Tag Archives: UC Diveristy

New rainbow space on campus

Please tell students and staff about the new safe space on campus for rainbow communities – Locke Room 109a.

The space was granted to QCanterbury by the College of Arts, and named the ‘Robin Duff Room’ in honour of a former UC student leader who poured his heart and soul into advocating for LGBTQIA+ people on our campus and beyond during the years surrounding the Homosexual Law Reform of 1986.

For more information and support for the rainbow community, check out the LGBTQIA+ info page.

I thought I was quite privileged, until….

I thought I was quite privileged, until I did the UC DiversityFest privilege walk.

I had a light-bulb moment when I went to see how the Privilege Walk board was filling up in Puaka-James Hight Library. I set the board up a week ago, and was the first person to mark my final position. At number 17 I thought that must be about average, because it’s in the middle.

Fast-forward a week and I was floored to find out… I’m not average at all!

170727 - privilege walk diversity

Participants are asked to respond to 35 statements about power and privilege by either taking a step forward, back, or remaining in place. The closer you are to number 1 at the end, the more power and privilege you have. Participants are then asked to reflect on the question, ‘How can my understanding of my privileges or marginalisations improve my existing relationships with myself and others?’

As a sociology graduate these kinds of questions have always fascinated me, but my light-bulb moment was to realise another reason why; because in this environment, I’m not actually that privileged. In some deep corner of my mind I must have guessed it but here was the proof I needed. So how can I use this new-found knowledge?

Going back to the question, how can my new-found understanding improve my relationship with myself: This exercise made me see how many of the circumstances in my life, beyond my control (such as my parents going through a divorce, having to work during secondary and higher education, and being bullied for something I can’t change) have made me less privileged than others. It made me reflect on some of the challenges on my path to university, and how the echoes of certain unavoidable marginalisations continue to challenge me today.

As to the question, how can my new-found understanding improve my relationship with others: The exercise made me wonder about the stories of those at numbers 34 and 36 – those individuals must have overcome incredible odds to be at UC today. And for numbers 1 and 3, did it come as a surprise to them; how did it make them feel? How do we feel as a group to realise our ‘average privilege’ is quite high?

It was certainly an eye-opening experience for me and I hope you will give it a go. The displays are up until 1 August, in all campus libraries.

I’m looking forward to the follow-up talk on 2 August and hearing about your experiences!

Have your say on equity and diversity

The draft version of UC’s Equity and Diversity Policy is currently out for consultation, and staff are encouraged to provide feedback on it.

The document articulates the University’s commitment to equity and diversity and is intended as a framework for embedding principles relating to equity and diversity at UC. It has been developed by the Central Equity & Diversity Advisory Committee.

Read the draft policy here

Feedback can be emailed to Timothy Rowe up until 31 July 2017.

See more about equity and diversity at UC

He Pitopito Reo – Snippets of language

In a new semi-regular column, Intercom will share sound files of pronunciation so we can all learn to say Te Reo Māori words correctly – where possible, before we develop bad habits.

The first word is Rehua – the name that the refurbished former Commerce building will be known as when it opens.

Listen here:


The College of Education, Health and Human Development | Te Rāngai Ako me te Hauora, UC Centre for Entrepreneurship (UCE) and UC’s Executive Development Programmes (EDP) are moving to the Rehua building in the heart of Ilam Campus in late 2017.

You can listen to other UC-related Te Reo Māori words on the UC website

If you have a query about how to pronounce a Te Reo Māori word correctly, send your request via the Te Ohu Reo request form and we will endeavour to feature it in a future column.

Celebrating Matariki at ECLC

The Early Childhood Learning Centre (ECLC) celebrated Matariki on Monday night with children and families.

170630-ECLC MatarikiSome 40 people were treated to a dinner of roast meats, vegetables and warm pumpkin soup. Before dinner, a video CD of the Matariki story was played for the children and whānau, relating the Matariki story.

Matariki is the Māori name for the cluster of stars also known as the Pleiades. It rises in mid-winter – late May or early June. For many Māori, it heralds the start of a new year.

170630-ECLC Matariki1For the ECLC community, it was a good time of gathering, feasting and enjoying one another’s company. It was a heart-warming way to spend a cold evening.

Thank you to all families who joined us for the special dinner, and to all staff who prepared the delicious food for all to enjoy.

See more information on Matariki