University of the Fraser Valley

UFV making strides towards Ashoka Changemaker Campus designation

UFV making strides towards Ashoka Changemaker Campus designation

UFV’s pursuit of a changemaker campus designation aligns with its dedication to fostering a community where students, staff, faculty, and the surrounding community are empowered to become changemakers.

The University of the Fraser Valley took a significant step towards becoming an Ashoka Changemaker Campus this Fall, when a cohort of UFV staff and faculty presented their efforts to embed social innovation at the core of the institution’s values and practices. The event showcased the purpose of their work and the comprehensive plan to implement forward-thinking changes over the next four years.

The cohort’s focus has been to further integrate topics of systems thinking, social innovation, Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion (EDI), experiential learning, and empathy throughout the university, ensuring that these values become an inherent part of UFV’s DNA.

“Being a Changemaker Campus will help UFV achieve our vision, mission, and values as an institution,” said Nicolle Bourget, UFV Senior Lead, Academic Strategic Programs & Projects.

Bourget noted that while efforts made towards Changemaker status will affect the institution’s core, the changes are not just for internal staff and faculty – it’s for the students.

“The whole goal is for our students to be able to make change, exercise their agency, and write their own story as they embark on their education and career journey and beyond.”

To attain the Ashoka Changemaker Campus designation, UFV is embracing a commitment to:

  1. Equipping Students for Purpose-Driven Careers: UFV aims to create an educational environment that empowers students for meaningful, purpose-driven careers after graduation. This transition signifies a shift away from traditional models towards more community-focused, impact-oriented engagement.
  2. Impact-Oriented Community Engagement: The university is building on community-engaged and impact-focused initiatives, moving away from conventional educational approaches.

Sundeep Hans, Director of Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion, highlighted how the process has already been revelatory: “It’s in the process and the doing, if you will, where we’re already feeling the impact,” she says.

“We’ve been able to surface many of the incredible innovative ideas and initiatives happening across the university but also, the act of doing so in the changemaker team has been engaging, inclusive and collaborative.”

UFV is dedicated to fostering a community where students, faculty, staff, and the surrounding community are empowered to become changemakers: people who envision a new reality, take action, and collaborate with others to bring that new reality into existence for the greater good. The process to become a changemaker campus is a pathway to achieving this goal.

Over the summer, UFV completed Phase 1 of the designation process and is now creating an action plan to take UFV into the 2nd phase of the 3-phase process.

Changemaking Cohort ~ 2023