The first BPI Community Day held on March 30th, 2023 was a resounding success, as over 90 young researchers, faculty, and staff members gathered to celebrate the vibrant and diverse community that makes up the Institute.
The day kicked off with a warm welcome from Dr. Orlando Rojas, who set the tone for what was to be a day full of learning, fun, and connection. Dr. Gregory Paradis emceed the event, ensuring the day's activities flowed smoothly. Elder Yvonne Rigsby Jones from Snuneymuxw First Nation shared an inspirational land acknowledgment, followed by Dana-Lyn Mackenzie, APSC ED.I Senior Manager, welcoming guests and encouraging them to thrive in EDI initiatives. Additionally, the event introduced BPI EDI.I Committee members for the first time, highlighting their contributions to the community.
The day continued with an Inclusive Communication workshop facilitated by Bakau Consulting. The workshop provided valuable insights into how to be more mindful in day-to-day conversations, giving attendees practical strategies for fostering inclusivity.
Following the workshop, guests enjoyed a delicious dinner and complimentary drinks. The evening continued with a series of game activities that brought much laughter and excitement. Attendees showcased their talents and creativity during the dance and karaoke session, which was the highlight of the evening.
Ayako Takagi, an Industrial Designer, appreciated the opportunity to learn how to actively include everyone, saying, "The stories of 'how we could be better' shared by the keynote speaker were easy to understand and practical. I am happy that we got the opportunity to discuss them as a group." Marina Mehling, a PhD Student and EDI.I Committee Member, remarked, "Community Day was planned with the intention of giving BPI members an opportunity to connect and learn from others. It was lovely to see that plan come to fruition-- everyone brought positive energy and openness to the event!"
The success of BPI's first Community Day can be attributed to the efforts of all those involved, including the EDI.I Committee. The event brought together members of the community, allowing them to grow and learn together. We look forward to the next Community Day, where we can gather again and continue to strengthen our community.