Building community and a sense of belonging

The building community and a sense of belonging key action area will work to evoke a sense of belonging and connection; ensuring SFU is a welcoming, safe, equitable, and inclusive community for all students; supporting transitions in and out, especially for those coming from different environments and bridging to new ones.

Opportunities to get involved

Join a working group

We're looking for students to join our group which meets every two weeks.

Main contact

Interested in learning more about this key area, or have a suggestion?


Lara Campbell
Professor, Gender, Sexuality and Women’s Studies

Progress to date

  • Peer Idea Activators team established: it offers paid positions for students to collect and give feedback on projects, as well as providing them with training in human centered design, facilitating creative brainstorms and pop-up outreaches with students. 890 student contacts were made across all 3 campuses. Students’ ideas are being developed into action projects and shared with students for further feedback and input.
  • Movie nights: launched Spring 2019 as a result of student feedback from the Peer Idea Activator creative brainstorms. Students requested the events, and the PIA team led design jams with students to build out the details of the event. The series is a great example of SFU students building the community they want to be a part of. Number of people engaged: 180 in spring 2019. Over 390 and counting in Summer 2019. Movie nights have been so successful they’re expanding to Surrey in Fall 2019.
  • Surrey Games Lounge: offers a variety of games and activities with free food in response to students’ feedback for more games and interactive activities. Games lounge ran twice a week in the Surrey campus Mezzanine in Spring 2019. An average of 150 students participated everyday it was on. Will be continued in fall 2019. In a recent Games Lounge survey report, 96% of 235 survey respondents said “yes” to see more of these activities.
  • Mural Mosaic: created as part of semester welcome activities in fall 2018 and SFU Tribute – Volunteer Appreciation Festival in spring 2019. The mural mosaic will be happening again during Welcome month for Fall 2019. Several hundreds of students, staff and faculty participated in painting tiles for the mural mosaic. The fall 2018 murals have been permanently install at the Burnaby campus.
  • Fire pits: 30,000 marshmallows have been roasted since the fire pits were launched! The fire pits provide an outdoor social gathering space for students at the Burnaby campus and have quickly become a well-loved part of campus culture, especially in the cooler weather. The Indigenous Student Centre (ISC) recommended the cedar box style for the fire pits and the inclusion of the ISC design on the boxes. The cedar boxes for the fire pits were built by SFU carpenters. Quote from students: “I think it is a great idea! It helps student have a chance to socialize and get to know others!” “This is a great way for engagement!”“I made a new friend today.”
  • Student advisory group for SEI: will be launching in Fall 2019, the goal is to have students participate in the main SEI advisory committee. Students will receive an honorarium for their participation.
  • The Ideas to Action website was launched in fall 2019. The website aims to empower students to share their ideas on how to make the campus community a place where they belong and feel included.


Upcoming milestones


Anticipated date

Launch Movie Nights at Surrey campus
Fall 2019
Launch student avdisory group
Fall 2019