Call for applications, nominations for head of Stong College

The Faculty of Health at York University invites tenured faculty members to apply for the position of head of Stong College.

Reporting to the Faculty of Health dean, the successful candidate will provide administrative and educational leadership and contribute to inspiring learning, leadership, and citizenship within an engaged and diverse community of students, staff, faculty, Fellows and alumni at Stong College.

The head of Stong College works in partnership with the Calumet and Stong Colleges Student Success Team, including the head of Calumet College, to enhance the experience of Faculty of Health students and support both the Faculty of Health Strategic Plan and the Calumet and Stong Colleges Strategic Plan.

Stong College is affiliated with and serves the students in the School of Kinesiology & Health Science and the School of Nursing in the Faculty of Health.

Head of Stong College role

The head of Stong College contributes to an engaged community by working collaboratively with students, staff, faculty, Fellows, residence life, key campus partners (e.g. Division of Students), and alumni to build and maintain a vibrant, diverse and inclusive community. The colleges play a crucial role at York, and the college head position requires a commitment to the University, Stong and Calumet Colleges, and most importantly, the desire to enhance the lives of students and strengthen the student experience.

The college head actively engages within the colleges’ community by supporting and attending key colleges’ community events and meets regularly with college-affiliated student organizations, staff, units and key campus partners throughout the academic year. The college head role provides a faculty member the opportunity to provide strategic vision and mentorship, and contribute to supporting the success of students and enhancing their experience at the Faculty- and University-level.

The successful candidate will be committed to enhancing the student experience, including the first-year experience, through the delivery of student-centred programs and services, and to engaging members of the York University community, as well as the wider community. The successful applicant will also be engaging and supporting students of diverse heritage and backgrounds, including equity-deserving, under-represented, international, first-generation, 2SLGBTQIA+, mature and part-time, place of birth etc. The college head will support the University’s commitment to decolonizing, equity, diversity and inclusion (DEDI) through the development and implementation of initiatives designed to foster inclusivity and sense of belonging.

This is an exciting opportunity for an individual who is passionate about advancing student success and contributing to building a sense of community among students, staff, faculty members, Fellows and alumni. College heads receive a stipend, course release and sabbatical top-up.

Application/nomination process

Tenured faculty members interested in becoming the head of Stong College can apply directly. Members of the York University community who know a tenured faculty member who would make an exceptional college head are welcome to nominate an individual.

Applications/nominations should be submitted to Professor Mazen Hamadeh, Chair, Search Committee, c/o Lesia Facey, administrative assistant to the Search Committee, at: Office of the Dean, Faculty of Health, no later than Friday, Oct. 20. Applications are welcome from faculty members across all programs/schools/departments within the Faculty of Health and the University and should include: 1) an up-to-date resumé; 2) a statement of interest in the head of Stong College role (maximum two pages); and 3) a brief (one-page) statement of approach to DEDI in an academic environment. The position commences Jan. 1, 2024, for a period of three to five years.

Learn more about the role

Applicants or nominees who are interested in learning more about the position are welcome to contact Jennine Rawana, head of Calumet College, at; or Mazen Hamadeh, former head of Stong College, at

Residence Life launches sustainability, well-being pilot program

Two Black York University students walking on the Keele Campus

Over the 2023-24 academic year, York University’s Residence Life Department is piloting two Living Learning Communities (LLCs), communities of residents who are interested in engaging in learning outside the classroom around a specific topic or theme. This year’s LLCs will seek to engage residents in a series of educational opportunities to deepen their understanding of sustainability and well-being.

In addition to the social and educational programming all residents are invited to partake in, LLC residents (selected based on interest indicated through their housing application and a series of questions to determine candidacy) participate in a sequenced set of learning opportunities tied to the community theme or topic.

The sustainability LLC, housed in Founders Residence, will engage 35 residents in a series of workshops, events and dialogues with the aim that all participants will be able to act upon principles of sustainability. The well-being LLC, in Bethune Residence, will foster 35 residents’ abilities to engage in behaviours that contribute to their mental, spiritual, sexual, emotional and physical health.

Over the course of the next eight months, LLC participants will have the opportunity to engage in two educational programs, workshops or events per month tailored to support them with their respective LLC’s learning outcome.

Additionally, participants will engage in three reflective activities over the course of the year to solidify their learning and reflection throughout their experience in the program.

Each community has a work-study Living Learning Community leader to foster connection, facilitate peer programming and engage in intentional one-on-one conversations to support participants in achieving their respective goals for the LLC program.

“I wanted to get involved with the Living Learning Community at York because it’s a great way to practice immersive learning, in the sense that we get to constantly be at one with a community that shares similar values and is constantly striving to learn and grow from their surroundings,” shares Ramisa Mustafa, student leader for the sustainability LLC. “I believe it’ll not only help me engage more with York, but also help me grow as an individual and allow more room for holistic knowledge acquisition.”

Melanie Sit, student leader for the well-being LLC, adds, “I originally was interested in becoming a don, but the application to be an LLC piqued my interests, as I enjoy learning about the topic of well-being and I had some experience with it in high school. I also love planning and running different activities and events that bring joy to other people.”

In April, the sustainability LLC pilot project was one of four applications awarded funding through the Sustainability Innovation Fund, which will support the sustainability LLC in fostering student leaders equipped to role model sustainable behaviours and foster a more sustainable culture across the York University community.

Mustafa notes, “Ultimately, experiencing a sense of community helps people hold themselves accountable for their actions and decisions, academics and a lot more, which I believe is important while living alone. These students who participate in the Living Learning Community will most likely have a more fulfilling experience at York because of the values and knowledge base they’ll have exposure to. This will help them step out as more socially aware individuals at the end of the program.”

The sustainability and well-being LLCs formally launched Sept. 6 with a welcome and orientation event for each community. Applications for the 2024-25 academic year will open in February 2024 as part of the housing application process for students.

Fall orientation continues with welcome events for all students

A group of five York University students walking down York Boulevard in the fall

The new academic year at York University begins on Sept. 6, which means York’s 2023 Transition and Orientation programming is already underway, welcoming new community members with a mix of fun and informative events.

In addition to the orientation sessions YFile highlighted last week for Black, mature, transfer and international students, here are the details about the remaining 2023 Orientation events – all with a focus on decolonization, equity, diversity and inclusion to ensure all students feel welcome and supported at York.

Open Doors York

Open Doors York will bring the entire University community together in a large, festival- and exploration-style day, on Sept. 5 from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Key partners on the Keele Campus will open their office doors for new and returning students to visit, learn and maybe even walk away with some freebies. And that’s not all – in the York University Commons, expect a carnival-style atmosphere featuring music, games, snacks and giveaways.


From Aug. 26 to Sept. 8, York students, staff and faculty can enjoy specially priced meals from participating campus food vendors. Yorklicious is a great opportunity to explore the wide variety of food options on campus and get a great meal for $10 or less. Participating vendors include:

  • Sushi Shop
  • Campus Bubble Tea
  • Z-Teca
  • Great Canadian Bagel
  • Mac’s Sushi
  • Break Café
  • 416 Grill
  • Rasoi
  • ChopD and WrapD
  • Grill House
  • Chef’s Table
  • Crepe Delicious
  • Chungchun Rice Dog
  • Insomnia Cookies
  • Basil Box
  • Osmows
  • Orange Snail
Students enjoying a meal together on York University’s Keele Campus

Indigenous Student Orientation

The Centre for Indigenous Student Services (CISS) will welcome incoming Indigenous students to York with three days of specialized events and activities from Aug. 23 to 25, including a harbourfront boat cruise. Students will meet CISS staff and learn about the services and programs offered by the centre. For more details and to register, visit the CISS Events & Activities page.

York University students learning about Indigenous culture

Move-in Day and Parents & Family Orientation

Aug. 26 is the official residence Move-in Day. Parents and/or guardians can drop students off at their specific residence, where student volunteers will be waiting to help them move in. More details are available on the Housing Services website.

As the move-in is happening, parents, guardians and family members can attend the Parent and Family Orientation. There, they will receive a welcome from University staff and students, and they can take in a play performed by Vanier College Productions. The performance offers a humorous but heartfelt glimpse into the first-year university experience, while simultaneously introducing the audience to many of the supports and services that are on offer for students.

Afterwards, a services fair will allow parents and guardians to speak directly with University staff and learn about the resources that will be available to their students. There will be additional sessions available for parents of international students, plus a generic session on student finances that is open to everyone.

Orientation Week

This year, Orientation Week will run from Aug. 27 to Sept. 4. The week will include a variety of events, workshops and icebreakers designed for first-year students to get to know each other, as well as upper-year students in their colleges and Faculties.

A York University student participating in Orientation Week celebrations

For complete details and to register, visit the Orientation Week Events page. Students can use the college finder tool to determine which session they should sign up for based on their academic program’s college affiliation. Participating colleges and Faculties include:

  • Bethune
  • Calumet
  • Founders
  • Glendon
  • Lassonde
  • McLaughlin
  • New College
  • Schulich
  • Stong
  • Vanier
  • Winters

Academic Orientation Days

Academic Orientation Days will take place on Aug. 29 and 30. These mandatory sessions for all new students introduce their specific degree program and the resources available within their affiliated college and Faculty. They also touch on academic services, financial support and other vital tools to help facilitate a smooth transition into university life. Students can refer to the Transition and Orientation Events page for complete details and registration information.

YorkFest 2023

Each year, the York Federation of Students (YFS) aims to make YorkFest the largest back-to-school orientation festival held on a Canadian university campus. Details for this year’s YorkFest haven’t yet been released, but keep an eye on the YFS website for updates.

For more information about what’s happening at York in the lead-up to September and beyond, visit the Transition and Orientation 2023 website, which includes a schedule of events, the new student checklist, a college finder tool, student support services, information for parents, housing details and more.

Residence Move-in Day marks the start of Orientation Week for new students

Saturday, Aug. 27 is Residence Move-in Day, and for many new students coming to York University, it also marks the start of a full week of orientation to university life. This year, events will be online and in person, marking a return to pre-pandemic times.

Orientation Week for thousands of new students to York University continues through to Sept. 6. The week brings an energetic blend of social and academic orientation programming planned by the Faculties, the Lassonde School of Engineering, the Schulich School of Business, York International, the Atkinson Centre for Mature and Part-time Students, the University Libraries and York’s 11 colleges. Events are presented both online and in-person and are open to resident and commuter students.

Energy will be high and guiding incoming students through Orientation Week are hundreds of upper-year student leaders who are volunteering their time and experience to make sure that everyone has a safe and enjoyable time. The Orientation leaders will be ready and waiting on Saturday to help students and their parents move into their residence rooms. Move-in day also includes a parents’ orientation, tours of the campuses, cheer offs, games, BBQs, parties and more.

One of the highly anticipated events of Orientation Week is York Orientation Day, a full-day event on Sept. 6 where students connect with peers and faculty in their program, explore the campus and attend the welcome ceremony in the York Lions Stadium at Keele Campus.

Visit the Orientation website for more details.

McLaughlin College a community partner for Human Rights Watch Canada Film Festival  

film clapper

McLaughlin College is one of this year’s Human Rights Watch Film Festival (HRWFF) community partners. The festival will hold screenings of five documentaries and will take place at the Hot Docs Ted Rogers Cinema from May 26 to 29.  

The five documentaries are:  

The Klabona Keepers 
The Klabona Keepers is an intimate portrait of the dynamic Indigenous community that succeeded in protecting the remote Sacred Headwaters, known as the Klabona, in northwest British Columbia from industrial activities. 
Tamo Campos, a York University master’s of environmental studies student, is the documentary director. 

March For Dignity  
This film follows a small group of brave LGBTI+ activists in Tbilisi, Georgia, as they attempt to conduct the first Pride march in the country, where homosexuality remains highly stigmatized.  

Mujer de Soldado (Soldier’s Woman) 
Mujer de Soldado is a deeply moving picture of female solidarity that finally provides space for the dignity of women’s experiences that has long been denied. 

Tacheles -The Heart of the Matter 
Three generations removed from the Holocaust, Yaar is a young Jewish Berliner desperate to leave the past behind. 

The Last Shelter 
Deep in Mali, in West Africa on the edge of the Sahel Desert, lies the peaceful city of Gao – a quiet way station for passersby with their eyes set on Europe in hopes of finding opportunity, safety and a better future. The Last Shelter is an emotional portrait of this town and the generous people who live in it. 

Human Rights Watch Film Festival logo

All five documentaries will be made available for digital viewing from May 30 to June 2. Each of these films addresses some of the most pressing human rights issues from across the globe. 

“Human Rights Watch is one of the world’s most recognized and respected human rights protection agencies and its annual film festival features award-winning documentaries that illustrate the human rights struggles that people are forced to confront daily. They are not only revealing, insightful but, above all, educative,” says Head of McLaughlin College James C. Simeon. “McLaughlin College is proud to be one of the many Community Partners for this year’s Human Rights Film Festival.” 

For more than 40 years, Human Rights Watch has defended people at risk of abuse by investigating abuses scrupulously, exposing the facts widely, and relentlessly pressing those in power for change that respects people’s rights. Their researchers examine situations in 90 countries around the world, functioning as investigators, journalists and advocates. 

Recently marking its 30th anniversary and currently screening films in more than 20 cities around the world, HRWFF bears witness to human rights violations in direct storytelling and exposé form. They create a forum for courageous individuals on both sides of the lens to empower audiences with the knowledge that personal commitment can make a difference. Tickets for the film festival are free of charge and can be reserved here. For more information, visit the Human Rights Watch website.  

Global South Forum discusses reconceptualizing Bandung  


York University’s Global South Forum “Reconceptualizing Bandung: Non-Alignment and Third Worldism Today” took place on April 5.  

The virtual event discussed the significance of the “Bandung spirit” associated with the Asian-African Congress of 1955 in Bandung, Indonesia, which was attended by delegates from 29 Asian and African nations, to discuss peace and oppose contemporary colonialism, racism and capitalism. 

Co-organized by the Faculty of Environmental and Urban Change (EUC), Founders College, the graduate and undergraduate programs in Development Studies and the African Studies program in the Department of Social Science, and the York Centre for Asian Research (YCAR), the event brought together three globally prominent speakers from diverse backgrounds and different geographies to consider the structural shifts that accompanied decolonization, the continuous exploitation through an international division of labour, and the legacy of resistance as represented by Non-Aligned Movement and Third Worldism.   

The speakers included Su Lin Lewis, an associate professor in modern global history at the University of Bristol; Yao Graham, the coordinator of Third World Network-Africa, based in Accra, Ghana; and Houria Bouteldja, a founding member of le Parti des Indigènes de la République, a decolonial political member organization in France.  

Driving the discussion were the shared structures of feeling among the scholars about the political, social, cultural and ecological problems in the capitalist world economy. 

EUC Professor llan Kapoor says, “Bandung represents the powerful idea of ‘non-alignment,’ that is, a refusal to conform to the mainstream socioeconomic norms on offer today, be they capitalist, liberal democratic or authoritarian – norms that privilege the already privileged and exploit the excluded. The idea is to struggle instead for a new, radically egalitarian world which puts the excluded first.” 

YCAR Director and EUC Professor Abidin Kusno notes, “Today, the context is ‘Asia rising’ a reality which surpasses the dream of Bandung, but it is not clear how the rise of China for instance would challenge European hegemony and the global capitalist economy to build a more democratic and egalitarian world order.”  

Pablo Idahosa, an associate professor in African studies/international development studies at the Department of Social Science at the Faculty of Liberal Arts & Professional Studies says, “A reassessment of the global order political-military, resource and financial realignments taking place, and the ambivalence of many countries in the global south towards them, would benefit from lenses provided from the global south, and not only because of but perhaps accelerated by, the invasion of Ukraine.” 

“Reconceptualizing Bandung” is the most recent event organized by the Global South Forum at the University, which has presented a series of events brought together since 2019 by Kapoor, Kusno, Idahosa, Viviana Patroni, associate professor of international development studies at the Department of Social Science, along with EUC Associate Professors Stefan Kipfer and Anna Zalik.  

The goal of the forum is to bring together the community of colleagues at the University committed to facilitating conversations about development more inclusive of the critical intellectual contributions from the global south itself.  

For more information about the Global South Forum, visit the YCAR website. To receive notices about upcoming events and other activities contact

York University played key role in Singaporean arts and education leader’s success

York alumnus Venka Purushothaman

Venka Purushothaman, deputy president and provost for LaSalle College of the Arts in Singapore, credits York University with opening his eyes to the potential of the arts, the field in which he has made his career.

By Elaine Smith

From the beginning of his post-secondary journey, it seemed quite likely that Venka Purushothaman, who earned an honours bachelor of arts degree in English literature and mass communication and a master’s degree in English literature from York University, would pursue an academic career, and he has – but not as a professor of English. Instead, Purushothaman’s path led him to arts criticism and administration before he earned a PhD in Singaporean cultural policy and festival culture at the University of Melbourne in Australia. He has since spent 20 years at LaSalle College as a professor and administrator and will be part of the college committee that works with the government to form a national university of the arts in Singapore.

As a secondary school student, Purushothaman was eager to pursue a university degree somewhere different from Singapore, because he needed to see the world. “I spun a globe and put my finger on it and the closest spot to where it landed was Newfoundland, so I decided to come to Canada to study,” he said.

Always curious, Purushothaman began reading extensively about Canada and was inspired. When he arrived, he decided to see the country before applying to university as a way of becoming comfortable with colloquial English and building his confidence; he put on his backpack and travelled.

Purushothaman decided to pursue a liberal arts education focusing on literature because he loved to read. Toronto appealed to him because, like Singapore, it was multicultural, although “Toronto was taking multiculturalism to another level,” he said, noting that York’s curriculum and approach to learning seemed like a good fit, mixing the traditional literary canon with postcolonial works. “The first-year offerings were diverse and wide and opened up new ways of thinking,” he said.

As he absorbed these new ideas, Purushothaman also worked on campus. One of the jobs he had later in his undergraduate career was as senior don for Winters College. At the time, Winters was becoming the fine arts residence, and Purushothaman soon got to know many budding artists.

“It was a bridge to understanding the arts in its many manifestations,” he said. “I went to all kinds of performances and exhibitions to support my friends and I became more in tune with contemporary arts. It was a transformative environment.”

After earning his master’s degree, Purushothaman visited his family in Singapore, intending to return to Canada and find a position in copywriting or editing. However, fate decreed otherwise. The arts were taking root in Singapore, and he was recruited to work as an arts administrator for the Singapore Arts Centre Co. Ltd. to help establish a national arts centre, the first in the country. Purushothaman travelled the world to visit arts facilities, including Harbourfront and Roy Thomson Hall in Toronto. All the while, he continued writing, reviewing the visual arts and theatre work, he says, “that fed my soul.”

This job led him to other arts administration positions and, eventually, back to academia: first to his PhD studies and then to LaSalle College, where “I blended my interest in academia and the multi-faceted arts and creative industries.”

“I have been philosophically committed to transformative arts education,” Purushothaman said. “I do not want us to be siloed by history and tradition. Arts education should always be pioneering in that regard. Artists are resourceful and inventive, always looking for creative ways of learning. These modalities are now also valued by the non-arts sector and the place of creativity in many organizations is highly valued.”

Purushothaman believes in learning from the best and has used collaboration to tap into new ways of thinking and educating. In addition to creating the Asia-Pacific Network for Cultural Education (ANCER), he is a founder of a Global Design Initiative that pairs LaSalle with five other universities worldwide who are exploring new approaches to design education. The college is also a member of the Shared Campus Project, a consortium of universities who have a co-operation platform for international education formats and research networks. Purushothaman is also looking forward to making connections with the School of the Arts, Media, Performance and Design at York University.

“I want to see how we can find a common space to collaborate, because I truly believe in that global exchange,” he said.

Meanwhile, his latest endeavour is assisting in forming an alliance of Singapore’s two arts colleges to create a national university of the arts.

“It’s an exciting time,” he said. “It fits with the world class universities that Singapore already has. While we are seeing cuts to the arts in many countries, our government has a vision for multiple peaks of excellence. It is giving its stamp of approval to the arts, which is only fitting, because the arts are pervasive in society and help people realize their own potential.”

The arts and his early pursuit of an international education have led Purushothaman to discover and build upon his own potential and generations of artists and students have benefited.

McLaughlin College guest lecturer features Oscar-winning film


On Dec. 8 at 3 p.m., Lesley Sparks, Hot Docs education and youth programs manager, will virtually join McLaughlin College to feature the Academy Award-winning documentary, Learning to Skateboard in a Warzone (If You’re A Girl). Sparks will then lead a discussion about the success and challenges of offering human rights content in today’s classroom.

Lesley Sparks

Sparks began her career in education with the creation of a national school program for Kodak Canada. She has created and organized major teacher conferences, lectures and events to highlight the power of the image. Since 2000, she has managed the Docs For Schools program curating documentary film programs for elementary and secondary teachers to complement their curriculum.

Docs For Schools the education program of Hot Docs, showcases content related to what is happening in society, culture, and the world. The programs offer documentary content across many subjects and grade levels to inform, offer insight, and bring new perspectives to students.

This event is co-sponsored by the Office of the College Head, McLaughlin College, and Human Rights Watch (HRW). To register in advance, click here.

Deborah E. Anker to deliver McLaughlin College’s Annual Public Policy Lecture

Woman's hand

McLaughlin College at York University will host its Annual Public Policy Lecture, presented by Professor Deborah E. Anker, on Nov. 29 at 7 p.m. via Zoom.

Deborah E. Anker
Deborah E. Anker

Anker, a clinical professor of law and the founder of the Harvard Law School Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program (HIRC), will deliver the talk, “The Development of American Gender Asylum Law; Cross Border Collaboration Between U.S. and Canadian NGOs.”

Anker’s lecture will highlight the development of the body of the gender asylum law, or asylum claims of women subject to persecution over the past two decades and the influence of the international women’s human rights movement, which highlighted violence against women as a human rights issue. Anker will also discuss the urge for Canada to take leadership and reclaim its legacy after establishing a human rights framework for interpreting refugee law and issuing the first guidelines for adjudication of gender asylum claims in the 1990s.

Anker is one of the most widely known asylum practitioners, teachers and scholars in the U.S. and a pioneer in the development of clinical legal education in the immigration field, training students in direct representation of refugees and creating a foundation for clinics at law schools around the U.S. Author of the leading and annually updated treatise, Law of Asylum in the United States, Anker has co-drafted groundbreaking Gender Asylum Guidelines and amicus curiae briefs. Her historical work on U.S. ratification and implementation of the UN Refugee Convention in The Forty Year Crisis: A Legislative History of the Refugee Act of 1980,” is a classic that has shaped the interpretation of U.S. asylum law, especially in an internationalist direction.

Learn more about Anker and register for this event here.

Brain food: McLaughlin Lunch Talk Series serves up four events for October

McLaughlin College invites the York University community to come and listen to interesting speakers as they share their knowledge on a variety of topics during the popular Lunch Talk Series. The long-running series continues this year in a virtual format via Zoom.

Students who attend six or more Lunch Talks throughout the year will receive a Certificate of Participation, while those who attend 10 or more will receive a Certificate of Honour.

There are four events scheduled for October:

Distant States are as Responsible for the Refugees as the Neighbours – Oct. 6, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

Presented by Boldizsar Nagy, associate professor at the Central European University, this event explores the argument that countries next to the home countries of the refugees have the duty to take up the refugees, and more distant states may refuse their admission. This talk will show that this is a morally false position that cannot be justified, so neither the “first country of asylum” nor the “safe third country” rule is morally tenable. Naturally, it is not denied that practical reasons may militate in favour of protecting refugees close to their home, but no normative claim can be based on them.

Nagy teaches international law and refugee law. He studied law and later philosphy at the Eötvös Loránd University (ELTE) in Budapest, and has acted as a practising international lawyer on several occasions, including the Gabčikovo-Nagymaros Project Case at the International Court of Justice. For more on his background, visit this page.

Register for the event here.

Fast-track Removals from the U.S.: Violations of Due Process and Non-Refoulement Obligations at the Southern Border – Oct. 7, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

In recent years, the majority of those deported from the United States each year are sent back to their home countries through summary procedures. Bypassing the immigration court system, these summary removals are improperly punitive, deny due process and violate fundamental non-refoulement obligations under U.S. and international law. This talk, presented by Sabrineh Ardalan, a clinical professor of law, will will provide an overview of recent policy changes that have led to an increase in fast-track removals, the legal framework for these removals and case studies that highlight the impact of these summary procedures on asylum seekers.

Ardalan is the the director of the Harvard Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program. At the clinic, Ardalan supervises and trains law students working on applications for asylum and other humanitarian protections, as well as appellate litigation and policy advocacy. She has authored briefs submitted to the Board of Immigration Appeals as well as to the federal district courts, circuit courts of appeal and the U.S. Supreme Court on cutting-edge issues in U.S. asylum law.

Register for the event here.

The New EU Migration and Asylum Pact: Daylight at the End of the Tunnel or a Dead End? – Oct. 14, 12:30 to 1:30 p.m.

On Sept. 23, 2020, the European Commission proposed the New Pact on Migration and Asylum, which is supposed to reform the existing European Union (EU) migration and asylum framework. However, the future of the Migration Pact is far from certain – considering the current stage of negotiations among EU member states, it is questionable whether the legislative proposals put forward by the European Commission will ever be adopted and, if so, what their final versions will look like. The aim of this talk, presented by Iris Goldner Lang, is to address the challenges the increasing number of migrants and refugees and the COVID-19 outbreak have had on the EU migration and asylum policies, and to discuss whether the Migration Pact can respond to these challenges by ensuring efficient and human rights-compliant practices. Special attention will be drawn to the most important novelties proposed by the Migration Pact, the challenges of their implementation and the importance of solidarity among EU member states.

Lang is a Jean Monnet Professor of EU Law at the University of Zagreb. She is the holder of the UNESCO Chair on Free Movement of Persons, Migration and Inter-Cultural Dialogue and an academic co-ordinator of the Jean Monnet Centre of Excellence “EU’s Global Leadership in the Rule of Law.” She has held visiting positions at University College London and at Harvard Law School, where she was a John Harvey Gregory Visiting Professor of Law and World Organization and a Fulbright Visiting Researcher.

Register for the event here.

The 2021 Canadian Election: The Election No One Wanted – Oct. 18, 12:30 to 2 p.m.

When Prime Minister Justin Trudeau called a snap federal election in the midst of the pandemic in the hopes of winning a majority, the five-week summer election campaign ended with virtually the same results as the last election in 2019. The outcome was another Liberal minority government, which prompted commentators to say, “All this for that?” There were many disappointments during this “pandemic election,” including the fact that it was the most expensive election in Canadian history and it had the lowest turnout on record.

McLaughlin College has assembled a panel of experts to offer their analysis of the 2021 federal election results and to share their thoughts and reflections on what this general election will mean for Canada, both in the short- and long-term.

Moderator: James C. Simeon is head of McLaughlin College and associate professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration (SPPA), York University. He is a former director of SPPA. His principal areas of research include public international law, especially, international refugee law, and public policy and administration.


Sylvia Bashevkin is a professor in the Department of Political Science at the University of Toronto. Some of her scholarly distinctions include fellowship in the Royal Society of Canada and the Canadian Political Science Association Prize in International Relations. Title of the talk: Do unnecessary elections invite trouble for governing parties?

Robert Drummond is University Professor Emeritus, Department of Politics and School of Public Policy and Administration, York University. His key areas of expertise are politics and government, public policy, Ontario politics, public politics in an aging society, political parties and elections, pensions and retirement policy, and labour policy.

Denis Pilon is an associate professor in the Department of Politics at York University. He is the author of Wrestling with Democracy: Voting Systems as Politics in the Twentieth Century West and The Politics of Voting: Reforming Canada’s Electoral System.

Frederick Fletcher is University Professor Emeritus, Communication Studies and Politics, at York University. His research and teaching have focused on the media and politics, with special attention to elections and electoral democracy. His recent research deals with coverage of Indigenous issues in mainstream newspapers and the challenges faced by traditional media in the digital era. Title of the talk: Campaign 2021: News media narratives and images

Register for the event here.