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Giving News


John Inglis painting

Donor Establishes 15 New Scholarships

OCAD University is pleased to announce one of the largest philanthropic gifts for student scholarships in its 135-year history.

The Ada Slaight Scholarships, funded by a $300,000 gift from Ada Slaight, will mean the creation of 15 new entrance scholarships based on academic merit.

The 15 students awarded the scholarships will each receive $5,000 per year for four years of full-time study. Seven students will begin their scholarships in the 2012-13 academic year and eight students will begin their scholarships in the 2013-14 academic year.

Read the full gift announcement

Alumni Mentoring


OCAD U student

Would you like to mentor a student?

A new alumni mentor program has been proposed to help OCAD U students make the transition to the world of work following graduation.

We are looking to recruit both Art and Design alumni mentors based in Toronto who would be paired with current 4th year (graduating) students.

Full details of this new OCAD U alumni volunteer opportunity--including eligibility and requirements--and a brief survey to identify your interest is available on the new Mentoring Program page of the Alumni website.

Financial Planning

Focus on Finance

Where To? Setting Financial Goals for Your Career

By Diana Bahr, financial aid & Awards

Have you given any thought lately to the direction you want to take your art or design practice? Do you have a business plan, a vision statement, a post-it note with your creative to-do list for the year? And do you know how much the things you want will cost?

The saying “if you don’t know where you’re going, you won’t know when you get there” is an oft-repeated clich� because it’s so true. Setting a goal helps, especially for those dreams you need to save for.

Here are three steps to help you set goals for your career:

1) Determine your goals
If you’re not sure what goals you have for your art or design practice, try these exercises:
Recall meaningful experiences. Write down what you value about your happiest projects, jobs and relationships. What do you want more of?
Consider your strengths. Try the “VIA Signature Strengths” questionnaire.
Categorize. Think of things you’d like to achieve in the different areas of your career such as professional development (take a class), profit (increase sales by 5%), and promotion (meet three new potential clients).
Prioritize. How important are the activities that currently take up your time? What would you rather be doing? Use this quadrant exercise to give you clues about goals you’d like to achieve.
Imagine. Imagine you’re at your Lifetime Achievement Award party celebrating the successes in your art and design practice. What did you accomplish?
Stage It. Brainstorm goals based on stages in your professional life. What did you want while at OCAD U? When you graduated? What do you want mid-career?

2) Name your goals and date them
A goal is a dream with a deadline. Name them and give them a date. The best goals are SMART:
Specific and clear (you can name it)
Measurable (break the goal into small steps you can track)
Achievable (its challenging but attainable)
Realistic (it doesn’t take over the rest of your life)
Time-based (you have a deadline in mind)

Using a spreadsheet or journal, create four columns with the headings: Goal, Cost, Steps and Date. Fill in the chart with your goals, how much they each cost (see step three), some steps you’ll take and when you plan to achieve them. You could create another column for dates for each step as well, along with a box to check off when you complete them! Post it somewhere you look often to stay inspired. See this worksheet for an example.

3) Research what they will cost
Want to start a business? What will your start-up costs be? Plan to exhibit internationally? How much will it cost to ship your paintings to Italy? Be thorough. Try a simple goal calculator to put a price to it. Don’t let expenses deter you. Use the financial figures to determine how much you will save per month in order to make your dreams come true.

- Keep your goals and progress in a central place (a sticky on your computer, a spreadsheet on Google Docs or cell phone app)
- Choose goals based on your values (these will keep you motivated)
- Use your goals to inform a savings plan (read about that in an upcoming issue of Focus on Finance)

My name is Diana Bahr. I’m the Projects Officer with Financial Aid & Awards and a mature student at OCAD U—and I’m as passionate about personal finance as I am about art. I believe artists and designers can create any career they want, with a great plan and some basic financial management skills.


Supporting OCAD U

Laura Letter

Within the last few days you should have received a letter from one of our graduating students, Laura, sharing her experience in her program, and asking you to please consider supporting OCAD U with a donation. You can make a gift online or get more information on how to give.

Alumni News + Updates

We have been receiving many emails from alumni telling us about their career news and accolades, so we created a page on the Alumni website to share their updates with the rest of the alumni community!

Click here for Alumni News

Click here for Alumni on View (Solo + Group)

Tell us your news

New Alumni Discount

Above Ground Coupon

In celebration of Alumni Day, Above Ground Art Supplies has kindly offered an in-store 20% discount to OCAD U alumni from May 1 to 20! Click here to enlarge the image so you can print it off and bring it to the store.

Upcoming Events


Alumni Day


May 5 | 100 McCaul street

11: 00AM to 2:00pm

Please join us for Alumni Day, a new free event for alumni and their families.

Highlights include:
- Welcome from Dr. Sara Diamond (OCAD U President) and Maggie Broda (OCAD U Alumni Association President)
- Free outdoor BBQ
- Guided tours of the Medal Winners' Exhibit
- Mask-making workshop for kids
- Silkscreening workshop for adults
- Alumni Association reception from 4pm to 5pm

This event is free but RSVP is required.

Register your attendance

Sponsored by TD and the Alumni Association

Wednesday, april 25

2 pm - 3 pm |51 McCaul |Room 5200

Seminar: Repaying Your Student Loan

Free seminar on the top 6 things to know about repaying your student loan! You’ll learn about:
� The benefits of government-sponsored student loans
� How the grace period works
� Saving money
� Your consolidation agreement
� Avoiding repayment problems
� Maintaining student loans

RSVP to Diana Bahr

Presented by Financial Aid & Awards and National Student Loan Service Centre

Wednesday, May 23

12PM - 1PM or 8pm to 9pm | webinar

Webinar: Leadership Starts with You!

Alan Kearns, Canada's Career Coach and founder of CareerJoy.com, OCAD U alumni career and leadership coaching partner, will lead you through this 1-hour interactive webinar where you will learn to establish concrete goals, plans, and methods to facilitate professional development and ensure leadership success.

Details and registration for 12pm to 1pm session
Details and registration for 8pm to 9pm session

Presented by Alumni Relations and CareerJoy.com

Summer Life Drawing

Interested in drawing a model?

These open sessions are perfect for people looking for life drawing without instruction.

Beginning June 13 and running through August 15, life drawing sessions are scheduled on Wednesdays from 7 to 10 p.m. Bring a board and materials - no reservation is required. Cost: $10 per session. Payment should be made to the monitor on duty.

Click here for the full schedule and location.

Brought to you by the Alumni Association

From the Mailbag

Roman Forum

We received some emails identifying the archival photo from Rome we featured in the February Alumni Newsletter.

John H. Borg, who studied at OCA from 1967-69 and again from 1974-75, wrote in to tell us that the gentleman on the far right was instructor John Inglis (AOCA, 1952), standing with his wife Kwan.

Gwyneth Fatemi (AOCA, 1984) concurred, adding "[John] was an instructor when I was a student in 79-81. I went with Franklin Arbuckle and Gerald Lazare in '82".

We also heard from former faculty member Mary Tuck Corelli, who wrote "I well remember the excitement on the third floor when that group's work arrived from Italy for evaluation and inclusion in the annual exhibition. I also have a lovely memory of entering the old auditorium with my colleague Marion McRae for the very first meeting of the college Alumni Association and how pleased every one was at its birth that day—so many memories of my 3 decades serving on the OCA faculty!! Very best wishes to very special people-OCADU  ALUMNI!!"

Alumni Travel




Art & Life In Italy

November 7-18, 2012

Join a small group of art lovers, amateurs and enthusiasts on this art and architecture tour to Venice, Florence and Rome. Artist and Art Educator and alumna Maggie Broda (AOCA, 1972) leads this exploration, joined by local artists and art historians on site.

Days are filled with frescoes,paintings, marble and wood, and punctuated with espresso, gelato and divine food and wine. Whether this is a long-awaited first visit or a happy occasion to return to your favourite places, this trip will stimulate and revitalize. Andiamo!

This trip is limited to 16 participants. Open to OCAD U Alumni and Friends. Please contact Kerry to reserve your spot: 1-800-387-1483 or travel@WorldwideQuest.com.

Presented by the OCAD U Alumni Association + Worldwide quest travel


Career Services

2 Habits That Can Hold You Back from Reaching Your career Potential

We all have habits in our life. Olympic athletes have Olympic habits, while others with similar talent struggle. Our good habits such as a strong work ethic, regular exercise & consistency in our activity, help support the kind of career & life we want. Our poor habits interfere with these desires. That is a very simple idea, but we all relate to the challenge of changing habits in our lives. I heard a great quote this past week, "The key to achieving our goals is to align our habits with our desires." Do your career habits support your career desires?

I want to share some final thoughts from my conversation with author Jenifer Fox about the 2 major habits that can limit your career potential. What are the 2 career limiting habits that Jenifer shared?

1. The weakness habit - I have discovered many clients, before starting in our Career Identity Program, have a much clearer picture of their weakness, than their strengths. Jenifer shared, "A majority of the energy in the school system and workplace has emphasized working on your weaknesses."

2. The strengths assumption - Your strengths are obvious to those around you. Others assume that you know your own strengths well. I have found, in many cases, we can be blinded by self-bias, both positively and negatively. Only 20% of professionals have a clear & accurate perspective of their strengths. Jenifer stated "Disabled concepts can create disabled perspectives."

Whether you are 25 or 45, it is never too soon to figure this stuff out. It really is not challenging as you think to change your habits, especially with a clear goal, some good tools and individualized coaching. The real benefit as Jenifer shared, "Meaningful lives are those that are filled with meaningful work. The journey to fulfillment begins with introspection, risk taking and, most of all, self-knowledge translated into good habits."

excerpted from the CareerJoy Blog

Introducing our new Vice-President, Jill Birch

On April 30, OCAD University will welcome Jill Birch as Vice-President, Development & Alumni Relations and President, OCAD University Foundation. Reporting to the President and serving as a key member of the University Cabinet, Birch will lead OCAD U's development and alumni engagement strategies, activities and teams, and be responsible for collaborating with faculty members, staff and the OCAD U Foundation Board.

Birch was most recently Principal and National Capability Lead - Sector Development with Knightsbridge Human Capital Solutions' Leadership Solutions Practice, where she was responsible for driving market awareness, developing sector relations, and client development.

Previously, Birch worked at Sheridan College in Oakville, where she was Vice-President, Business Development. In that role, she was responsible for a $40-million business unit that included fundraising, alumni, partnerships, marketing communications, government relations, corporate training, continuing education and applied research.

Prior to joining Sheridan, Birch was Associate Director, In-Company Development, International Training and Partnerships for the Schulich School of Business at York University, where she was responsible for building Schulich's leadership practice. She has worked with a wide variety of clients in high-tech, health, energy, the public sector, manufacturing and telecommunications. Birch received her M.A. from the University of Toronto and is currently a Ph.D candidate at Griffith University, Australia, where she is researching relational leadership processes.

"Jill's entrepreneurship and success in building local, national and global partnerships as well as raising revenue in the post-secondary environment are impressive strengths that will benefit our institution," said Dr. Sara Diamond, President of OCAD U.

Alumni Association Reception May 5

Association Logo

The Alumni Association will be holding a reception for alumni in Lambert Lounge at 100 McCaul on May 5 from 4pm to 5pm as a nice way to close the Alumni Day activities.
Come and meet members of the Alumni Council and learn about how to get involved with the Association. RSVP greatly appreciated.

Alumni Benefits

Home and Car Insurance



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