SFU Public Square + You

If you like what we do, then we’d like you to be part of it. We partner with organizations, SFU students, faculty, staff, alumni and the general public to convene gatherings that strengthen and grow connections across and between communities. From partnerships and collaborations to work-study and volunteer positions, there’s potential and opportunity right here. All it needs is you.

For students 

SFU students! Gain experience, meet new people, and even create your own public engagement initiatives at SFU Public Square. Our volunteer, for-credit, and co-op opportunities have varying levels of participation and commitment to fit different schedules. In all of our student paths, you’ll find ways to learn from engagement professionals and play a valuable part in the work that happens here.


Much of what we do would not be possible without the time, skills and expertise of our volunteers. We welcome students from all SFU departments, community members and even SFU staff join us to help both in our office and at events.

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Through SFU’s unique work-study program, students join our team as part-time program assistants and contribute to the research, communications, programming and logistics that drive our work. 

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Co-op opportunities

Students that join our team through the co-operative education program are paid, receive credit and take on significant projects. This imparts valuable work-integrated learning that facilitates community and university connections that can help these students excel in graduate programs, their careers and passion projects.

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Peer Education Program

The Peer Education Program is currently on pause! Check back later for updates. 

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Student partnerships

We engage with student groups, clubs and associations as event partners, providing them with support on their programming, logistics, design and communications as well as meeting space (both physical and online).

Contact our program manager Seth Erais at if you’re interested in discussing a partnership.

For faculty

We’ve partnered with dozens of faculty members to help bring their research into the public sphere through panel discussions, workshops and event series. Whether you’re joining an event as an expert voice or need help to envision and facilitate, we provide a unique opportunity to mobilize knowledge, support community-engaged research and collaborate across disciplines.

Classroom partnerships

Our Classroom Partnership Program is a faculty-led, for-credit experiential learning program for SFU students. Each year, we work with faculty to identify courses with thematic links to our annual Community Summit and co-design opportunities that are relevant, appropriate and implementable. Students in the program get a unique opportunity to learn directly from internationally-renowned experts in their areas of study while discovering how their work can be applied in real-world scenarios. 

In the past, students have worked on:

  • Background papers and research interviews — shared with our audiences to provide context around complex topics
  • Content delivery — students have presented their research and participated in panel discussions at Community Summit events
  • Facilitation — students have led group dialogues and discussions

Contact our program manager Seth Erais at if you’re interested in discussing a partnership.

For staff

Our expertise in public and intra-organizational engagement offers a unique way to enrich your own programming and elevate the presence of your department. Plug into our network of partnerships and convene memorable discussions around the work you’re doing on topics that matter both at the university and beyond. Interested in working together? Contact us!

For alumni

SFU alumni come to us to reconnect with their academic roots and apply them to society’s evolving challenges. We work with them as partners, supporters and speakers and they offer us inspiration for future topics to engage with. They embody a commitment to lifelong learning and engagement, and their concerns and experience shape our work.

For community

For community organizations, businesses and governments looking to engage deeper internally and with communities, SFU Public Square can help envision, coordinate, convene and facilitate one-off or series gatherings in various formats. With our knowledge and experience in planning, execution and relationship-building, you'll find that conversations about even difficult topics can be made accessible and productive.

Community partnerships

SFU Public Square works in a rich and varied network of partners both within and outside the university, and serves as a bridge between the academic and public realms. From concept to program design and facilitation, content, logistics and production, to communications and marketing, we’ll work with the seed of an idea or objective and grow it with our collaborators into an in-person, online or hybrid event, series or project.

Contact our executive director Janet Webber at if you’re interested in discussing a partnership.


Community members are invited to join us as volunteers in our office and at events to help support our programming and gain skills in communications, logistics, event planning and research.

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Social enterprise

Over the years, we have developed a reputation as a well-regarded and strategic force that has enhanced SFU’s profile as a source for knowledge and guidance, particularly in the arena of community engagement. We occasionally apply these skills for fee-for-service contracts with governments, business associations, community groups and others to define, produce and facilitate public involvement initiatives. The funds generated through these services are used to create more experiential learning placements for SFU students and help us advance our programming. 

Projects have included:

  • Evergreen’s Project Green Bloc
  • Community consultations for PeaceGeeks
  • Canadian Mental Health Annual Consultations
  • The Surrey Community Summit
  • The Reimagine Downtown Vancouver project and follow-up report 
  • The Future We Want: The Change We Need public engagement series with the City of Vancouver

Contact our executive director Janet Webber at if you’re interested in discussing such a project.

What people are saying

“SFU Public Square was contracted by us to do a public engagement process and in the end come up with a final product, which was our Reimagine Downtown Vancouver public engagement process, with some very clear direction from 11,000 people from all walks of life. Reimagine has definitely become a roadmap for us as an organization in terms of directing where downtown will go in the next 22 years. It’s been transformative for us as an organization in what we do, day in and day out.” 

— Charles Gauthier, president and CEO, Downtown Vancouver Business Improvement Association