ACE joins a panel on Equity in Post-Secondary Education

Tuesday November 22

Health Nursing and Environmental Studies Building Room 140

Panel on Equity in Post-Secondary Education

Andrea Jacobs, Centennial College

Brenda Spotton Visano, Professor, Economics, York University

Ciann Wilson, Faculty of Environmental Studies, York University


This panel examines different programs and initiatives that have been developed at Centennial College and at York University in order to pursue equity in post-secondary education. Andrea Jacobs will speak about the mandatory equity course at Centennial College. Brenda Spotton Visano (and others) will present the success of the Transition-Year Program at York University, a special access program for youth and adults who wish to attend university, but have previously experienced social and financial barriers to accessing the formal education system. The program provides the tools and supports necessary for a successful transition to university degree study. Ciann Wilson will speak about equity initiatives in the Faculty of Environmental Studies.

Andrea Jacobs teaches at Centennial College. Brenda Spotton Visano is a University Professor in the School of Public Policy and Administration and the Department of Economics. She is a member of the Graduate Programs in Economics, Sociology, and Social & Political Thought. She teaches, researches and publishes in the areas of macroeconomics, monetary theory and policy, banking, and economic sociology. She is the inaugural Director of York’s new Transition Year Program, which saw its first class of students successfully transfer into their academic degrees this past spring, 2011. Ciann Wilson is a PhD Candidate in the Faculty of Environmental Studies. She is a founding member of ACE: Accessibility, Community and Equity


Meeting Minutes for October 4th, 2011

ACE Meeting Minutes
Tuesday, October 4th, 2011

 (for PDF  – ACE Minutes_OCT 4)

Meeting Summary: Introduction to ACE, Schedule of upcoming events and avenues for getting involved, Scholarships and other supports available to students.

Next Meeting: Tuesday, November 8th, 2011. 12:30 – 2pm HNES 204


What is ACE?

ACE is comprised of students who organize around issues of equity, specifically along the lines of race and marginalization. Over the past two years, we have organized workshops, seminars and peer mentorship sessions, all geared at offering students some of the necessary social and emotional supports needed for their success. One of our most important feats was our role, along with the initiatives of the faculty-led Equity Committee in ensuring that, effective for the 2010/11 academic year onward, all incoming masters students to FES, irrespective of academic background, were offered funding packages. An added part of our mandate is to provide students information on the ongoing programs and supports

offered throughout the University.

ACE has a NEW website:

Upcoming Events

–          We need volunteers for the following events so email if you are interested

November 3rd, 2011 6pm

In honor of World AIDS day (December 1st) ACE reps Ciann and Yogi will be organizing a presentation for the event Acting Independently of Dominant Stigma: A Conference on Living Postivelorganized by the Undergraduate Sexuality Studies Association. This event will be held @ The Chancellors Lounge by the Underground, Student Centre York University, 4700 Keele Street 6 – 8pm

Mid-November 2011

Tentatively planned for mid November, a talk titled “Imposter Syndrome” – a discussion about the feeling of being a relatively new student to academia, the overwhelming feeling of not belonging, feeling like an “imposter.”  This session will also branch out into a larger session on what counts as knowledge, valuing our own lived experience and the knowledge we bring to the table. Panelist Diane Zorn.


January – March, 2012

  • ACE will be supporting Anna Zalik and Liette Gilbert in organizing 2 seminars for the Exclusion, Expulsion and Extraction seminar series through-out the winter term. One will examine oil exploration and extraction and the debates around this both from community, environmental and economic perspectives.  ACE is looking for ideas for a second seminar so if you have suggestions, we want to hear them!!!

February 2012

“Narrated Histories” – in honor of collective memory essential to the celebration of Black History month we will invite students, faculty and alumni from all racial/ethnic backgrounds to read/recite/perform/showcase a piece they’ve created around their own histories of oppression, race, experience etc… and how that has contributed to their work, world views and future.


March 2012

Eco-Arts Festival – we will organize an event tentatively called a “Cultural Mash-up,” where over food and music, we’ll have a networking event for students.


  • A google-doc spreadsheet will be created and shared with all ACE members that provides detailed information about these events and how you can get plugged in.
  • Please feel free to suggest additional events that you think ACE should plan during the school year.

ACE sub committees

–    We need representatives for the following ACE sub-committees…

–     The Equity sub-committee: ACE does a lot of collaboration on initiatives with the faculty-led Equity Committee. We are currently forming a subcommittee who will attend both ACE and Equity committee meetings. Maya Stern will serve as the liaison for the undergraduate students, and Ciann Wilson for the PhD students. ACE is looking for a masters student interested in being a liaison between GESSA, ACE and the Equity committee. If you are interested, email There will be a vote by the larger MES community if there are multiple applicants interested.

–          The Outreach Sub-committee: will be responsible for the promotion and organization of ACE events, as well as recruitment initiatives.

–          Social Media sub-committee: will aid in making a web presence for ACE through facebook, twitter, the wordpress site etc…


Scholarships and additional Student Support:


  • You can find information about York Internal Awards Scholarships here:
  • SSHRC deadlines are coming up.
  • Administrative help for the above scholarships is available from Joseph Cesario.
  • GESSA has a small Research and Travel fund that you can access, and they will soon introduce a new Community Excellence Award that will be made available to MES and PhD students   
  • York University’s Graduate Students Association also has funds available for students in need
  • CUPE 3903 also gives out awards which you can find on their website


  • The York Institute of Health Research is organizing a workshop to assist students in applying to graduate studies (Masters and PhD levels): November 15th, 2011  contact Marc for more details
  • The Mytacs program matches MES students with potential paid internship opportunities.  Initial meeting, where you could find out additional details about this program happened on Thursday, October 6th. Contact Natasha Hargovan for more details on this
  • Another place you could go to seek internship is the Career Centre: TASTE program
  • In addition to the above two, there is also the FES Mentorship program that Jennisha is the main contact for.  The program pairs you up with an alumni doing work in your chosen field of interest. The mentorship lasts a year during which you have the opportunity to meet bi-monthly. Enroll ASAP Contact Jennisha:
  • Ciann will look into getting GESSA to do a ‘disorientation’ package designed by second year MES students for folks just coming into the program. The package will include handy information about what’s where on campus, good places to do regular tasks, etc.
  • The Centre for Research on Latin America and the Caribbean are now posting events and information on our listserve so look out!!! There website is




November 3rd, 2011

In honor of World AIDS day (December 1st) ACE reps Ciann and Yogi will be organizing a presentation for the event Acting Independently of Dominant Stigma: A Conference on Living Postively organized by the Undergraduate Sexuality Studies Association. This event will be held @ The Chancellors Lounge by the Underground, Student Centre York University, 4700 Keele Street 6 – 8pm

ACE Meeting

Our next ACE meeting will be held

November 8th 12:30 – 2:30

Health Nursing and Environmental Studies Building; York University Room 204

The Race, Racism and the Environment Seminar Series (2010/2011)

With funding from the York Federation of Students and the Faculty of Environmental Studies, ACE organized an entire seminar series on topics such as race, food production and precarious work; race and HIV; and racism within academia and knowledge production processes. Organized throughout the 2010/2011 academic year, the goal of this seminar series was to confront the contemporary issues that racialized communities face in relation to different aspects of natural, social and organizational environments. This seminar series encompassed a wealth of topics for rich discussions that draw from pedagogies such as anti-oppression, anti-racism, afro-centrism and eco-feminism. The series also highlighted the works of a diverse group of scholars and activists such as George Dei, Chris Ramsaroop, Carl James, Anne Phillips, Erin Konsmo and many many more.

See the links below for more information on the seminar series…

For an overview of the seminar series –  ACE Seminar series Archive 2010/2011

For a detailed list of the events visit –






Welcome to ACE!

Welcome to the ACE website. Here you can find information about who we are and what we do. You can also keep up-to-date with our upcoming events, seminars, info sessions, meetings, and find ways to get plugged in!