News Releases

April 26, 2023

NBCC director recognized with national leadership award

In 2012, when NBCC decided to enter the world of applied research and innovation, the search began for a dynamic leader to steer the College into this new terrain. A passionate educator, lifelong learner, and experienced researcher, Dr. Diane Burt was the perfect fit. 

More than a decade later, Colleges and Institutes Canada (CICan) has recognized Dr. Burt as a 2023 Bronze Leadership Excellence Award recipient. The national award was presented at the CICan World Congress in Montreal on Monday, April 24th

“Diane’s student-centred approach to applied research, which has created hundreds of experiential learning opportunities for thousands of NBCC learners, is a demonstration of her remarkable, steadfast leadership,” said Mary Butler, President and CEO of NBCC. “As a result of Diane’s work, NBCC learners have had the opportunity to gain hands-on experience in their field of study, applying what they’ve learned in the classroom in real-world situations and networking with potential employers.“

A strong advocate for applied research and experiential learning, Dr. Burt was recognized by CICan for her leadership both within her own team and across NBCC. Under her direction, the Applied Research and Innovation (ARI) team has supported hundreds of applied research projects, collaborated with countless industry and community partners, engaged thousands of students and staff, and secured more than $10 million in research funding.  

“NBCC set two goals from the beginning for applied research. Of course, the purpose of a community college is to be engaged with the community and our stakeholders, but at the same time, our purpose is education,” said Dr. Burt. “So it was really about how can we use applied research to enrich the learning experience for our students.” 

Outside of her role with ARI, Dr. Burt has been a well-respected leader and mentor for her colleagues across the College, prioritizing professional development opportunities and lending her expertise as an educator to NBCC’s Instructor Development Program. 

The CICan Awards of Excellence recognize and promote excellence within Canadian colleges and institutes. The Awards showcase the extraordinary contribution of individuals to their college/institute communities and highlight the role of our institutions in social, cultural, and economic development. There are three levels of recognition: Gold, Silver, and Bronze. 

About NBCC:  

As one of New Brunswick’s largest postsecondary education institutions, NBCC drives social and economic wellbeing across the province. NBCC welcomes 11,000 learners each year through quality-assured, relevant training opportunities. Supported by the Going Beyond campaign, NBCC is committed to accelerating skills development, innovating educational delivery, and reaching unprecedented numbers of New Brunswickers. Find out more at:  


Tanya Greer, Lead, Strategic Communications, (506) 440-9105,