Trent Press Release


March 27, 2002



Partnership Agreement endorsed by Boards of Governors
10-year framework to serve students in Durham Region

A partnership agreement has been approved by the Boards of Governors for Trent University and Durham College, the latter also operating on behalf of Canada's newest university, University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) until their final Act has been passed in the Legislature this spring. This agreement establishes a framework for the delivery of programs to maximize university-level opportunities for students.

The 10-year renewable agreement is effective August 1, 2002. A central principle is to build on the best niches of the three postsecondary partners to support a broad range of programs for students.

Both Boards acknowledge the strong support received from the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities in recognizing the partnership among the institutions. The Ministry has reaffirmed the objective of providing Ontario students with access to postsecondary educational institutions of high quality both by maintaining the strength of existing institutions in the system and through the establishment of University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT). Funding arrangements have been confirmed which will support the arts and science programs that Trent will continue to deliver in the Durham Region.

The agreement provides for distinctive and complementary roles for each institution. The University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT) will proceed to develop programs leading to university degrees, in keeping with its mission to provide market-driven programs as announced May 9th, 2001. Nine degree programs are planned to start September 2003 in time for the double cohort including Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.Sc.N.), Bachelor of Engineering (B.Eng.) Specialty in Nuclear Engineering, Bachelor of Science Radiation Physics (B.Sc.), Bachelor of Business Administration (B.B.A.), Bachelor of Arts in Integrated Justice Studies (B.A.), Bachelor of Engineering (B.Eng.) Manufacturing Engineering, and Bachelor of Education/Bachelor of Science (B.Ed./B.Sc.). Trent University will continue to offer degree programs in general arts and science, reflective of its primary mission, with majors in Anthropology, Biology, Computer Studies/Science, Cultural Studies, English Literature, Environmental Studies/Sciences, History, Psychology, and Sociology. Enrolment in these Trent programs at Durham/UOIT has grown 32% over the past two years demonstrating an overwhelming market demand in the area. Trent will significantly expand its student population over the next few years.

Bonnie Patterson, President of Trent University emphasized that Trent is proud of its 30-year presence in the Durham Region. "The new framework agreement we are announcing is a natural outcome of the Ministry's four-year pilot program which provided stable funding for Trent's involvement in the University Centre at Durham. With the conclusion of that pilot program, the new agreement will build on the unique strengths that UOIT will offer to students as a new institution and the outstanding liberal arts and science programming provided by Trent University for three decades. Students will be the prime beneficiaries of the quality program offered by both institutions," says Patterson.

Gary Polonsky, President of Durham College and University of Ontario Institute of Technology (UOIT), is confident that the agreement will enhance educational opportunities for students. "Durham College and Trent University have been long-standing partners and I'm very pleased that Trent wants to continue that relationship with the University of Ontario Institute of Technology," says Polonsky. "I know that all three institutions hold students in the highest esteem and, to that end, we will work together to maximize a postsecondary experience that will be renowned throughout the country."


  • In May 2001 the province announced a $60-million infrastructure investment in a new postsecondary institution in the Durham Region with a mission to offer career-oriented and market-driven degree programs. Plans are well underway to start serving students in Fall 2003 and it is anticipated that within five years, enrolment at the University of Ontario Institute of Technology will top well over 5,000 full-time students.
  • Durham College, Ontario's fastest growing college, will continue to offer high quality diploma programs and services to students and in partnership with University of Ontario Institution of Technology will work on seamless transition strategies for academically prepared students interested in moving between college and university.
  • Trent University continues in its mission to deliver outstanding liberal arts and science education with award-winning faculty in small class settings. Trent consistently places number one in Central Canada among primarily undergraduate universities in Ontario in the annual Maclean's ranking and is known for its award-winning faculty and emphasis on interdisciplinary studies.

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