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City and Royal Roads University partner for sustainable community development

September 1, 2016

A Royal Roads University program invites graduate students to roll up their sleeves and work alongside City staff on a range of sustainability initiatives.

The City of Victoria and Royal Roads University are partnering to enable students in the university’s Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Community Development to develop community initiatives at CityStudio Victoria, an innovation hub where City staff, students and community members co-create, design and launch projects on the ground.

“CityStudio Victoria is where learning meets living,” said Mayor Helps. “It’s an opportunity for students to get university credit while working as a team on real City projects.”

Royal Roads’ graduate certificate is designed for professionals working in the private and public sectors who wish to expand their expertise in sustainable community development. The program consists of two online courses and a week-long residency at CityStudio’s Johnson Street hub. On completion, the certificate can be applied in full toward the university’s Master of Arts in Interdisciplinary Studies.

The residency will convene students and City staff around projects such as local area planning processes, public engagement roadmaps, housing action plans and sheltering solutions, which are among 53 projects identified in the City’s Strategic Plan and Operational Plan.

Residency co-instructor Ann Dale, who held the university’s first Canada Research Chair in Sustainable Community Development and has received national and international recognition for her research in the field, is excited to work directly with Victoria’s CityStudio initiative.

“The messy, wicked problems facing Canadian cities can only be solved by collaborative, creative interdisciplinary design spaces such as this new program,” said Dale.

The Royal Roads University – CityStudio Victoria collaboration is one of several involving local university and college faculty and students, including courses in Royal Roads’ MA/MSc in Environment and Management program.

CityStudio Victoria was launched in January 2016 as a recommendation of the Mayor’s Task Force on Economic Development and Prosperity, and is a partnership between the City of Victoria, Camosun College, Royal Roads University and the University of Victoria.

Registration for the Graduate Certificate in Sustainable Community Development is open until December 5, 2016 and the program begins in March 2017.