Last night (Nov. 15), for the 25th anniversary of the Chair de tourisme Transat of the UQAM School of Management (École des sciences de la gestion de l’UQAM, or ESG UQAM) Jean-Marc Eustache, president and CEO of Transat A.T. inc. announced a donation of $1 million to the Research Chair as part of the 100 millions d’idées major fundraising campaign, led by the Fondation de l’UQAM, of which M. Eustache is the chair of the board of directors.
The ceremony took place at MTLab in front of about fifty guests, including the UQAM rector, Magda Fusaro; the dean of ESG UQAM, Komlan Sedzro; the Foundation Executive Director, Pierre Bélanger; as well as the Tourism Chairholder and Co-chairholder, Paul Arseneault and Marc-Antoine Vachon, respectively.
Thanking Transat and its president for their continuous and unfailing support, rector Magda Fusaro noted that:
“UQAM needs faithful partners like Transat to stimulate the values of creativity and innovation in our educators and students. This exceptional donation testifies to the commitment of the company toward the mission of our University. Transat and UQAM share the same vision for research—rigorous, impartial, ethical, Québécois and open to the world. I am really happy that we can continue to work together to develop the knowledge and skills of our community. I hope that this will create a domino effect and that other visionary organizations will dare to support education, today and tomorrow.”
The Transat Chair in Tourism
The Transat Chair in Tourism was the first research-innovation chair created at UQAM, in 1992. It is known for its cutting-edge projects and publications on tourism. Since its creation, it has built a solid reputation thanks to its unequalled contributions to training the next generation and due to the information it has produced, which has been put to use in the tourism and hotel management programs at ESG UQAM. With its many research publications, its Tourism Intelligence Network, the holding of the highly popular “Gueuletons touristiques” and its involvement with MT Lab, the Chair is increasingly contacted by media and tourism stakeholders.
“In a sector as competitive as tourism, we never have enough information about industry matters,” explained Eustache. "To meet this challenge, it’s important to continually increase our knowledge about markets, trends, consumer expectations, as well as about new technologies, which are essential for the development of our industry. The Transat Chair in Tourism represents a valuable source of knowledge which will help us make enlightened decisions."
An historical campaign
This significant contribution by Transat is part of the largest fundraising campaign in the history of the University, which set an objective of raising $100 million. UQAM has ideas for the future and needs responsible and committed allies like Transat to bring them to life. Created in 1987, Transat is one of the world’s largest players in today’s tourism industry, with service providers in 26 countries, 5,000 employees and the 4.5 million passengers it sends on travels each year. The company is very active with regard to social responsibility, and is multiplying its initiatives of this type, including humanitarian activities, and by promoting sustainable tourism and reducing the impact of its activities on the environment. In October 2018, Transat became the first major international tour operator certified by Travelife for all its activities.
Once again, Transat is demonstrating its unfailing support of UQAM and its Foundation, as well as the Tourism Chair. The company has contributed a total of $1,825,000 to the Chair since 2000. The continuous commitment by the company has propelled UQAM to the rank of one of the best tourism teaching institutions in the world according to the World Tourism Organization. In addition, on a personal level, Jean-Marc Eustache has offered the largest individual donation from an alumnus in the history of UQAM.