The world is becoming more connected every day, and this affects all of our lives in big ways and small. A slowdown in the Chinese economy can put oil workers in Alberta out of jobs; political turmoil in Syria impacts families in Toronto; a Korean dance craze takes over a grade-six class in Markham.
As the world becomes more connected, so does UTSC and the students we educate. Our mission is to help our students become engaged global citizens who are equipped to go out into this new world and succeed professionally and personally.
We start with our students, who often come to us with both local and international perspectives. Most come from the GTA, and are either first-generation immigrants themselves, or children of immigrants with strong ties to their families’ countries of origin. On page 6, Department of Sociology Chair Patricia Landolt and Ju Hui Judy Han, assistant professor in the Department of Human Geography, discuss the special strengths these students bring to our campus, and the way the university is working to engage with them.
In addition, we have a strong commitment to increasing diversity through international recruitment. Our groundbreaking Green Path program is in its tenth year of helping students from China find their feet before they start classes here, and this year we introduced a similar program for students from Taiwan (page 30).
UTSC also boasts faculty with strong international experience and research interests. This issue of UTSC Commons includes stories about researchers studying everything from AIDS in Africa (page 15), to art in China (page 25), to state failure in Afghanistan and Somalia (page 10).
As the world continues to change, UTSC will change with it. Our committed faculty, working through strong, innovative programs, will keep producing students fully equipped to engage with and succeed in this new connected world.
Dean & Vice-Principal, University of Toronto Scarborough