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Fireside chat with The Right Honourable David Johnston

Time: June 29, 2023, 1 p.m.

WACE is pleased to announce a fireside chat with the Right Honourable David Johnston at the 23rd annual WACE World Conference. During his session, David Johnston will examine lessons from his latest book, Empathy which discusses how to turn compassion into action. He will also explore educators' role in helping to guide today's youth to find purpose in their careers while navigating an uncertain and volatile world.

The Right Honourable David Johnston was Canada’s 28th governor general. During his mandate, he established the Rideau Hall Foundation (RHF), a registered charity that supports and amplifies the Office of the Governor General in its work to connect, honour and inspire Canadians. Today, he is actively involved as Chair of the RHF Board of Directors. In 2018, he was appointed Colonel to the Royal Canadian Regiment. Prior to his installation as governor general, Mr. Johnston was a professor of law for 45 years, and served as President of the University of Waterloo for two terms, Principal of McGill University for 3 terms. He was president of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada and of the Conférence des recteurs et des principaux des universités du Québec.

He was the first non-U.S. citizen to be elected chair at Harvard University’s Board of Overseers from which he graduated in 1963 magna cum laude and was twice named all-American in hockey and was named to Harvard’s Athletic Hall of Fame. He holds degrees from Harvard, Cambridge and Queen’s and has received more than three dozen honorary degrees or fellowships. He has authored or co-authored more than 30 books. He was named Companion of the Order of Canada in 1997. He has chaired or served on many provincial and federal task forces and committees, and has served on the boards of more than a dozen public companies. He has been married for 56 years to Sharon and they have 5 daughters and 14 grandchildren.  

Dr. Vivek Goel, President and Vice-Chancellor, University of Waterloo

Dr. Vivek Goel is the University of Waterloo's President and Vice-Chancellor. He has held a number of senior leadership roles at the University of Toronto including as VicePresident and Provost and most recently as Vice-President Research and Innovation. He served as founding President and CEO of Public Health Ontario from 2008 until 2014 and also as a founding scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES). Goel has served as Chief Academic Strategist with Coursera, a global platform that connects universities and learners with online courses. Goel obtained his medical degree from McGill University and completed post-graduate medical training in Community Medicine at the University of Toronto. Dr. Goel obtained a master’s degree (MSc) in Community Health from U of T and a master’s degree (MS) in Biostatistics from Harvard University School of Public Health. 

Featured Sessions

Around the WIL World in 60 Minutes

Speakers from regions across the globe will share their perspectives on work-integrated learning (WIL) and how it relates to their location. Topics will include WIL updates, challenges and opportunities for WIL and the future of WIL in their region.

North America: CEWIL/CEIA Matt Rempel

Matt’s passion is in post-secondary education and student success.  Joining Sheridan College in 2014, he created the Career-Integrated Learning department and serves as the elected President for Co-operative Education and Work-Integrated Learning (CEWIL) Canada.  Matt is a graduate of an Executive MBA program, a CivicAction Fellow, and earned a Doctor of Education degree. 

Australia/NZ: ACEN/WILNZ Michelle Eady 

Associate Professor Michelle J. Eady lectures in Curriculum and Pedagogy in the Faculty of the Arts Social Science and the Humanities (ASSH) at the University of Wollongong, Australia. Michelle is a proud Fellow of the International Society of the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning (ISSOTL), a Fellow of HERDSA and a senior fellow of AdvanceHE (SFHEA). Awarded a national Office of Teaching and Learning (OLT) citation for excellence and innovation in teaching, her current research interests include teacher education, work-integrated learning (WIL), communities of practice, and Indigenous strengths. Most recently, she has served as a research lead at Elon University Centre for Engaged Learning (CEL) institutes (2019-2021 and 2022-2024) researching connections between WIL and writing transfer and WIL and student voice. Professor Eady proudly serves as the incoming ISSOTL President and director of the Australian Collaborative Education Network (ACEN) and World Association for Collaborative Education (WACE) and looks forward to continuing advancing important WIL and SoTL work worldwide through collaborations with colleagues and students.

Europe: ASET / European Regional Office Kristina Johansson

Kristina Johansson is an associate professor in work integrated learning she is also a head of department for national economy, law and statistics. She is one of five research leaders in WACE, World Association of Cooperative Education. Together with colleagues she is also one of the founders of Global WIL. The research is right now focusing on students learning, leadership, validation of knowledge and curricula design. The teaching assignments is fore most within the PhD Education in WIL at University.

Asia: Thai/ASEAN/Japan Regional Office Atit Koonsrisuk

Atit is a faculty member of the School of Mechanical Engineering, Suranaree University of Technology (SUT) in Nakhon Ratchasima, Thailand. Atit is a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy (UK) and won the SUT Teacher of the Year Award in 2014. His responsibilities include teaching bachelors and graduate students, overseeing graduate student research. He is a reviewer of several international journals (Energy, Applied Energy, Solar Energy, Energy Conversion and Management, Journal of Solar Energy Engineering, Transactions of the ASME, Applied Thermal Engineering, International Journal of Ambient Energy, Journal of Process Mechanical Engineering).

Africa: Dr. Charles Lebon Mberi Kimpolo

Dr. Charles Lebon Mberi Kimpolo is the Director of the Industry Initiative and Head of the Next Einstein Forum (NEF) at the Global Network Secretariat of the African Institute for Mathematical Sciences – Next Einstein Initiative (AIMS-NEI). For the last couple of years, Charles brought strategic oversight and direction to the AIMS Industry Initiative across the Network, with the aim to broaden the scope and breadth of partnerships with industry in Africa and beyond. Charles leads the implementation of Work Integrated Learning programs at AIMS to develop new industry needs-driven capacity development programs and support AIMS graduates in their transition to employment, entrepreneurship and further study. Charles’s dream is to position AIMS-NEI as the industry’s leading academic partner in Africa that achieves industry and economic advancement of the continent.

Employer Showcase - The Future of work: engaging work-integrated learning to achieve innovation, entrepreneurship & economic recovery in an uncertain world

Moderated by Dr. Norah McRae and featuring panelists from various organizations who participate in work-integrated learning (WIL), this panel discussion will showcase the employer perspective on how WIL can achieve innovation, foster entrepreneurship and contribute to economic recovery.

Norah McRae, PhD, Associate Provost, Co-operative and Experiential Education (CEE) at the University of Waterloo

Norah McRae, PhD, is associate provost, Co-operative and Experiential Education (CEE) at the University of Waterloo. Her involvement in co-operative and work-integrated education spans more than 20 years, over which time she has led strategic program development and research on student engagement, community-engaged learning and intercultural competency development.


Ruhuni De Alwis, People and Culture Leader, Healthcare of Ontario Pension Plan (HOOPP)

Ruhuni De Alwis is a Waterloo Math and Arts grad, with a 30+ year career in IT, sitting in all the various seats from Developer, Business Analyst, Team Lead, Delivery Manager, and interesting organizations. Ruhuni has evolved her career into Performance Coaching, with a focus on creating a harmonious work and life culture that nurtures and grows people into the best versions of themselves. Success lies in helping organizations and people build a culture, with intent, that celebrates and values collective wisdom - learning from failures and successes equally- so others can benefit.

  • Amaryllis Jones, P&G Talent Acquisition and E&I Leader, Canada, Procter & Gamble

Amaryllis Jones leads Talent Acquisition and Equality & Inclusion at Procter & Gamble. She has multifunctional experience in Sales and Brand Management, working in Commercial Operations as P&G’s Dish Care Sales Leader prior to joining Human Resources in 2021. With a focused on attracting and retaining the right, brightest and most diverse talent, her efforts have contributed to P&G Canada being recognized as an accredited Indigenous Employer of Choice, LinkedIn Top Employer and Canada’s Best Diversity Employer amongst other accolades. She is a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University’s BBA’14 and MBA’20 program.

Stephen Harrington, Partner and National Lead – Workforce Strategy, Deloitte Canada

Stephen is Partner in Deloitte’s Workforce Transformation practice, leading Workforce Strategy in Canada. Within that role Stephen has been involved with the question of the Future of Work since he wrote his first paper on the subject in 2011. The driving question has been: how will the 4th industrial revolution change work, and how can we best prepare our organizations for this shift? Of course, the pandemic has accelerated this discussion in the last few years. With over 20 years experience in advisory, Stephen’s work is focused on building workforce strategies that deliver not only improved employee engagement but also business benefits in the form of improved productivity and bottom line savings. Deploying workforce strategies he has worked in the fields of rewards, attraction and retention / employee value proposition, compensation, succession management, competency modeling, workforce analytics, learning, and leadership development.

Naveed Zahid, AVP of Engineering Transformation, Global Technology Strategy and Transformation, Manulife

Naveed joined Manulife four years ago but has been working in various Engineering roles for the past 19 years. He began his career in the technical consulting space at CGI and Deloitte, before moving to various Engineering organizations, such as Blackberry, and is now in Fintech.

As the AVP of Engineering Transformation, he heads a number of initiatives including Manulife University (MU), a program intended to onboard new Engineers and upskill existing engineering talent at Manulife on topics involving Software, Quality, Performance, Reliability, Security, and Platform engineering disciplines. Naveed also heads Engineering Enablement and Effectiveness at Manulife, a team that is driving consistent measurements of engineering productivity as well as driving engineering culture through internal hackathons and maturing Manulife’s Global Coop / Internship programs. In addition, he runs the engineering hiring panel at Manulife, as well as Manulife TechTalks - an external Meetup group in the Kitchener-Waterloo area.

Naveed has a passion for continuous learning and development of Engineers at Manulife and works hard to ensure that Manulife hires talent without bias, while supporting a culture of inclusivity. He loves partnering with Engineers and leaders across the organization and creating a community of knowledge sharing and support. All of this results in building better products and experiences for Manulife’s customers.

Naveed is even busier outside of work, with four children, aged 15, 12, 3 ½ and 15 months old. His household is absolute chaos, and he wouldn’t have it any other way!

Naveed is a graduate of the University of Toronto, Bachelor of Applied Science, Computer Engineering.

Notes about the 2023 conference:

WACE 2023 will be hosted in-person at the University of Waterloo in Waterloo, Ontario. However, as international restrictions and travel guidelines continue to evolve due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the conference format is subject to change.

Continue to check this page for updates to the WACE 2023 conference programming.

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