The following message is sent on behalf of Dr. Sara-Jane Finlay, Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion. It is for the attention of UBC Deans, Directors, Managers and Administrative Heads of Units.
A message from Sara-Jane Finlay, Associate Vice President, Equity and Inclusion:
In the New Year, Alden Habacon, Director of Intercultural Understanding at UBC will transition his position to a consultant role, primarily working with the Equity and Inclusion Office.
Alden’s intercultural understanding strategic planning work, which brought him to UBC five years ago, has been for the most part successfully completed. This included consulting with the UBC community around their intercultural needs and developing and initiating a strategic plan, inspiring both campuses around intercultural initiatives, and growing self-sustaining capacity throughout the university.
In short, UBC has seen real culture change and a growing momentum around intercultural perspectives, approaches, skills development, and relationships—producing more intercultural learning, student experiences, research approaches and community engagement. The demand for training and professional development is now greater than one person can supply and it is time for a different approach to the work.
Although Alden won’t be as visible on the UBC campuses, I want to assure you that the intercultural understanding work at UBC is not finished. Alden will retain the title of Senior Advisor, Intercultural Understanding and the focus of his work will shift towards growing capacity at the local level to respond to the needs for intercultural understanding, skills and education. This change will enable him to intensify work within a handful of units.
In the last few years, Alden has also been engaged with many great organizations across Canada. The demand for his time outside of UBC has outgrown what he is able to provide and he aspires to share his knowledge and strategic vision with other universities across Canada.
If your unit is interested in opportunities to build intensive intercultural capacity and skills development, contact the Equity and Inclusion Office at firstname.lastname@example.org, or contact Alden Habacon directly at email@example.com
Alden and I would like to thank the UBC community for its enthusiasm, collaboration, healthy skepticism, advice and, most importantly, engagement with intercultural understanding.
Associate Vice-President, Equity and Inclusion
Equity and Inclusion Office
University of British Columbia