I am truly impressed by how far we have come.

Last week, we completed our first quarterly gathering – and it was incredible to interact with everyone again. Today, we are only two weeks away from re-opening Summerhill to begin our test of the physical space elements of Building a Better Workplace. It is all starting to finally come together.

As important as it was to be reminded last week about how far we have come since Forward, Together began, it is also important to remember what we have already accomplished as part of Building a Better Workplace.  

Earlier this month, Deanna Bennett was invited to present Building a Better Workplace (BBW) at the CASE Strategic Talent Management Conference. She shared how BBW began in November 2020, details of the appreciative inquiry change management framework we used, and how we moved through the five phases of BBW: Define, Discover, Dream, Design, Deliver. 

For those of us who have been a part of BBW since the beginning, and for the rest of us who are joining Queen’s Advancement during the later phases, it is incredibly valuable to be reminded of or understand how we got here. Deanna has therefore offered to share the presentation she made on March 17 with all Advancement staff. 

Later today, Kate Bearse will add an optional Advancement staff meeting to our schedules on April 19 at 10 am (ET). Continuing the theme from our staff meetings last week, whatever the outcome of our pilot year, what we have accomplished since November 2020 is something to celebrate. 

We have come a long way. 

Questions about our hybrid pilot

With the start of our yearlong hybrid pilot in sight, it is important to feature a Q&A over the next few weeks. If you have a question related to Building a Better Workplace and/or the hybrid pilot phase, please send it to the Advancement Leadership Team (ALT) through Advancing Your Voice. Here are the questions we received this week:

How is the move going?

As of 12:30 pm on Wednesday, March 23, the campus planner has let us know that the moves are complete (these moves started on Friday, March 18). Please note that there is still a large-scale cleaning by Physical Plant Services (PPS) to be completed and the carpet to be cleaned. Next week, Simon Labbett, Jon Bennett, and Brent Nickel will start setting up the monitors at the desks.

A huge thank you to Simon Labbett, Kelly Colby, and Kate Bearse for being onsite during this move and for packing up extra unexpected items. We would also like to thank Tania Carfa for joining a week ago to pick up remaining items to help facilitate the cleaning. Additionally, we would like to thank everyone who went in and packed up their offices, we understand that this was no small feat.

When will the booking tool be available?

A link to the booking tool will be shared on Monday, April 4, in the newsletter. Kate Bearse plans to go through each room to ensure all the desks are accounted for and labelled properly before we test this with the working group and make it live for you.

Where can I eat when I am in the office?

Currently, we do not have a kitchen in Summerhill that facilitates this (pipe dream); you are welcome to eat at your desk and, of course, venture out to other areas on campus. A kitchen in which we can all gather is in the plans, and we look forward to this time.

March staff meeting presentation video

Thank you all for attending the all-staff meeting last week, we were so happy to see you online or in person. We wanted to share the presentation (I:\ADV Common\2020-2025 Advancement\Advancement Staff Meetings\2022-03-24 - Staff meeting and video\Presentation - Staff Mtg 2022-03.pdf) with you as well as the video* (I:\ADV Common\2020-2025 Advancement\Advancement Staff Meetings\2022-03-24 - Staff meeting and video\Impact of Advancement V3.mp4). Kate is still recovering from watching herself five times!

*Please make sure you are logged into the Queen’s VPN to access the presentation and video

A further commitment to equity, diversity, inclusion, and Indigeneity (EDII)

I am pleased to announce that, beginning April 25, Coco Doré will join the Office of Advancement as our new Senior Advisor, Equity, Diversity, Inclusion, and Indigeneity (EDII). 

As Senior Advisor, EDII, Coco will provide critical guidance to the senior leadership team in the Office of Advancement. Reporting to the Vice-Principal (Advancement), Coco will be responsible for the strategic development, oversight, and leadership of proactive equity, diversity, inclusion and Indigenization special projects and initiatives in support of Advancement’s strategic plan. She will oversee the operational implementation of this strategy and help to embed an EDII focus within the internal culture and practices of and externally facing programs run by the Office of Advancement. 

Coco holds an honours bachelor’s degree in arts from the University of Toronto and a bachelor’s degree with distinction in education from the University of Western Ontario.

As a seasoned educator and diversity, equity, inclusion and belonging professional of 10 years, Coco is skilled at leading the creation and delivery of resources, training, and initiatives pertaining to anti-racism and decolonizing frameworks. She is a subject-matter specialist on topics such as unconscious bias, oppression and privilege, intersectionality, microaggressions, and trauma. Coco is also an active member of the Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion (CCDI)

In addition to her current role in outreach under Admissions, Coco has served as an award-winning debate and public-speaking head coach for the last four years at the University of Toronto schools. Prior to that, Coco was a history and Indigenous studies teacher with the York Region District School Board for five years.

Coco believes, “For this role, you need someone who does not miss an opportunity from one-on-one conversations to large teaching sessions to create a safe environment for others to question their unconscious biases, learn how to use more equitable language, and how to be an active bystander when they witness discrimination and oppression.”

The reputation of Queen’s University as a leader in EDII among Canadian post-secondary institutions attracted Coco to this position; including the collective commitment of senior leadership to acknowledge and address past and present issues to pave a new path forward for Queen’s. Coco looks forward to working with and getting to know the faculty, staff, students, and alumni of Queen’s.

When she is not advancing positive change in the field of EDII, Coco is an avid traveller, particularly to London, England, where she visits her family and friends “as often as humanly possible.” 

I would also like to extend a special thank you to everyone who contributed to Coco’s recruitment. Gary Hinds, Carla Ferreira Rodrigues, Carey-Anne Morrison, and Mariya Yurukova served as members of the hiring panel. The Advancement Leadership Team, Corrine Beckner, Bobbie O’Connor, Natalie Shearer, Tahmena Bokhari, director of EDII from the Smith School of Business, and alumnae Tuba Chisti and Anita Jack-Davies also provided input during the final round of interviews. 

Please join us in welcoming Coco to the Office of Advancement.

Introducing Queen's Lecture Series

Queen's Lecture Series

A new lecture series will give alumni and the Queen’s community access to some of the university’s top researchers and internationally renowned visiting scholars.

Queen’s Lecture Series – beginning with the Isabel and Alfred Bader Lecture in European Art on April 14 – will showcase knowledge from across campus and bring it directly to alumni and the university community through an ongoing series of annual lectures.

Advancement Enhancement Day update

The Advancement Enhancement Day committee had their first meeting last week and are looking to get your input on what we will focus on this year. 

Over the years it has come to light that there are three pillars that are present every year: wellness, team building/social interactions, and learning/professional development. Please take a moment to fill out this survey and rank the pillars and let us know how many you would like us to focus on this year. With your input we are looking forward to putting together a fun and enhancing day on June 15.

The Advancement Enhancement Day committee,
Kate Bearse, Sarah Blayney Lew, Rachel Castellano, Kym Cook, Deanna Theander, Michelle White  

Employee Spotlight

The Employee Spotlight celebrates the arrival of our new and existing 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’s feature includes:

Jessica Duggan is in the position of Director, Development and Alumni Relations at Smith. Learn more about Jessica and what they love most about their role. 

Jobs with Advancement

We need your recruitment help. Know great talent that would be a good addition to our team? If so, please promote the vacancies below with your networks and let’s find some amazing new team members.

Applications (including a cover letter and résumé) must be submitted through CareerQ. For additional information on this posting, please reach out to either Carla Ferreira Rodrigues or the hiring manager for the position you are interested in.

Position Competition number Unit and department Closing date Grade Job type
Alumni Officer J0322-0735 Alumni Relations April 5, 2022 07 Continuing
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