In May 2012, Glendon’s Centre of Excellence for French-language & Bilingual Postsecondary Education officially opened, thanks to a $20 million investment by the Government of Ontario.
May 25, 2012 – The Centre of Excellence will provide better access to French-language higher education for francophone learners across southern Ontario. It is the first new building constructed since the campus was founded in 1966, and it heralds a bright future for French and bilingual education at Glendon.
“We at York University strongly believe there is a growing need to expand French and bilingual postsecondary education in southern Ontario,” said York President and Vice-Chancellor Mamdouh Shoukri at the May 15 opening. “I am proud we are able to provide opportunities for the growing francophone population right here at York’s Glendon campus.”
Shabbirr Auhammud, a fourth-year French studies student from Etobicoke, Ont., said Glendon was the clear choice for him since it was the only university in the area that offered the direct-entry bachelor of education for future French teachers.
“I think it’s really important that we all recognize the importance of a strong Francophonie in Ontario. It’s part of our sense of there not being only one way to do things. And, I think, it’s part of the reason Ontario, and Canada, has been able to become a model for the world,” said Kathleen Wynne, MPP for Don Valley West. “The Centre of Excellence will reaffirm that vision for generations to come and become the heart of French and bilingual education in Ontario.”
While the new building provides much-needed classroom and study space, including a 250-seat amphitheatre, it will also provide an increased capacity and diversity of program offerings at Glendon.