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Volunteers load a truck with canned foods for delivery to the Downtown Mission.Volunteers load a truck with canned foods for delivery to the Downtown Mission.

Human Kinetics breaks donation record

Over the past month, students, faculty, and staff in the Faculty of Human Kinetics brought in canned goods and other non-perishable food items to donate to the Downtown Mission. This year, 5,587 items were donated, more than doubling the target of 2,000 and shattering the previous record of approximately 3,000 items.

More than 4,000 of the donated items came from the classes of two faculty members — Paula van Wyk and Dave Andrews.

Drs. van Wyk and Andrews promoted the food drive as promoting the values of outreach, community, and service embedded into the fabric of the kinesiology faculty.

“Even though not every student donated an item to the food drive, I encouraged them to find their own way to do something selfless for someone else as the act and the associated feeling can be contagious,” said van Wyk.

Andrews told his first-year class that they will probably forget a lot of the course content, but “they will always remember the tremendous good that they have contributed to — as a group — through their involvement in the food drive this year.

“Their outstanding generosity has unified and empowered them as a class, and they have helped an incredible number of people in the process.”

Andrews also put his money where his mouth is, pledging 10 cents for every item donated.

Head of the kinesiology department, he added that he is “beyond proud” of what the student body has accomplished with the food drive this year.

—Ryan Donally

Bonnie StewartEducation professor Bonnie Stewart researches digital life and participatory engagement. Photo by Nobuko Fujita.

Discussion to explore communities of practice and participation

In an era marked by fake news and data surveillance, what does it mean to teach and learn in the open?

“Maybe the only thing worse than being on the web with students in 2018 is not being on the web with students in 2018,” says Bonnie Stewart, assistant professor of online pedagogy and workplace learning in the Faculty of Education.

“It’s a difficult space, an attention economy, a radicalization engine… all those things are true. But if we refuse to engage its real capacity as a learning space, the negative effects will be just as pervasive… but how will the next generation get any opportunity to turn it around?”

Dr. Stewart’s work begins from the premise that digital life is real life, and therefore a space for teaching, learning, and scholarship. Focused on participatory engagement as historical model and digital method, her research ranges from massive online open courses (MOOCs) and academic Twitter through community media literacy initiatives.

Stewart is guest speaker at the on-campus Community of Practice fika event on Friday, Dec. 7. Fika is Swedish for coffee break, but it is more than drinking coffee. It is having a legitimate reason to set aside time for socialization and quality conversation.

“Come enjoy coffee and Scandinavian sweets,” says organizer Nobuko Fujita. “We are so excited to have Bonnie share her ideas about community-oriented approaches to knowledge creation and social media navigation in contemporary institutions. @bonstewart is an academic Twitter account that you should be following.”

Register for the on-campus event at https://ctl2.uwindsor.ca/openlearning/workshops/9/#wkshp-96 , or join the webinar online at bitly.com/OOL-CoP.

For more information, contact Fujita by email nfujita@uwindsor.ca or phone 519-253-3000, ext. 2105.

Students from the School of Computer Science presented their projects to the campus community and key industry members Friday.Students from the School of Computer Science presented their projects to the campus community and key industry members Friday.

Students showcase projects at Computer Science Demo Day

Students from the School of Computer Science presented their projects and research to about 300 attendees from the campus community, the public, and members of local industry on Friday, Nov. 30, in the CAW Student Centre.

Computer Science Demo Day drew from all programs in computer science to demonstrate a wide variety of technologies, from artificial intelligence and data analytics to virtual reality and health informatics. Undergraduate and graduate students developed the projects in about two months leading to the event.

Organizer Pooya Moradian Zadeh called it a wonderful experiential learning opportunity.

“This is an excellent social and professional venue for the students to showcase their ideas, talent, and skills to the community and improve their soft skills,” said Dr. Zadeh, a learning specialist in the School of Computer Science. “This gives the students an opportunity to think out of the box, believe their capabilities, extend their network and learn multiple extra skills that are not delivered in traditional classrooms.”

Besides showcasing the ability of students to solve practical, real-world problems, organizers believe the event can act as a bridge to connect the School of Computer Science to community and industrial partners.

“It is important for us to get to these types of events and look at the talent pool,” says Peter Ferraro, application delivery services manager at Green Shield Canada. “I have a genuine curiosity, having been a developer for 20 years, but even on the business and management side it’s always good to see what is out there. It’s critical. Our company is growing, and we want to bring in fresh — and, of course, local — talent, if possible.”

Johanna Beneteau, internship co-ordinator for Co-operative Education and Workplace Partnerships, offered a “big thank-you” to everyone who attended.

“It is so important that the University connects with industry. We are proud to show off our student talent,” she said. “I continually heard from industry how impressed they were with the quality of the student projects.”

—Darko Milenkovic

Open house Friday to recognize work for human rights and equity

Human Rights Day is just around the corner and it provides a wonderful opportunity to reflect. In this spirit, the Office of Human Rights, Equity, and Accessibility will present several OHREA Awards at its annual open house event on Friday, Dec. 7.

The awardees will be celebrated for advancing social justice, mental health, employment equity, and accessibility at the University of Windsor. This year’s honorees are:

  • Accessibility Award to Lancer Athletics staffer Sandra Ondracka;
  • Employment Equity Award to Purita (Pritz) Bristow, a retiree and former assistant director of enterprise information systems services in IT Services;
  • the Human Rights and Social Justice Award goes to Kathy M’Closkey of the Department of Sociology, Anthropology and Criminology;
  • the Mental Health Champion Award goes to University of Windsor alumnx Jessica Fazio;
  • the OHREA Award will be presented to nursing student Chantal Kayumba.

The open house will run noon to 1:30 p.m. in Alumni Hall’s McPherson Lounge, with the awards presentation from 12:15 to 12:45 p.m. The event promises warm beverages, lunch foods, and live music.

Organizers invite the campus community to bring non-perishable food items for donation to the student food bank.

For more information, visit webpages for the OHREA Awards and the open house, email ohrea@uwindsor.ca, or phone 519-253-3000, ext. 3400.