Forward With Integrity update: Energy in social sciences
With great energy, Dean Charlotte Yates begins a discussion about the President's
Forward With Integrity letter, enthusiastically detailing specific ways it adds emphasis to
the Faculty of Social Sciences' initiatives.
"The priorities in the letter have sparked our efforts combatting poverty, strengthening
pathways into university for new students and creatively thinking about new ways for
teaching, learning, student success and research," she says.
Since the letter was distributed last fall, Yates senses a renewed coherence in social
sciences teaching and learning, community engagement and research.
"There is a profound sense of energy and purpose within the Faculty," she says. "The
letter provides us with a vision that validates our many efforts to expand programs
reaching out to the community."
External partners, faculty members and students working on dozens of initiatives across
the Faculty are learning more about each other's work and finding new ways to
Among these initiatives are programs that expand pathways for Crown wards, involve
alumni in enhanced career preparation for undergraduates, engage students in the
classroom to solve real-life community problems and a new effort matching graduate
students with local teens in mentoring relationships.
"Forward With Integrity recognizes that the Faculty works under some constraints,"
Yates says, "but it challenges us to create new ways of doing things rather than using
the same approaches."
She says the letter is a catalyst encouraging conversations and activities in every
department and area of the Faculty. A group of faculty has been convened to discuss
ways to teach large classes utilizing creative techniques and best practices. She says the
group is keen on sharing innovative approaches so that critical thinking and positive
student learning experiences can be enhanced in large group settings.
Yates is confident that the successes experienced during the first few months can be
"The letter has been widely accepted and understood," she says, "and in every corner of
the Faculty conversations have started, information and best practices are being shared
and progress is being made."