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Membership of Principal’s Advisory Committee, Vice-Provost and University Librarian

On behalf of Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic) Mark Green has announced the membership of the committee that will advise the principal on the search for the next Vice-Provost and University Librarian.

  • Courtney Bannerman, Vice-President Graduate, Society for Graduate and Professional Students
  • Kim Bell, Services Coordinator, W.D. Jordan Rare Books and Special Collections and CUPE President
  • Amitava Chowdhury, Associate Professor, Department of History and Chair, Senate Library Committee
  • Paul Clifford, Systems Coordinator, Library
  • Haley Cochrane, Project and Communications Coordinator, Office of Indigenous Initiatives
  • Jared den Otter, President, Alma Mater Society
  • Betsy Donald, Associate Vice-Principal (Research)
  • Jennifer Doyle. Chief Information Officer and Associate Vice-Principal (IT Services)
  • Mark Green (Chair), Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)
  • Ken Hernden, University Archivist and Associate University Librarian
  • John Pierce, Vice-Provost (Teaching and Learning)
  • Jane Philpott, Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences
  • Ian Robson, Head, Information Resources
  • Will Roy, Open Scholarship Services Librarian
  • Stephanie Simpson, Associate Vice-Principal (Human Rights, Equity and Inclusion)
  • Lori Stewart (Secretary), Executive Director, Office of the Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic)
  • Sarah Wickett, Head Health Sciences Librarian

Principal Deane extends his thanks to the members of this committee for their willingness to serve.

Queen’s remembers Sarah Colby-Dobell

Sarah Colby-DobellThe Queen’s community is remembering Sarah Colby-Dobell, a fourth-year biology student, who died on Aug. 3.

Sarah was also pursuing a Smith Certificate in Business.

During her time at Queen’s Sarah was involved in several extra-curricular activities, including serving as secretary for Conservation Queen’s, an AMS club that serves to educate and raise awareness for endangered species and conservation efforts in both the Kingston Community as well as on Queen’s campus. Sarah also employed her talents as a fashion designer for the Vogue Fashion Charity Show at the university. She had also volunteered at the Queen’s University Food Bank throughout her four years.

Sarah is survived by her twin sister Erin, a member of the Queen’s Engineering Class of 2020.

A group counselling session for students is being coordinated for Friday, Aug. 7. Students can be referred by emailing supportservices@queensu.ca or by speaking with Counselling Services in Student Wellness Services or through Faith and Spiritual Life via chaplain@queensu.ca

Students in need of support are encouraged to contact Faith and Spiritual Life or the other support services available on campus, including Empower Me, and Good2Talk. Faculty and staff in need of support can also access the Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP), provided by Homewood Health, by visiting the Queen’s Human Resources website. For 24-hour EFAP services call 1-800-663-1142 (English) or 1-866-398-9505 (French).

‘Other Side of the Game’ selected for 2020-2021 Queen’s Reads common reading program

Award-winning play highlights the experiences of Black women in Toronto.

Graphic design for Queen's Reads
The annual Queen’s Reads program aims to engage students in meaningful discussion, encourage critical thinking, and promote connection and community building among students, faculty, and staff.

This year’s Queen’s Reads selection explores themes of anti-Black racism, institutional oppression, Black activism, and the ride-or-die philosophy in the civil rights movement.

Other Side of the Game by Toronto-based writer and broadcaster Amanda Parris follows two storylines – set 40 years apart – that centre on the experiences of Black women in Toronto.

In the 1970s, Beverly joins a Black activist group and has to prove her dedication. In the present, Nicole reunites with her ex-boyfriend who has just been released from prison. Both women must fight to have their voices heard while supporting their loved ones, discovering where their loyalties lie in the process.

Other Side of the Game premiered in 2017, and is Parris’s playwriting debut. It was published in 2019, and won the Governor General's Literary Award.

The annual Queen’s Reads program aims to engage students in meaningful discussion, encourage critical thinking, and promote connection and community building among students, faculty, and staff.

The Student Experience Office (SEO) in Student Affairs runs the program, and has been working to ensure this year’s Queen’s Reads prioritizes the needs of Black community members at Queen’s. This includes bringing together a programming committee that is composed almost entirely of Black student leaders.

“We all fulfill roles in perpetuating anti-Blackness and white supremacy through our ideologies, interpersonal relationships and institutions; this includes Queen’s where oppression, exclusion and microaggressions have been normalized and practiced widely,” says Jenna Huys, Student Assistant, Diversity and Inclusivity at the SEO. “Queen’s Reads stands as an opportunity to continue challenging anti-Blackness, to value the lived experiences of Black folks and specifically Black womxn, as well as to commit to practicing anti-racism.”

Due to the ongoing pandemic, most of this year’s Queen’s Reads will be held online. The SEO will be facilitating a range of live and asynchronous events, including a scheduled author talk with Parris on March 10, 2021, and online content, such as Black Excellence Spotlights that will be featured on the SEO website and social media channels throughout February 2021.

“All members of the Queen’s community are encouraged to participate,” says Clarissa de Leon, this year’s Queen’s Reads Programming Co-ordinator. “You do not have to have read the play to take part in Queen’s Reads programming.”

A free copy of Other Side of the Game will be available to all Queen’s students, faculty and staff. The e-book can be downloaded on the Queen’s University Library website starting this month. Limited physical copies will also be accessible in the fall.

Learn more about Queen’s Reads.

Contagion Cultures Lectures

A weekly virtual lecture series, Queen's Contagion Cultures, helps make sense of the COVID-19 pandemic through the expertise and insights of Arts and Science faculty members. This public-facing series asks important questions and explores complex responses to help society grapple with turbulent times.

A Faculty of Arts and Science collaboration between the School of Policy Studies, and the Departments of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, Gender Studies, Film and Media Studies, and Cultural Studies, the lectures are livestreamed on Zoom every Tuesday at 4 pm EDT/EST with events scheduled until December 2020.

The lectures are open to the public and participants are asked to register in advance.

For more information on the series, including links to recordings and speaker bios, please visit the School of Policy Studies website.

Provost announces restart of search for next dean of Smith School of Business

Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic) Mark Green announced on Wednesday the resumption of the search process for the next Dean of the Smith School of Business

The provost will chair the Principal’s Advisory Committee to advise on Smith’s future direction, and on the selection of the next dean.

“Much has changed since the previous committee last met in October, and thus I have decided to form a new search committee,” Provost Green says. “I think the community needs the opportunity to reflect on the appropriate composition of the committee for current circumstances, which include an enhanced focus on equity, diversity, inclusion, and Indigeneity within Smith and across campus.”

Provost Green thanked those who participated in the previous committee for all their hard work and dedication and invited members of the community to suggest individuals who might serve on the new Principal’s Advisory Committee.

Committee member suggestions can be sent to provost@queensu.ca by Tuesday, Aug. 18.

“Principal and Vice-Chancellor Patrick Deane and I would like to thank Interim Dean of the Smith School of Business Brenda Brouwer for her ongoing leadership as we continue the search for the next dean,” Provost Green adds.

Law school consults Queen's community about building's name

Dean’s advisory committee open for feedback about Sir John A. Macdonald Hall.

Photograph of Sir John A. Macdonald Hall
After the consultation process, the Dean of Law will make a recommendation to the Principal on the question of the building name.

Last month, the Faculty of Law announced its commitment to formally review the name of its building, Sir John A. Macdonald Hall, given concerns about the complicated legacy of Canada’s first Prime Minister, particularly as it pertains to Indigenous peoples. An advisory committee has now been struck and for the next eight weeks it will lead wide consultations to understand whether the law school building should continue to be named after Macdonald at a time when the country seeks to advance Truth and Reconciliation.

Sir John A. Macdonald Hall has been home to the faculty since the building opened in 1960.

“Macdonald’s legacy is complex. He is known as our first Prime Minister and for being instrumental in the formation of Canada, but the public has become increasingly aware of—and concerned with—how his policies negatively impacted Indigenous peoples,” says Mark Walters, Dean of the Faculty of Law. “It is now time to ask hard questions about the relationship between the building name and the identity, values, and aspirations of the community that learns and works within the building.”

The advisory committee—comprised of students, faculty, staff, and alumni —will welcome and consider all views presented by members of the community and use them to inform the development of recommendations that may include a variety of options for the Board of Trustees to consider when making its ultimate decision.

Interested groups or individuals are welcome to make written submissions via an online survey or directly to law.consultation@queensu.ca until September 18, 2020.  Opportunities for community members to make oral submissions will be announced soon.

“Our consultation aims to hear from members of our law school, university, alumni, and wider community to gain a full and diverse range of perspectives on Macdonald’s legacy,” says Jeff Fung (Law’08), advisory committee co-chair and Associate General Counsel at Nissan Canada Inc. “We look forward to reviewing feedback and fairly considering all views as we work toward recommendations.”

Students, faculty, and staff of the Faculty of Law will also have an opportunity to express their views on this issue, either directly or through their representatives, in a special meeting of the school’s Faculty Board.

After considering the opinions and recommendations expressed during the consultation process, the Dean of Law will make a recommendation to the Principal on the question of the building name. The Principal will then consider this recommendation in his proposal to the Board of Trustees.  Responsibility for naming of buildings lies with the Board. The Board will consider the Principal’s proposal before making the final decision regarding the name. Should the Board choose to remove Macdonald’s name from the building, a separate process would need to be initiated before it could be renamed.

Since 2016, the law school has been engaged with implementing the recommendations of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission, including hiring an Indigenous Recruitment and Support Officer and the creation of two bursaries to support Indigenous students at the law school. Academically, it has integrated a number of Aboriginal and Indigenous law courses in its curriculum, and recently announced the creation of the Chief Don Maracle Reconciliation/Indigenous Knowledge Initiative. The school has welcomed a wide range of Indigenous lecturers and visitors to the faculty, with 11 scholars and leaders visiting the school in the 2019-20 school year alone. In 2018, it saw the creation and installation of a major piece of public art in its atrium themed on the Indigenous legal tradition of wampum belts, words that are lasting, by Mohawk artist Hannah Claus. 

The Queen’s Faculty of Law has been a leader in Canadian legal education since its foundation in 1957, and over 8,000 alumni have graduated its programs.

Learn more on the law school's consultation website.

Supporting Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ communities

Queen’s is increasing security at Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre after recent vandalism.

Photograph of the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre
Queen’s has installed security cameras, floodlights, and additional measures to keep the centre safe and make the property more secure.

The Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre is an important hub on campus for Indigenous students looking for a home away from home. It offers cultural counselling, academic advising services, and programming that helps students connect with one another and build a strong community.

Recently, Four Directions has been targeted in troubling racist and homophobic incidents of vandalism. In late June, Indigenous nations and Pride flags hanging from the front of the centre were torn; last weekend, damage was discovered to the tipi at the back of the building.

In response, Queen’s has installed security cameras, floodlights, and additional measures to keep the centre safe and make the property more secure. The flags, which have been rehung in the windows, will also be permanently installed outdoors.

“Any attempt to damage the Indigenous student centre is a direct attack on Queen’s itself and on our values of acceptance and respect for all. These kinds of actions only strengthen our resolve to support and celebrate Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ identities,” says Rahswahérha Mark Green, Provost and Vice-Principal (Academic). “My office has been working closely with the Principal’s Office and Student Affairs to ensure the staff of the Four Directions Student Centre know they are fully supported by the university and that new measures are now in place to protect the centre and the work it does to support Indigenous students on campus.”

The Kingston Police Service is investigating both incidents.

“I am deeply hurt and dismayed that the Four Directions Indigenous Student Centre has been vandalized for a second time in a few short weeks. It has been a very trying year for Indigenous and LGBTQ2S+ members of the Queen’s community, and we want you to know that we stand with you,” says Kanonhysonne (Janice Hill), Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation).

Kandice Baptiste, Director of Four Directions, has released a statement on the centre’s Facebook page. She also made a statement after the incident in June, as did Kanonhysonne, who condemned the vandalism and expressed her commitment to create change at Queen’s. Principal Patrick Deane and Provost Green released statements as well.

Creating safe and inclusive spaces

The new director of the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion looks to the future.

Photograph of Deanna Fialho, Director of the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion
Deanna Fialho brings her experience implementing EDI programs to her new role as Director of the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion at Queen's.

Queen’s created the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion in 2019 to provide a dedicated space on campus for student groups working to advance social justice, anti-racism, and inclusion on campus. The centre is housed at 140 Stuart St., which is typically known on campus as “Yellow House.”

Deanna Fialho recently joined Student Affairs as the director of the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion. In this role, she will lead the development of programs, activities, and services dedicated to supporting the university’s equity-seeking students. The Queen’s Gazette connected with Fialho to learn more about her experience and her goals for the centre.

Tell us about your professional background and the work you’ve done to promote equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in your previous positions.

This is a great question, and one that I believe must be rooted in my personal background and identity which has shaped both my approach to equity and desire to come to Queen’s in a meaningful way. I am a first-generation woman born and raised in the Greater Toronto Area. My family is originally from Goa, India and were raised in Karachi, Pakistan, immigrating to Canada in 1971. The value of education was defined clearly for our family by my maternal grandfather who faced the need of re-educating himself as a chartered accountant despite a fruitful education and career in Pakistan. My grandparents on both sides of my family sacrificed a lot for our family and have supported each of their grandchildren to build a bright future in Canada through education. I truly believe in the power of Canada’s post-secondary institutions to build the skills, self-awareness, and innovation that will ultimately drive an equitable future for all.

I spent key years of my early adolescence  in a rural Ontario town, which defined for me the incredible value of building community through inclusive learning environments, as well as an early awareness of the risks to safety, development, self-worth, and big aspirations for young people who operate in environments that do not place value on diversity.

Foundational to my work and experience in EDI is a strong understanding of how race, class and gender shape the various power structures that build our current reality. This was fostered through a Master of Educational Leadership and Policy degree from OISE at the University of Toronto and an undergraduate degree in Sociology from Carleton University. 

My vision for equity and inclusion is rooted in a strong passion to build environments that foster a sense of belonging, where people feel safe and are empowered to share their identities, and unique experiences. This approach has drawn a vibrant career path for me within Canada’s corporate landscape where I have gained extensive experience and expertise implementing large-scale EDI programs at several large organizations, most recently at KPMG and NAV CANADA.

In the early days of my EDI career, I supported student success programming through a unique grassroots engagement and peer mentorship initiative in Halton Region that brought local communities and the private sector together to empower safe decision-making amongst equity-seeking youth. These early experiences shaped my personal approach to EDI in a powerful way, underscoring the value of including diverse perspectives, experiences, and ideas in every part of the planning process for EDI strategies.

What interested you about the position of Director of the Centre for Student Equity and Inclusion?

I see the student-centered approach to EDI at Queen’s as central to the future success of the centre. The vibrant student clubs currently placed in the centre, as well as the multitude of student leadership and engagement initiatives on campus, make me feel hopeful about the change we can make together to advance a culture of inclusion at Queen’s and in the city of Kingston. 

Do you have a sense of what goals you would like to achieve in your new role?

I am prioritizing active listening as my first step to building a strong foundation of support for, and engagement of, student-led EDI initiatives at the centre. My vision includes the creation of safe and accountable spaces for racialized and equity-seeking students and student clubs to hold dialogue and campus-wide engagement on EDI, opportunities to enhance EDI acumen through co-curricular education and resources for all students, as well as creating a physical and virtual hub for EDI resources on campus. Meaningful collaboration and partnership with student clubs in the centre are central to bringing this vision alive.

How do you see this role supporting broader efforts to promote equity and inclusion at Queen’s?

I believe together we can create a bright future for all students at Queen’s that is rooted in active celebration and value of diversity within each aspect of our institutional operations. I believe embedding inclusion into the various policies, procedures and structures that shape the student experience at Queen’s will advance a culture of belonging in a strong way, and see the centre as a strong catalyst for this work in collaboration with other units in Student Affairs and the Human Rights and Equity Office.

Principal’s online town hall available online

A video recording of the online town hall with Principal Patrick Deane on Wednesday, July 22, is now available online, so that Queen’s community members have another chance to watch the event.

Principal Deane answered questions from the community with the support of other senior leadership team members including Provost Mark Green, Vice-Principal (Research) Kimberly Woodhouse, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration) Donna Janiec and Dean, Faculty of Health Sciences Jane Philpott, while Stephanie Simpson, Associate Vice-Principal (Human Rights, Equity & Inclusion), was the host/moderator, and Kanonhsyonne Janice Hill, Associate Vice-Principal (Indigenous Initiatives and Reconciliation), Office of Indigenous Initiatives, provided a welcome and closing.

Queen’s University researcher earns Young Scientist Award

Queen’s University professor Christopher Spencer has earned the 2020 Young Scientist Award (Donath Medal) from the Geological Society of America.

Christopher SpencerThe Young Scientist Award was established in 1988 to be awarded to a young scientist (35 or younger) for outstanding achievement in contributing to geologic knowledge through original research that marks a major advance in the earth sciences.

Dr. Spencer recently joined the Department of Geological Sciences and Geological Engineering after completing a five-year Early Research Fellowship at Curtin University in Perth, Western Australia. His research seeks to understand the formation, destruction, and secular evolution of the continental crust.

Queen’s Emeritus Professor Ray Price, a world-renowned geologist, praised Dr. Spencer’s work saying his “…work and ideas are the most exciting I have seen in a decade."

Further information about the Donath Medal can be found on the GSA website

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