Third meeting between the Board and ULFA on the UICC “Pathways” College

Representatives of the Board of Governors and ULFA met for a third time on March 28th to discuss the conditions under which Academic Staff teaching courses in the University’s new University of Lethbridge International College Calgary (UICC) would be employed. 

You can read more about the college (which is the result of a collaboration between the Board and Navitas, an Australian international student recruitment and services company) and our previous meetings to discuss terms and conditions here and here. The March 28th meeting was discussed in detail at the ULFA Annual General Meeting (AGM) on April 9 and Townhall meetings describing the state of discussions prior to the most recent meeting were held on March 26 and March 27. This post provides an update for those who were unable to attend the AGM.

The focus of the March 28 meeting was to reach a common understanding of how the UICC could operate under the current Academic Staff Collective Agreement (ASCA). Initially, ULFA’s position had been that no changes to the ASCA were required to hire faculty in the college, while the Board side sought greater clarity as to the relationship between the college and certain articles and processes. In this meeting, the two sides attempted to reconcile these two understandings, focussing particularly on questions involving 

  • The definition of the UICC as a program under the ASCA;
  • The structure of hiring committees and the participation of the director of the UICC in search committee deliberations;
  • The implementation of the Right of First Refusal (RoFR) for sessional instructors hired to teach specific courses within the UICC.

The two sides were able reach an agreement-in-principle on the shape of an MoU addressing these issues via the following elements:

  • A statement concerning the unique and holistic approach of the college in supporting international students during their transition to study at the U of L;
  • A statement indicating that the UICC is to be considered a program for the purposes of redundancy language in Article 34;
  • A statement indicating that the director of the UICC or their delegate is to be considered a Senior Academic Administrator for the purposes of Article 25.05 (allowing for non-voting but otherwise full participation in the activities of a search committee)
  • A statement allowing the reopening of the MoU by mutual agreement each year.

The ULFA team is currently preparing a first draft of the MoU for discussion with the Board team. While the next meeting date has not been set, the two sides hope to meet very soon..