Hey there, time traveller!
This article was published 2/10/2015 (1973 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
It is Manitoba's time for a transformational investment.
My father was an immigrant to Manitoba, who believed you must give back to your community more than you take. As a result, I am always looking for that opportunity to help out -- to contribute to the place I call home.
When I was asked to volunteer as chairman of the Front and Centre campaign for the University of Manitoba, it became clear this was more than a give-back, it's a transformational campaign that sets the stage for Manitobans, and for generations to come. It ticks every box.
To be honest, ensuring Front and Centre is a success is also selfish. I've had the benefit of working for two market-leading, Winnipeg-based companies (StandardAero and now New Flyer Industries). Like so many other Manitoba companies, we need a continuous supply of young, talented, educated and well-rounded people to continue to fuel the growth of our business.
Since graduating from the U of M in 1984, I've worked and travelled across Canada, the United States and in several countries around the world. I've seen first-hand that the most powerful engine of transformative change in a community is the presence of a robust research-intensive university.
That's what the U of M is; an investment in the university is an investment in education, but also in the cultural well-being and economic vibrancy of our city and our province. It is an investment in life-changing research, in the medical infrastructure of Manitoba, in human rights and in sports and recreation and so much more. It is an investment in community initiatives that change lives, in future entrepreneurs who create jobs and in the professionals that my business and so many others need to design, manufacture, deliver and support products and services. No other initiative has such a wide range of implications for the future prosperity of our province and our young people.
And the impact won't just be felt at home. When you look at the leaders of major businesses, financial institutions and communities around the world, you're going to find someone educated in Manitoba or with roots here.
I wear my pride in the U of M wherever I am in the world.
We have set an ambitious goal for the campaign -- $500 million -- the largest philanthropic campaign in Manitoba's history. It's a push to the next level.
The community is demonstrating enthusiastic and unparalleled support. We have the backing of more than 132,000 alumni in 131 countries. We also have a provincial government that recognizes post-secondary education as a crucial investment.
On Saturday, we will launch Front and Centre with one of the strongest leadership teams I have ever seen. Israel Idonije, former Bisons football player and NFL professional, will share how his years at U of M shaped his future and announce how far we've come in our goal.
Whether it's investing in scholarships and opportunities for indigenous youth, fostering innovation and discovery or building the places and spaces in which our students and community thrive, the priorities were chosen to ensure enduring influence on Manitoba generations from now.
This is your opportunity to support transformational change.
Paul Soubry, president and CEO of New Flyer Industries, is the chairman for the University of Manitoba's Front and Centre fundraising campaign.