During the week of October 16, Carleton hosted its fifth annual Inclusion Week to strengthen inclusion and belonging in its community and raise awareness of the value of human rights work and equity, diversity and inclusion (EDI).
Events were led by faculty, staff and students from across the campus community, with the support of the Department of Equity and Inclusive Communities (EIC), The events focused on this year’s theme of ‘Doing the work: Reflecting, relinquishing, and reclaiming power in inclusion.’
The week began with the EIC Open House, which celebrated the last five years and highlighted the many services and supports provided by the department.
“The idea of Inclusion Week is to further our understanding of EDI and our role in helping to advance our university’s goals under the EDI Action Plan, the Scarborough Charter, and other EDI-related commitments,” said Noël Badiou, Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusive Communities. ”I’m thrilled to see such a broad range of events this year that are being hosted from across the entire Carleton community. Students, faculty and staff have engaged in a greater way and number, demonstrating a growing commitment to equity and inclusion across campus.”
“I am committed to championing our collective efforts to build a culture of anti-oppression in an environment that respects equity and strives for inclusivity,” said L. Pauline Rankin, Carleton’s Provost and Vice-President (Academic). “This requires reaching out across divisions and taking collective action, but it also demands that we do so with a commitment to listening across those divides, practicing patience and extending kindness.”
Inclusion Week events continued throughout the week spanning a wide range of in-person, virtual and hybrid activities that included:
Inclusion, My Muse – An Art Exhibit: Hosted by the Centre for Research on Inclusion, the three-day art exhibit showcased various forms of equity, diversity and inclusion-inspired art. The exhibit, displayed in the Nicol Building Atrium, featured a collection created by Carleton community members and explored the many ways artists are “Doing the Work” of EDI through creative expression
What do Indigenous Sciences Look Like?: The Faculty of Science, along with the Office of the Associate Vice-President Indigenous Teaching, Learning, and Research, hosted “What do Indigenous Sciences Look Like?”. Kahente Horn-Miller, Associate Vice President, Indigenous Teaching, Learning and Research, introduced students, staff and faculty in attendance to sisters Kathleen and Catherine Cayer, basket weavers from Kitigan Zibi Anishinabeg First Nation. Kathleen and Catherine were taught traditional Mi'kmaq ways of weaving and demonstrated the importance of traditional knowledge and science in our institutions while answering questions from audience members. Associate Dean (Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion), Rowan Thomson, led a panel discussion that explored lived experiences with the Carleton Collaborative Indigenous Learning Bundles. “We recognize the need to bring reconciliation to all aspects of our scientific activities,” said Thomson. “We are thrilled that many instructors in the Faculty of Science have adopted Collaborative Indigenous Learning Bundles in their courses
Community Safety Services (CSS) Open House: The Carleton community was invited to tour the CSS Office Space, chat with members of the team and check out patrol vehicles.
Reclaiming the Intersectionality Between Disability and Sexuality: Hosted by the Student Experience Office, “Reclaiming the Intersectionality Between Disability and Sexuality,” was an evening of programming that amplified the voices of Carleton’s queer and disabled community members. A panel of guest speakers spoke on their own lived experiences, as well as the importance of reclaiming, embracing and celebrating non-heteronormative identities in all forms.
Student EDI Research Awards: Community members gathered for presentations by the recipients of the 2023 Student EDI Research Awards, funded by the Office of the Provost and Vice-President (Academic). Carleton students Cosette Arsenault-Deraps, Aanya Baindur, Senai Debebe, Olivia Little, Shadea Nance and Pallavi Sodhi shared key findings from their summer research projects. “These students have engaged in important and rigorous research throughout the summer to explore an issue through the lens of equity, diversity, and inclusion,” said Krista Craven, Learning Specialist, Equity and Inclusive Communities and emcee of the event.
Neurodiversity and the University Classroom: Students from the School of Linguistics and Language Studies (LING/ALDS 3604) hosted an information fair that showcased their learnings about neurodiversity in relation to higher education. Information booths included tips and tricks for instructors, peers, and neurodivergent individuals. The information presented derived from a combination of research literature and lived experiences of neurodivergent students.
EDI Amplified: A Panel on Student Initiatives, Lessons and Triumphs: The Carleton Academic Student Government brought together students from across campus for a discussion on past EDI events and initiatives on campus revealing the successes, challenges and lessons learned about running successful EDI initiatives.
Drag Queer Trivia Night!: The Sprott Business Students’ Society hosted an event for the 2SLGBTQ+ community and allies to celebrate and learn about queer history, culture and icons through the gamification of knowledge. Participants enjoyed fun trivia and drag performances from local Ottawa drag queen JD Merciii
Collective Stories of Race and Equality: The School of Social Work hosted Collective Stories of Race and Equality. This workshop encouraged authentic dialogue as facilitators drew from participants’ experiences and encouraged participants to move towards more meaningful connections and equitable solutions.
Fostering Skill Development Through Inclusive Course Design: Teaching and Learning Services (TLS) hosted a workshop that explored practices and actions to make learning more inclusive, equitable, accessible, and flexible by examining the design of the FUSION modules.
Breaking Down Barriers: Exploring Disability, Dignity, and Ableism: The Accessibility Institute hosted a workshop that explored the significance of language and dignity in interactions with people with disabilities and helped event participants to recognize and identify instances of ableism.
Grand Opening of the Black Students Community Hub: The Department of Housing and Residence Life Services hosted the official opening of the Black Students Community Hub in Teraanga Commons. Laura Storey, Executive Director, Housing and Residence Life, welcomed guests. “The hub is a designated space for Black students to engage in meaningful conversations, share experiences and build strong connections,” she said.
How to Support Indigenous Peoples in Colonial Spaces: During this workshop, hosted by the Centre for Indigenous Support and Community Engagement (CISCE) participants learned about Indigenous Peoples in Canada, appropriate terminology, and explored how to create safer spaces for Indigenous students & colleagues on campus.
Transing Sex & Pleasure: A Panel Discussion: The Sexuality Resource Centre hosted an evening of disruptive cis-normative sex talk chatting with a panel of five sex-perts from across the country about their journeys navigating sex and pleasure as trans folks. The event explored, unlearned, challenged and celebrated trans sexual joy.
The week ended with Umoja’s Graduate School Information Session, which promoted the inclusion of African, Caribbean, and Black students in graduate degrees. Hosted by the Umoja Black Community Engagement Program, attendees received step-by-step guidance on the graduate application process, including funding options, insight from graduate guest speakers and faculty, and advice on how to increase their chances of successful admission.
In alignment with Carleton’s EDI Action Plan, Inclusion Week events offered the Carleton community with opportunities to gather and celebrate the power of inclusion while exploring practical ways of integrating EDI into our daily lives and the life of the university.
Thank you to everyone who supported an event this year, and well done to all our hosts for your commitment to equity and inclusion at Carleton and your support in making Inclusion Week 2023 a great success.
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