Inspiring the Future: Reflecting on Five Years of Striving and Achievement

Over the past five years, ORION has embarked on an incredible journey to empower innovation by supporting researchers and educators in Ontario. We have fostered a robust research, education, and innovation platform while making significant strides toward supporting our valued community. As we embark on a new chapter, we are proud to reflect on our major milestones of the past five years and envision a better future.

Reflecting on Our Achievements

In collaboration with our community, we have expanded our cybersecurity offerings, built invaluable community partnerships, and empowered innovation. We developed a strategic plan for 2021-2025, focusing on trust and transparency within the organization and our community. Our strategy revolves around cultivating purpose and engagement within the industry, supporting a world class research, education and innovation platform, and building trusted community partnerships.

To cultivate a culture of connection, we have identified and implemented core values, including diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI). We have implemented policies and practices that eliminate barriers, building a diverse and inclusive workplace. We promoted open dialogue and nurtured a culture where different ideas can flourish. We continue our ongoing commitment to creating an environment that celebrates individuality and empowers every member of our community.

In an increasingly digital world, we remain dedicated to supporting a world class platform for researchers, educators, and innovators. Recognizing the value of a collaborative approach, we made significant enhancements and expanded our offerings. The Shared SIEM pilot and Ontario Cybersecurity Higher Education Consortium (ON-CHEC) focus groups enabled us to listen and learn from our community. We also expanded our network by purchasing additional equipment and completing upgrades to improve network resiliency and reliability.

Nowadays, education has become one of the most targeted sectors for ransomware attacks. In response, we launched new cybersecurity offerings such as DDoS Threat Protection along with Vulnerability Assessment and Penetration Testing (VAPT). This year, we made further improvements to the Cybersecurity Awareness Training platform and ORION Community Training to better meet the needs of our constituents. Over the past five years, we have been proud to provide the tools and resources necessary for researchers and educators to thrive in a safe environment.

We believe that by building trusted community partnerships, we can reach even greater heights. We have forged new relationships and nurtured existing ones with research organizations, educational institutions, government agencies, and industry leaders. We are excited to have amalgamated with GTAnet, joining forces to serve our communities better. We have engaged with our constituents by attending and presenting at conferences such as OHEIT, OCCCIO, CANHEIT, NORDUnet, CANARIE Summit, Cyber Summit, Higher Education Summit, and more. These partnerships have been instrumental in fostering innovation and helping our community tackle complex challenges.

Over the past five years, we have been dedicated to enriching our community relationships through trust, transparency, and engagement. ORION is proud to be a voice for our constituents and a trusted source of thought leadership.

Envisioning a Better Future

As we chart our course for the years ahead, we remain steadfast in our commitment to supporting researchers, educators, and innovators in Ontario.

Since 2001, our constituents have come to us for their security and network needs, leveraging our expertise and experience. We will apply the lessons we have learned in the past 5 years to improve our secure platform, offer innovative solutions, and enhance our cybersecurity offerings. In doing so, we can provide even more value to our community.

As the threat landscape evolves, we plan to stay on top of cybersecurity advancements. Our team will do this by leveraging emerging technologies and industry best practices to ensure the highest level of protection for research and education institutions.

Additionally, we strive to further improve our infrastructure and expand network capacity. Our organization will invest in enhancing our robust platform to further foster seamless connectivity and collaboration. We aim to empower researchers and educators with the resources they need to push the boundaries of innovation.

Going forward, we will continue to listen to our community members and help them solve the challenges they are facing. ORION will seek out opportunities to work with other organizations and strengthen our existing relationships. Building trusted partnerships will enable our community to pursue groundbreaking discoveries.

We are on a mission to empower innovation in Ontario and beyond. We will advocate for the needs of our community on a provincial and national level. Looking ahead to the future, we remain committed to supporting researchers, educators, and innovators who are at the forefront of change.

Empowering Researchers, Educators, and Innovators in Ontario

As we reflect on our past achievements and envision a better future, we are excited to be empowering innovation across Ontario. By facilitating collaboration and increasing connectivity, we can enhance our support to the community. We will work together to create a brighter future for everyone.