Feelin' Groovy: UTM celebrates faculty and staff with 60s-themed party

Staff and faculty dresses in 60's clothing
Thursday, May 18, 2017 - 4:07am
Blake Eligh

U of T Mississauga celebrated “Wayback Wednesday” in hippie style on May 18 with a 1967-themed party for staff and faculty to celebrate the campus’ 50th anniversary.

Hosted by the Office of Advancement and Hospitality & Retail Operations, the groovy flashback fête featured photos from the campus’ 50-year history, a jukebox playing hits from the Summer of Love and party-goers dressed in hippie garb, complete with fringed vests, flower crowns, headbands and tie-dyed T-shirts. The classic 60s menu included root beer floats, chicken Kiev, Monte Cristo sandwiches and shrimp cocktail.

Interim V-P and Principal Ulrich Krull reminisced about the state of the world in 1967, when the Erindale College campus began—a time that included the Vietnam War and race riots in many U.S. cities, as well as peace rallies, the “Summer of Love”, Twiggy and the Grateful Dead.

“This was the world stage at the time UTM was built,” Krull said. “It was also the time of cultural change, when education minister Bill Davis had a vision for the education system that was contrary to what had previously exisited. Education wasn’t only for the elite—it was also for the general public, and could help to build a quality of life for everybody in this society. The provincial government footed the money, put in the resources to build the university and college system in a different way. This meant major expansion, much larger numbers of students having the opportunity to get a higher education.”

Over the past 50 years, many thousands of people, faculty and staff, have been involved in building this place, and making it special. There are over 54,000 graduates, and still more that have been touched by the campus,” Krull said. “We’re talking about tens of thousands of individuals who have changed the nature of Mississauga, Peel Region and the world.”

“It is the contributions of faculty and staff who changed the outlook of the youth who came here, creating people that could fulfill the roles of citizens and strive for their own livelihood. That is what this institution has been about,” Krull said. “It’s a major contribution—recognize that every day, as you work with people around you and with the students that you see, you are changing the world to be a better place. You’ve made a difference, and I want to thank you for that. Congratulations.”

View photos from the party