Report: UTSC Campus Affairs Committee - May 10, 2023

UTSC Campus Council Chambers, AA160


MAY 10, 2023


To the Campus Council,
University of Toronto Scarborough,

Your Committee reports that it met on Wednesday, May 10, 2023 at 3:10 p.m., in the Council Chamber (AA 160), with the following members present:

Tarun Dewan (Chair), Jason Glover (Vice-Chair)*, Wisdom Tettey (Vice-President & Principal), William A. Gough (Vice-Principal, Academic and Dean), Andrew Arifuzzaman (Chief, Administrative Officer), Neel Joshi (Dean, Student Experience & Wellbeing)*, Philip August*, Rana Behzadi, Monisha Chawla, George Cree, Kyle Danielson*, Fatima Formuli, Brian Harrington, David Kwasny*, Ainsley Caroline Lawson*, Joseph Peter McNamara, Tanzina Mohsin*, Silma H. Roddau*, Asmi Shukla, David Zweig

Non-voting Assessors:
Ramona Gonsalves, Sheila John*, Nadia Rosemond*

Secretariat: Lydia Gill (Secretary), Anwar Kazimi

Regrets: Angela Abuel, Rana Behzadi, Monica Chawla, Jaqueline M. Deane, Mark Fitzpatrick, Qusai Mahmud Hassan, Alexander Irving, David Kwasny, Sylvia Mittler, Sonja Nikkila, Marvia Idris Rani, Silma Roddau, Asmi Shukla, Andrew Tam

Guests: Irena Creed (Vice-Principal, Research & Innovation), Thevya Balendran (Community Partnerships & Engagement), James Bullanoff (Varsity News), Celeste Ceres (Community Partnerships & Engagement), Andrea Charise, Kimberley Tull (Director, Community & Learning Partnerships and Access Pathways), Tanya Poppleton (Senior Director, Campus Safety), Khadija Uddin (Community Partnerships & Engagement)

*Participated Remotely


  1. Chair’s Remarks

    The Chair welcomed members and guests to the fifth meeting of the Campus Affairs Committee for the academic year. The Chair informed members that there was a change made to the agenda for items number 5 and 6. He remarked that these items would come to the Campus Affairs Committee for information, rather than approval. It was noted that the administration would engage in further consultation with the Provost Office before presenting both items for approval at a later governance cycle.

    The Chair also provided an update on the results of the governance elections. For the Teaching Staff seats, Professor Mark Fitzpatrick was declared elected; and Tarak Ahmed was declared elected for the Administrative Staff seat. In the undergraduate student constituency, Beheshta Ali Dad Khan, Soham Nayak, Aliya Ali Shaikha, Zanira Manesiya and Pratik Guha were declared elected, and in the graduate constituency, Manisha Kabi was declared elected as well. The Chair thanked all candidates for their participation in elections.

  1. Overview of the UTSC Campus Operating Budget, 2023-2024

    The Chair reminded members that the committee received an overview of campus strategic priorities in the February and in Cycle 4, a presentation on the University’s Budget Report 2023-24 and Long-Range Budget Guidelines 2023-24 to 2027-28 was also provided. He noted that these earlier items culminated in the campus operating budget presentation today. The Chair invited Andrew Arifuzzaman, Chief Administrative Officer to provide the presentation. Highlights from Mr. Arifuzzaman’s presentation were as follows:
  • 96% of the Campus revenue came from student tuition. This included both international and domestic student tuition.

  • UTSC had set a target of 32% for international student enrolment and was steadily meeting this target.
  • Doctoral enrolment continued to steadily grow.
  • Between 60-65% of the gross revenue was funded through international student enrolment. This was primarily a result of the stagnation on domestic student tuition fees and provincial grants. The CAO portfolio continued to strategize new ways of diversifying the revenue streams for the campus.
  • Between 2015 – 2022, UTSC had made significant investments into academic infrastructure and spaces, campus wide renovations and upgrades, and the Office of the Vice-Principal Research & Innovation portfolio.
  • Key themes for 2023 -2024 would be:
    • Academic experience and technology
      • There would be continued improvements to improve classroom technology.
    • Research facilities and support
    • Space and space use
    • Mental health – students, faculty and staff
    • Life on campus and in our community
    • UTSC 60th Anniversary
  • Key Priorities for 2023-2024
    • Investment in new faculty positions
    • Research – Start up, new positions in partnership and core facilities.
    • Cluster of Scholarly Prominence and Centers of Excellence
    • Student Supports – Mental Health
    • Infrastructure
      • New Capital Projects
      • Space Plan – Student Space and Campus Upgrades
      • New North Residence
    • Community Partnerships

      Members had no questions.
  1. Annual Report: Campus Safety, UTSC

    The Chair invited Mr. Arifuzzaman to introduce the item. Tanya Poppleton, Senior Director, Campus Safety, presented the report. Khadija Uddin, Community Crisis Response Coordinator also supported the presentation. Highlights from Ms Poppleton’s presentation were as follows:
  • There was an increase in the overall number of criminal offences on campus since the previous year. This could be attributed to the return of persons to campus since the pandemic.
  • Theft under $5000.00 increased by 15. This increase was most likely attributed to one person who was apprehended.
  • There was an increase in fraudulent activity that primarily targeted international students. This increase in fraudulent activity activated a Tri-Campus Fraud Working Group to address concerns.
  • There were decreases in the number of alarms, trespass investigations, and suspicious person calls. Increases, including but not limited to, were notable for fire alarms, due to residence functioning at full capacity, mental health calls, and motor vehicle collisions. It was noted that increases in mental health calls were still below pre-pandemic levels.
  • The Campus Safety Team had experienced staffing changes, including but not limited to, retirements, new hires, and newly developed positions. Mr. Arifuzzaman commented that recruitment and retention of Special Constables was challenging, as the Constables once hired, would often seek out opportunities with municipal or regional Policing Services. The screening and certification that they would receive at UTSC, fully qualified them for traditional policing services roles. Ms. Poppleton and her team were consistently recruiting and training new candidates for Special Constable positions.
  • In response to recommendation #6 of the University President and Provost Task Force on Student Mental Health, UTSC hired a Community Crisis Response Coordinator to provide immediate support to students as a Mental Health professional.
  • The Campus Safety Office was involved in several community engagement activities, including but not limited to, ball hockey, UTSC Homecoming, Residence Life Team Training, and International Students Orientation.
  • Ms Poppleton noted that the Annual Progress Report on Institutional Commitments to the Final Report of the Review Committee on the Role of Campus Safety (Special Constable Services) in Responding to Students in Mental Health Crises was included in the materials for this presentation. She remarked that there was significant effort to improve services and achieve consistency across the tri-campus.

    Principal Tettey thanked Ms. Poppleton and the team for their proactive and community focused approach to Campus Safety at UTSC.

    A member inquired as to whether there were any further insights into the lower numbers of mental health related calls in comparison to pre-pandemic levels. Ms Poppleton primarily attributed these levels to having lower numbers of students on campus in the reporting year (2021-2022). Mr. Arifuzzaman followed by noting that there was also increased investments into mental health support services in other areas across the campus to support students. Proactive and preventative measures were part of a holistic campus wide effort to support student mental health.

    Another member inquired as to whether there were plans to expand the Mobile Crisis Unit, and if the Campus Safety Office also dealt with Cyber Security issues. Ms Poppleton noted that there were plans to expand the Mobile Crisis Unit and that the unit also handled Cyber Security issues.
  1. Annual Report: Community Partnerships and Engagement, UTSC

    The Chair invited Mr. Arifuzzaman to introduce the item. Kimberley Tull (Director, Community & Learning Partnerships & Access Pathways) presented the report. The Report, entitled ‘Collaborative Dreaming’, drew upon the principles, values, and inspiration that informed the Community Partnerships & Engagement team’s work. Ms Tull reported that areas of focus/ highlights for the report were Reflection, Inspiration, and Aspiration. She also noted that a central focus for the team was the development of the Partnership & Engagement Framework that was developed in collaboration with the UTSC community, and local Scarborough community partners. The report highlighted the many ways that UTSC was engaged and making an impact in the local community.

    A member inquired as to whether Ms. Tull could discuss some of the impacts of rising inflation on local community partners. Ms Tull remarked that local community-based organizations were experience financial challenges, and thus, some had not returned to in-person programming. She also noted that community partners continued to have expectations of UTSC being engaged and committed to the local community.
  2. Creation of the iRISE (Institutes for Resilient and Inclusive Societies and Ecosystems) as a new Extra-Departmental Unit C (EDU:C)

    The Chair invited Professor Bill Gough (Vice-Principal Academic & Dean) to deliver an introductory presentation about Extra-Departmental Units at the University of Toronto to the Committee. Professor Gough explained that an Extra-Departmental Unit, hereinafter referred to as an EDU:C, were flexible and multidisciplinary entities organized around emerging research and teaching areas that span disciplines. He noted that there were four types of EDU’s: A, B, C, and C. The primary focus of his presentation was on EDU: C’s. They were defined as typically being multidisciplinary multi-departmental research and/or academic unit with a defined research domain in a particular area of academic work. The EDU: C existed to foster research and scholarly interest in an area. Professor Gough noted that UTSC housed two active EDU:C’s; The Culinaria Research Centre and the Centre for Global Disability Studies (CGDS).

    The Chair then invited Professor Irena Creed (Vice-Principal, Research & Innovation) to deliver the presentation on the Creation of the iRISE (Institutes for Resilient and Inclusive Societies and Ecosystems) for information. Highlights from Professor Creed’s presentation were as follows:
  • The Institutes for Resilient and Inclusive Societies and Ecosystems (iRISE) would be an organizing framework and an administrative home for its three constituent and interrelated institutes and was the product of extensive community consultations and evidence-based review of the campus’ scholarly record during the development of UTSC’s Strategic Plan, Inspiring Inclusive Excellence.
  • The vision for iRISE would be to establish the University of Toronto as a leading global centre of scholarship on convergence research in pursuit of goals of sustainable, resilient, inclusive, just, and equitable futures.
  • The mission for iRISE would support the pursuit of convergence research and catalyze change by facilitating research discoveries and enabling innovators to move discoveries into action, inspiring communities and building their capacity to act, and training future leaders.
  • iRISE would strive toward the following goals:
    • Produce knowledge throughout the disciplinary spectrum.
    • Create spaces enabling convergence dialogues and encouraging the envisioning of alternative futures.
    • Embrace diverse epistemologies and methodologies of different disciplines to generate transformative solutions to problems.
    • Build sustainable collaborations and partnerships that engage diverse stakeholders to co-create knowledge infused with social concerns and values.
    • Train scholars and leaders dedicated to creating inclusive, sustainable, and just and equitable societies.
    • Mobilize and translate knowledge into public policy and practice.
  • The three inaugural institutes of iRISE are:
    • Institute for Environment, Conservation & Sustainability
    • Institute for Inclusive Health & Well-Being
    • Institute for Inclusive Economies & Sustainable Livelihoods
  • Over 1000 members of the UTSC and broader U of T community were engaged in the strategic planning process for iRISE.

    Members had no questions.
  1. Creation of The FLOURISH Centre for Community Arts and Social Wellness (the FLOURISH Centre) as a new Extra-Departmental Unit C (EDU:C)

    The Chair invited Professor Irena Creed back to deliver the presentation for the Creation of The FLOURISH Centre for Community Arts and Social Wellness (the FLOURISH Centre) as a new Extra-Departmental Unit C (EDU:C). Highlights from Professor Creed’s presentation were as follows:
  • The vision for FLOURISH was to establish a robust theoretical, applied, community-driven evidence base for integrating arts practices into Canadian health and social care services.
  • FLOURISH would be the first centre in Canada dedicated to research, training, and advocacy for community-engaged arts as a method for social wellness.
  • The FLOURISH Centre had 3 primary objectives:
    • Arts and arts specific research to transform scholarly understanding of the societal benefits of art engagement.
    • Arts advocacy centering on Indigenous, Black, communities of colour, and equity-deserving groups & organizations.
    • Development of policy and practice to support arts-wellness initiatives at all government levels.
  • FLOURISH would develop strong partnership with local community partners, including but not limited to, Scarborough Arts, TAIBU Community Health Centre, and Craft Ontario.

    In the discussion, Professor Andrea Charise (Professor, Department of Health & Society) remarked that community engagement had been a highlight of the work FLOURISH Cluster of Scholarly Prominence (CSPP). She noted that community was often eager to engage with the FLOURISH researchers and had long been engaged in arts research and generational inheritances of art informed practices.
  1. Report of the Presidential Assessors

    There were two reports for the Committee’s attention.

    Professor Bill Gough, Vice- Principal, Academic & Dean (VPAD), provided a report of the work of his unit, sharing the following information:

  • There were some concerns as it pertained to technology and academic integrity during the examination period. Professor Gough thanked the Registrarial team for their swift action in addressing academic integrity issues.
  • UTSC had promoted 13 new full Professors. Of the 13, 5 were from the Teaching Stream – this would be the largest cohort of Teaching Stream full professors since the inception of the stream at UTSC in 2013.

    Next, Neel Joshi (Dean, Student Experience and Wellbeing) delivered a report on the work of his unit. Highlights from Mr. Joshi’s report are as follows:
  • The Office of Student Experience and Wellbeing (OSEW) launched a free Law School Prep Program (LSPP) at UTSC, in partnership with the U of T Faculty of Law. The first cohort of the program would host over 20 UTSC students. Students would visit law firms, attend workshops at the Faculty of Law, and engage in experiential learning opportunities.
  • The Toronto Pan-Am Sports Centre had an increase in participation numbers. Attendance was similar to pre-pandemic levels.
  • OSEW was planning for its largest orientation and frosh week for Fall 2023.

    A member inquired as to the rationale for UTSC changing the convocation ceremony arrangement to surname instead of the traditional ceremonies being arranged by program. Professor Gough clarified that the change was requested by the Office of Convocation, as this was a much simpler process operationally, and it would be in alignment with other divisions at the University.



On motion duly moved, seconded, and carried,


THAT the consent agenda be adopted and that Item 9 - Report of the Previous Meeting, be approved.

  1. Annual Report: Recognized Student Groups, UTSC  (For Information) ** 

  2. Report of the Previous Meeting: Report Number 51 - February 9, 2023  (For Approval) ** 

  3. Business Arising from the Report of the Previous Meeting 

  4. Date of Next Meeting: September 19, 2023, 3:10 p.m. 

  5. Other Business

    The Chair reminded members that a Special Meeting of the Campus Affairs Committee might be held in the case that the administration would have items that needed to be approved in Cycle 6B of governance. He noted that the Secretary would inform the membership appropriately.  

The meeting was adjourned at 5:01 p.m.