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Celebrating women who have made a difference

The Ban Righ Foundation is honouring a professor posthumously, and an executive director of a local not-for-profit.

A panel comprising three board members, one former board member, and one community member review the nominations and select the recipients of two awards.

The recipients are celebrated at the Ban Righ Foundation Inspiring Women evening at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, and this year’s edition will be held Thursday, Oct. 25. The event is open to the public and includes a talk from Penguin Random House CEO Kristin Cochrane (Arts’94), poets Alyssa Cooper and Linda Stitt, and songs from the Cantabile Women’s Chorus and by musicians Kris and Dee.

The annual “Inspiring Women” awards ceremony brings us together to celebrate women’s accomplishments and recognize the ongoing professional and personal contributions of community members. This year, the Ban Righ Foundation is honoured to recognize the exemplary work of the late Kim Renders and of Mara Shaw. 

The Ban Righ Foundation Mentorship Award recognizes a Queen’s University faculty member who identifies as a woman and has demonstrated mentorship and knowledge-sharing, has supported or continues to support women in achieving their goals, and has inspired a student or students.

The Ban Righ Foundation Leadership Award is given to an individual who identifies as a woman and whose leadership has built capacity and fostered opportunities for others, made positive contributions to the Kingston community, and has been inspirational.

This year’s honorees are Kim Renders, who is receiving the Mentorship Award posthumously, and Mara Shaw, who is receiving the Leadership Award.


Ban Righ Foundation 2018 Mentorship – Kim Renders (posthumous)

[Queen's University Kim Renders]
Kim Renders. (Supplied Photo)

Kim Renders is remembered by her nominators as a theatre pioneer and activist who used her art to address political and social issues. First and foremost she was passionate about inclusion and community theatre. She was keenly aware of the challenges facing female performers and was a role model who fought for more opportunities for women on stage. The award nomination describes her "inspirational qualities as a theatre professional, feminist, and award-winning teacher." Ms. Renders mentored not only students and performers, but her colleagues as well.  Through exceptional mentoring, she also empowered others to make waves and create needed change.

A colleague, Martha Bailey of the Faculty of Law, said “Kim has always provided thoughtful advice on teaching problems. Our subjects are totally different, but her ideas on how to engage and challenge students have helped me tremendously.”

Former students praised Ms. Renders, saying “Kim Renders’ mentorship has been invaluable to me as a student, an emerging artist and as a woman…. As Kim’s student I felt heard, valued, challenged, and inspired to make change.” 


Ban Righ Foundation 2018 Leadership Award – Mara Shaw

[Mara Shaw Bernard Clark Loving Spoonful]
Mara Shaw, Executive Director of The Loving Spoonful. (Photo by Bernard Clark)

Mara Shaw has been Executive Director at Loving Spoonful since 2012. She is a cellist, parent council member, and community activist. The qualities that come through loud and clear in the nomination is that she leads with compassion and encouragement.

Ms. Shaw’s nominator said, “Mara brings passion and boundless energy as a leader, cheerleader, and activist to building a strong and sustainable community.” She is also considered creative and innovative, and has obtained grants for the program and brought many people together for this cause.

“Summing up, Mara is the kind of creative, caring and ethical leader who serves as a role model for others to be caring and ethical in their own right”. “She is constant. Her needle is always pointed in a caring direction.”


To learn more about the Ban Righ Foundation Inspiring Women Event, visit the Queen's University Events Calendar.

Celebrating Queen’s engineers

The Queen’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science is putting out the call to its community to make its 125th an anniversary to remember.

[Queen's University Engineering and Applied Science 125 anniversary]
The Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science gave out t-shirts and took photos with students, faculty, and staff to mark the kickoff of 125th celebrations. (Supplied Photo)

A year of festivities are underway, marking the impact of Queen’s engineers throughout the faculty’s history.

The earliest incarnation of the Queen’s Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science began in 1893, and the Faculty has a number of initiatives planned between now and August 2019 to mark the milestone anniversary.

“The Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science has been delivering a transformational experience to students since 1893, and during this academic year, we are proud to be celebrating that legacy and the community we have built,” says Dr. Kevin Deluzio, who is both Dean of the faculty and a proud alumnus. “We encourage all members of the faculty to join our celebrations and help us commemorate 125 years of renowned spirit and unrivaled excellence.”

The year will include events to honour the past and present contributions of the students, alumni, faculty, and staff, and offer a look at the exciting future of Queen’s Engineering. Highlights for the year include a research symposium, teaching and learning showcase, student design competition, staff celebrations, industry luncheon, and the Queen’s Engineering Excellence: 125th Awards at Fort Henry in March.

Homecoming weekend will provide a great kickoff to the 125th celebrations, as alumni share in the excitement at the Dean’s Homecoming Pancake Breakfast. Student teams, clubs and faculty will be on hand to meet with alumni, share past and present stories, and distribute special 125th items – some alumni will have the chance to win limited edition Engineering socks.

As part of the anniversary year, the faculty is seeking to profile members of the Queen’s Engineering community through its 125th Awards. A call has gone out to all members of the Queen’s Engineering community to suggest alumni and current students who are leading interesting lives and making noteworthy contributions to society. Queen’s Engineering is also looking for names of faculty and staff who have helped educate, guide, and support students through their time at Queen’s or who have gone above and beyond in their work. Nominations close October 22nd.

“The pride of Queen’s Engineering is its people, and we are receiving nominations from around the world and from within our campus,” says Dean Deluzio. “We look forward to sharing these special stories with you over the year.”

In addition, the faculty has unveiled a limited edition 125th Engineering crest. At Homecoming, a special photo wall will feature the new crest, along with all the historic crests, so alumni and current students can snap a picture of themselves and see how their class fits into the faculty’s history.

The Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science at Queen’s University has graduated many tens of thousands of students and consistently ranks as one of Canada’s leading schools for engineering.

To learn more, or nominate someone for an award, visit the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science website.

Honouring courageous women

The federal government unveiled an initiative Tuesday designed to pay tribute to more than 100 Canadian women.

  • [Queen's University Status of Women Maryam Monsef Agnes Etherington Art Centre]
    Maryam Monsef, Minister of Status of Women, asks students what they would tell their younger selves. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University QFLIP co-chairs Agnes Etherington Art Centre]
    Queen's Female Leadership in Politics (QFLIP) co-chairs speak with Professor Elizabeth Goodyear-Grant. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Status of Women Maryam Monsef Agnes Etherington Art Centre]
    A panel including Minister Monsef, Professor Goodyear-Grant, peace advocate Alaa Murabit, Cuddles for Cancer founder Faith Dickinson, and military trailblazer Louise Fish. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Status of Women Maryam Monsef Agnes Etherington Art Centre]
    Various reporters attended the announcement and discussion session. (University Communications)

They come from coast to coast, from a wide variety of fields and disciplines, and from nearly every decade of our country's more than 150-year history.

They are the Women of Impact in Canada, part of a new initiative unveiled by the Ministry of Status of Women as part of Women’s History Month. Minister Maryam Monsef visited Queen’s on Tuesday to unveil an online gallery which includes photos, stories, and quotes from prominent Canadian women. The gallery inspired the theme for this year’s Women’s History Month, which is “Make an impact”.

“Whether reaching for success in fields as diverse as STEM, the arts, and politics, or paving the way for others as trailblazers and human rights defenders, all the women that we celebrate in the Women of Impact in Canada gallery have something in common: courage,” says Minister Monsef. “Their accomplishments are an inspiration and their stories are a call to action, reminding each of us of the potential we have to make an impact and change the world.”

Minister Monsef also encouraged the dozens present to go online to the Status of Women website to view the gallery, and consider submitting a name for consideration. She noted the gallery will continue to evolve, and hopefully serve as a valuable resource to educators.

The ministry partnered with Queen’s Female Leadership in Politics (QFLIP) student group to host the launch announcement and panel discussion at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre. Queen’s has connections to 17 of the featured women of impact, including a number of honorary degree recipients.

Later this month, the federal government will recognize International Day of the Girl on Oct. 11, and Persons Day on Oct. 18 – which marks the day when women were included in the legal definition of “persons.”

Read more about this event in this preview article in the Queen's Gazette.

Connecting Queen’s Black alumni

A new alumni chapter and mentorship program for Black alumni and students will launch at Homecoming.  

[Queen's University Yinka Adegbusi Asha Gordon Black Alumni Chapter]
Yinka Adegbusi and Asha Gordon. (Supplied Photo)

When Yinka Adegbusi (Artsci’13) moved to Toronto after graduation, she was surprised by the number of black Queen’s alumni she was running into.

When she was a student, she joined groups like the Queen’s Black Academic Society, but says she did not see a lot of people of colour on campus nor was she aware of some of the black alumni from Queen’s who had gone on to successful careers.

“I was amazed when meeting these people. I thought, ‘You all went to Queen’s? Where were you when I was there?’” says Ms. Adegbusi, who now works for the Ontario Ministry of Education as a data scientist. “This has always been an issue. Current (black) students don’t see themselves at Queen’s.”

So she was enthusiastically on board when Asha Gordon (Artsci’18) approached her to help create a program to encourage Queen’s black alumni to come together, network, and support each other.

Queen’s Black Alumni Chapter (QBAC), created by the chapter's leadership team and co-chaired by Ms. Adegbusi and Ms. Gordon, is launching a kickoff event scheduled for Oct. 20 in Kingston during Homecoming. It will give alumni a chance to network and mingle. There will be a panel discussion featuring four guest speakers who are making a tremendous impact in their communities: Hazel Claxton (Com’83) retired Morneau Shepell EVP and chief human resources officer; Beau Sackey (MBA’12), managing partner of Biltstone Consulting; Curtis Carmichael, (PHE’16), founder of Ride for Promise; and Jeanelle Dundas, (ArtSci'13), a lawyer with Blake, Cassels & Graydon LLP.

During the event, the chapter's flagship initiative, the QBAC Mentorship Program, will also be launched.

“Race has been an obstacle for many people of colour,” says Ms. Gordon, who received the Agnes Benidickson Tricolour Award earlier this year. “What we can do is turn the story around and make being black an asset and an advantage. There is a lot of work at Queen’s right now in terms of diversity and inclusion, and we want to help on the alumni end.”

Queen’s administration has been trying to develop a more inclusive campus. The Principal’s Implementation Committee on Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion’s report was released in 2017 and outlined many initiatives. The university also earmarked $3 million over three years to support existing programs and launch new initiatives related to equity on campus.

Ms. Adegbusi feels there is a need for a black alumni chapter because she knows some people who prefer mentors from the same cultural background who have faced similar challenges.

“I know a few people who tried alumni networking events and felt they could not connect because the mentor did not have the same experiences,” says Ms. Adegbusi.

The chapter is seeking alumni who are successful in their fields to share their experiences and give career advice to younger graduates. It is currently accepting online applications for both mentors and mentees.

Ms. Gordon feels focusing on networking and mentorship will help make QBAC a long-term success.

“In five or 10 years, I’d like people to be able to look at the Queen’s Black Alumni Chapter, see the current members, and be able to pick up the phone or send an email to someone and get the help they need,” says Ms. Gordon. “We never know where things will take (QBAC), but I am looking forward to building something special.”

QBAC is not only for alumni. The organizers are also encouraging black students and faculty members to take part.

For more details about the launch on Saturday, Oct. 20, visit the Homecoming event page. For alumni who can’t attend Homecoming but want to learn more, please visit the QBAC Facebook and LinkedIn pages.

This story originally appeared on the Alumni website.

“Words that are lasting”

The Faculty of Law has unveiled a permanent art installation in their lobby, paying tribute to Indigenous Peoples.

[Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous art]
Recreations of seven wampum belts are now hanging from the ceiling of the Faculty of Law building. (University Communications)

Every time students, faculty, staff, and visitors enter the Faculty of Law building, they will be met with a reminder of the original inhabitants of the land on which Queen’s sits.

This spring, the faculty launched a competition to commission a piece of Indigenous art to reside in the Gowling WLG Atrium. The goal of this installation was to portray the relationship between Indigenous Peoples in Canada and the law.

“I know that the entire Queen’s Law community is thrilled with this beautiful addition to the school’s atrium, a moving recognition that Queen’s University is situated on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee peoples, as well as an important tribute to Indigenous legal systems,” said Dean Bill Flanagan.

Artist Hannah Claus’ proposal, “Words that are lasting”, was announced as the winner in May, and she spent the summer preparing the art piece, which includes recreations of seven wampum belts suspended from the lobby ceiling.

“I spent a fair bit of time tracking down different individuals to ensure I had permission to reproduce the wampum belts, so there was some time spent getting in touch with different people,” she says. “The wampum belts that I selected to reproduce vary in function: some relate to governance structure within the Haudenosaunee Confederacy, and others represent nation to nation agreements between the Haudenosaunee and the Anishinaabe – the two main Indigenous groups who inhabit this area.” 

  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law wampum belts Hannah Claus Indigenous art]
    The seven piece installation can be viewed from the lobby and from all levels of the main staircase. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Bill Flanagan]
    Bill Flanagan, Dean of the Faculty of Law, spoke about the importance of reconciliation and Indigenous law. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Hannah Claus art]
    Hannah Claus speaks about her art installation. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous]
    Students, faculty, staff, and community members attended the unveiling. (University Communications)
  • [Queen's University Faculty of Law Indigenous]
    Back to front, left to right: Principal Daniel Woolf, Bill Flanagan, Brandon Maracle, David Sharpe, Hannah Claus, Shelby Percival. (University Communications)

Ms. Claus is a visual artist of English and Kanien'kehÁ:ka / Mohawk ancestries and a member of the Tyendinaga Mohawks of the Bay of Quinte. She teaches contemporary Indigenous art as a sessional lecturer at Kiuna, a First Nations post-secondary institution, in Odanak, Québec.

She is hopeful the art will both give Indigenous students, faculty, staff, and visitors something that relates to them when they enter the building, and encourage non-Indigenous people to learn more about the populations and cultures who live where they have chosen to study.

“I hope that the installation creates an Indigenous presence as soon as you come into the space,” she says, noting that wampum belts are a memory device that belongs to Eastern Indigenous nations' oral cultures. “As the artwork was being installed, a professor from an Indigenous Law course came out onto the stairs to see, and was very excited – he says he intends to bring his class down to the lobby at the start of term going forward.”

The installation of this public art piece is an important element of the Faculty of Law’s multifaceted response to the Calls to Action of Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission.

The ceremony was video recorded and can be streamed

Women of impact

The Agnes Etherington Art Centre will host an announcement by Canada’s Minister of Status of Women on Tuesday.

[Women of Impact]
The federal government is honouring a number of "Women of Impact in Canada", and seeking nominations of additional women to honour. (Supplied Photo)

Editor's note: This event was originally scheduled for Monday, Oct. 1 and has been moved to Tuesday, Oct. 2.

A number of Canadian women of impact will visit Queen’s next week, in a sense.

To launch Women’s History Month in Canada, the Honourable Maryam Monsef, Canada’s Minister of Status of Women, will make an announcement at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre on Tuesday.

She will launch a Government of Canada initiative called the “Women of Impact in Canada” Gallery – an online museum exhibit where Canadians can learn about and celebrate the accomplishments of women in fields ranging from science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM); arts; politics; human rights; and women who were trailblazers in new fields. Some prominent Queen’s women appear in the group, including Suzanne Fortier – the university’s former Vice-Principal (Academic) and Vice-Principal (Research) who is now the Principal of McGill University.

Minister Monsef will be hosted by the Queen’s Female Leadership in Politics (QFLIP) student group. Co-chair Meredith Wilson-Smith and Frannie Sobcov were contacted by the Minister’s office earlier this week about the announcement.

“We’re thrilled and proud to have the opportunity to work with Status of Women Canada to amplify the representation of these Canadian women and leaders whose successes often go under-recognized,” says Ms. Wilson-Smith. “The Women of Impact initiative shows every Canadian that women have always had the ability to make trailblazing strides in the face of sociocultural barriers.”

[Queen's University Agnes Etherington Art Centre QFLIP]
Frannie Sobcov and Meredith Wilson-Smith. (University Communications)

“Meaningful relationships between organizations such as these provide an incredible chance for discourse on our shared passion of women’s political leadership,” adds Ms. Sobcov. “It’s an honour to launch Women’s History Month with a woman like Minister Monsef—a living example that age, nationality, and gender are not impediments to a political career in Canada, but rather assets and opportunities.”

The Women of Impact gallery is a living initiative, meaning that Canadians can also nominate a woman of impact in their communities by completing a form on the government’s website.

Elizabeth Goodyear-Grant, faculty supervisor for QFLIP, says she was “very excited and honoured” that the Minister will be launching the gallery and Women’s History Month at Queen’s, and believes the gallery is an important initiative.

“Most immediately, it is important because it serves a role modelling function for younger women and girls who will see people like them in all types of roles and fields, particularly in roles as innovators and leaders,” she says. “Also, research is clear that women are less comfortable talking about and promoting their own achievements – so it’s important to have initiatives that ensure women’s achievements receive due recognition.”

The unveiling of the online gallery will take place Tuesday. Oct. 2 at 10 am at the Agnes Etherington Art Centre, and the event is open to the public.

Visit the Women of Impact in Canada website for a full listing of honorees.

An artful donation

The most prolific donors in Queen’s history have added to their legacy with a gift of just over $1 million (U.S.).

[Rembrandt van Rijn, Head of an Old Man in a Cap, around 1630, oil on panel. Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2003 (46-031).
Rembrandt van Rijn, Head of an Old Man in a Cap, around 1630, oil on panel. Gift of Alfred and Isabel Bader, 2003 (46-031). Photo by John Glembin

Alfred Bader (Sc’45, Arts’46, MSc’47, LLD’86), and Isabel Bader (LLD’07) have agreed to support four projects, all of which exemplify their passion for the arts. 

“The visual and performing arts are important for all people,” says Isabel Bader. “Sharing these opportunities is important. We all blossom when we are helped and encouraged. This is why we are supporting these programs.”

Alfred is a lifelong art collector with a special appreciation for Dutch and Flemish paintings from the Baroque period, and two of the four projects reflect this interest.

The gift includes a $645,000 donation to the Agnes Etherington Art Centre to promote The Bader Collection, The Agnes’s prized collection of more than 200 European paintings donated by the Baders. The money will fund a touring exhibition – the Collection’s first in 30 years – that will launch in Fall 2019 at The Agnes. The exhibition, Leiden, circa 1630: Rembrandt Emerges, focuses on a pivotal period in Rembrandt’s development as an artist and his artistic network in his native Leiden. It will also fund The Isabel and Alfred Bader Lecture in European Art, a lecture that will give Queen’s students and faculty access to some of the world’s most-acclaimed scholars. A portion of the gift is also earmarked for creating a digital platform for the Collection so that students, scholars, and art enthusiasts around the world can enjoy easy online access to these treasures and related research.

The gift also includes a $200,000 donation to the Department of Art History and Art Conservation to purchase a digitally assisted 3-D microscope and an electromagnetic multi-band image scanner. 

“These two pieces will transform our ability to examine works of art without destroying them,” says Patricia Smithen (MA’93), a professor in the department who specializes in paintings conservation. “No other school in Canada can offer students the opportunity to develop these skills.” 

While Alfred is a visual arts aficionado, Isabel is a long-time musician who enjoys all forms of the performing arts. The remaining two projects reflect her passions.

A third component of the gift is $70,000 for the Musicians in Residence Program at the Bader International Study Centre at Herstmonceux Castle near Isabel’s former home in East Sussex, England. The funding will enable musicians in residence Shelley Katz and Diana Gilchrist to relaunch the long-dormant Castle Concert Series, host free masterclasses and lecture-recitals for students, and take students to off-campus cultural events.

The final component is $150,000 to fund Queen’s first-ever Indigenous arts festival and an ambitious exhibition. A collaboration between The Agnes and the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts, the festival will take place at both venues in March.  

“With the Baders’ support, we can celebrate and affirm the vitality of contemporary Indigenous arts across music, dance, theatre, and film,” says Tricia Baldwin, Director of the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts. “We can all take part in thought-provoking conversations that will arise as Indigenous artists come together to define new protocols for resurgent futures.”

The exhibition, “Soundings: An Exhibition in Five Parts,” is co-curated by Candice Hopkins and Dylan Robinson, Queen’s Canada Research Chair in Indigenous Arts, and will take place at Agnes from January through April. Dylan Robinson will curate The Isabel's concurrent Ka'tarohkwi Festival of Indigenous Arts, which will include sound, performance, and installation art by leading Indigenous artists. 

“The Indigenous peoples were here long before ‘we’ came as explorers, conquerors, immigrants – however we came,” Isabel says. “They have not been well treated. Now we have at Queen’s the opportunity to celebrate and share their cultures. I believe it is important to support this.” 

The gift was made through the Isabel & Alfred Bader Fund, a Bader Philanthropy. Bader Philanthropies is a Milwaukee-based philanthropic organization dedicated to supporting causes that are important to the Bader family, including Queen’s University.

This article was first published on the Queen's Alumni website.

A welcoming website

The Inclusive Queen’s website provides information on resources, training, and support services to help all members of the Queen’s community feel welcomed. 

[Queen's University Inclusive Queen's Nour Mazloum]
Employee and student Nour Mazloum browses the Inclusive Queen's website. (University Communications)

The university’s efforts to create a more inclusive community have a new home on the web.

Visitors to the Inclusive Queen’s website can browse links to resources within the university community, learn about different initiatives underway such as the University Council on Anti-Racism and Equity (UCARE), and find a list of training courses available to help students, staff, and faculty broaden their understanding of how to foster an inclusive campus.

Creating this website was a recommendation of the Principal’s Implementation Committee on Racism, Diversity, and Inclusion (PICRDI).

“We are fortunate to have a campus community that is made up of people from all walks of life, says Teri Shearer, Deputy Provost (Academic Operations and Inclusion). “Having a greater understanding of and appreciation for different cultures is important for our staff and faculty, and for our learners as they join increasingly diverse work and study environments.”

“This site is intended for all members of the Queen’s community – whether you are seeking resources like prayer spaces, the Queen’s Inclusion and Anti-Racism Advisor, or student cultural clubs; or if you wish to further your understanding of Indigenous knowledge, employment equity, or racism and oppression,” she adds.

In addition to launching the website, the Office of the Provost and University Relations will continue to collaborate on efforts to raise awareness about inclusivity initiatives and resources on campus, as well as to communicate the university’s progress in implementing the PICRDI recommendations.

The Office of Indigenous Initiatives and University Relations are also working on a website focusing on Indigenous initiatives and reconciliation at Queen’s, to launch this academic year.

To view the new Inclusive Queen’s website, visit queensu.ca/inclusive.

Queen’s Reads book for 2018-19 unveiled

This year’s Queen’s Reads book will take the university community on a trip down the 401. 

[Queen's Reads University book Catherine Hernandez Scarborough]
Volunteers prepare copies of Scarborough for distribution during the Queen's Reads campaign. (University Communications)

This year’s Queen’s Reads book will take the university community to a place that may be familiar for some, and may challenge students, faculty, and staff to look at it through different eyes.

Scarborough by Catherine Hernandez tells the interconnected stories of members of a culturally diverse Scarborough neighbourhood, including recent immigrants, Indigenous Peoples, single parents, and children.

Queen’s Reads is an annual common reading program which seeks to engage the university community in dialogue. Every year, a selection committee comprising students, staff, and faculty members aims to choose a book by a Canadian author which covers themes that are part of ongoing conversations on campus, will engage students, and are topical in the broader Canadian context. Last year, the committee chose The Break by Indigenous author Katherena Vermette.

After evaluating a number of options, Scarborough was chosen as this year’s book. With the selection made, the Student Experience Office in the Division of Student Affairs coordinates the year-long programming. And Woo Kim, Manager of the Student Experience Office, says they have a lot planned.

“We encourage everyone to take advantage of these opportunities, even if you've only read a page - part of the campaign is about reading the book, and part of it is engaging on the topics and themes,” says Ms. Kim.

The Student Experience Office will be giving away 5,000 copies of the book to students, faculty, and staff, with the majority of copies being distributed in the first weeks of the fall term.

In addition, the team has plenty of activities planned throughout the year. There is a documentary screening and panel discussion planned for the fall, an author event with Ms. Hernandez in November, and discussion groups taking place throughout the fall and winter.

There will also be designated ‘Reading Nooks’ – physical locations across campus where the university community will be encouraged to read together – and regular blog posts on the Student Experience Office website from members of the Queen’s community writing about the book, the topics and themes, and their love of reading.

And if you cannot make it to the groups or events, you can always organize your own – like one group of staff did as part of last year’s program.

In addition to her book’s selection for this year’s edition of the Queen’s Reads program, Ms. Hernandez will also be the Writer-in-Residence for the Department of English for the fall term, focusing on creative writing. The residency is funded through the Queen’s Research Opportunities Funds - Arts Fund – Visiting Artist in Residence, as well as the Canada Council for the Arts.

[Catherine Hernandez]
Catherine Hernandez, author of Scarborough, will be the Writer-in-Residence for the Department of English this fall. (Supplied Photo) 

As part of this residency, she will be working on her next novel, Crosshairs, and organizing workshops and healing circles around LGBTQ2s and racialized communities at Queen's University, and within the larger Kingston community.

"Crosshairs is a difficult novel to write because it means engaging in difficult discussions around race, religion, and identity,” she says. “With the support of Queen's, I look forward to digging deeper into the questions, 'What price do we pay by being passive in the face of white supremacy? And what price do we pay for fighting back?'"

There will be a welcome event for Ms. Hernandez on September 21 at 2:30 pm in Watson Hall Room 517, which the Queen’s community and general public are welcome to attend.

Those seeking a copy of Scarborough should keep an eye out for the Queen’s Reads booth at the ASUS Sidewalk Sale, Queen’s in the Park, and pop-up shops at Union and University (U&U) events during Orientation Week.

The book will also be available to students at the AMS offices and the Student Experience Office in the John Deutsch University Centre, Stauffer Library, Duncan McArthur Hall, residences, and the Four Directions Aboriginal Student Centre. In addition, distance education advisors will be mailing free copies of the book to their students.

Some advanced copies have been distributed to offices on campus; staff and faculty are encouraged to share these copies within their offices.

Anyone requiring an accessible format copy of the book is asked to contact the Adaptive Technology Centre at adaptive.technology.centre@queensu.ca.

Learn more about Queen’s Reads on the Student Experience Office website.

Breathing new life into Indigenous languages

Queen's University is working with a local Indigenous cultural organization and Indigenous leaders to help with language revitalization.

[Queen's Tyendinaga Indigenous languages Haudenosaunee]
Dakota Ireland, an Oneida representative, makes notes during one of the conference's discussion sessions. (Supplied Photo)

Queen’s and Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na Language and Culture Centre played host to a historic meeting this week as six Indigenous nations met to help plan the future of their languages.

The three-day meeting and conference was part of a collaborative project between Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na and Queen’s, which began this spring and was funded by Ontario’s Ministry of Education Indigenous Languages Fund. Establishing this meeting and bringing together the Six Nations was a key milestone in the project’s overarching goals of developing community-specific plans for language revitalization.

“It’s a momentous event and a historical moment. It is the first time in our memories that members of all six language families are in one room talking about preserving our languages,” says Kanonhsyonne (Janice Hill), Director of Indigenous Initiatives.

The representatives of the six language families included learners, academics, policy makers, administrators, and teachers. The six language families of the Haudenosaunee, also known as the Iroquois Confederacy, are the Mohawk, Oneida, Onondaga, Cayuga, Seneca, and Tuscarora. The word Rotinonhsyón:ni is the Mohawk word for Haudenosaunee, while Haudenosaunee is the agreed upon Iroquois Confederacy Council term.

The agenda for the conference included discussions around how to move language beyond the classroom and language legislation, building resources such as a teacher’s association and online resources, and opportunities for group discussions.

“Queen’s is proud to be a partner on this project, which is enabling the revitalization of all of the six Rotinonhsyón:ni languages and meeting the calls to action in the national and Queen’s Truth and Reconciliation (TRC) reports,” says Gordon E. Smith, Vice-Dean (Faculty Relations) with the Faculty of Arts and Science. “We’re excited about the Rotinonhsyón:ni Language Cooperative meeting happening here at Queen’s, supporting Onkwehonwe/Rotinonhsyón:ni language family revitalization and uniting the work of these communities to share resources.”

The collaboration between Queen’s and Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na has already seen the creation of a certificate in Mohawk Language, which will be delivered in Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory starting this month. Over the next two years, the project will also develop an indexed online archive of Mohawk language resources; and will research best practices for teaching, assessing, and evaluating Indigenous language learners.

“We have come to the table in the spirit of sharing,” says Callie Hill, Director of Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na. “We are sharing knowledge, experiences, and resources for language revitalization and we are encouraging and supporting each other in revitalizing our languages”.

Some next steps for Tsi Tyónnheht Onkwawén:na, the six Rotinonhsyón:ni/Haundenosaunee groups, and Queen’s include the formation of four working groups to continue this work, as well as additional conferences.

The conference was held as the world marked the International Day of the World’s Indigenous Peoples

[Queen's TTO Haudenosaunee Indigenous languages conference]
Representatives from across the Haudenosaunee nation gathered in Robert Sutherland Hall for a three-day conference centred on language revitalization. (Supplied Photo)



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