EDI in the 519

Campus Newsletter

Volume I | Issue I | December 2021

Visit the VPEDI Website

Welcome from the VP, EDI

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Welcome to our first issue!

Create. Centre. Celebrate.

This newsletter strives to build a culture that reflects the diversity of the University of Windsor and our surrounding Windsor-Essex community. It centres bold, unapologetic and forthright stories of excellence, advocacy, challenges, and triumphs that impact our community and inspire a more equitable and just world.


If we do not capture these stories, no one else will. They will not be heard or seen. This newsletter’s goal is to create an expansive space where EDI issues are centred and celebrated. These stories tell us how far we’ve come and the potential of where we can grow as a community. 


In our opening issue, we cover important, emerging EDI-related events and initiatives at UWindsor. We introduce Dr. Clinton Beckford, our inaugural Vice President, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion (VPEDI). Learn about Dr. Beckford through testimonials echoing his extensive experience and profound impact at UWindsor and globally. We present Dr. Andrew Allen, the Anti-Racism Pedagogies Teaching Leadership (ARPTLC). See Dr. Allen’s longstanding contributions to the campus community and the academic change his position entails. Discover the launch of the Anti-Black Racism Distinguished Speakers Series featuring Dr. George Dei. And find out about new wellness and inclusion initiatives, like BIDE, the Wellness Lounge, the Scarborough Charter, the 50-30 Challenge, and the EDI Decolonization Senate Subcommittee. 

Read the Welcome Statement from the VP, EDI

Meet the VPEDI Team

Meet Dr. Clinton Beckford,

Vice-President, Equity Diversity & Inclusion

On June 1, 2021, the University of Windsor entered into a new chapter with the two-year appointment of its first acting Vice-President, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (“Vice-President, EDI”), Dr. Clinton Beckford. Dr. Beckford is not only the first Vice-President, EDI, but the first Black senior administrator since the University of Windsor’s founding nearly 60 years ago. 

Dr. Beckford has an established record of EDI engagement through his teaching, research in vulnerability, marginalization and education, and community work. Grounded in his interest and passion for the education of vulnerable children, he has developed courses and projects at the Faculty of Education, University of Windsor designed to enhance the competence of new teachers to teach through the lenses of equity and inclusion.  

Alumna Camesha Cox (M.Ed. 2007) says, “Dr. Beckford leads with dignity, grace and humility. He embodies the spirit of hope and possibility. As his former student, I have witnessed, first hand, his magic and have been moved to be a more passionate educator because of his example. In his new role as VP, EDI, I am confident that he will ignite students, faculty and administrators to co-create a more equitable, diverse and inclusive campus for all.” This is a testament to his extensive impact throughout the University community.

The Girls’ Leadership and Empowerment Program (GLEP), an initiative for secondary school students who identify as girls in Tanzania, was developed and run by Dr. Beckford. This was made possible with funding and support from the Rotary Club of Windsor (1918) and Rotary District 6400 and is a prime example of his work to eradicate discrimination and promote equity in education.

In his inaugural role as Vice-President, EDI, Dr. Beckford provides guidance, advocacy, insight, and leadership in building a systematic, intentional, and coherent infrastructure to support the ongoing work of fostering and ensuring increasingly welcoming, equitable, inclusive, just, and safe campus communities. This is an office that is empowered not only in name but in practice, with an integral and strategic seat at the executive leadership table, Senate, and the Board of Governors. A forthcoming Board/Senate Bylaw will institutionalize a permanent Vice-President, EDI role at UWindsor.

“Dr. Beckford brings extensive research, knowledge, and experience working with racialized, marginalized, and Indigenous communities locally and internationally to this role, as well as a deep knowledge of our campus community,” wrote Dr. Robert Gordon, President and Vice-Chancellor.

Since his appointment 6 months ago, the Office of the Vice-President, EDI, has been engaged in strategic initiatives to address the climate of systematic racial injustice and oppression perpetuated by the institution. For more info on those initiatives, visit the VPEDI website.

Continue Reading

Meet Dr. Andrew Allen, ARPTLC

July 1, 2021, marked the start of Dr. Andrew Allen’s two-year tenure as the Anti-Racism Pedagogies Teaching Leadership Chair (ARPTLC). The Office of the President and the Centre for Teaching and Learning selects the ARPTLC from among permanent full-time faculty members. This role is intended to lead and support teaching and curricular initiatives focused on anti-racism pedagogies in faculties and across campus, replicating success in one unit across other units efficiently. 

Dr. Andrew Allen exemplifies commitment to teaching for social justice, says Dr. Ken Montgomery, Dean of the Faculty of Education. “He has been engaged tirelessly in public pedagogical activities that focus on bringing widespread awareness of, and transformative change to, some of the most pressing social inequalities of our time. UWindsor is very fortunate to count such an exceptional teacher, activist, and scholar amongst our colleagues.” 


Read More


EDI @ UWindsor

The BIDE Initiative

The Belonging, Inclusivity, Diversity, and Equity Institute ("BIDE") is a new student-led institution in the Office of Student Experience that provides a platform for underrepresented and marginalized groups on the University of Windsor campus. The creation of the BIDE Institute ensures that students of diverse groups will be protected under UWindsor bylaws and policies. BIDE is an initiative that students can see and feel rather than merely hear about in statements.

Fardovza Kusow, BIDE co-founder and a student experience coordinator, says, “During my time at university, I had the opportunity to get involved with many on-campus groups/initiatives, however, as years passed I’ve noticed that incoming students were becoming unaware of some of the initiatives created for them (inevitably leading these groups to stop operating)."

She hopes, with BIDE, marginalized students will not only have an on-campus institute that’s at their beck and call but also have the opportunity to launch or get involved with their own initiatives.

"In the coming years, not only do I hope to see more students taking control of their university experience, but I see BIDE providing students with the confidence and drive to implement the change they wish to see."

Learn More

UWindsor Signs Scarborough Charter

On November 18, 2021, the university joined some fifty other universities and colleges across Canada as a signatory to the Scarborough Charter. In becoming a signatory, UWindsor reinforced its commitment to redressing anti-Black racism and fostering Black inclusion in universities and colleges across Canada based on four principles: Black flourishing, inclusive excellence, mutuality and accountability. 

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Scarborough Charter

50-30 Challenge

The 50-30 Challenge is an initiative by the Government of Canada to improve diversity and increase access for women, racialized persons such as Black Canadians, people who identify as 2SLGBTQIA+, persons living with disabilities, as well as First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples to positions of influence and leadership on corporate boards and in senior management. As a signatory to the challenge, UWindsor has committed to a goal of 50% gender parity and 30% significant representation.

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UWindsor Senate Strikes EDI & Decolonization Subcommittee

The Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Decolonization (EDID) subcommittee is the newest committee of the University Senate under the Senate Governance Committee. Its mandate is to support responsiveness and facilitate change on key equity issues. The subcommittee will require diverse representation in its membership, particularly members of the Black and Indigenous communities.

For more information, contact Renée Wintermute.

Wellness @ UWindsor

Wellness Lounge

The Wellness Lounge will be a space for all students to go and study without having to worry about the noisy atmosphere associated with the CAW, Leddy Library West, and the anxieties of sitting alone in a tiny cubicle in a large area. 

“What's exciting about this lounge is that it was one of the first initiatives we wanted to organize in the initial planning stages of BIDE. Although there are many spaces for students to go to on campus, having the option of going somewhere that prioritizes their wellbeing and mental health in a relaxing and low-pressure environment is something we hope to see more of on campus,” says Hussein Samhat, a student experience coordinator. 

Students will be able to come to the lounge to unwind, relax, or study in a quiet space. The theme of this lounge will match the atmosphere it hopes to foster—calming, peaceful, and welcoming. ​

Fardovza Kusow, a student experience coordinator, remarks, “This wellness lounge will be just one of few locations that we will have on-campus that will foster this type of environment.” 

The lounge will be located in Dillon Hall, in the former location of the Campus Pride Centre. The planned opening is for Winter 2022.​

Learn More

Upcoming Events

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Distinguished Speaker Series Keynote: Dr. George Dei

Dr. George Dei, an acclaimed educator, writer, and researcher, is the inaugural speaker of the Distinguished Speaker Series in Anti-Racism and Anti-Oppression Pedagogies.

His presentation Race, Indigeneity and Anti- Colonial Education: Making Discursive Links will focus on making discursive links between race, indigeneity, decolonization, and anti-colonial education. He will highlight the intersection of politics of indigeneity and decolonization for liberation and new educational futures.

Join Dr. Dei on December 10 at 10 AM.

Register Here

Have ideas for stories? We'd love to hear from you about people, initiatives, or events we can highlight for future issues. Submit your submissions here.

EDI Events Calendar: If your upcoming event advances EDI, submit it to the University's EDI Events Calendar here.

View the EDI Calendar

Office of the

Vice President, EDI

401 Sunset Avenue

Windsor, Ontario N9B 3P4

519-253-3000; 4671



We foster a community of inclusion where traditionally silenced stories are centred and celebrated at the University of Windsor and in the Windsor-Essex community.