Social Sciences Festival
This year's theme: "Social Science in Action"
October 22-26, 2007

Mon, October 22
Tues, October 23
Wed, October 24
Thur, October 25
Fri, October 26
        9am-11:30am, Film in Auditorium
"Encounter Point"
(Ronit Avni)
10-11:30am, Auditorium:
From Bio- to
Social Science

(Sonali Srivastava)

10am-11:30am, Auditorium:
Ron Charbonneau Memorial Lecture (
"Adolf Hitler & the Politics of Image")
Also starting at 10am:
Marketplace D Bldg:
Soc. Sci. Research
Kelly Purdy)

10:30am-12 noon, Auditorium:
What does Restorative Justice Restore?
(David Shantz)
10-11:30am, Auditorium:
Friday's Footprint and the Triple Planets of Doom
(Ricardo Dueñez)
11:30am-1pm, Auditorium:
Islamic Law in Canada: Marriage
and Divorce
(Sevak Manjikian)
  11:30am-1pm, Auditorium:
Native Awareness Group Panel
(Michael Kanentase Rice, Steven Bonspille)

12-1:30, Auditorium:
Social Sciences Festival Quiz Show
(Peter Gantous, MC)
11:30am-1pm, Auditorium:
Feature Lecture: "Climate Wars"
(Gwynne Dyer)
1pm-2:30pm, Auditorium:
Panel Discussion: Diversity & Change

(with Doug Miller)

Also starting at 1pm:
1-2pm, room D508
Ask a Psychologist

:30-3, Auditorium:
iPods, Algae, and Oil: your place in the future of (rural)

(Dr. Bill Reimer)
1-2:30pm, Film in Auditorium
"In the Name of the Mother & the Son"

(Maryse Legagneur)
1-2:30pm, Auditorium:
Climate Change 101: A live presentation of Al Gore's Slideshow

(Shelley Kath)
2:30-4pm, Auditorium: Prostitution Portraits & Sex Work Policy
(Dr. Frances Shaver)
2:30-4pm, Auditorium: What is Sustainable Development?
(Alena Perout)
4-5:30pm, room F216: Student Segregation: A Round Table discussion        

Please visit our displays in the F-wing Carrefour and across from the library as well as in
the A-wing third floor next to the elevator and A-wing 4th floor across from the elevator.
There will also be a student display in the display case next to room A306.

The theme of this year's festival is "Social Science in Action". We hope to raise awareness in the Vanier community on the many ways the Social Sciences can be applied to real world issues and concerns. From the sharing of research techniques and the results of actual research projects, to the exploration of issues of immediate concern, to illustrations of what people trained in social science can accomplish, this year's line-up will effectively show how we can put social science in action!

(Click on the "Refresh" button to assure you see any recent changes.)

Monday, October 22
,  10:00 - 11:30, Auditorium, A103
From Bio- to Social Science: My Career Path in International Projects and HIV/AIDS
Sonali Srivastava

Sonali Srivastava will speak about how her career path led her to do a BSc in Biochemistry and then an MSc in Medical Anthropology in England. She'll also speak about her work in India and Bangladesh with vulnerable women and HIV/AIDS prevention.

Speaker Bio: Sonali Srivastava, a Vanier graduate, went on to do Biochemistry Co-op at Concordia University. She completed a Master's degree in Medical Anthropology from Oxford University and has worked on HIV/AIDS prevention programmes in India and Bangladesh. Her past research has included potential uses for alternative therapies for HIV/AIDS in non-Western countries and sexually transmitted illness conceptions among sex workers in Bangladesh. She has published articles about the current state of HIV/AIDS in Bangladesh during her internship early this year. She is currently working as International Projects Officer at Vanier College.


Monday, October 22,  11:30am - 1pm, Auditorium A-103
Islamic Law in Canada: Marriage and Divorce
Sevak Manjikian

This talk will uncover how members of the Muslim community use elements of Islamic law to govern their lives in Canada. Primarily the focus of the talk will surround how the Canadian courts currently deal with matters of Islamic law that appear before their chambers.

Speaker Bio: Sevak Manjikian teaches Humanities and Religious Studies at Vanier. He has been interested in religion most of his life. Growing up in Saudi Arabia, he was surrounded by the rich textures of Islam. He has complemented this interest in religion by pursuing it at university. Sevak has a Bachelor's degree in Religious Studies from Queen's University along with a Masters in Islamic Studies from McGill University. Recently Sevak completed his Ph.D. at McGill University where his research focused on the use of Islamic law in Canada.


Monday, October 22,  1 - 2:30, Auditorium A-103
"Everywhere we go, there's aggro!" The Anthropology of Soccer Hooligans
Matthieu Sossoyan

This presentation, rooted in the social study of sport, will focus on the historical, social, psychological and cultural roots of modern-day soccer fan violence. An attempt will be made to explain the controversial aspect of hooliganism from within hooligan groups in Europe in general and, more specifically, in England.

Speaker bio: Matthieu Sossoyan has been teaching Anthropology at Vanier since 1999, after completing his Master's degree in Anthropology at McGill. Since that time, he has taught Methodology and Explorations courses as well. A few years ago, he created the Anthropology of Sports, Games and Leisure course for the new Social Science major called Sports and Leisure. That major is now in its 4th year and is running strong as ever. Matthieu's interest for the topic he will be addressing grew out of his anthropology course about sports.


Monday, October 22,  2:30 - 4:00, Auditorium A-103
Prostitution Portraits and Sex Work Policy
Dr. Frances M. Shaver

Based on findings from her research, Dr. Shaver presents a portrait of people working in the sex industry (PWSI) that reflects their diversity and challenges commonly held assumptions about their victimization. She argues that there is a need for social and legal reform based on decriminalization.

Speaker bio: Professor and Chair, Department of Sociology and Anthropology, Concordia University, Dr. Shaver received her doctoral degree in Sociology from the Université de Montréal. Her research and publications highlight human sexual behaviour (including a special focus on prostitution and other forms of sex work), the role of women in agriculture, rural poverty/deprivation, the household and the economy, and social change in rural and minority communities. Her current research focuses on the social determinants of health and well-being and their impact on work (including sex work) and family environments.

Dr. Shaver acts as a knowledge mobilizer to the general public, as well as a scholar. In keeping with the former she has responded positively to many invitations to meet with policy makers and community groups and been involved in initiating events bringing together community partners and other interested scholars and policy makers to discuss issues including strategic planning, prostitution research and policy, and the impact of resource restructuring on rural communities. She has been invited to appear before numerous policy groups including House of Commons Subcommittees, Departments of Justice (Ontario, Québec, Canada), and a variety of NGOs.

To see samples of her recent work, go to the Sex Trade Advocacy and Research (STAR) website:


Monday, October 22,  4 - 5:30pm, room F216
Student Segregation: A Round Table discussion
Note: limited seating

Do you hang out in the Italian caf or the Asian CAF? Students from two Social Science classes will discuss the issue of self-segregation at Vanier. Is this a natural process? How does it impact student comfort in the various areas of the college? Are there ways to encourage more integration without taking away people's space to be amongst themselves if they wish? Four students will give their views on the topic then the floor will be opened to all who wish to participate.


Tuesday, October 23,  10:00 - 11:30, Auditorium A-103
The Ron Charbonneau Memorial Lecture:
"Adolf Hitler and the Politics of Image:
Propaganda and Spectacle in Nazi Germany"
Jim Najarian

Ron Charbonneau

This annual lecture was created in memory of Ron Charbonneau (left) who taught History at Vanier for over thirty years. We wish to honor his profound dedication and his impact on his students as well as the Vanier Community.

Professor Jim Najarian from the Vanier History department will present this second Memorial Lecture entitled, "Adolf Hitler and the Politics of Image: Propaganda and Spectacle in Nazi Germany".

Synopsis: Propaganda and mass spectacles were essential elements in the creation and promotion of the National Socialist image in Hitler's Third Reich.

A full range of mass media techniques were employed by the Nazis and most effectively utilized in the annual Nuremberg Rallies, calculated to legitimize Nazi rule and mobilize German society to support Nazi objectives.

Using film clips and still photographs, Mr. Najarian presents a fascinating depiction of a hateful regime using sophisticated devices to achieve their idealogical goals.

Speaker Bio: A product of the 1960s, Jim Najarian (left) was born in New York and grew up in California. He received his B.A. from University of California at Berkeley, and his M.A. and Master's of Philosophy from Columbia University in New York. He studied modern European history, with a specialty in modern German history and research in the areas of Weimar and Nazi Germany. After three years of post-M.A. work at Berkeley, he became a teacher.

He did one year at Loyola, then got in on the ground floor of Vanier College in 1970, where he has taught History, Humanities, and Liberal Arts until the spring of 2007, when he took his retirement. He has hitch-hiked through Europe and travelled many times across Canada and the US.


Tuesday, October 23,  11:30 - 1pm, Auditorium A-103
Native Awareness Group Panel: "Aboriginal Worldviews and Rights"

Steven Bonspille
, Grand Chief of the Mohawk Council
Michael Kanentase Rice, Principal of Ratihente High School in Kanesatake

The Native Awareness Group is a group of Vanier community members who work to raise awareness of the histories, cultures and current realities of Canada’s Aboriginal peoples (the people some of you have heard of as “Indians”). Every year during the Social Science Festival, the Native Awareness Group invites individuals from different Aboriginal communities to discuss issues of relevance to Aboriginal people in Canada today. This year, the guests include two members of the Mohawk community to discuss the importance of understanding Aboriginal worldviews in context of the European intrusion into the Americas in the 15th century and its implications on current Aboriginal, provincial and federal relations.

Speaker bios:
Sose Onahsakenrat Steven L. Bonspille is 41 years of age, married, and has three children. He is from the Bear Clan family and has have lived in Kanehsatake for most of my life. He graduated from Dawson College in Business Administration and received his Certificate in Public Relations Management from McGill University. He worked as the Director of the Kanehsatake Cultural Centre for 12 years. He was a Governor for the First Nations Confederacy of Cultural Education Centres from 1996 to 2001 and served as the Vice-President from 2001 to 2004. He was first elected to the Mohawk Council in 2001 as a Council Chief and in 2005 he was elected as the Grand Chief of the Mohawk Council. His main interest has always been to fight for social justice and the basic needs of his people and to strengthen Moahawk identity through language and culture. On the lighter side he is an avid lacrosse fan and player.
Michael Kanentase Rice
is Principal of Ratihente High School in Kanesatake. He has also been teaching History, Social Studies and Native Studies at RHS since 1998 and has been Principal since July 2006. He has a BA in Canadian Studies/ Northern Studies at McGill(1995) and a B.Ed from Queen's University in Native Studies and History (1998). Mr. Rice was a member of the History and Geography Task Force (MEQ) from 2000-2004 and the Histoire et de la citoyennete MELS 2005-2006.



Tuesday, October 23, 10:00am- 12 noon, Marketplace (D Building, first floor, across from the cafeteria)
Social Science Research in the News
Vanier teacher, Kelly Purdy and her Research Methods students will host a poster presentation on Social Science Research in the News.

The research activities of social scientists can be seen everyday in media reports that we hear on the radio, see on the television, or read about on the Internet. The students from the Honours Research Methods class will present a poster display about current research events in the media. Come and see the work of social scientists in action, and see how their research is relevant to all of us in our everyday lives.

Kelly Purdy has been a teacher at Vanier since 2004 and teaches Psychology and Methodology courses. She graduated with her PhD from McGill University, where her research interests included children and adolescent's social development and issues related to adolescent health.


Tuesday, October 23,  1 - 2:30pm, Auditorium A-103
Vanier Students: Diversity and Change
Doug Miller, panel moderator

A panel of students gathered by Doug Miller from the Learning Centre will discuss their personal experiences with issues of race, ethnicity, gender, living with HIV and other forms of diversity and how these experiences led them to work for social change.


Tuesday, October 23,  1 - 2pm, room D508
Ask a Psychologist
Loris Peternelli, Jacqui Miller and Hannah Steinwald

Have you ever wondered what it would be like to be a psychologist? Come and hear a panel of teachers from the Psychology Department talk about their experiences in becoming a psychologist and what their jobs are like now. It's also your chance to ask a psychologist anything you want to know!

How do I become a psychologist? How long does it take? How much money do psychologists make? Do psychologists really analyze everyone they meet, including friends and family?!

Bring your questions, and this panel of psychologists including Loris Peternelli, Jacqui Miller and Hannah Steinwald will provide you with answers.


Tuesday, October 23,  2:30 - 4pm, Auditorium A-103
What is Sustainable Development?
Alena Perout

Is it the same as being green? If a corporation calls itself sustainable, does it mean it's environmentally friendly? Is it a way to describe how countries like China or India are developing? To some Sustainable Development is the only way to save the planet from environmental degradation. To others it is the only way to get big business on board the environmental movement.
This presentation will look at the history of Sustainable Development from when the term was first used to what it means today. From something which was highly criticized from all fronts at first, it is now a term being embraced by some of the largest corporations in the world and accepted by some of the best known environmental organizations. Finally, it is through Sustainable Development that the United Nations intends to achieve the UN's Millennium Development Goal, which would see world poverty disappear by 2015.

Alena Perout has been teaching Geography at Vanier College since 1992. She also teaches Canadian Environmental Issues for the Department of Geography, Planning and Environment at Concordia University. Her main interest is in the link between environmental change and human migration.

Click for their website


Wednesday, October 24,  10:30am - 12 noon, Auditorium A-103
What does Restorative Justice Restore?
David Shantz

In this presentation, David Shantz will discuss his work as a chaplain and the importance of activities like the Face to Face activity, in which people who have been victimized meet with inmates.
Speaker bio: David Shantz is an ordained minister with the Mennonite Conference of Eastern Canada. He has worked as chaplain for 20 years with Correctional Service Canada. Since 1995 he has presented the Face to Face program in federal institutions. This activity brings together victims and offenders in a structured, safe and confidential setting. He has also served on the Canadian National Restorative Justice Committee.


Wednesday, October 24,  12 - 1:30pm, Auditorium A-103
Social Sciences Festival Annual Quiz Show.
Peter Gantous, MC

Annual Quiz Show with Vanier teacher Peter Gantous as Master of Ceremonies. Teams of students show off their social science knowledge in this informative and entertaining competition. Come cheer them on!


Wednesday, October 24,  1:30 - 3pm, Auditorium A-103
iPods, Algae, and Oil: your place in the future of (rural) Canada
Dr. Bill Reimer

In this presentation Dr. Reimer will explore the interdependence of rural and urban places. Consumer products, safe food, clean water, and a sustainable environment are all intimately connected in a complex web that spans the globe. How can we learn about it? What can we do to minimize the risks? What is a good strategy for a CEGEP student to choose in the face of this complexity?

Speaker bio: Bill Reimer is a Professor of Sociology at Concordia University. For the past 10 years he has directed a national research project on the New Rural Economy ( It includes 15 researchers, more than 75 students, and 32 rural communities in a research and education network from all parts of Canada (plus 2 in Japan). His publications deal with the impact of technology on rural communities, the economy and the household, Aboriginal communities, the informal economy, social support networks, social capital, community capacity-building, and rural immigration.



Thursday, October 25, 10:00 - 11:30, Auditorium A-103
Friday's Footprint and the Triple Planets of Doom
Ricardo Due
ñez and Victor Perichon

Robinson Crusoe, author Daniel Defoe's 17th century adventurer, ends up shipwrecked on an island for years. One day he is shocked to discover a man's footprint on the beach. He first assumes the footprint is the devil's… turns out it was "Fridays", and represented the industrial beginning for the New World, as European colonialism spread, and dominated local people and resources - the devil in another guise. Today, our footprint is much bigger, and just as dangerous: if every person in the world "consumed" at the same rate as North Americans, we would need two additional planets worth of natural resources. At this session of the Social Science Festival, we will discuss Robinson's "devils" footprint, and the calculations that led to shocking predictions of the three-planets of doom!

Speaker BIOS:
Ricardo Dueñez, (left) a native of San Diego, California, is a Geography, Explorations, and Methodologies teacher at Vanier, with a dark and mysterious background having something to do with Tanzanian forestry, Mozambican health, and South African environments. Believe it or not, he thinks that working with Vanier students on issues relating to awareness of the world around us has been perhaps the most fulfilling of his many and varied jobs.
Victor Perichon is a Belgian student working towards a graduate diploma degree in Environmental Impact Assessment at Concordia University. He is currently involved with Sustainable Concordia, and efforts to reduce that institution's"ecological footprint".


Thursday, October 25,  11:30am - 1pm, Auditorium A-103
Feature Lecture: "Climate Wars"
with Gwynne Dyer

"Climate Wars," is based on Gwynne Dyer's (seen at left) forthcoming CBC "Ideas" series and Random House book of the same name (out in April 2008) and deals with the frightening geopolitical implications of large-scale climate change. Canada comes through relatively unscathed, losing only the prairies and gaining all the land from the current northern limit of cultivation to the Arctic coast. Unfortunately, NONE of the United States stays habitable for a dense human population except the Pacific North-West, so Canada also has the problem of 300 million American refugees.

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has been revising its estimate for the probable range of warming upwards to between two and four-and-a-half degrees by the end of the century, with a maximum of 5.8 degrees Celsius. Five degrees hotter produces a world in which most of Russia's existing farmland survives except for the northern Caucasus, and it gains much new potentially arable land in the north -- but none of the Middle East makes it, and none of China except Manchuria.

Northern Europe's land would remain productive, so Scandinavia, Poland, Germany, Britain and northern France would be all right, but Spain, Italy and the Balkans become deserts. None of South-East Asia makes it, and none of South Asia except the foothills of the Himalayas. None of Africa makes it except Madagascar, none of South America except Patagonia, none of Australia except Tasmania.

This nightmare vision would be less troubling if the IPCC were some fringe group of radicals, but it is an inter-GOVERNMENTAL panel that operates by seeking the broadest possible consensus among over a thousand of the world's leading meteorologists and climatologists. So what might we do about it? The answer comes in two versions: utterly apocalyptic, and what you might call "wise counsels of despair."

Speaker bio: Gwynne Dyer has worked as a freelance journalist, broadcaster and lecturer on international affairs for more than 20 years. His first television series, 'War', was aired in 45 countries in the mid-80s, and one episode, 'The Profession of Arms', was nominated for an Academy Award. His articles are published by over 175 papers in some 45 countries.

Dyer's recent book, 'Ignorant Armies: Sliding into War in Iraq', was the number-one non-fiction best-seller in Canada in the spring of 2003. Both "Future Tense" and "War" have been high on the Canadian bestseller list, while his most recent book, "After Iraq" was number three on the Canadian nonfiction list this spring. "Climate Wars," based on his forthcoming CBC "Ideas" series and Random House book of the same name (out in April 2008) deals with the frightening geopolitical implications of large-scale climate change.

Important: Teachers wishing to bring their classes to this event should first contact Nancy Leclerc by email at


Thursday, October 25,  1 - 2:30pm, Auditorium A-103
Film Screening: "In the Name of the Mother and the Son"
Film-maker Maryse Legagneur

More on "In the Name of the Mother and the Son"

This film takes us to the heart of Montreal's Saint-Michel neighbourhood for an intimate look at two young Quebecers of Haitian origin as they search for hope and freedom. Like their parents, who left Haiti to settle in Canada and had to start from scratch, James and Le Voyou are trying to make a life for themselves, each in his own way. The subtle voice of a guardian angel whispers to James and Le Voyou in Creole - words spoken by generations of Haitian women who have always struggled so that their families might find happiness.

Filmmaker Maryse Legagneur will be present to discuss the film.



Friday, October 26,  9am - 11:30am, Auditorium A-103
Film Screening: "Encounter Point"
Film-maker: Ronit Avni

Director Ronit Avni (above) will be present to discuss the film.

Synopsis: Caught in the crossfire of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict are civilians who seek to build a secure, peaceful future. Their stories seldom make the headlines, drowned out by explosive coverage of suicide bombers and an occupation maintained by one of the world's most powerful armies. This critically acclaimed documentary follows the lives of everyday leaders struggling for peace in the midst of an escalating conflict.

Just when the world is losing hope about the possibility of resolving the Palestinian-Israeli conflict comes Encounter Point. Created by a Palestinian, Israeli, North and South American team, Encounter Point moves beyond sensational and dogmatic imagery to tell the story of an Israeli settler, a Palestinian ex-prisoner, a bereaved Israeli mother and a wounded Palestinian bereaved brother who risk their safety and public standing to press for an end to the conflict. They are at the vanguard of a movement to push Palestinian and Israeli societies to a tipping point, forging a new consensus for nonviolence and peace. Perhaps years from now, their actions will be recognized as a catalyst for constructive change in the region. Encounter Point is a film about hope, true courage and implicitly about the silence of journalists and politicians who pay little attention to vital grassroots peace efforts.

For more information on the film, please visit:

"Oddly funny and deeply troubling" - Los Angeles Times

"Something else entirely.... Ronit Avni and Julia Bacha never flinch from the brutal tragedies these men and women have endured, thereby capturing the heroism of their nonviolent choice." - TimeOut NY

Speaker bio: Ronit Avni is the Founder and Executive Director of Just Vision, a non-profit that widens the influence of Palestinian and Israeli grassroots peace builders. She has co-produced short videos and online video advocacy features in collaboration with filmmakers in Senegal, Burkina Faso, the United States and Brazil while working for Peter Gabriel's human rights organization, WITNESS. WITNESS advances human rights advocacy using video and communications technology. Ronit has trained non-governmental organizations from Honduras to the Gambia to produce videos as a tool for public education and grassroots mobilizing, as a deterrent to further abuse and as evidence before courts and tribunals. She wrote and produced a short documentary film, Rise, with the Revolutionary Association of the Women of Afghanistan. Rise premiered at Makor in Manhattan and screened at the Women's Film Festival in Seoul, Korea, and at the GlobalVisions Film Festival in Canada. Excerpts from Rise were featured on PBS's World At Large. She was among eight American-based recipients of the 2003-2005 Joshua Venture Fellowship for young Jewish social entrepreneurs. She was recently selected to receive the Auburn Seminary's 'Lives of Commitment' Award. Ronit has lectured at American University, Concordia University, Minnesota University, Bard College, New York University, the New School and Vassar College. Ronit has written for Satya magazine and co-edited the book, Video for Change: A Guide for Advocacy and Activism (Pluto Press, UK), with staff from WITNESS. Ronit's essay, "Inverting the Shame-Based Human Rights Documentation Model in the Context of the Palestinian-Israeli Conflict," was published in the spring 2006 edition of American Anthropologist.

Ronit graduated with honors with a BA in Political Science from Vassar College. She received a Burnam Fellowship to intern at B'Tselem: the Israeli Information Center for Human Rights in the Occupied Territories. While abroad, Ronit volunteered for the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI). Ronit acquired a DEC in Professional Theatre Studies from Dawson College. She has directed plays for Show-Off and Threepenny Productions in Montreal.


Friday, October 26,  11:30am - 1pm, Auditorium A-103
Planes, Spiders and Elevators; Phobias Are Easy to Treat
Karen White, Psychology and Methodology teacher at Vanier College

A phobia is an excessive fear reaction to something that isn't actually that dangerous. It can lead us to avoid common experiences such as riding in elevators or going into basements.

These fears can stop us from travelling or speaking in front of groups, and make us feel ridiculous! But psychologists know how to treat phobias well and quickly (without ever having to talk about your mother)!

Dr. Karen White is a teacher in the Psychology Dept at Vanier College. She is also a clinical psychologist in private practice in Montreal. She treats adults and adolescents for depression, anxiety, stress, compulsive behaviours, and often just for unhappiness. In addition, she treats couples and individuals who want to improve their relationships.


Friday, October 26,  1 - 2:30pm, Auditorium A-103
Climate Change 101: A Live Presentation of Al Gore's Slideshow on Global Warming and Climate Change
Shelley Kath

Shelley Kath, Executive Director of The Climate Project-Canada and climate change messenger personally trained by Al Gore to present the slide show that forms the subject of the documentary film, An Inconvenient Truth.

Former U.S. Vice-president, Al Gore has presented the slide show on global warming and climate change seen in the film, An Inconvenient Truth, over 1,000 times. Now, you can see the slideshow in your community, presented by one of the Canadians personally trained by Al Gore to present his slides. The slideshow provides a great overview and introduction to global warming and its many impacts, particularly climate change. The slideshow includes a look at some of the Canadian impacts as well, and explores some of the ways individuals can approach taking action to reduce greenhouse gases.

The Climate Project (TCP), founded by former US Vice President Al Gore, is a movement to educate and challenge both citizens and governments into action against the growing crisis of global warming.

Its first initiative involved the training of over 1,000 individuals, including 21 Canadians, to present a personalized and localized slide-show version of An Inconvenient Truth. Following the initial US training sessions, similar trainings led by Al Gore were held in Australia and the United Kingdom, and others are planned for India, China, Spain and Canada. The Canadian training program will be developed and organized by a new organization called The Climate Project - Canada, created by a handful of Canadian presenters trained by Mr. Gore in Nashville. The Climate Project - Canada operates in close conjunction with The Climate Project in the US

Speaker bio: Shelley Kath is one of the climate change messengers personally trained by Al Gore to present the slide show that forms the subject of the documentary film, An Inconvenient Truth. Following the film's launch in the spring of 2006, Mr. Gore decided to create "The Climate Project", an initiative through which he wanted to select and personally train some 1000 individuals who would then go out into their communities and present the slide show a minimum of 10 times each. Shelley was the 51st person chosen and the first Canadian, and was trained by Mr. Gore in December 2006 in Nashville, Tennessee. She also assisted at Mr. Gore's final training session in Nashville in April of this year and served as mentor to some 50 presenters from the northeastern US and Canada. Additionally, Shelley authored one of the documents contained in the training materials for Mr. Gore's US training sessions. Furthermore, she arranged for and coordinated the translation of Mr. Gore's slide show into French and Spanish by the Centre Helios, a Montreal-based nonprofit energy and environment research and consulting group.

Since December of last year, Shelley has served as the point person and coordinator for Climate Project activities in Canada. Recently, she was named Executive Director of The Climate Project - Canada, which will host a training session led by Mr. Gore here in Canada, along with a post-training follow-up program, in order to launch another 200 presenters across the country (currently, there are only 21, compared to 1000 in the US).

Shelley is an attorney and member of the Quebec Bar, formerly with the law firm Fasken Martineau DuMoulin, in its Environment and Energy, as well as Strategic Counsel Groups. Before becoming a proud Canadian, Shelley lived in New York State where she was very active in environmental advocacy. Prior to coming to Montreal to study law at McGill, she served as Legislative Director of the Sierra Club's New York State Chapter, where she coordinated the Chapter's 45,000 members and served as the organization's chief spokesperson and lobbyist. She began her career in environmental advocacy about 20 years ago when she was drafted by the League of Women Voters, best-known for their voter registration work, to become the League's Environmental Lobbyist in New York State.

Shelley lives in Montreal with her husband and 7-year old son, who naturally fuels her interest in keeping global warming at bay!

Recent online articles by Shelley Kath:

National Post article from June 1, 2007: In defence of An Inconvenient Truth

McGill Reporter article from May 31, 2007: Becoming an Instrument of (Climate) Change



This Festival could not have been made possible without the generous contributions of the following members of the Vanier Community:

Nancy Wargny, Faculty Dean, Faculty of Social Science, Commerce, Arts and Letters
The Vanier College Learning Centre
Doug Miller and Dany Brown
Vanier Social Justice Committee
The Vanier College Teachers Association
Myriam Mansour (Native Awareness Group)
Neil Caplan, Miles DeNora, Lyne Marie Larocque
Zsofia Orszagh, Denis Lafontaine and Marguerite Corriveau
Kelly Purdy, Natasha-Kim Ferenczi and Frédérique Denis
All teachers of the Vanier College Social Science Program

We thank each and every one of you.

For further information or inquiries, please contact:
Nancy Leclerc at (514) 744-7500 ext 7272 or email her at:

Please check this page for any changes in rooms or the schedule.
(Click on the "Refresh" button to assure you see the latest changes.)

back to top