forward/slash summit recognizes NAIT as key economic contributor

by | Dec 5, 2022 | Web Archive

Edmonton Global hosted nearly 1000 leaders across the Edmonton region at the first forward/slash summit on September 28. The movement took place at the Edmonton Event Center, where more than forty partner organizations gathered to network and share their vision for Edmonton and its surrounding municipalities. The evening was an opportunity for movers and shakers to unite and spark change based on Edmonton’s potential to prosper on a global scale.

Forward/slash focused on five sectors highlighting Edmonton’s strengths: AI and tech, health and life science, food and agriculture, hydrogen, and global logistics. The program included interactive displays and panel discussions where guests could learn more about how Edmonton contributes meaningfully to these sectors. Malcolm Bruce, CEO of Edmonton Global, recognized NAIT as a unique contributor during his introduction to the night.

“This event has been a massive collaborative effort from across the region. The planning included more than 40 partner organizations, including the 14 municipalities that make up the Edmonton region,” quoted Bruce in a media release by Edmonton Global. “I can’t think of another time in our history where so many organizations have come together with a shared vision for our economic future. It’s inspiring to be part of leading this important work alongside so many partners.”

Along with partners at forward/slash like Stantec and PCL, NAIT alumni are the future of many sectors that the movement focused on to drive the region’s economy. NAIT’s four schools, the JR Shaw School of Business, School of Applied Sciences and Technology, School of Health and Life Sciences and School of Skilled Trades, teach hands-on and technology-based curriculums.

According to Edmonton Global’s website, the University of Alberta is ranked third in AI research, but this does not mean that polytechnic institutes like NAIT should be overlooked. NAIT’s Melton Crane and Hoisting Building at the Spruce Grove campus is an example of innovative AI and tech, with three crane simulators, mobile cranes and boom trucks allowing the Crane and Hoisting program to succeed further and accelerate Edmonton’s infrastructure.

NAIT’s Center for Innovative Media, Clean Technology Team, Center for Grid Innovation and the Technology Access Centre for Sensors and System Integration are all applied research centres that contribute to the sectors forward/slash highlighted. For NAIT students, especially those who spend a short time in condensed and fast-paced programs, it can be tricky to keep up with any news that does not involve their study area. Movements like forward/slash remind NAIT students, staff and alumni are part of something big – and essential to Alberta.

NAIT’s techlifetoday can give students a personalized view of how their school contributes to global innovation, but Edmonton Global has various resources for students looking to learn more about their city from a business perspective. For more information on Edmonton Global’s initiatives and to learn more about what the Edmonton region and Albertan post-secondary institutions like NAIT offer on a global scale, visit For a recap of forward/slash, check out their website at

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