WRC Distinguished Student Award Recipient 2014
Lianne Lee has a Bachelor in education from the University of Calgary, and a Master of Arts in educational research from the Werklund School of Education. Lianne has led a broad range of community programs and systems-change initiatives to enhance the wellbeing of children and youth of immigrant families. From being a front-line staff in after school programs early in her career, to her most recent role as c.a.r.e. for Ethno-Cultural Children and Youth Manager at the Immigrant Sector Council of Calgary, Lianne’s efforts have focused on addressing systemic barriers faced by immigrant families in Calgary.
Since 2011, Lianne has collaborated on the planning, implementation, and assessment of an award-winning educational initiative, the Service-Learning Program for Pre-Service Teachers. A partnership among the University of Calgary, c.a.r.e., and ten community organizations, the long term goal of the program is to improve academic outcomes for children and youth from immigrant backgrounds by strengthening teacher education, particularly in the areas of cultural humility and culturally responsive practices. Lianne has presented on this program in a number of national and international community and academic conferences. Building on these experiences, Lianne’s Master’s thesis will focus on the perspectives of community organizations in community and university service-learning partnerships.
Drawing from Lianne’s personal experiences as a first-generation Chinese-Canadian woman, she developed and implemented the Glo Girls program when she was diversity coordinator at Big Brothers Big Sisters. This program fostered positive mentoring relationships, knowledge exchange, and intercultural understanding between female adults and young females from immigrant, refugee and Indigenous backgrounds.
Lianne was a director at Antyx Community Arts and has advocated for children, youth, and women on various advisory committees for the City of Calgary and UCalgary. Lianne advocated for the distinction of specialized groups in the City of Calgary’s Welcoming Community Policy. She emphasized the need for the City of Calgary to identify and address issues and barriers that are particularly persistent for women, children and youth, immigrants, seniors, and people with disabilities. Lianne focused on how issues faced by these groups are compounded as a result of overlapping identities and barriers. Lianne’s recommendation was accepted and is reflected in the approved policy.