2023 President’s Annual Report

From Access to Success

Right the Future

Since its founding, York University has been committed to removing barriers to accessing education so that no talent is left behind. Recognizing education as a fundamental human right, we have continued to support the long-term success of our diverse student population through new scholarships, awards, bursaries, work-integrated learning programs, paid research opportunities and dynamic outreach initiatives.

Together, we are working to advance decolonization, equity, diversity and inclusion across both academia and prestigious professional sectors, ranging from STEM and business to the legal field.

By the Numbers

total # of undergraduate students (domestic and international)
# of students that have interacted with SAVY, York’s student virtual assistant, since its launch in January 2020. SAVY had already exceeded 100,000 conversations by July 2023
undergraduate scholarships and bursaries provided
increase in Year 4 graduation rates compared to previous year
York University was there for me as a young man. It was accessible, interdisciplinary, and opened my eyes to a wide world of coming opportunities. I hope I can help this become true for many others.”
Doug Bergeron
Founder and CEO, DGB Investment, Inc.
Through the inaugural Provost’s Postdoctoral Fellowships for Black and Indigenous Scholars, York University supported my research on the intersectionality of race/ethnicity and disability among children and youth across Canada.”
De-Lawrence Lamptey
Faculty of Graduate Studies, and Faculty of Health
Postdoctoral Visitor
Alongside Michelle Tsui-Woods, Vanessa Ironside and Dean Jane Goodyer, the k2i academy works with the community to create equity-focused STEM programs to inspire future generations of creators, innovators, and problem solvers.”
Lisa Cole
Director of Programming, k2i academy, Lassonde School of Engineering
k2i academy & Alumni (M.Ed.)

Generous $40,000 donation offers high school students an exclusive opportunity to study under jazz greats 

In July 2023, a $40,000 donation from the Nick Nurse Foundation provided a rare opportunity for 50 high school students to study under Juno-award winning and internationally recognized jazz and gospel artists at York’s School of AMPD.   
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Rekindling in-person athletics and recreation

The Athletics and Recreation division returned to pre-pandemic operations this past year, reinvigorating campus health and wellness with a full complement of fitness and recreation activities. This included a complete athletics season with more than 450 varsity athletes,  varsity student support for equity-deserving athletes and teams and a partnership with Student Counselling, Health & Well-being focused on health education.
3. Good Health & Well Being

Increasing access to undergraduate research in science 

Science students at York now have more paid research opportunities, thanks to a $200,000 gift from York alumnus Earle Nestmann, and matched by the Faculty of Science for a total of $400,000 in funding.  
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Sophisticated virtual assistant is connecting students to services

SAVY, York’s student virtual assistant, provides access to critical information students need to succeed in their academic journey at York, 24 hours per day, seven days per week.  Since its launch in January 2020, SAVY has had over 100,000 conversations with students, and 23,000 unique students have interacted with the bilingual tool via its chat interface.
4. Quality Education

Expanding access to legal education for equity-deserving groups 

The Osgoode Hall Law School at York University partnered with Davies Ward Phillips & Vineberg LLP to launch the Davies Fellows Award – a $1.2 million bursary that strives to eliminate systemic barriers to legal education and promote inclusivity and diversity within the profession.  
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities
16. Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions
17. Partnerships for the Goals

Innovative initiatives are helping graduate students thrive

As part of the Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarships (Vanier CGS) program – targeted to top doctoral students pursuing graduate studies in the social sciences, humanities, natural sciences, engineering and health – Ontario Graduate Scholarship (OGS) tri-council (Vanier) reviewers undergo Unconscious Bias training. This encourages a holistic approach to evaluating applications and ensures that non-traditional career paths and metrics of research are considered.  
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Creating access to STEM for underrepresented youth

The Lassonde School of Engineering’s Kindergarten to Industry (k2i) academy is creating equitable outcomes for underrepresented youth in STEM.   K2i has received $5 million in funding to-date from diverse partners, which range from government to the private sector. Included is two years of funding from the provincial government to develop WIL programs.
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Academic integrity for AI (AI for AI)

In the 2022-2023 academic year, York University launched the AI Technology and Academic Integrity webpage to equip educators with strategies to work with students on the benefits and pitfalls of AI, while preserving the principles of academic integrity. 
4. Quality Education

Supporting global learning opportunities 

The Paulina Lau Scholar Program, launched in 2022, is increasing access to global learning opportunities for York University students in the Lassonde School of Engineering, Science and LA&PS. The scholarship provides up to $7,500 in funding towards students’ learning overseas, which includes coursework, research or internships. 
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Recognizing Black excellence

In October 2022, the Janes Family Foundation made a transformative contribution of $500,000 to York University to continue its support of the Tom Janes Award for Black Scholars, setting talented students up for long-term success.
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Creating pathways for the next generation of Black business leaders 

The Schulich School of Business, the Ivey Business School and the Smith School of Business have teamed up to create the University Pathways Program to create paths to university business education for Black high school students.
4. Quality Education
10. Reduced Inequalities

Fostering inclusion for international students 

LA&PS is fostering international student success with the York First Friend (YFF) program, an innovative program designed to support international students in their transition to university life.
3. Good Health & Well Being
4. Quality Education

Addressing food insecurity 

York University has launched the YUeats program – a value meal program that provides York students with access to healthy, affordable and filling meals for $6.99. The program was launched in response to the 2022 Canadian Campus Wellbeing Survey, which identified food insecurity as a concern for York students.
1. No Poverty
2. Zero Hunger
3. Good Health & Well Being
10. Reduced Inequalities