Laurentian University celebrates a $114-million day – by Jonathan Migneault (Sudbury Northern Life – September 6, 2016)

Laurentian University had a $114-million day Tuesday, in what it’s president, Dominic Giroux, has called an historic moment for the university.

The day started with a $10-million donation to support Laurentian University’s Department of Earth Sciences and its Mineral Exploration Research Centre from David Harquail, the CEO of Franco-Nevada Corporation, through his family’s Midas Touch Foundation.

In honour of Harquail’s donation university’s board of governors renamed the Department of Earth Sciences to the Harquail School of Earth Sciences. Harquail’s donation will help Laurentian improve its mineral development research.

“It’s very tough for mining companies to do anything that’s long-term or scientific. They need to have immediate results for the low cash that they have available,” Harquail told

Later in the day Laurentian announced an additional $104 million in funding to fund the ambitious Metal Earth research project.

The seven-year initiative will see a team of more than 100 professionals and students compare data about the planet’s crust, a first-of-its-kind experiment in Canada to use geoscience to produce 4D images of the Earth — from the surface where we live to the mantle beneath our feet.

The funding included $49.2 million from the federal government’s Canada First Research Excellence Fund and an additional $55 million from 22 partners from academia, industry and government.

The Conservative government established the Canada First Research Excellence Fund in 2014, said Giroux, with the purpose to elevate Canadian Universities to world-class status for specific areas of research.

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