This year is a very exciting one for U of T, as it begins celebrations for three anniversaries: U of T’s one hundred and ninetieth anniversary, Canada’s one hundred and fiftieth anniversary, and UTM’s fiftieth anniversary.
For the celebration of Canada’s one hundred and fiftieth anniversary, U of T has planned numerous events to coincide with ‘Canada 150’ festivities across the country, including conferences, lectures, workshops, and art exhibits, which look to celebrate the Canada of the past, the present, and the future.
U of T will be hosting a Kent Monkman exhibit at the U of T Art Museum from January 26 to March 4. Consisting of a variety of artworks, this exhibit begins at the present day — with portrayals of urban settings — and transports the viewer back before Canada’s Confederation, to the time of the fur trade.
In addition to this, Monkman will also be holding an art lecture art on February 1 and will be leading a tour of the exhibit on February 4.
The university will be hosting the band DEYS on March 1. DEYS will be composing a song and creating a collaborative music video that celebrates both Canada and its diversity.
As a way of looking towards the future during Canada’s anniversary, U of T will also be hosting a lecture on climate change by professor Stephen Scharper on January 16. As part of this lecture, Scharper will discuss how climate change can be discouraging, and how Canadians still may be able to find a sense of hope in the face of this unsettling reality.
Additionally, on March 10, U of T will be hosting an event called, “Sounds of Silence” to celebrate Canada’s anniversary. At this event, 15 singers, 15 poets, and 15 composers will collectively offer 15 performances that celebrate the diversity of Canada and give a voice to communities that have been repressed.
Meanwhile, UTM’s fiftieth anniversary is going to be a yearlong affair where faculty, staff, alumni, and students are encouraged to join in on the celebration. While there was only one building at UTM when it was founded in 1967, it has now grown to be the second largest division at U of T, and its anniversary promises to be a celebration of everything that the campus has achieved during that time.
UTM has already begun its celebration with the 50 Challenge, whereby alumni are encouraged to submit memories from their experiences at UTM. The winners of the challenge will be featured in UTM’s alumni magazine.
UTM has also begun a program called 50 Faces that asks the community to nominate individuals who have somehow had an impact on UTM. The individuals chosen for 50 Faces will then be featured on UTM’s fiftieth anniversary website throughout the beginning of the year.
To further celebrate 50 years at UTM, and the influences that have shaped it, the Centre for Student Engagement will be hosting a celebration of Aboriginal and Indigenous contributions in late January.
As UTM uses its fiftieth anniversary to look at the future of its campus and community, the Department of Geography is planning to host a conference focusing on Canada’s Arctic.
Finally, UTM is also planning to host a film festival for its anniversary to celebrate the diversity of the campus. It has hired a photographer who will be taking photographs of the campus and the community throughout the year, as a means of celebrating the beauty of the campus.
While U of T is currently working on plans to celebrate its one hundred and ninetieth anniversary, no announcement has been made about what the events will entail. It is expected that the plans for the celebration will be revealed shortly.