$500,000 BMO Gift to Create New Fund to Support Future Leaders in
Canada's Green Economy Celebrated at Eco Jobs Luncheon
PETERBOROUGH, ON, Oct. 22 /CNW/ - Over 165 members of the Peterborough and Trent communities gathered today at the Peterborough Golf and Country Club to participate in Inside Trent: Lunch with the Experts 2009 and to hear about a new $500,000 gift from BMO to establish the BMO Financial Group Future Green Leaders' Fund at Trent University.
Demonstrating leadership in today's emerging green economy, BMO Financial Group's support will provide the opportunity to increase the number of graduate students and undergraduate summer student researchers studying within Trent's leading-edge environmental portfolio.
"BMO Financial Group's generous support will help further Trent's collective knowledge base to prepare us to take action to meet the environmental challenges we all face," said Dr. Steven E. Franklin, president and vice-chancellor of Trent University. "The new Future Green Leaders' Fund allows us to further build on a 45-year relationship with BMO and to ensure Trent University remains on the forefront of preparing students for jobs in the emerging green economy."
Trent University has been a leader in the environment since its inception in 1964. Thousands of Trent students have gone on to become highly skilled, contributing professionals in a wide variety of occupations within the environmental/green workplace. Trent's environmental expertise at both national and international levels is focused on aquatic sciences, climate change, water contaminant analysis, environmental modeling, northern and polar studies, species conservation and biodiversity, wildlife stress and diseases, ecological restoration, community-based environmental solutions and DNA profiling of animal and plants for effective ecosystem management. Graduates of Trent's environmental portfolio make significant contributions to helping governments, the private sector and communities affect important and positive change.
"Today, we are taking the opportunity to bring together two elements at the heart of our strong focus on corporate responsibility, namely education and the environment," said Eileen Grady, Managing Director, BMO Harris Private Banking, Peterborough. "We firmly believe that this donation and the establishment of the BMO Financial Group Future Green Leaders' Fund will help to attract and support new leaders in Canada's green economy to Trent - cementing the University's place as a true leader in environmental education in Canada."
A leader amongst financial institutions in Canada in the area of environmental sustainability, BMO is a generous supporter of many environmental initiatives in Canada. In 2008, BMO created the Clear Blue Skies strategy to recognize the importance the bank places on the quality of the air that we breathe. Achievements to date include: being the first Canadian bank to achieve ISO 14001 certification; a commitment to reducing net emissions related to energy consumption and transportation to zero by 2010, and being named as one of the highest scoring companies in the world and the only Canadian bank in the Global 500 Carbon Disclosure leadership Index for 2009.
The announcement of the creation of the BMO Financial Group Future Green Leaders' Fund led off the third annual Inside Trent: Lunch with the Experts speaker series. This year's luncheon featured keynote speaker Michael Kerford, vice president of ECO Canada, and a panel of Trent experts, speaking on the topic of "Preparing for the Green Economy: Green Jobs and Opportunities for Youth in the Emerging Eco Jobs Marketplace."
The event was also presented as part of a two-day celebration of the launch of Trent University's Centre of Knowledge in the Environment, the first of four virtual centres designed to profile interdisciplinary teaching and research expertise among the humanities, social sciences, sciences and professional programs to be unveiled leading up to the University's milestone 50th anniversary in 2014. This Centre celebrates Trent's national and international expertise in and commitment to the environment as a distinct focal point of excellence. Trent's environmental expertise at both national and international levels is focused on aquatic sciences, climate change, water contaminant analysis, environmental modeling, northern and polar studies, species conservation and biodiversity, wildlife stress and diseases, ecological restoration, community-based environmental solutions, and DNA profiling of animal and plants for effective ecosystem management. Trent leaders in this Centre strive to build even further speciality expertise by infusing Trent's understanding of Indigenous knowledge into the study of climate change, water science, biomaterials, sustainable agriculture, ecology and conservation biology. In addition, Trent's expertise in Indigenous Knowledge infuses our understanding of the environment.
The Inside Trent: Lunch with the Experts series was launched in Peterborough in 2007 as a community outreach event, designed to bring Trent's experts to the community to facilitate a sharing of knowledge on topical subjects. The event is held on an annual basis in various communities and is sponsored by the Trent University Legacy Society, visionary donors who have made a future gift to Trent through their estate plans.
SOURCE BMO BANK OF MONTREAL
For further information: For further information: Dianne Lister, Vice President, External Relations & Advancement, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x7207; Don Cumming, Senior Director, Public Affairs and Government Relations, Trent University, (705) 748-1011 x6181; Kasia Lech, Manager, Media Relations, BMO Financial Group, (416) 867-3996