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Quid Novi: what's new on campus this August

Quid Novi: what's new on campus this August

[photo of the Queen's Physical Education Centre.]
Photo courtesy of Augusto Morales.

The PEC at night

Queen’s plans PEC revitalization

The university has begun the planning for the renovation of the former physical education centre, with the intention of repurposing it as a hub for student health and wellness, ­student innovation and student learning in the heart of ­campus.

If the planning comes to fruition, the building will also ­become the home of a new, state-of-the-art facility for the Faculty of Engineering and ­Applied Science, which will further enhance the ­faculty as one of the best in the country.

“The redeveloped building will be an enhancement to both the quality of our student experience and the quality of our research and educational ­facilities,” says Principal and Vice-Chancellor Daniel Woolf. “When completed, it will be a prominent symbol of Queen’s commitments both to student life and learning and to advanced research.”

The building, located on Union St., was ­decommissioned in 2009. In 2012, the three gyms in the building were renovated and reopened to provide increased recreational opportunities for ­students, and centralized exam space.

Learn more about the building’s potential in ­Principal Woolf’s column

More information about the PEC project will be made ­available as plans progress.

Read about the history of the PEC in an excerpt from the Queen's Review of 1931.

175th anniversary

Groups and departments across Queen’s are celebrating milestone anniversaries in 2016-17. In 2016, Queen’s School of Nursing celebrates 75 years, the Queen’s University Alumni Association celebrates 90 years and the Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre, 20 years. In 2017, Queen’s Equity Office has its 20th anniversary, the Centre for Teaching and Learning, its 25th, and the School of Rehabilitation Therapy, its 50th. queensu.ca/connect/175.

Divestment committee consultations

As reported in issue 2, 2015, the Advisory Committee on ­Divestment of Fossil Fuels is seeking input on whether the university should divest its Pooled Endowment Fund and Pooled Investment Fund from public companies that engage in fossil fuel extraction and distribution.

The committee was struck by Principal Woolf, as mandated by the university’s Statement on Responsible Investing (SRI), after an expression of concern was received from the student group Queen’s Backing Action on Climate Change.

The committee is holding consultation meetings to hear directly from interested people, both for and against divestment. While the meetings, scheduled for Aug. 27 and Sept. 17, will be held at Queen’s, it may be possible for those not in Kingston to make arrangements to participate remotely.

“The committee has already received many written ­submissions from members of the Queen’s community, demonstrating the high level of interest in the question of ­divestment,” says chair David Allgood, Arts’70, Law’74. “These upcoming meetings will be an important opportunity for the committee to have a dialogue directly with stakeholders.”

Requests to present to the committee should be made as soon as possible. Written submissions are also welcomed no later than Sept. 17. divestment@queensu.ca

The committee is expected to conclude its work at the end of September, and will make its recommendation to the principal on what action, if any, should be taken. The principal will then bring that recommendation to the investment committee of the Board of Trustees for a final decision.

In memoriam

James Pritchard, Professor Emeritus (History) died April 14.

Howard A. Smith, Professor Emeritus (Education) died April 24.

Ronald Seegobin, Assistant Professor, ­Anesthesiology, died April 26.

Robert Gilbert, Professor Emeritus (Geography) died April 27.

Kenneth C. Wilson, Professor Emeritus (Civil ­Engineering) died May 14.

Stanley Corbett, Assistant Professor and ­Associate Dean, Academic (Law) died May 18.

Brian B. Hope, Professor Emeritus (Civil ­Engineering) died June 15.

Read a tribute by Karin Steiner about her husband, Howard A. Smith. An article about Dr. Corbett has been posted on the Faculty of Law website: law.queensu.ca. An article about Dr. Gilbert has been posted on the Queen’s Gazette.

Comprehensive report addresses sexual assault on campus

The university’s Sexual Assault ­Prevention and Response Working Group (SAPRWG) has released a ­detailed report that includes recommendations to guide the university in addressing sexual assault, as well as a draft sexual misconduct policy for the university. A team has been ­established to exercise oversight of, and set priorities and timelines for, the implementation of the report’s recommendations, working in consultation with the working group and its policy sub-committee.

“The university takes sexual ­assault extremely seriously, and I am pleased that the working group has been able to expedite its report,” says Principal Daniel Woolf. “I want to thank the members of the working group and the policy sub-committee for their efforts. The work, however, does not stop here – a team has been assembled and tasked with prioritizing the recommendations and developing an ­implementation plan. I expect this process will also be conducted ­expeditiously.”

The report includes 11 strategic objectives, from integrating and profiling support and advocacy services to improving institutional and public accountability.

Recommendations associated with the objectives include:

•   Establishing a central, visible and welcoming sexual assault centre;

•   Raising the profile of all sexual assault support services;

•   Clarifying and communicating the roles of various university personnel responsible for first ­response;

•   Standardizing academic accommodations processes;

•   Broadly targeting our diverse student body with more effective prevention education ­programming;

•   Incorporating educational ­opportunities for academic and non-academic departments; and

•   Developing a comprehensive, stand-alone sexual assault ­policy.

“The report, recommendations and draft policy represent the ­culmination of months of research, planning, and consultation with the Queen’s community, and examination of best practices across the sector,” says Arig al Shaibah, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs (Student Life and Learning) and chair of the SAPRWG.

The policy builds on an interim Sexual Assault Support and Response Protocol, established by the working group in December 2014. The policy will go through the university’s governance approval process, first to the Senate and then to the Board of Trustees, likely in the fall. Releasing the policy as a draft will allow the university to gather feedback from the university ­community.

Provost and Vice-Principal ­(Academic) Alan Harrison chairs the team that will prioritize recommendations and set timelines for next steps.

In addition, the policy sub-­committee will continue its work on the sexual misconduct procedures over the summer, with the goal of having them approved and in place by the end of 2015.

The university is also well positioned to meet the requirements of the provincial government’s Provincial Action Plan to Stop ­Sexual Violence and Harassment and any associated legislation.

Read the full plan


[cover of Queen's Alumni Review 2015 Issue 3]