Recognized as one of Montreal's Top Employers (2017)
By Richard Yerema and Kristina Leung, Mediacorp Canada Inc. staff editors (Apr 19, 2017)
Here are some of the reasons why Concordia University was selected as one of Montreal's Top Employers (2017):
- Concordia University provides exceptional family-friendly benefits including a full year of paid leave for employees who are new mothers and parental leave top-up for fathers and adoptive parents (to 93% of salary for between 32 to 37 weeks, depending on the employee) -- additionally, employees can extend their leave into an unpaid leave of absence and can take advantage of onsite daycare upon their return
- Most of Concordia University's workforce receives 4 weeks of starting vacation allowance and paid time off during the summer months and winter holidays
- Concordia University employees receive subsidized access to the campus' onsite fitness facility which features state-of-the-art exercise equipment, a basketball court, instructor-led classes such as spinning and Zumba, and personal training services
Concordia's collegial community has deep bonds
It was because of Concordia University's support of innovation that Mia Consalvo took a job there six years ago. In fact, the clincher for Consalvo, a professor of communications studies and the Canada Research Chair in Game Studies and Design, was the institution's Technoculture, Art and Games (TAG) research centre, which she now heads.
"When I first started doing games research in the U.S. 16 or 17 years ago, I wanted to use some funds to buy a Sony PlayStation to play games and study them," recalls Consalvo. "I had to write a special letter to justify why I needed a PlayStation. I was thinking, you'd never have to write a letter justifying why you needed a computer or a television monitor. And there are still places where I know my colleagues have trouble either getting resources or getting legitimacy or even tenure because they study games. It's the opposite here: they take games incredibly seriously."
She also applauds Concordia for providing her with a lab. "I have a space where I can work specifically on the game stuff. The location is great because it's downtown. It's easy to access a lot of the games industry that works in Montreal."
Concordia, which has 500-plus programs, more than 47,000 students and some 6,000 part- and full-time faculty members and staff spread over two campuses -- one downtown and the other in the west-end neighbourhood of Notre-Dame-de-Grâce -- is a supportive community despite its size, says Alan Shepard, President of the university for the past five years.
"There's a deep bond with the institution and with the people that make up the institution. It's not just bureaucratic-speak to say that people care about each other, they're interested in each other's professional lives, in their personal lives, in helping each other out."
Shepard says that sense of community is underpinned by benefits including a year's worth of paid leave for new mothers and parental leave top-up for fathers and adoptive parents, and a defined benefit pension. And he says it's fuelled by a shared commitment to students. "It's easy to come to work in the morning because you're doing something that you think makes a big difference in the world and in the lives of individual students. Education is about personal transformation."
Consalvo feels that esprit de corps with her colleagues. "My department is extremely collegial and helpful and there are so many wonderful people who work there, both faculty and staff."