About SAVY, York's Student Virtual Assistant

Meet SAVY, the Student Virtual Assistant! SAVY interacts with students through a chat-like interface to help them with:

  • Registrarial and financial services
  • Academic advising referrals
  • Important dates and deadlines
  • Mental and physical health resources
  • Career support
  • Campus events and student life
  • Campus services

SAVY is a software-based agent built on IBM’s Watson platform that is populated with content designed to help students perform tasks related to their academic journey at York. It will point students toward accurate information relating to the questions asked, recommend relevant resources, offer directions and wayfinding, provide reminders about upcoming deadlines and connect students to other resources, people and places on campus.

SAVY’s name was announced in September 2020, after a successful naming contest that brought:

  • 1,544 entries; with
  • 1,064 unique name suggestions; from
  • 733 students!

With SAVY students can get 24/7/365 general information via mobile phone and online. It serves as students' first point of contact, designed to provide relevant, targeted information without the need for searching. The vision is to create a “digital ecosystem” that will both push customized, timely and targeted information to individual students as well as gather information from a student in order to provide even better answers to questions and guide decision making over the course of their academic journey at York.

Students can access SAVY via eClass (formerly Moodle for Keele students) and the Current Students website, and all undergraduate students have access to it. In the January 2020 launch, students from the School of Arts, Media, Performance & Design, Glendon and the Lassonde School of Engineering had access. In May 2020, access was expanded to include the Faculties of Science, Health, Environmental Studies, Liberal Arts & Professional Studies, and Education. In September 2020, students in the Schulich School of Business received access, and SAVY launched in early October 2020 to Osgoode Hall Law School students. The September 2020 release includes French content for Glendon students, expanded Financial Services content, and new Bookstore and Library Services content.

Awards & Recognition

SAVY has been recognized with the following awards:

SAVY is the 2021 Gartner Eye on Innovation Award winner.

2021 Gartner Eye on Innovation Award
This award recognizes the innovative use of technology-enabled capabilities in student experience.
Watch the SAVY submission video.

SAVY is the 2021 CUCCIO Innovation Award winner.

2021 CUCCIO Innovation Award
This is awarded to information technology projects or initiatives that have significantly advanced teaching, learning, research or administration within an institution or in the community.

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Interested In Learning More?

Visit the Timelines & Milestones page for a full list of rollout dates.