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U of M education program dedicating 45 per cent of spots to ‘diverse’ students

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WATCH: Global's Talia Ricci brings you the full story. – Feb 12, 2016

WINNIPEG — A new policy at the University of Manitoba is being called one of the country’s most progressive.

The new policy states that 45 per cent of applicants to the Bachelor of Education program can be admitted based on applicants identifying themselves as being a part of several “diversity” categories. This number is up from 10 per cent last year.

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Some of those categories include Indigenous people, people who have been treated differently based on their perceived racial backgrounds, students with physical or mental disabilities, sexual orientation differences and disadvantaged Canadians.

“Manitoba is a community of great diversity and as the Faculty of Education, we need to be making a more concerted effort to ensure that our teachers reflect that diversity,” Melanie Janzen, associate dean of undergraduate programs said.

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The other 55 per cent of students will fall into a general category. The university said that 45 per cent is the goal but not a hard set number; all of the applicants must still meet the mandatory entrance requirements to be considered for the program.

“It’s really a target for our faculty to better recruit more diverse groups of people and also respond to more various groups of people in our classroom,” Janzen said.

The new policy will be implemented for students applying to the program in September 2017.

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