March 30, 2017
Last month at the Ashoka U Exchange in Miami, RECODE and Ashoka Canada hosted the second annual Canadian Network Day. The Exchange is the largest gathering of social impact educators in the world (over 700 attendees) and with 10% of attendees and multiple workshops and panels featuring Canadian examples, there was a strong Canadian presence.
In keeping with RECODE’s spirit and practice of experimentation, the first half of this year’s “Canada Day” day was devoted to a workshop on Indigenous Reconciliation. Over the course of the morning we saw a deep appetite for entering and learning how to navigate the Reconciliation space, and we also recognized the relatively few pathways or access points to do so. Participants came away with an increased understanding of their role in Reconciliation and some tools to set the stage to hold a similar conversation at their home institutions. Thank you to Reconciliation Canada for leading the workshops. More information about their work can be found here.
During the afternoon we focused on the four priority areas identified by the RECODE Network: Advocacy & Constructive Engagement, Network Building, Tools & Resource Sharing, and Evaluation. Participants broke into smaller groups and discussed how to advance these respective areas of activity on their own campuses and also across the country.
At RECODE we believe that having over 80 Canadians at the Exchange and close to 50 at Canada Day is an indicator that there is a growing and increasingly important movement of educators and institutions who are looking to create what Ashoka calls a “change-maker education”. Canada is a diverse country with a geography that doesn’t lend itself to national field-building easily. Nevertheless, the collective interest in working together, identifying where we have common cause and how we might deepen our relationships was evident. We are proud to be part of this growing field, and are excited to see the speed, breadth and depth of changes that are afoot. We hope it’s not an exaggeration to say that what was an experiment last year now feels like a new tradition.
To know more, please see the agenda, notes from the afternoon breakout discussions and check out the Exchange highlights on storify. Want to join the conversation? Connect with Chad Lubelsky at email@example.com and visit www.re-code.ca for regular updates.