Estimated reading time: 2:45

Offering an opportunity to come together for delicious treats and good company, Environment held its second annual food truck social on September 28 at the EV3 Green. We know networking can be hard, but as Adrianna Hern, Harry Cheung, Dr. Chris Fletcher, and Dr. Simon Courteney remind us, being in the Environment community makes it easier, and there are tips that can help.

“Being in this community means being with like-minded people,” said Dr. Simon Courtenay, director of the School of Environment Resources and Sustainability (ERS). “Everybody here has the same or similar values: the value that the environment is essential and the bedrock upon which everything else is built.”

Headshot of Harry Cheung

Harry Cheung, an undergraduate student in the Department of Geography and Environmental Management (GEM), appreciates meeting students in various disciplines and understanding their work and passions.

“People in the Faculty are willing and open to talk about things they have worked on, which is a great opportunity to learn more about particular interests while getting to network and understand people more.”

Cheung describes the community as one that understands its strengths and areas of improvement while being willing and there to help each other out and pursue passions to make change happen.

Headshot of Dr. Chris Fletcher

Dr. Chris Fletcher, chair of the Department of Geography and Environmental Management (GEM), enjoys meeting new people or reconnecting with old colleagues. For Dr. Fletcher, being in the Environment community means the opportunity to work, learn, and work around people doing interesting things in the environmental space.

“We have such a diverse group of colleagues and students, so it’s great to work here.”

Headshot of Adrianna Hern

Adrianna Hern is a new undergraduate student in the Department of Geography and Environmental Management who is just at the beginning stages of creating her social network.

“We’re going to be in one community throughout the next few years,” Hern said. “I like the chance to meet other people and, as a first year, to get comfortable with my surroundings and exposure to the community. And free food is a bonus.”

She shared that when meeting new people, she looks for a common interest, such as a small quizzical detail like what program they are in and go from there.

Headshot of Dr. Simon Courtenay

Outside of Environment, it can be a bit trickier to approach people and make connections.

“We all have to do it, and most of us find it difficult. Walking up to someone we don’t know and saying hello is a tough thing to do," said Dr. Courtenay.

To make it easier, he recommends walking up to someone, introducing yourself, and having a topic of conversation in mind. For example, in a conference setting, saying, “My name is so-and-so, and I am doing research in this area. I’d love to talk to you about what I’m doing and get your advice.” 

The Faculty of Environment has hosted two food truck socials to bring the community together for networking to foster a collaborative, supported, and empowered community.

As part of the Faculty’s Strategic Plan, Environment strives to demonstrate an ethos of caring. We build a stronger community by creating safe spaces for students, faculty, and alumni to connect.

The University of Waterloo is remembering Ian MacNaughton (BA ‘68, MA ‘71), a remarkable force in Ontario’s urban planning sector, after his death on Saturday, October 7, 2023.

To honour his rich legacy UWaterloo, which awarded MacNaughton its 50th Anniversary Alumni Award in 2007, is inaugurating an award in his name, the Ian MacNaughton Memorial Award, and naming a space in his honor. With this award and space naming, MacNaughton will continue the impact he made in life by inspiring and supporting future environment students.

On Wednesday, September 27, 2023, the Faculty of Environment held the 2023 ENV Moon Festival (Mid-Autumn Festival) in the courtyard of EV1. The Deans, professors and supporting staff within the faculty and related university units attended this event, warmly welcoming and sending their good wishes to our students. Many of the students and some staff shared their performances in the celebration, bringing the atmosphere to a crescendo.