Women are political trailblazers in India. Breaking the glass ceiling in their chosen careers, women have powered India through to a more equal world.
To contribute to Profiles, follow CIRCLE's Profile Guidelines.
As a tutor and music teacher for underprivileged youth in Scarborough, in the final year of his undergraduate studies in Toronto, Dr. Shivajan Sivapalan met many families— and was shocked to learn they were often misguided or ill-informed about mental health. Dr. Sivapalan met a child on the Autism spectrum, who was of Indian background. “The family wasn’t sure what Autism was or meant . . . The mother had never heard the word before. And the worst part was that she felt it was her fault that her child was on the spectrum.” This was a life-changing encounter for Dr.
In the 1990s, while other agricultural scientists in Ontario were mostly planting crops in their research plots, agroforestry pioneers Andy Gordon and Naresh Thevathasan were instead planting trees—and turning heads.
Naresh and Andy at the Ontario Agricultural College were working to give producers a long-term income prospect and environmentally friendly alternative to monocultures, by intercropping lucrative hardwoods among rows of cash crops.
Dilshan Fernando (PhD candidate in Sociology; CIRCLE Student Writer) and Dr. Sharada Srinivasan (Associate Professor; Director CIRCLE) spoke to Vikas Swarup on the occasion of the awarding of the Doctor of Letters, honoris causa by the University of Guelph on 16 June 2022.
In many Canadian workplaces, South Asian women are a distinct and thriving minority. But what do their paths to success look like?
They don’t have it easy. Anju Philip, a PhD candidate in the Department of Management at U of G’s Gordon S. Lang School of Business and Economics says they often navigate complex and arduous parallel cultures.
In the post-pandemic world, international engagement and research collaboration may look quite different than in the past. We’ve learned how easy it can be to communicate with colleagues around the world in real time, without needing to travel. Well-attended international webinars, guest lectures by non-Canadian speakers, and virtual annual lectureships have prevailed.
So, can CIRCLE be a hub for such future research endeavours at Guelph?
Chef Vijay Nair's vision for the University of Guelph's food service is anchored in sustainability.
"A lot of people are too disconnected from food, and food is way too cheap," says Nair. "People just don't appreciate the value of food."
Food waste is a problem. In Canada, this costs almost $50 billion a year with 58 per cent of food production wasted.
Many countries today make gender issues a priority. That's a testament to the impactful gains made by gender advocates the world over.
But deep-rooted issues remain – among them, the wage gaps between men and women, inequalities in land ownership and access to other resources, stagnant and declining women's labor force participation, and violence against women.
Heart-to-heart connections, an openness to differences, and busting myths are all part of being interculturally competent. Dr. Andrea Paras, Associate Professor at the University of Guelph, believes intercultural competence is learned, not instinctive. In other words, it must be taught…and she's committed to helping it flourish.
For travelers, India is a site of curiosity.
For international students, it's a destination likely to reveal new knowledge.
And for multi-instrumentalist Mark Spagnolo, India was the site of a gig that reverberated like no other.