Last June, I and a few other UBC Governors and senior staff visited NYU, Columbia, Harvard, UCLA, and UC-Irvine. Just like UBC, these universities are located in areas where housing prices are prohibitive. And just like them, UBC is in the business of competing to attract and retain the best talents, well aware of the need to create favorable and affordable living and working conditions. The purpose of this fact-finding mission was to learn about the various community and housing programs that these sister institutions are using to address the challenges for their campuses and for their faculty, staff and students.
What stands out of our visits is the embedded pride that these universities project at all levels in the support they provide to their faculty and to their students. Unfortunately, none of these sister institutions had any support program for staff. We are hoping that UBC will lead the way in this direction.
Here are summaries of what we have learned on these visits. You can find them on the Board of Governors’ webpage/blog dedicated to the UBC Housing Action Plan, which also features other related topics and where you can participate in the ongoing discussion.