Words of Welcome

Spring 2020

Editor's Note

Stephen Loo headshot

St. Paul's Mission:

To inspire a life-long love of learning and a profound commitment to social responsibility

St. Paul's Vaues:

  • Integrity and respect
  • Justice for Indigenous Peoples
  • Intellectual curiosity and rigour
  • Community and collaboration
  • Diversity, inclusivity and belonging
  • Sustainability and stewardship

In my note to alumni and friends in the Fall 2019 issue of Community Notes I wrote about my optimism for 2020 and beyond. I wrote that in spite of the many challenges facing our world, I maintained tremendous optimism for the decade ahead because of all the inspirational members of the St. Paul's community who are committed to changing the world for the better. 

Now we are halfway through 2020 and you don't need me to tell you how our world has changed nor why it is has been difficult to maintain optimism during these past few months. But I will tell you that now more than ever, I am proud to be part of an institution with the mission and vision statements shared above which guide all of the work my colleagues and I do. 

Our community consists of students, alumni, staff and faculty who care deeply about doing the right thing and finding solutions for the common good. I think the stories in this issue of Community Notes are a great reflection of that and prove that even if there will always be more work to do, we are definitely on the right track.

I chose the banner image above because it features a group of staff and students from the Waterloo Indigenous Student Centre (WISC) with the TEDx sign during an event where Lori Campbell, director of the WISC, gave a talk titled "Reconciliation is Dead". That group of my colleagues are the embodiment of what community looks like within an educational institution but they also do incredible work in the wider Waterloo Region to build a community of allies and collaborators to shift mind sets and address social inequities.

On behalf of my colleagues, I want to express our thanks to those of you who are front line health care workers and medical researchers. We thank those of you who work to keep our lights on and our water safe. We thank those teachers who worked from home to deliver education to our children in a novel way. We thank farmers and those in the transportation and logistics sector who kept our supply chains moving. We thank all of you who were deemed essential for risking your own health and safety to ensure the health and safety of all of us.

We also thank all of you who are standing up and making your voices heard on the issues of systemic racism in this country and around the world. 

    Stephen Loo

    Director, Advancement and Alumni Relations

    PS If you know a member of the St. Paul's community with an interesting or important story about performing essential work or leading for change on issues of systemic racism and injustice, please let us know so we may share their story as inspiration for all of us.