Student Success Symposium

Change, Disruption, Access:

Debriefing the New Normal-Impacts to Student Success and Colonial Ways of Knowing


November 5, 2020

Virtual Conference

A Message from the Assistant Director, Indigenous Initiatives at UTSC

We hope that today will serve as an opportunity to pause and reflect on the past several months.  We can all agree that the COVID virus which has impacted us globally has been catastrophic, and like many areas, education has had to rely on technologies to ensure our reach to students remains accessible and inclusive.  Student practitioners whose services are often a source of stability have had to pivot rapidly in this new environment and embrace uncertainty while also trying to instill hope in the students and communities we serve.

Today we look to create the space needed where we can engage in discussions and reflections on our respective practices, programming, and subsequent pathways to student success.  In doing so, expose both the challenges and opportunities of student-facing practitioners as we expand our scope of understanding of student engagement and success from colonial ways of knowing toward a more responsive approach that recognizes the whole student and provides them with certainty, and motivation during these turbulent times.

Our hope is to engage you on a journey of learning and growth, where we can collectively foster and cultivate authentic programming and relationships which will have significant impacts on Indigenous students, and other equity deserving groups and their perceptions of self-efficacy in higher education.

Kelly Crawford –
Assistant Director, Indigenous Initiatives

U of T Scarborough


9:00 – 9:15 AM


Land Acknowledgement and Opening Remarks

Kelly Crawford – Assistant Director, Indigenous Initiatives at U of T Scarborough

Speaker Info »

Welcome Address

Professor Maydianne Andrade – Vice-Dean Faculty Affairs, Equity & Success at U of T Scarborough

Speaker Info »

9:15 – 10:15 AM


Wreckonciliation and Whiteness in Indigenous Post-Secondary Education

Dr. Lana Ray – Assistant Professor, Department of Indigenous Learning at Lakehead University

Session Info »   Speaker Info »

10:15 – 10:30 AM

Learning Break

Power and Disruption

Juanita Muise – Coordinator of Indigenous Engagement, Office of Student Experience and Wellbeing at U of T Scarborough

Speaker Info »

10:30 – 11:30 AM


The Story of Us – Decolonial Perspectives on Virtualization and Normalized Colonial Biases

Roméo Fournier – Indigenous Academic & Learning Strategist, Academic Advising and Career Centre at U of T Scarborough

Session Info »   Speaker Info »

11:30 – 11:45 AM

Learning Break

Ideas for Online/Remote Land-Based Learning

Professor Danielle Kwan-Lafond – Assistant Professor in Sociology at U of T Scarborough

Speaker Info »

11:45 AM – 12:45 PM

Sharing Circles

12:45 – 1:00 PM

Closing Remarks

Varsha Patel – Assistant Dean of Student Success at U of T Scarborough

During the symposium today, there might be conversations that you want to spend more time discussing and unpacking. Attendees are invited to contact the resources available at their institutions for support. In addition, the virtual space will remain open at the end of the symposium until 2 PM if you choose to remain and continue the dialogue.

Feeling Distressed?