UNB’s Renaissance College program, which includes the Bachelor of Philosophy in Interdisciplinary Leadership and the Bachelor of Integrated Studies for mature students, is celebrating 21 years of operation with a series of community events. 

“It’s essentially about celebrating the past accomplishments of RC and also kind of just welcoming in the new,” said Maya Kors, a third-year student involved in planning the celebrations. 

Planning for the celebrations originally began in 2019, for the 20th anniversary, but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

“It was all very fitting because the 21st, it’s like the start of a new decade and just, it’s really exciting and ended up working out really well. We also got to host it with the help of our new dean, Dr. Carol Nemeroff,” said Kors. Nemeroff joined the college in June of 2020. 

“I liked the idea of 21 better, because there really is a sense that when you get to age 20, and with the first cohort of senior and founding faculty retiring, you’re bringing in the second generation now. It really is a sense of coming of age,” said Nemeroff. 

A welcome event, held virtually September 23, featured a community mixer, a trivia game, and guest speakers Terry Haggerty, former Dean of Renaissance College, and alumna Josie McKinney.

“We had participation from early faculty members, current faculty members, alumni, and current students,” said Ryan Cobb, a Renaissance College alumnus involved in the anniversary planning. 

The second event on Friday, September 24, was also held virtually. Dean Carol Nemeroff revealed the strategic plan for Renaissance College moving forward, which includes plans to move the program’s location to the Lady Beaverbrook building in the next two years, implementing a masters program, and creating a leadership hub for UNB. 

Friday’s event launched the college’s new  leadership speaker series, with guest speaker Pierre Battah, and also announced Patsy McKinney, a Renaissance College alumna, as the inaugural recipient of the Trailblazer award. 

Nemeroff explained the award was created to recognize the accomplishments of past and present RC students, and to acknowledge the, “outstanding accomplishments of individuals or groups who have demonstrated vision, collaboration, and leadership through initiatives that have established a pathway to meaningful change with lasting tangible impact that is recognized by the community.” 

An outdoor barbecue and coffee house was planned to end the celebrations, but has been postponed indefinitely due to the recent changes in the provincial COVID-19 restrictions.