Staff, students, alumni and dignitaries have been summoned to Mount Royal College next Thursday, where it appears likely the college will be made a university.
Sources have told Metro an event will occur Sept. 3, and they have been instructed to have their calendars cleared for this day.
An invitation for the event reads “celebrate a historic Mount Royal milestone” and “join us for an important announcement for post-secondary education in Calgary.”
One student said through Facebook that at a mature student orientation (on Wednesday), the vice-president felt “there is a very strong chance that as of a week from now, Mount Royal could very well be a university.”
Mount Royal president Dave Marshall wouldn’t comment, though he did confirm an email was sent out for a “special event” on Thursday at 2:30 p.m. and that it would be held in the college’s main gymnasium.
“It’s going to be a convocation-like activity,” Marshall said.
The college’s vice-president academic, Robin Fisher, wouldn’t confirm anything either, saying it’s the government’s announcement to make. Fisher indicated he believed both the premier and minister of advanced education would be at the event.
Donna Babchishin from Advanced Education and Technology didn’t have any details on a possible name change, but said legislation has already been passed enabling post-secondary institutions in the province to apply for university status. Babchishin said MRC was in that process, but couldn’t confirm when it would be completed.
Ald. Brian Pincott, whose ward includes Mount Royal, was pleased to hear the college could finally earn the university label.
“Calgary can very easily handle two universities — there’s four in Halifax alone and that’s only 200,000 people.”
The Mount Royal College Reflector reported in its Feb. 12 edition that the provincial legislation would allow Mount Royal College to become Mount Royal University as early as this summer.