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University Advancement | April 2018  


Ryerson explores privilege and oppression in Canada

White Privilege Conference


Ryerson explores privilege and oppression in Canada

Though Canada is praised around the world for its multiculturalism, significant hurdles still exist in communities nationwide. With the aim of leading transformative and solutions-based discussions about the impact of privilege, Ryerson University’s Office of the Vice-President, Equity and Community Inclusion will be hosting The White Privilege Conference (WPC) Global — Toronto from May 9-12, 2018. An annual staple in the United States, this marks the conference’s international debut where a series of keynote presentations, workshops and activities will delve into issues that focus on, and that go beyond, race.

“Ryerson is pleased to host White Privilege Conference Global — Toronto for its first Canadian edition,” said Denise O’Neil Green, vice-president, equity and community inclusion, Ryerson University. “We have an impressive lineup of thought leaders that will both educate attendees and empower them to build a more inclusive world. We invite diverse and respectful perspectives, and we encourage everyone to be part of it.”

Hundreds of people are expected to attend the four-day event, which features a prominent group of keynote speakers:

  • Shirley Cheechoo, Chancellor, Brock University
  • Rinaldo Walcott, Associate Professor, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
  • Adrien K. Wing, Associate Dean, University of Iowa
  • John Powell, Executive Director and Chancellor's Chair, Haas Institute
  • Jane Fernandes, President, Guilford College
  • Ritu Bhasin, Speaker, Author and Advocate
  • Desmond Cole, Activist and Freelance Journalist

WPC Global — Toronto has generated significant interest amongst local students and youth, who are invited to take part in the conference’s Youth Action Project (YAP). With tailored programming led by a team of experienced facilitators, YAP is an opportunity for the upcoming generation of thought leaders to develop the critical skills needed for identifying various forms of discrimination and for planting the seeds of change.

The conference will also feature the achievements of accomplished Black women in Canada at the 10th Annual Viola Desmond Awards and Banquet on May 11, 2018. This event will celebrate the debut of Canada’s new $10 bill featuring Desmond, the first Black woman to be on the face of Canada’s regularly circulating currency, and will recognize four nominated female trailblazers who have contributed significantly to the empowerment of the Black community at Ryerson and in Toronto. Join us for an evening of education and celebration.

WPC Global — Toronto welcomes attendees from all walks of life: students, post-secondary professionals and faculty, leaders in the corporate and non-profit sectors, activists, artists, social workers, counsellors, healthcare workers, and members of faith communities are all invited to attend. For more information and to secure your spot, please visit: