Year in Review 2022: Top headlines at York University, January to April

image of blocks that spell 2022

As a new year emerges, YFile takes a look back on 2022 to share with readers a snapshot of the year’s highlights. “Year in Review” will run as a three-part series and will feature a selection of top news stories published in YFile. Here are the stories and highlights for January to April, as chosen by YFile editors.


SEEC helps develop Business Recovery Project for York Region, Aurora Chamber
York Region entrepreneurs were offered free access to the Schulich Executive Education Centre’s (SEEC) Certificate in Business Essentials course thanks to the leadership of the Aurora Chamber of Commerce and the support of the provincial government, York Region, Town of Aurora, and the York Region Chambers of Commerce.

THE Banner for Sustainable YU

York University launches report on progress toward the UN Sustainable Development Goals
The UN Sustainable Development Goal Report is York University’s first annual progress report on the SDGs. Both the report and its accompanying website share stories of progress and facts about York University’s leadership, commitment and progress toward the 17 goals through inspirational stories, facts and figures, and forward-looking action.

York researchers publish novel findings on role of tumor suppressor protein in muscle health
In a study published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, Jonathan Memme, lead author, PhD student in Kinesiology and Health Science (KAHS), Ashley Oliveira, contributing author, PhD student in KAHS, and David A. Hood, senior author, professor and Tier I Canada Research Chair, and director of the Muscle Health Research Centre (MHRC), show that the importance of p53 is most evident under stress conditions where the maintenance of mitochondrial function is essential.

Melissa Grelo and Emmanuella Owusu
Melissa Grelo and Emmanuella Owusu

Emmanuella Owusu is the inaugural recipient of Melissa Grelo Entrance Award for Black and Indigenous Excellence
First-year Bachelor of Commerce in Information Technology student Emmanuella Owusu was awarded the Melissa Grelo Entrance Award for Black and Indigenous Excellence. The award is granted to a woman entering the first year at the School of Information Technology or the Department of Economics, in York University’s Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS).


York Capstone Network partnership with BHER expands opportunities for students
The partnership with the Business + Higher Education Roundtable (BHER) provides more experiential learning (EE) opportunities that give students hands-on experience and help develop skills that enable them to create impact and drive positive change.

The project, titled “Teaching Against Anti-Black Racism and Toward Black Inclusion,” was conducted as part of the Dean’s Award for Research Excellence (DARE) program for undergraduate students enrolled in the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies (LA&PS)

DARE project leads to first-of-its-kind Black Canadian readings and film database
A research project aimed to redress ideologies and systems of anti-Black racism in the University has culminated in a first-of-its-kind database for Black Canadian readings and films.

York University establishes research fund to support Black scholars
The York Black Research Seed Fund provides $150,000 in funding and mentorship to support the research activities of Black academics. The fund aims to promote equitable and inclusive funding to set roots for research projects and support future growth.

All aboard! Next stop is the autonomous train
Autonomous cars conjure images of beetle-like vehicles zipping around the streets, but what about the potential of autonomous rail transport? One researcher at the Lassonde School of Engineering is bringing this vision to life and it has the potential to significantly improve a nation’s ability to transport both passengers and freight.


Provostial Fellows deliver on academic priorities and SDGs
York University’s Provostial Fellows made steady progress on the University Academic Plan priorities and fulfilling the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

York University releases inaugural Annual Report on Black Inclusion
The annual report comes one year after York released the guiding documents Addressing Anti-Black Racism: A Framework on Black Inclusion and the accompanying Action Plan on Black Inclusion: A Living Document for Action (2021) to the University community for consultation and review.


Do octopuses, squid and crabs have emotions?
Octopuses can solve complex puzzles and show a preference for different individuals, but whether they, and other animals and invertebrates, have emotions is being hotly debated and could shake up humans’ moral decision-making, says York philosophy Professor Kristin Andrews, an expert in animal minds.

York leads team to establish $5.45M national mental health research and training platform
Faculty of Health Professor Rebecca Pillai Riddell will lead a revolutionary, multi-million dollar research training initiative that will support a more diverse, inclusive, accessible and transdisciplinary approach to mental health research and training.


photo of camera
The new MCL offers equitable access to space, equipment and resources for students and faculty who are creating multimedia as part of learning, research and teaching

York University’s Scott Library opens Media Creation Lab for research and teaching 
A new Media Creation Lab in the Scott Library provides students and faculty with access to new teaching and hands-on learning opportunities that span across disciplines.

Federal budget earmarks $1.5M for Jean Augustine Chair in Education, Community and Diaspora
Funds laid out in the federal government’s spring budget guaranteed long-term support for research and other initiatives at York University that create pathways to education for Black youth and future Black scholars.

Global Digital
The coalition is open to students, alumni, staff, faculty members and community partners, who will work together to advance the school’s efforts to promote an academic environment that is equitable, diverse and inclusive and is shaped by decolonizing principles

School of Global Health launches coalition to support equity, diversity, inclusion and decolonization
A new Coalition of Support launched by York University’s School of Global Health (YSGH) will take steps to ensure that principles and practices of equity, diversity, inclusion and decolonization (EDID) are built into the core of the school’s vision and living culture.

York professors receive awards from Government of Canada’s New Frontiers in Research Fund
Two York University researchers have received research awards from the Government of Canada’s New Frontiers in Research Fund (NFRF) special call for innovative approaches to research in the pandemic context.

Check back in the next edition of YFile for Year in Review 2022: Top headlines at York University, May to August.