New office space next step in "evolution" of community engagement at Mac

By Erica Balch, October 30, 2017
    Outgoing McMaster Provost David Wilkinson delivers remarks at a recent event to celebrate the opening of the Office of Community Engagement’s new space in Hamilton Hall, Room 103B.

About 60 members of the McMaster and Hamilton communities gathered recently to mark the opening of the Office of Community Engagement’s new space and to celebrate the many community-based partnerships, projects and initiatives currently underway.

Faculty, staff and students, as well as representatives from community organizations and the City of Hamilton attended the event which was held in the Offices’ new space in Hamilton Hall, Room 103B.

“We really wanted to share both the space and the work that we do,” says Sheila Sammon, McMaster’s director of community engagement. “The opening of this space represents another step in the evolution of community engagement at McMaster. Every day, we’re working with both campus and community partners to support their work. So, having a space where we can meet and invite the community in is essential.”

Both Provost David Wilkinson and incoming Provost David Farrar spoke at the event.

Farrar expressed his support for community engagement and his interest in working with the Office going forward. Wilkinson praised the accomplishments of the Office of Community Engagement, adding that the combination of institutional leadership and the coordinated efforts of faculty, staff and students from across the university has been pivotal to the success of community engagement at McMaster.

Sammon also recognized both the work of the Office and role of the Network for Campus Community Partnerships in helping to expand community based research, education and service activities across campus.

“Our office has been in a unique position to observe a shift in campus culture toward a more coordinated and principled approach to community engagement activities,” she says. “It has been a privilege to be part of the development of new projects and provide opportunities for capacity building among students, staff and faculty and to work closely with community partners on initiatives that contribute to the social good.”

Read the Office of Community Engagement’s annual report to learn more about the community partnerships and initiatives that exist across campus.