Growth from within

Mount Allison establishes new programs, community partnerships in response to students’ 21st century learning needs
By: Dr. Vicki St. Pierre, Dean of Arts and interim Dean of Business and Social Sciences

Mount Allison is built on tradition and academic excellence. Our small, primarily undergraduate university has — over its 183-year history — celebrated many successes and risen to many challenges to continue to offer a campus community that is thriving, innovative, and inclusive.

As you have read in this issue, university campuses — and student needs and focuses — are different than they were in the past, both inside and outside the classroom. This has not been lost on us. Over the past four years, Mount Allison has seen more than 20 new or revamped academic programs come to fruition.

These new areas build on the excellent established programs Mount Allison is known for in liberal arts and sciences education. These collaborations across campus see a considerable focus towards 21st century learning and preparing students for new areas — not training for a job but any job.

Some of the exciting new additions include:

  • Community Engaged Learning (degree minor and certificate) — integrates academic learning with community service, connecting course-based learning with real-world experiences with community partners. This sees Mount Allison students working directly with local K-12 schools and non-profit organizations to enrich both their learning and the wider community.
  • Data Science (minor and certificate) — an emerging interdisciplinary study and application of how we capture, organize, archive, access, and use large-scale data. Students in any discipline can incorporate courses in this area into their degrees, gaining valuable analytical skills applicable to any field.
  • Screen Studies and Popular Culture (minor and certificate) — the study of film, television, and popular culture from critical and technical perspectives. This new offering builds on the excellent existing drama studies program, bringing a new, complementary focus to students’ degrees.

Program growth is in direct response to what students told us they wanted and needed — in conjunction with new ways of looking at resources and openness to new ideas and collaboration. Mount Allison is fortunate to have passionate professors and academic staff across campus. This growth has come from them working together to create new ways of offering educational experiences and disciplines to students.

The support and contributions of Mount Allison alumni and friends are also immensely appreciated and have enabled us to focus on this growth and better respond to what students need. This has included funds for specific academic areas such as the Frank McKenna School of Philosophy, Politics, & Economics (PPE) and the Pierre Lassonde School of Fine Arts. These investments, along with many established scholarships, bursaries, and awards including the new McCain Scholars, directly support Mount Allison students, allowing them to focus on their education and gain valuable experiential learning experience in the form of paid internships.

Watch for more academic news coming from campus and know you are always welcome to return if one of these new areas catches your eye.


Dr. Vicki St. Pierre
Dean of Arts and interim Dean of Business and Social Sciences