ONCAT NEWS: NOVEMBER 2020

ONCAT NEWS - NOV. 2020 | NOUVELLES DU CATON - Novembre 2020
News Release
 

This November edition of ONCAT NEWS is all about funding opportunities! Read on to discover new calls for funding and requests for proposals, their upcoming deadlines, as well as the dates and times for value-packed info sessions facilitated by ONCAT.

 
 
  1. Research Requests for Proposals. This funding strategy aims to generate knowledge that can directly inform policies, pathways, and institutional practices and contribute to a greater understanding of system-wide issues that impact transfer and student mobility. DEADLINE: January 18, 2021.
  2. Research Ideas Portal. If you have a compelling research project in mind that will help build a body of knowledge on student mobility in Ontario, you can submit a preliminary proposal through our Research Ideas Portal. ONGOING INTAKE.
  3. Research Scans on Contemporary Issues in Transfer. Apply for funding to help inform ONCAT’s strategies and aid in the development of more seamless transfer practices in Ontario. Projects can include environmental scans, literature reviews, and/or exploratory research on contemporary issues in transfer. ONGOING INTAKE.
  4. Data Linkages Expressions of Interest. Over the next three years, ONCAT is committed to working with our partners to improve transfer system data reporting across Ontario colleges, universities, and Indigenous Institutes. Institutions that participate in data linkage projects will receive funding to i) support the staff time required for in-house data clean-up, linkages, and analysis, and other project related activities (e.g., REB applications) and ii) the creation of data linkages by Statistics Canada. DEADLINE: February 1, 2021.
  5. Postdoctoral Research Fellowship. Help ONCAT establish a research program focusing on transfer and articulation in Ontario. This is an excellent opportunity for an early career researcher looking to make an impact on both PSE research and policy and forge new networks in the PSE sector. DEADLINE: January 13, 2021.
 
  • Transfer Pathways. ONCAT supports the development and implementation of in-demand pathways that respond to student interest, regional needs, institutional priorities, labour market opportunities, and/or the experiences of under-represented learners. Apply for a pathway viability grant, development grant, scaling grant, and/or remodeling grant. ONGOING INTAKE.
 
  • Seamless Transfer. This stream supports experimentation and innovations in credit transfer processes, helps gauge the sector’s readiness for change, and identifies realistic models that can be scaled province-wide. ONGOING INTAKE.
 
  • Transfer Student Action Fund. ONCAT is now offering funding to support projects developed by transfer students for transfer students through the Transfer Student Action Fund (Action Fund). ONGOING INTAKE.
 
Keep an eye out for additional funding opportunities. In the coming months, ONCAT will be expanding two successful learning collaboratives to additional institutions:
 
  • MapIT: Participate in institutional process mapping through the next cohort of the MapIT learning collaborative. DEADLINE: November 30, 2020.
  • DataPilot 2.0: Receive funding to assess transfer student outcomes through the Institutional Data reporting learning collaborative. For more information, please visit the DataPilot 2.0 webpage. DEADLINE: January 25, 2021.
     


Want to learn more about what, and how, ONCAT funds groundbreaking research into transfer and pathway development? Join us for an information session via Zoom to hear more about our funding strategies. 
 
We will be hosting two sessions: one dedicated to Research Funding opportunities, and another session that covers Pathways and Seamless Transfer. Each presentation will last approximately 30 minutes with an additional 30 minutes set aside for questions.
 
Facilitators: 
 
Ana Skinner, Manager, Funding Programs
Roger Pizarro Milian, Senior Researcher
Inna Yeranosyan, Coordinator, Grants and Projects
 
Information Sessions:
 
 
 


In addition to the Funding Streams/RFPs (released on November 9, 2020), the Ontario Council on Articulation and Transfer continues to work with the Ministry of Colleges and Universities to support greater integration and collaboration within the Province’s credit transfer system. To address the challenges that communities and the Province are facing, as a result of COVID19, and to support the health and economy of the Province, additional priorities may emerge and ONCAT may release additional Funding Streams/RFPs. New Funding Streams/RFPs will be posted on www.oncat.ca.
 

As the fall season arrives, there’s no doubt in anyone’s mind that the start of the 2020/21 academic term has been unlike any other we’ve known. As a province, we continue to face the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and now brace for a second wave. Over the summer months, I had the chance to connect with many colleagues in our sector, and I can say with absolute confidence that every institution, in every part of the province, is facing a great deal of uncertainty and encountering financial or human resource strain. I have heard from institutional executive heads, transfer advisors, registrars, and faculty members, and while we are all making do as best we can, we are all deeply concerned for our students, colleagues, and communities.
 
I have also come across many great examples of how our postsecondary education institutions are making things work by finding creative solutions to collaboration and to the ways they support students. Many have made the switch to online course delivery and have developed highly engaging online first-year orientation programs. It is lovely to see individuals recognized through the Minister’s Award of Excellence, including many folks doing amazing work in response to COVID-19. I also enjoy, seeing on social media, how institutions are finding joyful ways to celebrate students graduating or honour important anniversary milestones for their own institutions. Happy 35th Anniversary to First Nations Technical Institute!
 
Here at ONCAT, we continue to hum along. While our office remains closed and staff continue to work primarily from home, the summer and the beginning of fall have been busy. A number of research projects funded last year are wrapping up and we are eager to share findings with our sector partners, sure that the knowledge we gain on transfer in Ontario will inform our future work. The ONTransfer.ca team has been working very closely with institutional contacts as part of our Data Enhancement Project, and the technical improvements have resulted in a notable increase in the number of pathways and course equivalences posted on our public website. Our learning collaborative models, whether it’s MapIT (which works with a cohort of institutions to develop process maps for transfer credit) or the Transfer Pathways DataPilot, have us working, and learning, together.
 
It is also that exciting time of year when we launch our annual RFPs and ONCAT Funding Streams. Over the last few years, we have made changes to how we support the development of strong proposals; we now work more closely with our grantees to ensure strong alignment between grantee efforts and our strategic priorities. More has been shared in this newsletter about ONCAT Funding Streams, of course, but I also invite you to reach out to me or the team directly if you have questions.
 
We are also involved in meetings with our colleagues at the Ministry of Colleges and Universities to identify key provincial credit transfer system priorities. These new priorities, to be co-developed with the Province, support a forward-thinking approach to advancing Ontario’s transfer system. We were very pleased to see the Government of Ontario recognize the importance of transfer as part of the Government’s Better for People, Smarter for Business Act 2020. As we have already built a strong foundation of cross-sector engagement and collaboration, we ready to take the next steps and look forward to working with the Ministry and sector partners. It also needs to be acknowledged that, despite ongoing economic challenges faced by the Province and the unrelenting pressures caused by the pandemic, we are grateful for the ongoing support we receive from the Ministry.
 
And finally, a special thank you to the staff here at ONCAT. They have made the shift to working at home and have been generous with their patience as we set up new technology or experiment with virtual meeting tools. Like many other workplaces, many staff are juggling additional family responsibilities at home, while others find themselves a bit more isolated from colleagues or family. Yet, regardless of circumstances, we have found ways to stay connected and focused on the delivery of our mandate. We have also welcomed a few new team members during this time, and despite knowing us only in the virtual space, the skills they bring are welcome additions to our team. To the ONCAT team, thank you for all that you do and for being the fantastic people that you are.

Sincerely,
Yvette Munro
Executive Director
 
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