Feb. 11, 2019

Inaugural diversity awards recognize students, faculty and staff committed to inclusion

Winners celebrated at third annual Diversity Days keynote luncheon

In a city like ours with people of all different shapes and sizes, backgrounds and experiences, diversity and inclusion have never been more important.

For the third year running, hosted by the Office of Diversity, Equity and Protected Disclosure (ODEPD) with partners across campus, Diversity Days has been a time to celebrate the different voices we have in our UCalgary community and to learn about the challenges groups face as we work together to foster an inclusive campus. 

Beginning on Feb. 5, the three-day initiative featured a variety of events, workshops and interactive activities to address diversity, equity and inclusion topics, ranging from intercultural bias to sexual violence.  

The staff award recognized the Alberta Sexual Assault Course and Conference Planning Team for their dedication to sexual violence education and prevention; the team is pictured above.

In addition to a keynote address from Calgary-born activist and comedian Adora Nwofor, the opening luncheon also included the presentation of the ODEPD’s inaugural Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Awards. 

Launched in fall 2018, the awards recognize students, faculty and staff who are committed to advancing inclusion on campus.

“We were so pleased by the number of nominations we received in each category. The award adjudication team had a difficult task identifying a winner out of so many worthy candidates,” says Dr. Valerie Pruegger, PhD, director of the ODEPD.

“Our award winners have worked hard to create systemic change and foster inclusion on our campus. It is amazing to see the work being done by individuals and teams in this regard throughout our community.”

The engineering leadership team won the faculty award for prioritizing diversity in numerous faculty initiatives and programs.

The Schulich School of Engineering leadership team won the faculty award for prioritizing diversity.

With representatives from students, AUPE and MaPS staff, and faculty members, the adjudication team selected the following award winners:

Staff Award: The Alberta Sexual Assault Course and Conference Planning Team

A team from the Cumming School of Medicine, Alberta Health Services and the Calgary Sexual Assault Team worked collaboratively to bring a conference and course on sexual violence education to campus.

Topics included sexual violence in Indigenous communities, trauma informed responses and care for marginalized populations such as transgender and LGBTQ2S+ communities.

Faculty Award: Schulich School of Engineering Leadership Team

The leadership team at the Schulich School of Engineering were acknowledged for creating systemic change across the faculty through a wide variety of initiatives and programs.

In addition to having an associate dean of diversity and equity, the faculty also outlines diversity as one of three strategic priorities, actively invests in female academics to close the gender gap in STEM fields, and offers support to engage underrepresented populations in engineering including women and Indigenous students.

Student Award: Laura Fader, Schulich School of Engineering

Undergraduate engineering student Laura Fader was recognized with the student award for her commitment to numerous diversity initiatives on and off-campus.

Some of Fader’s contributions include serving on the Engineering Diversity and Inclusivity Action Committee, creating a peer mentorship program to foster an inclusive environment and acting as a national Canadian Engineering Memorial Fund ambassador promoting gender equity in engineering from 2017-18.

The next diversity awards nominations will open in the fall of 2019.