July 24, 2020 – We are pleased to announce that Maria Popica, French teacher at John Abbott College, has received the Minister’s Award in Higher Education for the Educational Research Reports category (collegial).
This competition highlights the commitment and inventiveness of those who innovate by creating current educational resources and adapting their teaching strategies to make them more effective,

« … I am proud to recognize the innovative implications of higher education professionals who contribute every day to the success of our students. I warmly congratulate the 27 laureates who, through their involvement, promote the development of Quebec’s talent. »
Jean-François Roberge, Minister of Education and Higher Education

Recipients receive scholarships ranging from $1,500 to $10,000, a trophy and a certificate.

This award was presented to Mrs. Popica to recognize the innovative aspect of the course French as a Second Language, Learning through Community Engagement in French-Speaking Communities.
This course, given alternately in the classroom and in a Francophone community, helps create meaningful links between language learning, community service and the holistic development of the student. By doing community service, students improve their language and cultural skills, strengthen their critical thinking skills, develop empathy and the habit of engaging with their multilingual community.
“Maria’s work helps us better understand student motivation to learn French and the potential for increasing that motivation through the social interaction provided by community service-based course work. The importance of social interaction was one of the key results from extensive research of French second-language students she had conducted in collaboration with a number of English colleges.” said Gordon Brown, Academic Dean.


Nous sommes très heureux d’annoncer que Maria Popica, enseignante de français au Cégep John-Abbott, a reçu le Prix du ministre, Catégorie – Rapports de recherche pédagogique 2019-2020, le 18 juin dernier.

Ce concours souligne l’engagement et l’inventivité de celles et ceux qui innovent en créant des ressources éducatives actuelles et en adaptant leurs stratégies d’enseignement afin de les rendre plus efficaces

« …Je suis fier de souligner les implications novatrices des professionnels de l’enseignement supérieur qui contribuent chaque jour à la réussite de nos étudiants. Je félicite chaleureusement les 27 lauréates et lauréats qui, par leur implication, favorisent le développement des talents du Québec. » Jean-François Roberge, ministre de l’Éducation et de l’Enseignement supérieur

Les lauréates et lauréats mériteront des bourses variant de 1 500 $ à 10 000 $, un trophée et un certificat.

Ce prix a été décerné à Madame Popica pour reconnaître l’aspect innovateur du cours L’apprentissage du français langue seconde par l’engagement communautaire en milieu francophone.

Ce cours, donné en alternance en salle de classe et en milieu communautaire francophone, permet de créer des liens significatifs entre l’apprentissage de la langue, le service rendu à la communauté et le développement holistique de l’étudiant. En faisant du service communautaire, les étudiants améliorent leurs compétences linguistiques et culturelles, renforcent leur capacité de réflexion, et développent de l’empathie et l’habitude de s’engager auprès de leur communauté plurilingue.

Gordon Brown, directeur des études : « Les travaux effectués par Maria nous aident à mieux comprendre la motivation des étudiants à apprendre le français et le potentiel d’augmenter cette motivation grâce à l’interaction sociale prévue dans des cours axés sur les services communautaires. L’importance de l’interaction sociale est l’un des résultats clés d’une recherche approfondie menée auprès d’étudiants de français langue seconde en collaboration avec plusieurs collèges anglophones. »


John Abbott College Chemistry teacher, Roberta Silerova is the recipient of the 2019 Supporting Active Learning & Technological Innovation in Studies of Education (SALTISE) Best Practices and Pedagogical Innovators Award. This honour was presented to her during the annual 8th Annual SALTISE Conference held at Dawson College on June 3rd.

“SALTISE is a learning community that brings together instructors and professional development staff from English and French educational institutions within the greater Montreal area, as well as other regions of Québec. The award recognizes educators, in colleges and universities, who are extraordinary leaders in the promotion of academic excellence, use of innovative pedagogies, and support of their academic communities” (

“John Abbott is very proud that SALTISE has awarded the Best Practice and Pedagogical Innovators Award at the college level to Roberta Silerova, dedicated chemistry teacher, Science Program Coordinator and Board member. I have personally appreciated attending one manifestation of Roberta’s engaging pedagogy, the Annual Science Symposium she organizes for students to present projects for which they have been linked to scientists practicing in their area of interest. This is just one example of her initiatives for enriching students’ educational experience”, Gordon Brown, Academic Dean.

Appointment of the Director General of the Centre d’expertise et de recherche appliquée en sciences pharmaceutiques (CERASP)

John Halpin, director general of John Abbott College and Philippe Gribeauval, director general of Cégep Gérald-Godin, are pleased to announce the appointment of Minh Luan Tran as director general of CERASP (centre of excellence in pharmaceutical innovation) as of June 25, 2019.

Minh Luan Tran earned his Bachelor in Mechanical Engineering from Concordia University in 1997 with a Minor in Computer Science from McGill University. Moving onto the pharmaceutical industry, he then oversaw a team of engineers and scientists. Minh spent 17 years in pharmaceuticals and 4 years in biotech. He was part of the team that built Canada’s first plasma protein facility in Québec. This greenfield project had an estimated capital of $400 million and created 200 new technical jobs in the Montreal biotech industry.

CERASP, a college centre for technology transfer, aims to develop and support applied research, training and technology transfer relating to the discovery, development and evaluation of innovative solutions in the pharmaceutical field, particularly in biopharmacy, in pharmaceutical technology, in pharmaceutical production and in digital health.