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Université du Québec – Improving the transition to higher education: several partners mobilize for the future of our young and old

In order to improve the transition from high school to CEGEP, from CEGEP to university or to better succeed when returning to studies, on September 19 the Université du Québec launched a new initiative called Successful transitions to higher education: an inter-order challenge in the presence of several collaborators, including the Fédération des Cégeps, and inter-order partners in the six regions of Quebec.

Despite remarkable achievements in the democratization of higher education and university studies over the past 50 years in Quebec, certain populations remain disadvantaged in pursuing and achieving higher education, such as those from low-income backgrounds. including families with no education beyond high school; those from low-income or single-parent families; those living in remote rural areas or those of indigenous origin. There are also people who experienced previous transitions with difficulty or are returning to their studies after several years of interruption.

In order to contribute to the Quebec government’s action plan for success in higher education, this new initiative coordinated by the Université du Québec will allow the development of a support model for higher education transitions between high school, college and university. All actions of this initiative will be overseen by a scientific committee composed of more than twenty university and college researchers who will work together to design a transition support model, making it a unique project in Quebec. This committee will work in collaboration with a community of experts pooling professional resources hired to support the initiatives of the regional inter-order groups. Different actors and services of secondary, higher and higher education will be involved in the implementation of this model.

Thus, the results of the developed model will enable the improvement of intervention and cooperation procedures within the education and higher education sector in terms of supporting the transition to higher education. Thanks to its implementation, students will have access to quality support that will enable them to prepare and experience the transition to university studies under conditions that will enable them to succeed in their study plans.

The target group that will use the model are managers and teaching staff, professional and support staff at secondary schools, colleges and universities, and possibly workers in community organizations in the energy sector. This project will also make it possible to better emphasize the specificities of each of the regional groups involved in the construction of the model by reflecting their reality. Finally, the results of this project will benefit all people who have ambitions for a university project, as well as their families, regardless of where they come from and where they want to go.

“Working to make university studies more accessible for more than 50 years, the Université du Québec believes that the quality of transitions during an academic career has an undeniable impact on student success. Once again, I would like to thank the many organizations directly involved in this project, including the Ministry of Higher Education, the seven university facilities in the Université du Québec network, the twenty-three CEGEPs, the seven school service centers, the three higher education schools, the two Carrefours Jeunesse-Emploi and all other organizations dedicated to this mission”, said Ms. Johanne Jean, President of the Université du Québec.

“I am pleased with the idea that at the end of this project we will have possible solutions, a model of support for transitions between primary, secondary, college and university. The goal is to prepare young people to a higher level so that a greater number of them have access to higher education. To achieve this goal, the cooperation of all stakeholders is essential,” added Mr. Bernard Tremblay, President and CEO of the Fédération des cégeps.

“Success in higher education is a topic that has concerned me for many years. To ensure this success, it is essential to focus more on the transitions between the different orders,” said Mr. Pierre Doray, Associate Professor in the Department of Sociology at the Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM).

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