NOTE: Applications for the 2014 Science Leadership program will open in January 2014.
The Science Leadership Program provides outstanding academic scientists with the skills, approaches and frameworks for engaging more effectively with the media, the decision makers and the public throughout their careers. Designed by Prof. Ray Jayawardhana, Senior Advisor on Science Engagement to the President of the University of Toronto, with the guidance of a planning advisory group, the SLP will build a network of top researchers across the UofT and other research-intensive universities in Canada, who share a common set of goals and to connect them with leaders of relevant external organizations and media to help foster a culture change.
The ‘boot camp’ for a select group of faculty members begins with a reception on a Wednesday evening and ends with a group dinner on a Friday. The program includes a series of hands-on training sessions on communications, outreach and leadership, discussion panels and opportunities for interaction. Experienced trainers and prominent practitioners will lead the sessions and participate in the panels. For example, at the 2013 SLP, Nancy Houfek, head of voice & speech at the American Repertory Theatre at Harvard ran a session on ‘the performance art of science presentation’; several top journalists, including Geoffrey Carr of The Economist and Ivan Semeniuk of Globe & Mail, discussed opportunities and challenges of media engagement; there was a parallel sessions on effective online communications, featuring well known bloggers including Marie Claire Shanahan and Colin Schultz, and on publishing popular science books with top literary agents, such as Rick Broadhead, and editors, including Nick Garrison of Penguin Canada. Other session topics include affecting policy, community involvement and team building. In 2013, Howard Alper, Chair of the Government of Canada’s Science, Technology, and Innovation Council, David Naylor, President of U of T, and and Bob McDonald, host of CBC’s Quirks & Quarks, also addressed the participants also addressed the participants.
Given the intensity and the nature of the training, participants are expected to commit to the full two days of the program. Over the course of the following year, the SLP Fellows are expected to put into practice what they learn at the workshop to further their vision for broad engagement through outreach initiatives, community partnerships, mentoring programs or writing/speaking for the public. They are also expected to attend one to two gatherings to share their experiences and best practices with the other Fellows. For the inaugural SLP, we selected about 13 participants from UofT and 8 more from other research-intensive Canadian universities. Selection criteria include:
NOTE: Applications for the 2014 Science Leadership program will open in January 2014.U of T applicants:
Please complete the form and submit electronically along with your curriculum vitae and arrange to submit one letter of reference from your department chair, dean or other senior colleague who can elaborate why you would be a good candidate to the e-mail address below.Non-U of T applicants:
The Provost (or the designate) should send the nomination, along with the form completed by the nominee and the nominee’s curriculum vitae, electronically to the e-mail address below.
Please contact Helen Lasthiotakis at SLPapply@utoronto.ca for further information.