Success Stories

The individual members of ICGE’s team are senior professionals who bring years of accomplished experience in leading major projects. We are proud to present a selection of stories drawn from our consultants’ diverse backgrounds—as academics and practitioners, employees and independent contractors, for private, public and non-profit organizations.

Envisioning and Developing a New College

ICGE worked directly with the First Nations Health Directors Association (FNHDA) Board and Leadership team to envision, develop and implement the FNHDA College of Indigenous Health Leadership.
ICGE worked directly with the First Nations Health Directors Association (FNHDA) Board and Leadership team to envision, develop and implement the FNHDA College of Indigenous Health Leadership. The seeds of the new College--first planted during a project to develop a professional education curriculum--later grew into a delivery system for professional development and certification. Envisioning and developing a College from scratch is a significant undertaking. It requires leadership, a clear vision, and the fortitude to see the project through from concept to concrete reality--all of which was amply demonstrated by the FNHDA Board and Leadership. ICGE's work encompassed all of the following: • informing decisions and directions developed from a best practices approach; • consistently putting the needs of students first, in terms of both content and delivery; • accessing existing education providers, potential partnerships and competitors through market analysis; • developing realistic financial plans and funding opportunities • creating a compatible and compliant Private Training Institutes Board (PTIB ) and FNHDA governance structure; and • Assessing and securing IT systems and services for Student Information Systems management and a Learning Management System (Moodle). This groundbreaking College is now actively involved in preparing British Columbia health professionals to lead the way in providing health services that serve Indigenous peoples, and reflect Indigenous knowledge and ways of being.
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COVID-19 pandemic Retention Campaign

In 2020, COVID-19 put all post-secondary institutions in reactive mode, with faculty rushing to convert on-campus curriculum to online formats, and students questioning whether this was worth coming back for at all in September. In June TRU conducted a survey of 2nd and senior students probing their intentions for the…
In 2020, COVID-19 put all post-secondary institutions in reactive mode, with faculty rushing to convert on-campus curriculum to online formats, and students questioning whether this was worth coming back for at all in September. In June TRU conducted a survey of 2nd and senior students probing their intentions for the 2020-21 academic year. The results indicated that over 50% were considering not returning in the fall, with the highest numbers among students dealing with accessibility, academic or social issues. Success Indicators: • Students reported being surprised and comforted by the university’s efforts to reach out and ‘check in’. • The majority of students had registered by August 23 and of these over 80% returned. • Overall enrolment for domestic students (representing both recruitment and retention) actually rose by 1% compared to 2019-20.
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Indigenous Health Education to Career Initiative

Research confirms a direct correlation between increasing the number of Indigenous people in health professions, and decreasing Indigenous health inequities. With this in mind, FNHA engaged ICGE to conduct an environmental scan of post-secondary health and health related programs across the Fraser Salish region and a global search for best…
Research confirms a direct correlation between increasing the number of Indigenous people in health professions, and decreasing Indigenous health inequities. With this in mind, FNHA engaged ICGE to conduct an environmental scan of post-secondary health and health-related programs across the Fraser Salish region and a global search for best practices in career development programs provided by Indigenous health boards, and table recommendations based on the findings. Research confirms a direct correlation between increasing the number of Indigenous people in health professions, and decreasing Indigenous health inequities. With this in mind, FNHA engaged ICGE to conduct an environmental scan of post-secondary health and health related programs across the Fraser Salish region and a global search for best practices in career development programs provided by Indigenous health boards, and table recommendations based on the findings. The findings were surprising and significant. • 25,000 data-points were recorded from 1,500 individual programs offered within the region, by 5 public and 44 private institutions. • None of the 44 private institutions offered Indigenous student services. • The 5 public institutions only offered “Supporting Services”, to reduce inequities among Indigenous students and increase their Capacity to Engage in health careers. None offered “Excelling Services”, to inspire Indigenous student interest in the health sector and build their Confidence to Excel. • Only two Indigenous health boards—in New Zealand and the U.S.—had developed programs dedicated to increasing Indigenous presence in the health sector. • Recognizing that Supporting and Excelling Services are equally important (since each provides unique and valuable benefits) ICGE introduced the term Binary Merit Approach® to describe this as Best Practice. Success Indicators: The findings and analysis present a singular opportunity for FNHA to advance Indigenous health outcomes and further the goals of both Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the United Nations Declarations of the Rights of Indigenous Peoples.
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Strategic Enrolment Management

MRU had established a pan-institutional SEM Planning Committee with representatives from all academic Faculties and Administrative Divisions, Indigenous leadership, Registrarial and Student Services, and the student body. The process of developing a MRU SEM plan entailed focus groups with students, statistical analysis, and identifying key current and projected influences on…
MRU had established a pan-institutional SEM Planning Committee with representatives from all academic Faculties and Administrative Divisions, Indigenous leadership, Registrarial and Student Services, and the student body. The process of developing a MRU SEM plan entailed focus groups with students, statistical analysis, and identifying key current and projected influences on student recruitment, retention and completion within the Calgary and broader Alberta environment. The resulting SEM plan reflected the highly personalized and caring elements of MRU’s new brand. Over the course of two years, we were part of a 5-person advisory group that presided over large (100+ person) and smaller (8-12 person) guided working sessions with students, faculty and staff to identify the “pain points” affecting student success at TRU related to Leadership; Lateral Communications, Shared Responsibilities and Partnerships/Relationships between units; Integrated Institutional Planning; Quality of Service; and Student Mix. Success indicators: • At MRU: o expansion of services provided by the Iniskim Indigenous Centre including a precedent-setting support program for Indigenous students entering the Science faculty o establishment of an on-campus Student Success Drop-in Centre o Early Alert system enabling intervention with students at risk of dropout (indicated by more than two absences and/or one failed assignment) o the groundbreaking MRU Assessment Seminar program, where senior students conducted in-depth interviews of 100 junior students every year, whose findings informed policy and process changes that led to retention increases of up to 12%.
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Developing Mission, Vision, Values

2019 saw a new president take the helm at TRU, setting the stage for the development of a new Vision Statement, including a timeless mission, aspirational vision, enduring values, and ten-year strategic change goals. Dubbed Envision TRU, the project spanned 14 months of conversations, in groups of two to 120,…
2019 saw a new president take the helm at TRU, setting the stage for the development of a new Vision Statement, including a timeless mission, aspirational vision, enduring values, and ten-year strategic change goals. Dubbed Envision TRU, the project spanned 14 months of conversations, in groups of two to 120, in boardrooms and classrooms, online and in-person, in four cities and two First Nations territories. An advisor’s network, writer’s cohort and facilitation group were convened and deployed. The resulting Vision Statement has been called TRU’s “north star”, illuminating its direction for the next several years and underscoring that indigenization is central, and not peripheral, at TRU. The video at this link captures the power of both the process and the outcome: https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=8xY0dbUC29A Success Indicators: • TRU’s commitments to both the Secwepemc and Texelc nations, indigenization, TRC calls to action and Indigenous student success are now front and centre in its institutional vision, values and strategic goals. • TRU is now set for the next evolution of its Find Your TRU brand—which moved through initial strategic planning to national launch from Jan. 2015 – March 2016— to reflect its new Indigenous-informed vision, values and strategic change goals. • The vision and values are core to TRU’s new People Plan, currently in progress. • Scenario planning sessions with the Board and university leadership led to a process that will hereafter inform how TRU pivots and thrives amidst substantive change.
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Development of a Health Director’s Certificate

In 2017, dissatisfied at the lack of traction of discussions with several post-secondary institutions, the First Nations Health Directors Association (FNHDA) decided to develop their own Health Director's Certificate. While their expertise in health care management was well-established, the Board had little experience in health care management education. Consequently, ICGE…
In 2017, dissatisfied at the lack of traction of discussions with several post-secondary institutions, the First Nations Health Directors Association (FNHDA) decided to develop their own Health Director's Certificate. While their expertise in health care management was well-established, the Board had little experience in health care management education. Consequently, ICGE worked with the FNHDA to build programs and curriculum to develop capable, professional Health Directors, ready to serve in-community needs. FNHDA knew what they wanted—a Health Director's Certificate—but were unsure how to create the apparatus for delivering an education program. Working with ICGE, the Board went through a series of foundational exercises to clarify expectations and carve out a strategy to achieve those expectations. Success Indicators: • A clearly articulated Vision, Mission and Values. • A strategic Plan for development and roll-out. • Work compliant with Ministry of Advanced Education criteria. • Programs and courses designed for delivery both face-to-face and online, and both synchronous and asynchronous. • The most recent project: development and delivery oversight of the Communicable Disease Emergency Response (CDER) planning course through a partnership between FNHDA and First Nations Health Authority (FNHA).
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Indigenous Program Development

ICGE has worked closely with Yellowhead Tribal College in Edmonton, Alberta to manage course developers and program strategy including educational environmental scans and course and program development.
ICGE has worked closely with Yellowhead Tribal College in Edmonton, Alberta to manage course developers and program strategy including educational environmental scans and course and program development. Success Indicators: • Development of Indigenous Governance Program. • Development of Indigenous Environmental Stewardship and Reclamation Program. • Development of Indigenous Land Stewardship Program.
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Development and Delivery of Digital Credit

TRU’s Program Delivery Division consisted of approximately of 160 online tutors in multiple disciplines and 12-15 support staff, all operating within three complex collective agreements. Faculty, located throughout British Columbia, were compensated on a unique system of assignments submitted by roughly 7000 students. At the time, this cadre of loyal,…
TRU’s Program Delivery Division consisted of approximately of 160 online tutors in multiple disciplines and 12-15 support staff, all operating within three complex collective agreements. Faculty, located throughout British Columbia, were compensated on a unique system of assignments submitted by roughly 7000 students. At the time, this cadre of loyal, mostly part-time employees lacked a vision, mission, and a collegial working environment. An engaging and inclusive planning process, ongoing relationship building and systematic (and empathetic) addressing of grievances turned this around. Success Indicators: • Created a divisional strategic plan, vision, and mission to anchor operational and strategic decisions for programs and courses. • Created the foundation, protocols, and systems for proctored online exams. • Designed and managed faculty development initiatives, (webinars, video newsletters conferences, online meetings) to ensure students would be engaged and retained. • Built a service-oriented culture with a timely focus on the student “customer”. Identified and created uniform and expected standards. • Grew divisional revenues by approximately 30%. • Enrolments doubled to over 14,000 students and the division was one of the largest and most successful at meeting or exceeding critical recruitment, retention and student satisfaction targets. • Built a divisional culture based on trust, acknowledgement and empowerment.
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