Connections & Conversations

Connections and Conversations

The Connections and Conversations group welcomes ALL faculty & staff at UTM, regardless of whether or not they have attended previous meetings. Join us!

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Next Workshop/Event(s):

*all workshops/events will take place between 12-1:30 pm with lunch typically provided at 11:30 am

  • Mar 26, UTM Room (details to follow) 
  • Apr 30, UTM Room - White Elephant in the Room (this workshop will be targeted towards non-racialized members of the UTM community)

Next meeting(s):

*all meetings will take place between 12-1:00 pm with lunch typically provided

  • Feb 27DV 3130
  • Mar 26 CC 3000
  • Apr 30 NE 6128
  • May 28 DV 3138
  • June 25 DH 4009

What is Connections & Conversations?

Connections & Conversations is an affinity group for racialized U of T staff and their supporters. The staff-driven initiative offers discussions and a support network for racialized staff to flourish at U of T. The group’s steering committee has been focused on creating an open and empowering environment for racialized staff to celebrate their accomplishments and contribute their unique ideas and talents to the University through networking, mentoring and other activities.

This Affinity Group is a welcome way to encourage cross portfolio, cross divisional and cross campus collaboration. The Group wishes to create a space to voice and address personal and group concerns around the lived experience of racialized staff at U of T. In addressing these challenges and opportunities, the Group aims to assist the University in promoting an environment that promotes personal and professional growth and development.

The objectives of the Connections and Conversations Affinity group are:

  • To find community and provide moral support to racialized members of the U of T community in their pursuit of a satisfying career experience;
  • To offer networking and mentoring opportunities and advice to members and supporters;
  • To contribute our unique experiences to the growth and development of U of T;
  • To seek opportunities within the U of T community to intersect with other groups in efforts to celebrate our cultural heritage while showcasing the talents of racialized staff;
  • To develop strategies and plans that address challenges that racialized U of T members encounter individually, or systemically; and
  • To explore channels for career advancement and seek opportunities to learn from University decision-makers.

Role of the Local UTM Chapter

Given U of T’s size and diversity, local Connections & Conversations groups have been established on each campus in order to better serve the needs of the community. UTM’s local group typically meets on the last Thursday of every month in order to learn from speakers, discuss current events and trends or plan future initiatives to help further our goals.

Executive Committee

Connections & Conversations' local UTM Chapter is guided by its Executive Committee, which provides leadership and operational management of activities such as organizing and running bi-monthly meetings, events, and other strategic initiatives.

Interested in volunteering for the Executive Committee? Click here to learn more!

2019-20 Executive Committee members:

Event Leads

  • Martina Douglas
    Program Coordinator, UTM Equity & Diversity Office
  • Rebeca Mahadeo
    Student Development Coordinator, Intercultural Programs, International Education Centre
  • Ramya Uthayakumar
    Coordinator, Events & Employment Services

Mentoring Leads

  • Corrine Bent-Womack
    Internship Coordinator & Outreach Officer, Department of Economics
  • Martin Kengo
    Community Engagement Coordinator, Access and Outreach, Centre for Student Engagement
  • Saima Ladha
    HR Advisor, UTM Divisional HR Office

Outreach & Communications Leads

  • Jermaine Ingram
    Multimedia & Classroom Technology Specialist, Information & Instructional Technology Service
  • Rachel Kulick
    Curriculum Support Officer, Undergraduate Programs
  • Stephanie Santos
    Receptionist & Administrative Assistant, Department of Language Studies

Group Charter, Strategic Plan, and other Documents

Connections & Conversations in the News

Connections & Conversations Events (Flickr)

Please check out the album below for events that the UTM chapter has held: