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ApplyBoard Launches
Canadian Advisory Board

ApplyBoard, the online platform that empowers students around the world to access the best education, today announced the launch of its Canadian Advisory Board (CAB). Led by Jo Johnson, Chairman, International at ApplyBoard, the CAB comprises distinguished education sector thought leaders and trailblazers who will lend their expertise to guide ApplyBoard through its continued growth within Canada.

Foundational members of the CAB include:

  • Sam Blyth Founder and former CEO of Blyth Academy, Canada’s leading private school by enrollment, in addition to schools and online schools in the US, Europe, Middle East, and Far East.
  • Ann Buller – President Emeritus of Centennial College. She currently serves on the Board of World Education Services and Academics Without Borders.
  • Dr. Feridun Hamdullahpur – President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Waterloo, member of the Sorbonne Université Strategic Orientation Committee, and member of the King Abdulaziz University International Advisory Board.
  • John Milloy – Former Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities and Minister of Research and Innovation for the Province of Ontario. He is currently the Director of the Centre for Public Ethics at Martin Luther University College, Practitioner-in-Residence in Wilfrid Laurier’s Political Science Department, and a Lecturer in the Master of Public Service Program at the University of Waterloo.
  • J. Robert S. Prichard Chair of Torys LLP and President Emeritus of the University of Toronto. He is also a director of Onex Corporation, George Weston Limited, and Alamos Gold and a member of the International Advisory Board of Barrick Gold.

“Feridun, Ann, John, Rob, and Sam are distinguished thought leaders in higher education who will bring invaluable experience to this extremely fast-growing and purposeful company,” said Johnson. “ApplyBoard will be able to draw on their knowledge and expertise as it fulfils its mission to eliminate barriers to education for talented students around the world.”

Jo Johnson headshot

Jo Johnson

Canada is among the fastest-growing destinations for international students in the world. From 2014 to 2019, the number of international students in Canada grew by 95%. While the COVID-19 pandemic has reshaped the global international education industry, Canada’s relative success in containing COVID-19 has left it well-positioned to grow its market share in the post-pandemic world. Canada’s steadfast recognition of the benefits of immigration makes it a top target among prospective international students looking to build a career and a home in their destination country.

“We believe that education is a right, not a privilege,” said Martin Basiri, Co-Founder and CEO of ApplyBoard. “We are fortunate to have some of the most influential individuals in education working alongside us, as part of our Canadian Advisory Board, to change the lives of students around the world.”

In addition to focusing on the Canadian market, the CAB will work alongside members of ApplyBoard’s UK Advisory Board to support its global efforts to make education accessible to students around the world. 


Canadian Advisory Board Members

Sam Blyth Headshot

Sam Blyth

Sam Blyth is the Founder and former CEO of Blyth Academy, Canada’s leading private school by enrollment, in addition to schools and online schools in the US, Europe, Middle East, and Far East. He is a Member of the Advisory Board of the National Museum of Natural History of the Smithsonian Institution, a Fellow Commoner of Pembroke College, Cambridge, and the Honorary Consul General for the Kingdom of Bhutan to Canada.

He was educated at Pembroke College, Cambridge and the University of Paris VII.

I am delighted to join the Canadian Advisory Board having seen students at Blyth schools around the world benefit from it. And to watch a Canadian company lead globally in this vital sector.

Ann Buller headshot

Ann Buller

Ann Buller, President Emeritus of Centennial College, is renowned within the Canadian postsecondary sector for her leadership and her ability to catalyze major transformative change, resulting in widespread recognition for her groundbreaking work in leadership development and global citizenship education. During her tenure, President Buller led Centennial’s award-winning internationalization efforts. She also introduced notable programs to support underrepresented students, such as those residing in underserved neighbourhoods, students with learning disabilities, and those who are the first in their families to pursue postsecondary education.

She served as Board Chair of the Canadian Bureau for International Education (2012–14) and as the Chair of the Association of Canadian Community Colleges (2011–14) and currently serves on the Board of World Education Services and Academics Without Borders. President Buller has earned several prestigious awards recognizing her excellence as a leader, most recently the 2021 Global Women in Education’s Influential Women in International Education Award, the 2016 World Federation of Colleges and Polytechnics Leadership Award, the Top 100 Most Powerful Women Award (2016, 2010), the 2015 Canadian Bureau for International Education’s President’s Award for Distinguished Leadership in International Education, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

“Internationalization is, and will continue to be, a priority for Canada and its post-secondary sector. The impact ApplyBoard has had in expanding education for hundreds of thousands of students while strengthening Canadian institutions is remarkable. I am excited to support ApplyBoard’s mission to educate the world, and to help them achieve their goals as a member of their Canadian Advisory Board.”

Feridun Hamdullahpur Headshot

Dr. Feridun Hamdullahpur

Dr. Feridun Hamdullahpur has been an engineer, educator, and leader over the span of his more than 35-year career in research and higher education. Since 2010, Dr. Hamdullahpur has served as the sixth President and Vice-Chancellor of the University of Waterloo. Throughout his career, Dr. Hamdullahpur has been an active researcher, a passionate educator, and served in various academic and administrative roles, including as a Vice-President Academic and Provost at the University of Waterloo.

Dr. Hamdullahpur continues to serve on committees and boards, including as an active member of the Sorbonne Université Strategic Orientation Committee since 2014 and as a member of the King Abdulaziz University International Advisory Board since 2017. In acknowledgment of his leadership in education and innovation, Dr. Hamdullahpur was awarded the l’insigne de chevalier des Palmes Académiques by the French Republic in February 2019, the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal in January 2013, and was made a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada in 2018.

“I am delighted to be part of the ApplyBoard Canadian Advisory Board and help support the organization’s tremendous potential and growth. ApplyBoard is leading the way in advocating and supporting a significant shift in access to global education. Their innovative approach to serving students and institutions is changing lives and societies for the better. I hope that I can lend my years of international higher education leadership and experience to ApplyBoard to enable the team to achieve their mission.”

John Milloy Headshot

John Milloy

From 2003 to 2014, John Milloy served as a Member of the Legislative Assembly of Ontario for the riding of Kitchener Centre. During that period, he held a number of Cabinet Portfolios, including Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities and Minister of Research and Innovation.

As Minister responsible for higher education in Ontario, John oversaw a significant expansion of Ontario’s Colleges and Universities and introduced strategies to increase international education in the province. He was an active member of the Council of Ministers of Education, Canada, and was the head of the Canadian Delegation at the UNESCO World Conference on Higher Education in Paris in July 2009.

John’s political experience extends to the federal scene where he worked for several senior Cabinet Ministers in the mid-90s, as well as spending five years as a senior advisor to Prime Minister Jean Chrétien.

Upon retirement from politics, John returned to the academic world and currently serves as the Director of the Centre for Public Ethics and Assistant Professor of Public Ethics at Martin Luther University College, and is the inaugural Practitioner in Residence in Wilfrid Laurier’s Political Science Department. He is also a lecturer in the Master of Public Service Program at the University of Waterloo.

John holds an Honours B.A. in History from Carleton University, an M.A. in International History from the London School of Economics, and a Doctorate in Modern History from the University of Oxford, where he was a Commonwealth Scholar.

“I am delighted to join ApplyBoard’s Canadian Advisory Board. The international education experience introduces students to new ideas, cultures, and outstanding academic institutions, giving them the knowledge and skills needed to meet the challenges of tomorrow. ApplyBoard helps match students with the right programs and institutions and I look forward to helping them continue to be a leader in the field.”

J. Robert S. Prichard headshot

Robert S. Prichard

Robert S. Prichard is a lawyer, educator, and corporate director. At present, he serves as Chair of Torys LLP, Chair of the Hospital for Sick Children, Visitor at Massey College, and President Emeritus of the University of Toronto. He is also the former chair of BMO Financial Group; a director of Onex Corporation, George Weston Limited, and Alamos Gold; and a member of the international advisory board of Barrick Gold. Mr. Prichard taught law at the University of Toronto, Yale University, and Harvard University, and served as Dean of Law from 1984 to 1990 and President from 1990 to 2000 at the University of Toronto. He subsequently served as President and CEO of Torstar Corporation from 2002 to 2009 and then President and CEO of Metrolinx before serving as Chair of Metrolinx from 2010 to 2018. He is an Officer of the Order of Canada, a Member of the Order of Ontario, a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada, and a Fellow of the Institute of Corporate Directors. He attended Swarthmore College, the University of Chicago (MBA), the University of Toronto (LLB), and Yale University (LLM), and he holds honourary degrees from 11 colleges and universities in Canada and the United States.

“ApplyBoard expands opportunities: for students and for colleges and universities internationally by seamlessly connecting them. As higher education globalizes, ApplyBoard can be a positive force in empowering people to find the best educational opportunities for them. Started and based in Canada but operating globally, ApplyBoard extends Canada’s long record of innovation and excellence in higher education.”