Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic
Image Credit: Saskatchewan Polytechnic

A proud history and prosperous future


It may be hard to believe, but this September marks our first full year as a polytechnic. Every day we're evolving, growing, and building bright futures together, but let's take a moment to reflect on our rich history as we mark this milestone.

Looking back

Twenty-eight years ago the Government of Saskatchewan announced major changes to its post-secondary education system. This resulted in the amalgamation of urban community colleges, the Advanced Technology Training Centre and the technical and vocational institutes across our province.

 On New Years Day the following year, the Saskatchewan Institute of Applied Science and Technology (SIAST) was established through provincial legislation. The new campus names were unveiled as: Kelsey Campus, Saskatoon; Palliser Campus, Moose Jaw; Wascana Campus, Regina; and Woodland Campus, Prince Albert.

Fast forward to 2005 and the SIAST Aboriginal council was founded. It was created to provide guidance and recommendations to the SIAST president and CEO on strategies for the recruitment, retention, and success of students and staff of Aboriginal ancestry.

Seven years later, in 2012, we joined Polytechnics Canada—becoming the 10th school to join an alliance of research-intensive, internationally recognized post-secondary institutions committed to creating high-quality jobs. This transition set the course for our eventual rebranding and allowed us to begin developing degree programs.

The following year, we introduced our first degree program—a Bachelor of Psychiatric Nursing. We also collaborated with the University of Regina to begin work on a joint master's degreethe Collaborative Nurse Practitioner program.

Finally, on September 24 last year, we set our rebranding efforts into motion. As we transformed from a technical institution to a polytechnic, SIAST became Saskatchewan Polytechnic. We marked the transition with the launch of our new visual identity, featuring a grey and purple "energy path" behind our name.

We're the first, and only, polytechnic in our province. Although we might still let the old five-letter acronym slip, we're a polytechnic school through and through.

So, what makes us different?

"One of our key differentiators as a polytechnic is our ability to grant degrees, diplomas, certificates, as well as provide apprenticeship training," says Dr. Larry Rosia, Sask Polytech's president and CEO. "We've evolved to meet the needs of our province and our country. With a focus on applied learning and applied research, we equip our students with the practical knowledge and skills they'll need to succeed as they embark on their careers. We're also employer driven. This means we build our curriculum collaboratively with employers, ensuring our students graduate with real-world expertise that aligns with employers' needs."

Looking ahead

We've come a long way. We're proud of our history, yet remained focused on a prosperous future. Our strategic plan is charting our course and putting Saskatchewan on the map nationally and globally. And none of this would be possible without our tremendously dedicated employeesmany of whom we'll be highlighting monthly in this newsletter.

Together, we truly are tomorrow in the making.