My Ryerson Best of 2011

by julia.hanigsberg | January 1st, 2012

Here is the 2011 roundup of some of my best of 2011. Don’t look for an order—this list represents what stands out in my mind and it was tough to whittle this down to 10 since there were so many great moments of 2011.

  1.  I love every time I hear from a Ryerson employee whose child has been admitted to Ryerson. There is nothing like the pride of our community in the university. Dependent tuition waiveris one of the most impactful benefits we give to our employees—a multi-generational impact that makes real change in people’s lives. I’m proud of every one of those kids who has worked so hard to get into Ryerson & keep sharing this good news with me!
  2. We have started many initiatives this year that demonstrate our commitment to Putting People First. Among these are our Employee Assistance Plan; developing an employee survey; planning for our first university-wide awards celebration; and rolling-out new employee awards (more news on these last two coming soon!).
  3. I have personally benefited from a great mentor group. My team of students and young alumni give me great advice and keep me in touch with issues that matter to our students.
  4. Is it funny that Twitter has been one of my best tools to “travel” the 21 acres that makes up our campus (while giving me a chance to learn from the world)?  I gain a tremendous amount of insight from my social media connection to students and colleagues and I’m available to our community in an immediate way. And every once in a while I’m able to get in there quickly and fix a problem that I might never even have heard about otherwise. And there are some great laughs!
  5. Great teamwork is one of the things I’m grateful for as I look back at 2011. One standout example is the Email and Collaborative Tools Project. The team drew from expertise across the entire university and was jointly led by the Chair of the Academic Computing Advisory Committee Dr. Dimitri Androutsos, and Director of Computing and Communications Services Brian Lesser.   
  6. Gould Street continues to create an amazing a sense of campus and community for our University. City Council extended pedestrianization for another six months; the Farmer’s Market  was a great team effort  of the farmers, students, and colleagues from University Business Services and Facilities & Sustainability;  the Community Garden showed great initiative and hard work from our students in collaboration with Facilities & Sustainability; and the new look around the Image Arts Building designed by Daoust Lestage has increased the beauty of our campus and reminded us of the inspiring impact of the public realm on our well-being.
  7. Opening the Image Arts Building was another great collaborative effort. Faculty, students and staff in the School of Image Arts showed huge commitment to the project and patience with its challenges working with the team from Capital Projects and Real Estate. This building is a new gem for the University.
  8. Every year it seems like there is another giant policy development mountain we have to climb!  These aren’t glamourous but they are important and necessary and take tons of work from lots of folks. The two projects that stand out this year for me are the implementation of workplace violence amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety Act and the implementation of new government procurement/purchasing directives.  Literally dozens of people worked on these projects led by teams from Human Resources, Environmental Health Safety & Security, and Financial Services and involving colleagues from Senate, student reps, student services, and the list goes on.
  9. Our campus can be a great lab for our students and colleagues. I love the creativity I’m exposed to when students take on everything from Gould Street to the new Health Science Building project and demonstrate the application of their education and considerable talents to problems and projects my teams are actively engaged with. We love learning with them.
  10. Winning a Canadian Architecture Award of Excellence for the design for our Student Learning Centre brings pride to the entire University. Snohetta and Zeidler have designed an exceptional building that will make a huge impact on Toronto and this is only the beginning of the recognition I’m sure it will receive.  Even with such fantastic architects, the SLC couldn’t achieve its promise without the creativity and hard work of a great team of students and colleagues from the library, student services, drawing from among faculty and staff experts, the Provost’s office and Capital Projects and Real Estate.

Thanks to everyone who made 2011 another incredible Ryerson year. I’m looking forward to a great 2012.

What are some of your fondest moments of 2011?

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