Ontario Takes Next Step Toward French-Language Postsecondary Education

Ontario is moving forward with postsecondary education for thousands of French-speaking students by creating a new stand-alone French-language university, l’Université de l’Ontario français. This historic addition to Ontario’s postsecondary sector will offer a range of university degrees and education, entirely in French. The university will promote the linguistic, cultural, economic and social well-being of its students as well as Ontario’s growing French-speaking community.

The newly appointed Board of Governors for l’Université de l’Ontario français includes 12 members, each with a strong commitment to Ontario’s Francophone community and to strengthening the French-language postsecondary education system. Together, they bring a wealth of experience and diverse viewpoints which will support the creation of the university.

Distinguished board members include:

  • Dr. Dyane Adam, C.M., Chair, Technical Implementation Committee of the Université de l’Ontario français
  • Fété Ngira-Batware Kimpiobi, Executive Director, Solidarité des femmes et familles immigrantes francophones du Niagara
  • Dr. Frédéric Dimanche,Professor and Director, Ted Rogers School of Hospitality and Tourism Management, Ryerson University
  • Glenn O’Farrell,President and Chief Executive Officer, Groupe Média TFO
  • Koubra Haggar,Grade 12 student, École secondaire Georges-P.-Vanier, Hamilton
  • Dr. Marième Lo,Professor, Women and Gender Studies Institute and African Studies, University of Toronto; Director, African Studies, New College, University of Toronto
  • Florence Ngenzebuhoro,Executive Director, Centre francophone de Toronto
  • Marie-Andrée Vermette,Lawyer, Partner, WeirFoulds LLP
  • Rodrigue Gilbert,Transportation and Logistics Leader, PricewaterhouseCoopers Canada
  • Jean Michel Beck,Founder, President and Chief Executive Officer of Aecon Group Inc.
  • Jacques Naud,Senior Vice-President, Sales and Distribution, Knowledge First Financial
  • Normand Côté,Vice-President, Leadership, Assessment and Development, Optimum Talent

Strengthening access to French-language postsecondary education and supporting Ontario’s francophonie are part of the province’s plan to support care, create opportunity and make life more affordable during this period of rapid economic change. The plan includes free prescription drugs for everyone under 25, and 65 or over, through the biggest expansion of medicare in a generation, free tuition for hundreds of thousands of students, a higher minimum wage and better working conditions and easier access to affordable child care.

Quick Facts

  • The Université de l’Ontario français Act was proclaimed on April 9, 2018. This is the final step in creating the university as a legal entity. Following this, program development can begin. Ontario plans to open the university and welcome the first students by 2020.
  • The institution will have the capacity to develop affiliations and build ties with universities and develop programs in collaboration with French-language colleges, both in Ontario and around the world.
  • Ontario is home to more than 622,400 Francophones — the largest population in Canada outside of Québec — with Central and Southwestern Ontario home to the fastest growing Francophone populations.
  • In partnership with the federal government, Ontario has invested more than $204 million in capital projects since 2008 to support French-language postsecondary education.

Additional Resources

Quotes

Mitzie Hunter

“This is such an important milestone for the creation of Ontario’s first stand-alone French-language university, and for improving access to quality postsecondary education for French speakers. I want to thank each of the new board members as well as the members of the Technical Implementation Committee for their commitment and dedication to Ontario’s Francophone community. Your work building a solid foundation for the university is critical, and it’s in line with our government’s commitment to bringing more people into postsecondary education and training.”

Mitzie Hunter

Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

Marie-France Lalonde

“The proclamation of the Université de l’Ontario français Act and the University’s Board of Governors mark an historic milestone for Ontario’s Francophone community. I would like to congratulate each of the new members of the Board of Governors on their appointment. I would also like to thank the members of the Technical Implementation Committee for their valuable work to help Ontario move as quickly as possible towards our ambitious vision for Francophone students.”

Marie-France Lalonde

Minister of Francophone Affairs

“I would like to congratulate the government on this proclamation, which marks the coming into force of the Université de l’Ontario français Act. It embodies the historic creation of this university, which will stand out for its governance, creativity, transdisciplinarity, collaboration and excellence.”

Dyane Adam

Former Chair of the Université de l’Ontario français Technical Implementation Committee, Former Chair of the Planning Board for a French-language University

Testimonials
This is such an important milestone for the creation of Ontario’s first stand-alone French-language university, and for improving access to quality postsecondary education for French speakers. I want to thank each of the new board members as well as the members of the Technical Implementation Committee for their commitment and dedication to Ontario’s Francophone community. Your work building a solid foundation for the university is critical, and it’s in line with our government’s commitment to bringing more people into postsecondary education and training.

– Mitzie Hunter, Minister of Advanced Education and Skills Development

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