A Year in Review



Letter from CEO and board chair

We are delighted to present our 2022-23 annual report, which reflects on the remarkable achievements and progress that Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) and our members have made over the past year.

This annual report is particularly significant as it marks my final term as President and CEO of CICan, as announced earlier this year. I want to take this occasion to thank my staff, our board, our members and stakeholders for all their support over the last ten years. Leaving an organization so important for the college and institute system provides an opportunity to reflect on our recent achievements and the ongoing initiatives shaping Canada’s college and institute sector.

This past year reminded us that change is inevitable. Change is constant. And, without change, there is no progress. In our case, the swift and relentless pace of change taking place worldwide ushered in an unforgettable period of triumphs and new adventures.

We started the year with a series of events commemorating our 50th anniversary, including launching a special edition podcast and website. The launch of new programs and the success of our first-ever hybrid conference, Navigating Anew, continued to propel us forward. And, as the year drew to a close, we were given even more reason to celebrate as we were named one of the National Capital Region’s Top Employers for 2023.

Amidst these achievements, CICan and our members continued to demonstrate their resilience in the post-pandemic landscape, consisting of rapid technological advancements, economic uncertainty and shifting societal demands. We stayed true to our values and embraced these challenges as a catalyst for growth. Working closely with our members, CICan responded to labour-market demands by launching targeted programs focused on training new workers and developing the skills of newcomers. And we continued to address concerted calls for sustainability efforts by sharing new and improved sustainability resources, including an updated SDG toolkit and a new report on colleges’ and institutes’ role in addressing climate change.

Our progress as an organization and a system would not be possible without our members‘ unwavering commitment to growth and innovation. We applaud their dedication and have eagerly supported them through capacity-building and knowledge-sharing initiatives over the past year.

Lastly, as we celebrate the past year’s achievements, let us also recognize the immense potential that lies ahead. The world will continue to change at an accelerated pace. But, with a collective effort and a shared vision, we will continue to embrace change, rise to new demands, and leverage challenges as opportunities for growth.

Our heartfelt appreciation to our dedicated members, partners, board, and staff, and everyone who has contributed to our vision of creating better futures for people, community and the planet.

Denise Amyot
President and CEO
Peter Devlin
Board Chair

CICan by the numbers

  • 140 members & 16 associates
  • 152 staff with a 44% gender parity and 31% significant representation
  • 16 Canadian projects
  • 11 international projects
  • 40 countries where projects are delivered
  • 10 project funders
  • $474M total value of CICan’s portfolio, an increase of 14% since March 31, 2022

CICan recognition

  • Canadian Nonprofit Employer of Choice Award in 2022;
  • Top employer in the national capital region for 2023
  • ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management standard certified
  • Gold performance rating on the CSA Group’s ESG and SDGs Standard for Association
  • World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics (WFCP)’s Awards of Excellence’s Gold award in the Sustainable Development Goals category in 2022


We are proud to be the national voice of Canada’s colleges and institutes and have worked tirelessly over the past year to ensure their priorities are heard and understood by Canadians and key decision makers.


Raising awareness and amplifying the impact of our members

As the national voice for colleges and institutes across the country, we place the utmost importance on raising awareness and amplifying the impact of our members. Our commitment is to ensure policymakers, stakeholders, and the public recognize our members’ invaluable strengths and contributions and see colleges and institutes as vital to the greater public good. We are also committed to ensuring our members’ concerns are acknowledged and addressed at the highest levels. This year, we prepared ten federal submissions, policy papers and reports, and held nearly 128 meetings with parliamentarians and senior government officials!


Securing a seat at the table

CICan is constantly looking for new and effective ways to ensure our members have a prominent presence and influence in the halls of power. One of the ways we accomplish this is by advocating for our members’ participation in the House of Commons Standing Committees. Over the past year, various members from CICan’s advisory committees presented their expertise and insights before the House of Commons, fostering meaningful dialogues that advanced the interests of the entire sector.

Standing Committee Appearances:

In addition to the standing committee appearances, CICan ensures the voice of colleges and institutes is present in conversations around relevant government programs and policies. For example, during the last year, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) began a review of the department and its programs, including the International Student Program, at the beginning of 2023. CICan has engaged senior leadership, hosting the IRCC  Deputy Minister at the November Board dinner and meeting with the review leadership team and Minister’s office to ensure colleges are included in broad and thematic consultations.


Harnessing the power of a collective voice

CICan has long understood the strength of collaboration and that effective advocacy often requires a collective voice. Over the past year, we leveraged several opportunities to create a stronger, more influential voice.

In fall 2022, after a two-year pause, we hosted our flagship “CICan on the Hill” advocacy event. The event focused on sharing perspectives around how colleges and institutes address skills and labour shortages, advance reconciliation with Indigenous peoples, and support the transition to a net zero economy. It brought together several presidents from our member institutions and over 60 staff and 30 students. In total, CICan facilitated over 35 meetings, including with five Deputy Ministers and across key departments and federal research agencies, including Indigenous Services, Employment and Social Development Canada; Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada; Natural Resources Canada; Innovation, Science and Economic Development Canada; Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council and Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada.

Towards the end of the year, we stood up for educational rights in copyright law by launching the Fair Dealing Works campaign in partnership with Universities Canada, the Canadian Association of Research Libraries, the Canadian Alliance of Student Associations, the Canadian Federation of Students, the Canadian Association of University Teachers and the Canadian Internet Policy and Public Interest Clinic. The campaign urges the government to maintain educational fair dealing provisions in the Copyright Act, highlighting the current balance that fair dealing helps to maintain between creators and users of educational materials.

And when we were not driving the conversations, we were invited to engage in others. As an emerging practitioner within the sustainable finance ecosystem, CICan was invited to join the Government of Canada’s Sustainable Finance Forum to discuss accelerating the transition to environmentally sustainable economies through catalyzing public and private investment capital.



Embracing the power of our actions

Our advocacy efforts over the past year were laser-focused on ensuring the government understood our members’ critical role in Canadian innovation. CICan, through active collaboration with the college community, the support of national business associations and student groups, and through deep engagement with government, was able to advance the compelling case from investment in college applied research.  We were thrilled to see our efforts pay off, as evidenced by the recent federal budget announcement of a $108.6 million over three years investment in applied research through the existing Tri-Council College and Community Innovation Program. The budget not only demonstrates that the government recognizes the growing importance of colleges and institutes as a path to economic resiliency and competitiveness for Canadian SMEs but our outstanding ability to influence government decisions and policies in support of our members.

We were also pleased to see Canada Infrastructure Bank recognize our instrumental role in Canada’s ongoing transition to a clean growth economy through the Building Retrofits Initiative – a part of a $5B portfolio. Our advocacy efforts resulted in significant benefits for our members, including reduced minimum deal size, from $50 million to $1 million, streamlined technical and financial analysis requirements and support in crowding in private capital to make funding from the bank more accessible.


Amplifying our message for all to hear

We enhance the impact of our advocacy efforts by implementing strategic communications initiatives that target national, regional, and online media outlets. Over the year, CICan was featured in prominent outlets like the Globe and Mail, the Ottawa Citizen, the Canadian Press, Maclean’s, the Hill Times, the PIE News, Pédagogie collégiale, Education for Employment magazine and our own Perspectives newsletter. We also nurtured our robust social media presence throughout the year, fostering significant engagement and maintaining steady audience growth across all platforms.

  • Facebook: up 11% (total page likes 2,581)
  • LinkedIn: up 32% (total followers 10,574)
  • Twitter: up 4% (total followers 7,504)
  • Web hits: up 2% (total page views 827,693)
  • Newsletter readership: up 21% (nearly 9,700 total readers in English and French)

Building Capacity

Our Canadian portfolio includes over a dozen programs and projects with over 80 participating colleges and institutes, and it’s growing rapidly. We’re also proud that each one of our programs contributes to advancing at least one of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. This year we added a few new programs that advanced our suite of offerings.

Canadian Partnerships

Our Canadian portfolio includes over a dozen programs and projects with over 80 participating colleges and institutes, and it’s growing rapidly. We’re also proud that each one of our programs contributes to advancing at least one of the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. This year we added a few new programs that advanced our suite of offerings.

International Partnerships

We bring Canadian education to the world and the world to Canada. Our international portfolio includes almost a dozen programs and projects, taking place in 40 different countries with over 59 of our members. By linking Canadian institutions with partners worldwide, we help transform post-secondary education and connect learners in Canada and overseas with employment-based training and the global skills they need to succeed. This year, a few new initiatives led to great results for our members.


Introducing new programs focused on skills development

Skills development, including upskilling and reskilling, is of the utmost importance in today’s rapidly changing economy. It plays a vital role in helping learners and workers stay relevant and successful. Over the past year, we launched Career Launcher Apprenticeships, a program providing financial incentives to small and medium-sized employers in the construction and manufacturing sectors to help them hire first-year apprentices in 39 Red Seal trades. Over two years, 5,360 apprentices will benefit from Career Launcher Apprenticeships, including more than 1,300 from equity-deserving groups. (SDG 8 & SDG 10)

CICan’s Career Launcher Internship program experiences continued successes.

In 2023, Montreal’s Dawson college won the sustainability institution of the year award for its living campus composed of a vegetable garden, monarch nursery, beehives and so much more. Narcisse Hassan, an intern from CICan’s Career Launcher Internship Program played an integral part of the wellbeing and sustainability efforts at Dawson College.

On Canada’s west coast, Sayo Yazumi, arrived in Canada from Japan and found it difficult to find work.  Following the Career Launcher’s Supportive Care Assistant (SCA) program and with the $5,000 stipend from CICan, she attends Vancouver Community College’s personal care provider program. She says, “I’m looking forward to building a career as a health care assistant and open to jobs in long-term care, group homes, or home care.” She adds, “If anyone is considering taking the SCA program, my advice is to go for it!”

We also launched Skills Enhancement for Newcomers, which helps newcomers to Canada develop the skills, knowledge, and practices unique to Canadian workplaces, enhancing their employment profiles. Over two years, 1,000 newcomers will benefit from these targeted microcredentials designed to enhance their professional and employability skills and ease their entry into the Canadian labour market (SDG 4 & SDG 8).


Empowering members through shared resources

Creating and sharing resources with our members is one of the many ways we work to help build their capacity. Over the past year, we developed several new resources carefully designed to address our members’ specific needs and the challenges they face. For example:

“It was a wonderful opportunity to network across Canada with like-minded individuals who held the same passion for virtual simulation. The professional development sessions were extremely useful beyond the project itself. The creation of the virtual simulation was very professionally satisfying, and I was proud of the work completed.”

– Faculty Membe, Norquest College

  • To support our member’s equity, diversity and inclusion goals, resources were created by the CICan Knowledge and Dissemination Centers as part of our CICan 50-30 Challenge Project. These resources are now available and complimentary to the Government of Canada’s What Works Toolkit – an online toolkit for Canadian organizations who are Participants of the 50-30 Challenge. (SDG 10)
  • To help newcomers navigate the Canadian college and institute system and the many ways that colleges and institutes can fast track integration into the labour market, we also relaunched the Planning for Canada website with new resources to help newcomers navigate the Canadian college and institute system and many ways that colleges and institutes can fast track integration into the labour market.(SDG 4 & SDG 8)
Over the past year, 4,500 newcomers benefited from Planning for Canada’s pre-arrival services. “The Planning for Canada team equipped us with lots of information and contacts of agencies that supported us from Day 1. In no time, I had a job, too,” says Amar Desai who moved from India to Canada. “I’m glad I connected with Planning for Canada because not only did they guide us about the culture in Canada and what work-life is like, they also provided us with a personalized planning session to help us through the journey.”

Ensuring the continued success of leadership development programs

Year after year, CICan delivers targeted capacity-building programs that equip members with skills and tools to stay at the forefront of post-secondary education and contribute to succession planning. This past year, our leadership institutes, which draw on the latest management concepts and experiences to prepare participants to lead in the college and institute system, welcomed over 190 registrants. It was also the first year we offered a leadership institute for aspiring managers and faculty who are looking to progress in their careers.


Empowering others discover their leadership potential

CICan’s Mentorship Program capitalizes on the expertise and experience of current and past leaders in post-secondary education to build capacity and drive knowledge within the college and institute system. This year we responded to 15 mentorship requests through our ongoing mentorship program, which pairs experienced college and institute presidents and directors general with those who want to work one-on-one with a mentor to address topics or challenges unique to their mandate.


Breaking down financial barriers

CICan offers a number of bursaries that provide financial support to college and institute students in financial need. This year, 24 students facing barriers to participating in and completing post-secondary education, were award $110,000 in bursaries through the CICan Paul and Gerri Charette Bursary Program, and the Bird Construction Inc & Paul and Gerri Charette program.


Recognizing excellence

As we do every year, CICan recognized best practices from institutions across the country and exceptional individuals making a difference within their college or institute and awarded over $10,000 in awards to member institutions, their faculty, student, and staff. Our Awards of Excellence, distributed in partnership with TD Insurance, were announced in April 2022 at our annual conference. We recognized 23 institutions across seven provinces and territories, 11 individuals, one faculty team and introduced two new categories: Excellence in Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion and Excellence in Global Engagement.


Advancing Student Mobility and International Recruitment

As part of our effort to facilitate student mobility and the recruitment of international students, we develop college-specific missions and sector-wide initiatives in collaboration with industry stakeholders to promote Canada’s colleges and institutes internationally and build partnerships abroad. Over the past year, CICan hosted two virtual student fairs. Our Pacific Alliance fair targeted Chile, Peru, Colombia, and Mexico, attracting nearly 1500 student attendees and 17 member institutions. The Francophone Africa fair drew over 2000 students from Cameroon, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Tunisia, and Morocco, with ten member institutions participating. Later in the year, we then organized an in-person business-to-business event in Nepal, where 15 institutions from Canada met with select agents from Pakistan, Nepal, Bangladesh, and Sri Lanka, expanding their reach in South Asia.

We also held partnership development missions in Madrid and the Basque region, Spain (June 2022), Abu Dhabi, UAE (Feb 2023), and Tra Vinh, Vietnam (March 2023) that featured 28 different member institutions and more than 50 individuals. Several agreements were signed with agents as part of these missions, while others formalized partnerships to support postsecondary program development in the region.


Strengthening social and economic development abroad

Stronger economies and improved social conditions can lead to reduced inequality, poverty alleviation and enhanced access to education and healthcare. These are among the many reasons we remain committed to strengthening social and economic development abroad, and in 2022-23 launched new initiatives with these goals in mind.

In partnership with Universities Canada, we launched the Canadian International Development Scholarships 2030 (BCDI 2030) program. This eight-year $80-million program strengthens social and economic development — particularly for women — in 26 eligible francophone countries, Commonwealth countries, and Small Island Developing States. More than 7,000 people will benefit directly, 51% of whom are women. (SDG 4, SDG 5, SDG 8, SDG 10, SDG 13)

We also launched the Kenya Blue Economy Skills Training Program (KBEST). This seven-year program supports the Government of Kenya in building skills in the Kenyan workforce to establish the country as a competitive presence in the global blue economy. Over 5,000 young Kenyans are expected to benefit directly. (SDG 4, SDG 5 & SDG 13).

And we’re thinking differently about investment. During the last year, we launched FiveThirteen, our new blended finance facility combining a USD $60-million stacked capital investment fund with a USD $20-million grant-funded technical assistance facility investing in and supporting women-led and owned small and growing businesses in sub-Saharan Africa. (SDG 5 & SDG 13)

This year, the Kenya Education for Employment Program supported Kisumu National Polytechnic in an exciting Applied Research project to tackle invasive water hyacinth growth in Lake Victoria.  The lead researcher worked with students to develop a prototype of a water hyacinth harvester, succeeded in identifying a local bio-gas producing company that was interested in using the harvested water hyacinth, and raise awareness in the community about alternative uses of hyacinth such as for fertilizer and the production of artworks.

Enhancing skills through international experiences

When students work and study abroad, they bring back skills and knowledge that benefit everyone. Our Global Skills Opportunity (GSO) program, jointly administered with Universities Canada, increases the participation of Canadians in international learning opportunities.

As of March 31, 2023, 3,269 (59% from CICan member institutions) students have completed or were in the process of completing a GSO-funded mobility experience in more than 100 countries. Most participants (75%) identified as underrepresented students, and 78% of international experiences occurred in non-traditional destinations.

Driving knowledge

We are proud to serve as Canada’s knowledge hub on the college and institute system, gathering data and producing studies to both improve understanding of the Canadian post-secondary sector and support our advocacy efforts, nationally and internationally.

By the numbers:

68 Events

including our annual conference, symposium, leadership institutes and webinars

54 Knowledge Products

including CICan’s Perspectives blog, Perspectives LIVE, podcasts, submissions and reports


Driving knowledge in the digital age

We were pleased to announce the launch of our new and improved website, collegesinstitutes.ca, in early 2023, designed to enhance user experience by providing streamlined navigation aligned with CICan’s key priority areas. This upgrade ensures users can easily access and explore valuable knowledge resources relevant to their interests and needs.


Driving meaningful dialogue with Season 2 & 3 of Perspectives LIVE

To provide our members with easily accessible and convenient access to new knowledge and insights, we continued to expand on the success of our Perspectives Live web series with seasons 2 and 3. This engaging web series brought together industry experts and post-secondary leaders, including members, to discuss the pressing challenges and opportunities within the college and institute system, including equity, diversity and inclusion, health and safety, and environmental sustainability.

  • 11 (5 English, 5 French, and 1 bilingual)
  • 34 special guest speakers
  • Almost 2000 views on YouTube

Presenting new knowledge tools and resources

The sharing of knowledge tools and resources is crucial for fostering growth, collaboration, and continuous improvement among our members. Over the past year, CICan released several new and improved knowledge tools and resources, including a new milestone report entitled “Are We Ready” detailing the role played by its members in addressing climate change and supporting Canada’s transition to a low-carbon economy and an updated SDG toolkit to include 11 new case studies from nine colleges and institutes, showcasing the innovative ways they incorporate the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Both resources not only showcase some of our members’ ongoing contributions in these areas but serve as a rallying call, inspiring post-secondary leaders everywhere to take decisive action toward the UN’s SDGs.

Over 41 members have now signed the SDG Accord. The accord inspires, celebrates, and advances the critical role of education in delivering on the SDGs.

Uniting people in a transformed world

The COVID-19 pandemic continued to reshape and transform our interactions and behaviours in 2022-23. For CICan, it meant hosting our first-ever hybrid connection conference in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Nearly 700 college and institute leaders and partners joined us on-site, and almost 300 participants joined us online. These numbers include representatives from every province and territory across the country and eight countries around the world! We learned from over 100 presenters in over 50 live and pre-recorded presentations in six nautical streams: Governing the Vessel, Charting Teaching and Learning, Navigating the Economy, Mapping Sustainability, Steering Innovation, and Sailing Globally.

Later in the year, we also gathered 150 educational leaders in Québec City on the unceded territory of the Huron-Wendat Nation for CICan’s 12th National Indigenous Education Symposium. Participants discussed and reflected on their shared visions and responsibilities when it comes to advancing truth and reconciliation.

It’s been almost ten years since CICan launched its Indigenous Education Protocol – an aspirational document and framework to improve educational outcomes for Indigenous learners and help institutions support Indigenous students. To date, 71 colleges and institutes have voluntarily signed the Protocol.


Colleges and Institutes Canada


The accompanying summarized financial statements of Colleges and Institutes Canada are the responsibility of management. They have been derived from the association’s complete financial statements which have been prepared in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles using information available to May 11, 2023, and management’s best estimates and judgements.

Management has developed and maintains a system of internal controls to provide reasonable assurance that all assets are safeguarded and to produce relevant, reliable and timely financial information, including the accompanying financial statements.

The Board of Directors discharges its duties relating to the financial statements primarily through the activities of its Audit Committee. The Audit Committee meets at least annually with management and the external auditors to review both the financial statements and the results of the audit examination with respect to the adequacy of internal accounting controls. The external auditors have unrestricted access to the Audit Committee. The Audit Committee also considers, for review by the Board of Directors, the engagement and re-appointment of external auditors.

The financial statements have been audited by Deloitte LLP on behalf of the membership. The Board of Directors met on May 24, 2023 and approved the financial statements.

Denise Amyot
President and CEO

Ramon Lashley
Vice President, Corporate Services


June 1, 2022


Colleges and Institutes Canada

Summarized Statement of Financial Position

March 31, 2023, with comparative figures for 2022



Current Assets $ 68,684,449 $ 47,786,866
Investments – unrestricted 2,825,129 2,749,225
Investments – Endowment Fund 1,306,746 1,416,777
Capital Assets, net 954,553 1,035,065
Intangible Assets 36,981 36,236
$ 73,807,858 $ 53,024,169
Liabilities and Net Assets
Current liabilities $ 67,838,583 $ 47,373,902
Lease Inducements 71,725 93,242
Net Assets 5,897,550 5,557,025
$ 73,807,858 $ 53,024,169
Summarized Statement of Operations
Year ended March 31, 2023, with comparative figures for 2022



Project Revenue $ 59,124,274 $ 43,983,123
Less: direct Project Expenses 45,480,124 32,940,075
Net project contribution 13,644,150 11,043,048
Membership fees 3,569,282 3,621,230
Other 498,937 367,838
17,712,369 15,032,116
Human resources $ 14,856,695 $ 12,855,332
Amortization of capital assets 381,947 282,814
Other 2,023,171 1,654,831
17,261,813 14,792,977
Excess of revenue over expenses
$ 450,556 $ 239,139


The things we were able to achieve this year would not have been possible without the continued support and contributions of our members and our many partners in industry, government, and from other associations in Canada and around the world who share our commitment to excellence in higher education.

Thank you also to the remarkable members of our Board of Directors, for sharing their strategic insights and guidance, their time, and knowledge. We’d also like to thank all the individuals involved in our various advisory committees whose input ensures we continue to meet the needs of our members.

Finally, thank you to the entire staff of CICan for their continued hard work and dedication throughout these challenging times.