We send our deepest condolences to the families who lost cherished ones in this plane crash and our thoughts are with our member institutions who have lost so many bright lights across Canadian campuses in this heartbreaking tragedy.
On January 8, as day was breaking, Ukraine International Airlines Flight PS752 was shot down after taking off from Tehran’s Imam Khomeini airport. All 176 passengers were killed including 138 who were bound for Canada. These included 57 Canadians, but many others were international students, permanent residents or visitors.
The tragedy is a national one, touching many educational institutions and communities across the country. Many of the victims were students, researchers and faculty at universities and colleges from coast to coast.
We do not know the life stories of all these students, researchers and faculty, and why they chose Canada, but as we learn more about them we are reminded about why internationalization is so important. It promotes human to human ties across borders and oceans and serves to brings global perspectives and experiences to our Canadian campuses. This tragic loss highlights the value of the rich diversity across Canada’s education institutions. These students, researchers and faculty all made a tremendous impact on the institutions where they chose to study and work, and Canada will be poorer for not having them in our future.
As a way of remembering each and everyone of them, we encourage you to send your stories about these individuals from your own campuses and share them with our Canadian education community.
May their memories be eternal.