Richmond Centre for Disability Ambassador Project

The Richmond Centre for Disability (RCD) is looking for volunteer ambassadors for their RCD Ambassador Project. The goal of the project is to develop a specialized volunteer and citizenship group that will work to enrich the lives of people with disabilities and improve our community while acquiring valuable employment and interpersonal skills.

Training sessions begin in April. For more information or to sign up, email or or call 604-232-2404.


Crohn’s and Colitis Canada’s AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program

Crohn’s and Colitis Canada is proud to launch the fourth annual AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program.

The AbbVie IBD Scholarship Program recognizes the obstacles faced by students living with Crohn’s and colitis and supports them in rising above their personal challenges in pursuit of their dreams.

Supported by an educational grant from AbbVie, Crohn’s and Colitis Canada will extend ten (10) one-time scholarships of up to $5,000 to students living with Crohn’s disease and ulcerative colitis who are entering into or currently attending a post-secondary educational institution for the Fall semester of 2015.

The scholarship eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Students diagnosed with Crohn’s disease or ulcerative colitis
  • Students seeking an associate, undergraduate, or graduate degree from a Canadian university; college; or enrolled in a trade school educational diploma
  • Students enrolled in or awaiting acceptance from a Canadian-based post-secondary educational institution for the Fall semester of 2015

For more information, and to access the online application, please visit The application deadline is June 1, 2015.

B.C. Public Service Work-Able Internship Program

The Work-Able Internship Program is a twelve month BC Public Service work experience program for recent post-secondary graduates with disabilities. This unique program provides learning, coaching and mentorship throughout the internship and interns will gain valuable skills and public service experience.

B.C. Public Service Work-Able Internship Program Full-Time
Salary: $1,627.65 Bi-weekly
Locations: Victoria, Vancouver
Length: Temporary Position from September 1, 2015 to August 31, 2016

Successful applicants will be offered extensive training, growth, and development opportunities, a competitive salary and a balance between work and life commitments. 

To be considered for this opportunity, students must submit:

  •  Resume Profile
  •  Personal Essay (750 words or less no less than 500)

To be eligible for the Work-Able Internship Program you must:

  • Self-identify as a person with a disability
  • Reside in B.C.
  • Have an under-graduate or graduate degree from a recognized post-secondary institution within 2 years of Internship start date of September 2015.

Successful candidates may be asked for supporting documentation regarding their disability to assist in providing accommodation supports. They will also be required to submit documentation that verifies their post-secondary graduation date and may be required to undergo a criminal record check.

Candidates selected to move forward in the hiring process may be assessed on the education, experience, knowledge, skills, abilities and competencies as listed in each of the attached job profiles.

For more information on the Work-Able Internship Program and to apply click here:

For any questions regarding this posting, please contact Odette Dantzer at

If you experience technical difficulties submitting your resume, please email for assistance.

Intercultural understanding… through art!

Post by Rachel Lee, Equity Ambassador and 3rd-year Sociology Student

At the start of a new year, everyone has something to look forward to…seeing your friends on campus, summer break, that concert you’ve been waiting forever for. Well here’s something to get excited about in March!

The UBC Equity Ambassadors are planning InterculturalU in celebration of the International Day to End Racial Discrimination, an event promoting intercultural understanding through your artwork!

Going beyond multiculturalism (i.e. co-existing different cultures), intercultural understanding focuses on making connections with, and increasing our knowledge of, each other’s cultures. In the past, InterculturalU included pecha kucha, roundtables, or panel discussions. This year, we hope to present an evening of art and awareness promoting understanding between the rich variety of cultures that every student brings to our campus. And we need your art to help make this possible!

Are you an artist in the broadest, most imaginative sense?
Are you passionate about ending discrimination and celebrating diversity using your art?

Complete an online submission form to showcase your artwork. The online submission process will close on January 19th, 2015.

Here are just few of the possible mediums that your art could be: song, dance, drumming, photography, painting, sculpture, slam poetry, improv, stand-up comedy.

We look forward to all your submissions! If you have any questions please contact us at

International Day of Persons with Disabilities

Wednesday December 3, 2014 is the International Day of Persons with Disabilities.

The annual observance of the International Day of Persons with Disabilities was proclaimed in 1992 by the United Nations General Assembly resolution 47/3. The observance of the Day aims to promote an understanding of disability issues and mobilize support for the dignity, rights and well-being of persons with disabilities. It also seeks to increase awareness of gains to be derived from the integration of persons with disabilities in every aspect of political, social, economic and cultural life.

This year, the International Day of Persons with Disabilities will focus on the role of technology in creating enabling working environments and in disaster risk reduction and emergency responses.

UBC is recognizing the International Day of Persons with Disabilities on December 3rd. Free events are also happening around the City of Vancouver recognizing this day.

Memorial sites: places of remembrance and action

Memorial picture 1

Post by Hannah Barath, Access & Diversity Co-op Student Assistant

On December 6, 1989, an armed man walked into an Engineering class at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal. After forcing the men to leave he said he hated feminists. He shot the women in the class, and then beyond it. At the end of his killing rampage, he shot himself. In total 28 people were injured, and all of the 14 people killed were women. Following these events, Canada established December 6 as the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. The day marks the anniversary of the massacre and reminds us about acts of gender-based violence against women in Canada and around the world.

We honour the memory of these 14 women and all other women who have experienced gender-based violence every year through memorial services and sites. This year marks the 25th anniversary of the tragic event at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal. Perhaps it is especially noteworthy that this is the first year that the annual December 6th memorial service at UBC Vancouver will be held at a newly created memorial site in the Engineering Design Centre courtyard.

Considering the significance of this anniversary and the new memorial on our own campus, I have been reflecting on the purpose and importance of creating such memorials. In my opinion, the purpose of memorials are to create spaces for reflection, mourning, honoring, learning, and coming together as a community. With this in mind, I thought about how memorial sites, and in particular the one on our campus, can be places of remembrance but also places of action?

Gender-based violence is an ongoing issue, and the installment of this memorial site is one way that ongoing violence can be recognized and acknowledged each and every day. The physical location of the site also reflects that this tragic event is one that the Faculty of Applied Sciences identifies especially strongly with. Out of the 14 murdered, 12 were engineering students, the other two a nursing student and staff member of the school.

But gender-based violence is not an issue that is contained or relevant to only one Faculty or one gender. It is something that affects all people in one way or another. Regardless of the memorial’s location it is open and meant for all members of the UBC community.

The design allows this to be a place for reflecting and mourning, but it is also an open area that allows for social interaction and gathering, creating a place that lets us come together as a community and work for positive change. The 14 women who were killed are commemorated by a leaf-shaped table, which bears each of their names and the following inscription:

“On the 6th of December 1989, 14 women – 12 of them engineering students – were killed at l’École Polytechnique de Montréal because of their gender.

We mourn. We remember. We question. Together, we work for change”

I think that the last line is particularly important. December 6th is the National Day of Remembrance and Action on Violence Against Women. The line “together, we work for change” signifies that there are actions that have to be taken. The shooting at L’École Polytechnique is one example from Canadian history, but it is not an isolated event. Gender-based violence is something that is ongoing and a problem in our society. December 6 will mark 25 years since a lone man walked into a school and shot 14 women to death, because of their gender. But we must remember that gender-based violence manifests in many ways and it is something that is still very common.

So let this year be the first of many to come where this memorial site is a place not just of remembrance, but also one of action. I invite you to reflect on ways that you can work against gender-based violence in our society and to join one or more of the related December 6th events that are hosted on campus.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014, 12:30 p.m.
The Wayne and William White Engineering Design Centre courtyard 

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 12-1 p.m.
Simon K. Y. Lee Global Lounge, Media Room, Building 1, 2205 Lower Mall

Tuesday, November 25, 2014, 7-9 p.m.
Place Vanier Residence, Boardroom

Friday, December 5, 2014, 10 a.m.-4 p.m.
SUB Main Concourse

Transgender Day of Remembrance


Guest post by Mustari Tumpa, 2nd-year Arts student and Josh Macdonald, 3rd-year science student.

On Thursday November 20th we at UBC remember the individuals who have been killed as a result of transphobia (the hatred or fear of transgender and gender non-conforming people). If you’d like to take part in remembering them, there are a few events being held at UBC.

Between November 17th and 20th there will be a table at the SUB to provide information and raise awareness about transphobia and the Transgender Day of Remembrance.

On November 20th there will be a Candlelight Vigil at the SUB concourse between 11:00 am and 3:00 pm. Between 5:00 and 7:30 pm there will be a Memorial event at the SUB Art Gallery that will explain what the Transgender Day of Remembrance is all about. It’s also an opportunity for folks to share their experiences and listen to spoken word pieces and panel discussions.

And if you identify as trans or gender-variant, here few things that might help improve your experience at UBC which you may not know about.

If your preferred name is different from your legal name you can use your preferred name on online courses or on Connect, by profs, classmates, and colleagues, and as the name called aloud at your graduation (it’s a part of the graduation application). However, you do have to use your legal name on official letters, transcripts, and the graduation program.

For more information visit or

Stepping Stools: Equity vs Equality


Post by Melody Cheung, Equity Ambassador and 3rd-year Arts student

At one of the very first meetings of the Equity Ambassadors (EA), one of the EA’s drew two pictures on the board. The picture was of people standing on blocks. On the left, everyone was standing on the same sized block whilst on the right everyone was standing on different sized blocks. This was the beginning of my journey in learning what equity means.

A quick Google search on the definition of equity brings up words such as ‘impartiality’ and ‘fairness’. But what does this really mean? How is it different than the world equality? What I learned that day was pretty eye-opening. It happened through a short anecdote about the difference between these two terms and how important it is.

Imagine that you are at a baseball game and have to look over a fence in order to see the game. There are also several others who are in the same situation as you are. The fence is quite high so everyone needs a stepping stool of some sort to see over the fence. In equality, everyone would get the same sized stepping stool. Thus, one can immediately see a glaring problem! Not everyone is the same height. This is where equity steps in. In being equitable, everyone would get different sized stepping stools so that they could all see over the fence. Everyone would get a chance to view the game.

This is what equity is about; it is about how people need different ‘boosts’ in order to have a fair chance to participate in society. When I first learned this concept, I was surprised that I hadn’t thought of equity in that way before and that it made so much sense after being explained. I think equity is such a simple concept yet it can have such profound reach.

Equity in essence is about ‘fairness’ but the way it brings it about is quite different than equality. For me equity has to do with paying attention to specific needs and working with individuals and groups to provide customised ‘stepping stools’ in the form of social, economic and political tools. This definition of equity is a cornerstone of being an Equity Ambassador and something that will continue to guide my journey in promoting equity in all its forms.

A note about the Equity Ambassadors logo: One of the EA’s suggested the ‘baseball’ anecdote be incorporated into our logo and this was the result! I’ve been working on the design with input from all the EA’s and I am so excited to be able to create discussion around the reasons behind the ‘stepping stools’.

What I loved about “What I LOVE About Being QUEER”


Post by Hannah Barath, Access and Diversity Co-op student.

At the end of September I had the opportunity to attend a screening and discussion of “What I LOVE About Being QUEER” with film-maker Vivek Shraya. Often when we hear stories from members of the queer community, we hear about discrimination and challenges they face. In his work as an artist, human rights advisor, and positive space coordinator, Shraya has met many young queer and trans individuals struggling with internalized feelings of shame, homophobia, and transphobia. This film was created to offer a positive alternative narrative. It is not meant to take away from the stories of struggling, but rather act as an accompanying story that supports and inspires.

In this film, 34 individuals share what they love about being queer. The result is a touching and impactful film that celebrates all that is queer. By interviewing a group of people varying in age, ethnicity, and gender expression, Shraya highlights the diversity that exists within queer communities. Not quite content with that, a Tumblr page where people can submit their own answers, as well as a book, was created to show an even more complex picture of the diversity within queer communities.

As expected, what people chose to talk about was quite varied. One of the topics discussed was sex. For some, queer sex is central to their identity, and for others it is just one of many things they love about being queer. Some love the physical aspect of it while some love that the absence of normative expectations lets them personally define what queer sex means for them. A film where queer sex is unabashedly celebrated is both wonderful and needed because it is something that is rarely talked about, at least in a positive manner. It also shows that there is nothing wrong with enjoying or wanting sex if you are queer.

The celebratory nature of this film isn’t meant to take away from the challenges queer individuals face in their daily lives. It is important that we remember to acknowledge these struggles. Queer sex is often demonized, condemned, and seen as unnatural. In order to change cultural attitude around queer sex we need to change the structures that support these attitudes. One way to make conversations around queer sex more positive would be to broaden sexual education programs beyond educating youth about sex for reproductive purposes. If instead, sex can be taught as something pleasurable it would only be natural to include topics such as queer sex and consent within the educational context.

In the discussion that followed the screening, Shraya said that he wants society to move beyond acceptance and tolerance, to strive towards celebration. With “What I LOVE About Being QUEER” he does exactly that, celebrating and connecting queer communities to each other while challenging mainstream narratives that surround queer identities. To explore, learn more about or take part in this project check out the “What I LOVE About Being QUEER” Tumblr and book. If you have time, make sure to check out more of Vivek Shraya’s amazing work.

Be a part of Autism and Asperger’s research!

Help us discover the unique ways in which people with Autism process language!
We are a group of researchers at the Child and Family Research Institute at BC Children’s Hospital, and we’re looking for participants to help us understand how people with Au-tism process language. Understanding language processing in the brain may help development of better therapies for people with Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD). We need people who are:

  • Male, between 14 and 30 years of age
  • Right-handed
  • Verbal, with English as their first language
  • Reading at or above a grade 5 level
  • Currently living in BC
  • Diagnosed with an ASD

The study involves:

  • Participating in language and thinking tasks
  • Separate interviews with you and your parents
  • Non-invasive MRI and EEG scans while reading sentences on a monitor

Scheduling is flexible and we offer an honorarium for your time. We’ll reimburse you for your travel expenses. For more information and to sign up, please contact Keith at or 604-875-3068