Chancellor’s Debate: Ready to Launch

Posted on Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Allan Rock and Calin Rovinescu sitting on chairs.

University of Ottawa President Allan Rock and the new chancellor, Calin Rovinescu, will take part in the debate on March 31. Photo: Robert Lacombe.

By Mike Foster

The question of how universities are preparing graduates for the ever-changing job market will be the subject of the inaugural uOttawa Chancellor’s debate on March 31 at 2 p.m. in Huguette Labelle Hall (Tabaret Hall).

This is the first in a series of debates that will bring together thought-leaders and opinion-makers for spirited discussions on important contemporary issues. The debate series was conceived by Calin Rovinescu, the University of Ottawa’s new chancellor.

The first debate will feature Rovinescu, who is president and CEO of Air Canada, along with uOttawa President and Vice-Chancellor Allan Rock. The other two debaters will be Alex Johnston, who is vice-president of strategy and public affairs at the CBC, and Marie-Hélène Lafond, who is a political and economic specialist at the U.S. State Department and co-founder of Connexion internationale de Montréal, a networking group for international affairs professionals.

In February 2016, during a wide-ranging address at his official installation as the 14th chancellor of the University, Rovinescu announced plans for the twice-yearly debates to discuss pressing topics of the day.

Some studies have suggested that many new graduates and employers do not believe that a university education prepares students well for the job market. However, most higher education institutions would strongly disagree with that assessment.

The debate will be moderated by Nathalie Des Rosiers, Dean of the Faculty of Law, Common Law Section, and will be followed by a question-and-answer period. Although seating at the debate is limited, the event will be webcast.

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