Office of Advancement
Office of Advancement

ALTogether Now

Vol. 81 – January 11, 2020

exterior photo of Summerhill building


Leigh Kalin

By Leigh Kalin, Associate Vice-Principal Alumni Relations & Annual Giving 

Three cheers for the branch volunteers

By: Kim Day, Interim Manager, Advancement Regional Strategy

There is a lot said about how we, as an advancement team, needed to quickly shift gears, be innovative, and manage our business remotely due to the pandemic.  This is certainly true, and for the most part, not without some speed bumps, we carried on and managed to successfully pivot and keep things afloat. What one might not expect is how resilient, passionate, and committed our Branch volunteers have been through these crazy times.  

 In Alumni Relations we are often asked about the relevance of the Branch network and whether it is purely a social outlet for diehard “Queensies.” The difference between purposeful and meaningful events is something that we have discussed for years. Purposeful programming focusing on highlighting research, faculty, and new initiatives is absolutely the cornerstone of successful engagement, but the need for meaningful connections and outreach over this pandemic has never been so important, and no one answered this call and was ready to help more than our branch volunteers.

This year, they spent much of their time sharing Queen’s webinars and posting COVID survival tips over their social networks.  They delivered special surprise Queen’s swag to unsuspecting alumni, who no doubt needed a lift, they played trivia with alumni who wanted a social outlet, and they called hundreds of upper-year students and alumni to reassure them that things would be okay and spent their own personal time listening to their experiences. Many times, they were the recipient of an email or phone call from an alum who was unhappy or disgruntled with Queen’s, and they handled it all with grace and diplomacy.  Perhaps most importantly, they showed support for our under-represented students and alumni by helping to amplify their voices and lend a helping hand where they could. 

Moving into 2021 and beyond, when things get somewhat back to normal, let us remember these volunteers, appreciate, value, and celebrate them for always being there for us. Let’s try to remember what meaningful connections meant during less desirable times and continue to show gratitude to these unsung heroes.

Collaboration graphicCovid-19: Dealing with Seasonal Affective Disorder resources

Need help woth Seasonal Affective Disorder? Homewood Health can help.

Feedback on Harassment and Discrimination Prevention and Response Policy

I wanted to share the Gazette article on providing feedback on the university’s harassment and discrimination policy.

Direct link to the Campus Community consultation page:

The consultation will occur in phases, with the first round of feedback being accepted until Jan. 29, 2021. Feedback will be reviewed in early February, and amendments to the policy and procedures will be addressed. A second round of feedback on the amended documents will run from Feb. 22 to Mar. 5, 2021. Final versions will be developed from there and posted publicly for the university community by mid-March.

CCAE Prix D’Excellence Awards

A reminder to please consider nominations for the CCAE Prix d’Excellence Awards.

Prix awards recognize outstanding achievements in alumni affairs, public affairs, communications, marketing, development, advancement services, stewardship, and overall institutional advancement, and submissions are open from Jan. 25 to Feb. 8.

For more information on the CCAE Prix d’Excellence Awards, go to Prix d'Excellence (

As in the past, Kate Bearse will co-ordinate entries on behalf of the Office of Advancement. Those planning a submission should let Kate know ASAP, and final entry drafts should be forwarded to Kate by Feb. 1 for submission to CCAE by the deadline. We did great work in 2020 – the Prix Awards are one way for us to celebrate those successes.

Sign up to receive a copy of the redesigned QAR

The Queen’s Alumni Review is undergoing a redesign with the new look scheduled for our very next issue.

If you would like to receive a copy of the redesigned QAR, please email Ellen Babb indicating your approval to have your address included on the mailing list and verify that your address is listed correctly on MyHR before by Monday, Jan. 18.

Key to Success graphicEmployee Spotlight

The Employee Spotlight celebrates the arrival of our new staff by profiling responses they share through a fun and informal survey that will help us get to know them better. Be sure to review these profiles and use these fun facts and tidbits to find commonalities, embrace differences and spark a conversation.

This week we have three spotlights to share: 

We welcome Michelle Fuko to Advancement, in the position of Associate Vice-Principal Development. Click here to learn more about Michelle, the origin of her maiden and married names, and what is the best piece of life advice she has received.

We also welcome Mariya Yurukova to Advancement, in the position of Senior Development Officer, Arts, Department of Development. Click here to learn more about Mariya, her favorite family tradition, and what she’s most looking forward to on her first day.

We welcome back Kacey McCuen to Advancement as well, in the position of Human Resources Advisor within the VP Office. Click here to learn more about Kacey and what she is most looking forward to upon her return.


Miriam of Queen's

Fun fact

Miriam of Queen's 

Published in 1921, this now out of print novel by Queen's alumna Lilian Vaux MacKinnon (BA 1902) tells the story of a bright young woman's adventures at Queen's at the turn of the century.

The novel takes the reader on a tour of the formal academic world, with its caps and gowns and high moral idealism, of Queen's playing fields and skating rinks, of Kingston's drawing rooms, and of the decorous social life of the day, in which male and female students addressed each other as Mister and Miss.

It is melodramatic by today's standards and now almost entirely forgotten, but it was a popular and critical success in its day and went through two editions for publishers McClelland and Stewart.

MacKinnon also published several short stories about Queen's later in life.