for Canada at a time when they faced severe racism from Canadians and after their service many did not receive the same veteran’s benefits and services received by non-Indigenous veterans. 

Dear students and colleagues,

I am very saddened to share that today the RCMP has confirmed the death of two victims of the shooting in Faro yesterday, as well as a third victim being treated for critical injuries. The RCMP has not yet released their names.

Our thoughts and prayers go to the faculty and staff at the Faro Campus and the Ross River Campus. We are in touch to ensure they are supported.

The news yesterday and today, from receiving emergency texts and being unsure what was happening to today’s confirmation of fatalities, is unsettling for us all. I have learned that the Yukon is a small and highly connected community and many of you have connections to most, if not all communities, including Faro.

It is all right to feel shaken and it is all right to feel upset. It is also all right to grieve the two people who died and the safety we felt yesterday.

WATERLOO – Black spruce, an evergreen tree that dominates boreal North America, has historically demonstrated high resilience to fire, even depending on it for regeneration. However, a new study led by Wilfrid Laurier University’s Jennifer Baltzer and an international team of collaborators found that increasing fire activity due to climate change may lead to declines in this widespread and economically important boreal species.