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Social Justice, Podcast

Episode 105: Redistributing Power in Universities — with Charmaine Lyn

February 09, 2021
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Charmaine Lyn joins Below the Radar to share learnings from her career in making social change from within post-secondary institutions.

Charmaine is the Director of Changemaker Education for Ashoka Canada and works with different changemaker campuses across the country to advance social justice in our institutions and communities through community engagement.

Host Am Johal speaks with Charmaine about the journey that brought her to this work and her background in law which sparked a passion for accessibility in education, championing community engagement, and redistributing power and burdens within the often rigid structures of universities. They also discuss equity, diversity, and inclusion initiatives in higher education, working at the intersection of community and university, and what the university might look like in a post-pandemic world.

About Our Guest

charmaine lyn

Charmaine works closely with Canada’s seven designated Changemaker campuses and their change leaders to deepen and accelerate field-level collaboration and transformation in Canadian post-secondary.

In this role, Charmaine is leading Ashoka Canada’s targeted efforts to build upon growing momentum for social impact work in Canadian higher ed by identifying and accompanying prospective Canadian campuses through the designation process. Charmaine draws from over 15 years’ experience advancing equity, diversity, social accountability, and decolonization as drivers of post-secondary institutional change. Prior to joining Ashoka, Charmaine was Senior Director of the Office of Community Engagement at Concordia University in Montreal, where she also served as a Special Advisor to the Provost on Indigenous Directions, and stewarded the launch of the SHIFT Centre for Social Transformation. Charmaine also previously directed recruitment and admissions to McGill University’s Faculty of Medicine and Faculty of Law. Born in Jamaica and raised in Tio’ tia:ke (Montreal), where she currently resides, Charmaine is a first-generation university attendee and lawyer by training. She holds a BA in English Literature and BCL (Civil Law) and LL.B. (common law) degrees from McGill University. She speaks English and French.

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