Mathew J. White
As part of their overall commitment to Grant MacEwan University, the Royal Bank of Canada (RBC) has donated $650,000 to the MacEwan School of Business in support of the new Curriculum Enhancement Project — a program that is being integrated into the bachelor of commerce degree.
The announcement was made official at MacEwan’s Student Business Conference, an event that brought together more than 1,000 students and 100 industry volunteers to give students the opportunity to connect with members of the business community.
“The donation by RBC was in relation to a proposal we put forth to them in relation to some of the activities in our bachelor of commerce program,” said Robert Dean, assistant dean at the School of Business. “A lot of it’s related to the seven professional skills we developed and find are a key requirement for successful business grads to be placed easily within the job market.”
The seven professional skills — which include everything from business ethics to presentation skills — were generated in collaboration with local-business leaders.
Dean said the fact that they took input from industry professionals helped secure the donation.
“As a result of that (collaboration), the proposal went to the RBC and we were granted the $650,000 to continue and enhance those seven professional skills within our existing curriculum within the bachelor of commerce,” said Dean.
For MacEwan business students, the new curriculum project simply means they’ll see a lot more of these skills being incorporated into their everyday lessons — and in more than one class.
Dean said learning and reinforcing these skills will serve as a great advantage for any student entering the workforce. He added that while preparation is the main goal, the funds will also be used to generate more interaction among students and the business community.
“It just gives them further opportunities to link with other programs and external resources that they may not have had historically,” said Dean. “It also ensures that the curriculum that we’re developing is solid and really meets what our community and business leaders are wanting from our graduates.”
Much like Dean, RBC’s main reason for the donation is to make it easier for graduates to continue on a path of success.
“This donation really kind of hit home with us because it’s part of a program that will help students be ready for the working world and really prepare them for that dynamic business environment they’re going to enter,” said Nicole Fisher, advisor of corporate communications with RBC.
“RBC believes investing in educations is one of the most important things we can do,” she added.
Although the RBC has been working with MacEwan since 1971, the company also contributes to a number of educational facilities across the country, including the University of Calgary, the University of Alberta and Mount Royal University.