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University president addresses cyber security incident


The first topic tackled by University of Windsor President Dr. Robert Gordon was the cyber security incident that occurred last year.

“It’s just the new reality that all universities and colleges are dealing with,” said Gordon, who explained during his State of the University Address things could been worse had it not been for the help of the community.

“The day of the breach I had an opportunity to reach out to Dr. Patti France [president of St. Clair College], our Mayor Drew Dilkens, David Musyj [CEO of Windsor Regional Hospital] and others in our community and ask for support and we got it right away,” he said.

The outage took down the main website, Blackboard Learning Management System, UWinsite Student and the campus Wi-Fi affecting the university for two weeks. Students and staff were left frustrated wondering when they would regain access to their school's online tools.

The university on Thursday said it has learned lessons which have been shared with others.

“We are committed to doing everything we can to ensure our systems are safe and robust enough to deal with the emerging challenges that many organizations are facing,” said Gordon.

The university is also ensuring it is ready to supply talent to meet the future growth of the region.

“I think there's a number of potential programs that we are in a position to support that will be able to I think build the economic prosperity of our region,” he said.

The university contributed to the region’s recognition this week by Business Facilities Magazine for landing the EV plant. Invest Windsor Essex President and CEO Stephen MacKenzie said he is in constant contact with the university.

“Incredibly important role. You noticed an increased co-op placements, increased grants. That's all meaning that it's working together,” he said.

MacKenzie added there is a contingent from the university and college visiting an existing battery plant in Poland to tighten the connection between the school and companies.

MacKenzie values the partnerships, which includes the university, because they were vital in landing the EV plant and will continue to be vital during the current recruitment of supply chain businesses.

“It's a living, breathing organism this amazing place we call Windsor-Essex and I think the growth of new companies and hopefully the growth in business for existing companies is [going to] be phenomenal over the next couple of years,” he said. Top Stories


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