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Brainstorming for Montreal’s prosperity

by Milos Kovacevic November 11, 2014

Concordia suggests projects for novel Je vois Montréal project

Concordia has less than seven days remaining to garner sufficient votes and see whether its six proposals on social and business initiatives will make it into the final round, in a city-sponsored project looking for public solutions to improve Montreal’s prosperity.

Je vois Montréal was launched in February by Concordia Chancellor and BMO Financial Group President Jacques Ménard in partnership with the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal. It seeks to better Montreal’s reputation, increase its international stature, and improve both economy and society. According to Concordia’s press release, Ménard’s other reason was to “counter the negative publicity that has too often plagued Montreal in recent years.”

The campaign depends heavily on community voting in choosing the final projects—arranged in four broad categories: community identity; business; skills and education; and quality of life—that will see the initial 200 proposals whittled down to 120. Organizations and individuals submitting comprehensive plans detailing aims, timelines, and logistics must be willing and able to carry out their proposals should they be chosen at a Nov. 17 forum.

Concordia’s six proposals are:

  • A network of ambassadors of entrepreneurship throughout Montreal, proposed by Xavier-Hervé Henri, director of Concordia’s District 3 Centre.

  • A universal discount card for post-secondary students proposed by Concordia as well as the other major universities: Université de Montréal, McGill, HEC, and UQAM.

  • A partnership with La Vitrine for a fund dedicated to the cultural integration of international students. The students would receive credits exchangeable for artistic activities in Montreal.

  • A collaboration with Youth Fusion in the mentoring of youth at the Kahnawake Education Centre for the duration of a school year.

  • “Adoptez une école,” likewise with Youth Fusion, would pair organizations with schools to increase student success by having organizations provide human, technical, and financial support. In return, businesses would profit as skilled students enter the workforce.

“Keeping kids in school is our priority—creating innovative partnerships between targeted schools, universities and private companies, and implementing long-term projects in order to engage youth in learning,” Gabriel Bran Lopez, Youth Fusions co-founder and Concordia alumnus, said.

“We want to reach the 80 per cent graduation rate target that we have set for ourselves as a society.”

Want to vote for Concordia’s initiatives or curious about the other projects? You’ll find everything at jevoismtl.com. Deadline to vote is Nov. 17, 2014. (French only).

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