Fostering equity and anti-racism across campus
A message from the Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism (EDI-R).
The Office of Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Anti-Racism (EDI-R) recently initiated the Program Area Leads (PALs) initiative to advance the University's equity and anti-racism goals. The PALs lead and facilitate cultural changes by embedding equity and anti-racism into various programs, services, and units across campus.
The purpose of the PALs initiative is to lead and facilitate culture change by embedding equity and anti-racism into various programs, services, and units across campus. Over 25 volunteers, including staff, faculty, and postdoctoral scholars worked collaboratively together to drive this purpose. The program adopted a multifaceted approach.
The initial phase focused on equipping members with relevant knowledge and skills, while encouraging discussions and self-reflection on often difficult topics. Members completed six online training modules including Collective Impact and Inclusive Leadership, Disrupting and Decentering Whiteness, Confronting Anti-Black Racism, Understanding Indigenization, and 2SLGBTQ+ Fundamentals and Gender Equity, which served as foundational building blocks for the program.
With the knowledge and skills acquired in the learning phase, members proceeded to the application phase earlier this year. Guided by advisors from EDI-R office, they completed case studies in various areas tailored specifically to the institution’s needs, including communications, competency building, online course reviews, and policy and process reviews. By engaging in real-world scenarios, members gained a deeper understanding of how to conduct equity and anti-racism work more effectively.
Every gift counts
By Fram Dinshaw.
Witnessing how charitable donations helped University of Waterloo students complete their education and achieve their goals demonstrated the importance of the Faculty, Staff and Retiree (FSR) Giving Program for Heather Mair, a professor in the Department of Recreation and Leisure Studies and the FSR co-chair for the past six years.
Heather’s ‘eureka’ moment came when a flyer landed on her doorstep featuring a University of Waterloo student she recognized.
“I found that really moving, because if you have a philanthropic approach to life, you like seeing where the resources are going. Seeing a student I knew benefit from FSR support was really meaningful to me,” says Heather.
“I feel very strongly that education should be accessible, and this is a way to support students. That was my entire motivation for joining and co-chairing the FSR Giving Program with Tony Munro (BES ’91) and Rose Vogt (BES ’84). Tony, Rose and Heather are now stepping down as their term concludes.
For those wishing to become FSR donors, Heather offered some straightforward advice: “Do it!”
Heather, Tony and Rose are keen to share this message with other UWaterloo employees and retirees, many of whom are unaware of the FSR Giving Program.
Tony says that if every Waterloo faculty and staff member donated just 1 per cent of their monthly earnings, it could make a huge difference for students and the campus community.
“The greatest challenge we face with the FSR Giving Program is a lack of awareness,” says Tony, who works in marketing and undergrad recruitment in the Registrar’s Office, managing international recruitment and partnerships.
Tony says there are three ways to give back: through time, treasure or talent.
The key for him is engaging and educating staff through peer-to-peer communications to encourage them to give to specific areas they may care about, such as a certain faculty or initiatives like the Global Emergency Student Relief Fund, which helps students from countries in crisis to continue their education at Waterloo.
For Tony, it was his experience in UWaterloo’s world-leading co-op program that sealed the deal.
“I’m an alum who has worked with the University for 30 years and I would never have had this opportunity if I wasn’t a student in the co-op program,” Tony explained when asked why he chose to get involved with the FSR Giving Program.
“It was a chance to give back to the university that gave so much to me. I’ve grown to appreciate more how universities are funded and how they need to generate more money.”
UWaterloo also gave much to Rose, who remembers struggling to make ends meet in her student years, especially after a parachuting accident left her unable to walk, work or pay tuition.
It was this experience that led Rose to start giving once she landed her first job at UWaterloo after graduating, always donating a small portion of her monthly salary to help those students coming after her. After retiring in 2019, she became co-chair of the FSR Giving Program.
“I gave a little bit monthly for a long time — almost 30 years. I couldn’t afford much, but it was the spirit of giving,” says Rose.
“As a retiree, I recognize that students are our future. They’re the ones that are going to fill the roles that keep our society running.”
As Heather, Tony and Rose’s term as co-chairs ends, new leaders have stepped up to help support our students through the FSR Giving Program. Sharon Lamont (a retired staff member from the University of Waterloo Library) and Julie Joza from the Office of Research will represent retirees and staff respectively. A Faculty chair to replace Heather Mair is still needed. If you’re interested in volunteering, please contact Jennifer Murray in the Office of Advancement’s Annual Giving team. FSR support is the heart of UWaterloo!
W Days at W Store coming up next week
A message from W Store.
Start your holiday shopping early. W Store is having their annual W Days Event starting on Monday, November 20. Shop a selection of apparel, technology, accessories and gift items up to 50 per cent off on November 20, 21 and 22 in the South Campus Hall concourse.
Markdowns include all screen-printed hoodies and crewnecks with the ceremonial seal (which are now discontinued), all Adidas apparel, Waterloo-branded rugby shirts and so much more! Items are only available while supplies last. W Days is an in-person event and sale items will not be available to shop online during that time.
Visit us again on November 24 to shop brand new Black Friday apparel, only available in-store.
Voting is open for the GreenHouse People's Choice Awards
A message from United College.
Each term, United College’s social impact incubator, GreenHouse, hosts the Social Impact Showcase. It celebrates the amazing work GreenHouse students accomplish through their journeys of social innovation and entrepreneurship, while also providing an opportunity for students to acquire funding for their ideas. You can have your say by voting for your favourite student-led social venture in the People’s Choice Awards.
The People’s Choice Award will be given to the social venture with the most online votes, granting them $1,000 to jumpstart their project! This term, there are 10 ventures pitching for funding.
Voting opens today, November 17, and goes until November 19 at 11:59p.m. The winners of the People’s Choice Awards will be announced on November 22 in person at the Social Impact Showcase. Register today!
She Kills Monsters and other notes
The Theatre and Performance program presents She Kills Monsters as the production for the fall 2023 term, running November 21 to 25 at 7:30 p.m. with matinees taking place on Wednesday, November 22 at 11:30 a.m. and Thursday, November 23 at 12 noon. The event will take place in the Theatre of Arts (ML135). For more information and tickets visit https://www.uwshekillsmonsters.ca/.
The latest Atlassian blog from Information Systems & Technology (IST), Best Practices for teams using Jira Service Management, is now available online.
Mark your calendars: On Saturday, December 2, the Peace and Conflict Studies Undergraduate Society at Conrad Grebel University College will be hosting the Make a Difference (MAD) Holiday Market, a one-day artisan and craft holiday market, with all funds collected from participating vendors, the silent auction, and the suggested $2 entry contribution donated to A Better Tent City, Waterloo. "Fill your car with family and friends to make a difference while shopping for this holiday season!" says a note from the PACS undergrad society.