Trent University was an important part of the Collegiate Way International conference at Rice University in Houston, Texas recently where Principal Tina Fridgen of Champlain College, and Dr. Michael Eamon, principal of Traill College, joined delegates from 18 institutions in seven countries spanning from Singapore to the United Kingdom.
“It was a great opportunity to meet other professionals from around the world who dedicate their lives to student life,” Principal Fridgen observed. “Although the collegiate model is slightly different in every university, there is no doubt of the shared international understanding that colleges benefit student success and the greater academic experience!”
Collegiate Way International promotes the value that small, interdisciplinary, residential colleges can have in making higher education truly personal and transformative. Trent University is a founding member of the group formed in 2014. The organization holds a general meeting every two years to provide a forum where scholarly papers are presented and best practices shared. This year’s topics of discussion included issues surrounding mental health, sexual violence, and student wellness. Finding better ways to capture student feedback and benchmark collegiate services were also points of discussion. A roundtable showcasing Rice University’s uniquely empowering system of student governance and justice was another highlight of the conference.
While in Texas, Principal Eamon was elected unanimously to a third term as the chair of the organization.
“I am humbled and honoured to have a strong vote of confidence, so that I can continue my work in promoting the collegiate way in Canada and throughout the world,” Principal Eamon remarked. At the conference, Principal Eamon also presented a paper on the Traill College renaissance to positive reviews. “The delegates were very impressed with the recent changes undertaken at Traill and with the direction of the Colleges revival now underway at Trent. They remarked favorably upon the supportive role both Trent’s president and vice-president academic continue to have in the University’s collegiate success.”
During his new mandate, Principal Eamon is expected to produce a peer-reviewed work of conference proceedings, expand the institutional member base, and help prepare for the next conference to be held at the University of Otago in New Zealand in 2020.