Sponsor Interview: Dr. Gage Averill

Sponsor Interview: Dr. Gage Averill

May 09, 2024

Preparing our community for Workday Student 

With UBC students gaining access to Workday Student on May 21, we want to share some insights from the people behind the project. We are bringing you the perspectives of those who are either working closely with the project or who will be impacted end users. In our latest instalment, Dr. Gage Averill shares his thoughts on how he believes Workday Student will best support UBC’s students, faculty, and staff. 

Name: Dr. Gage Averill

Title: Provost and Vice-President, Academic, UBC Vancouver. Dr. Averill serves as an Executive Sponsor for the Integrated Renewal Program - Student (IRP Student).

What factors led to the need to implement a new student information system? 

UBC’s current Student Information System is over 30 years old and has reached a state where it is too outdated and prone to regular failures. We made the conscious decision to not pass along a malfunctioning system to the UBC community of today and tomorrow.  

Our aim is to provide UBC with a secure, integrated, and modern platform that improves the academic administrative experience for our students, faculty, and staff. It might take time to achieve these goals, but we believe in the benefits of Workday Student. 

What benefits will faculty and staff experience because of the transition to Workday Student? 

One of the most significant benefits of Workday Student will be providing the UBC community with a consistent experience - whether that be students registering for classes or instructors submitting grades. We also want faculty members to be able to understand their students’ academic pathways and be able to assist them throughout their journey. Another great benefit is that Workday Student will provide students, faculty, and staff with a secure system for years to come. 

How will students be impacted by the change to Workday Student? 

At first, this will be a big change for our continuing students, but we anticipate they will learn the new system quickly. For students who are new to UBC this fall, Workday will be the only academic administrative system they will have to learn to use. Our goal is for the transition to be as seamless as possible for all students, and we are working with our business partners to ensure students have the information and support they need to complete tasks in Workday Student.   

What is being done to ensure the transition for students, faculty, and staff will be as smooth as possible? 

This is the most inspiring part of the current transformations. We’ve taken the lessons learned from the implementation of Workday with Finance and Human Resources to heart. During the transition to Workday Student, we wanted to ensure everyone is ready by highlighting the benefits of the new system and providing insights into how it will look and operate once it is live. 

Launch 1 and 2 of Workday Student have been a success. As we ready ourselves for student access to the system on May 21, we need to remember that this is a big change for everyone. There might be some challenges along the way – this is to be expected.  My hope, however, is that the transition will be relatively smooth for our students, and those who support them.  

The IRP Student team is working to help equip and support staff and faculty, as they prepare to help students along the way.  I’d like to encourage everyone to be patient and kind during this transition period. Reach out to your managers if you need help and continue to refer to the training and resource materials provided.