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Our commitment

Mount Saint Vincent University is committed to efforts that advance equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility across all facets of our university and in the community.

Equity, diversity and inclusion means acknowledging and embracing each individual’s uniqueness, which includes race, ethnicity, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and gender expression, socio-economic status, age, religious beliefs, political beliefs, and other characteristics and ideologies. It also means celebrating, in a safe environment, the rich dimensions of diversity contained within each individual. Cultivating diversity in the workplace develops stronger relationships, fostered by trust, respect and open dialogue.

In 2021, the University appointed its first Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Accessibility Advisor, Delvina Bernard.

Mount Saint Vincent University strives to be a safe and welcoming place for all through our commitment to fostering equity, diversity, inclusion and accessibility. The university is committed to removing barriers of all kinds so students, faculty and staff – especially those from underrepresented groups – can fully participate in the university experience. MSVU encourages everyone to take steps to understanding the diverse cultures, ethnicities, experiences, abilities and beliefs within MSVU and its neighbouring communities.

For students

Whether it’s the Aboriginal Student Centre, the Black Student Support Coordinator, 2SLGBTQIA+ resources, or Accessibility Services, MSVU is here to support all students on their academic journey.

For faculty and staff

MSVU is committed to EDIA in employment and believes the University community benefits from shared experience with people from diverse backgrounds who bring new and varied perspectives to academic endeavors and community life.

EDIA supports and initiatives at MSVU

The Alexa McDonough Institute for Women, Gender and Social Justice (AMI)

The AMI is a hub of feminist energy, action and research that seeks to achieve equity and improve lives in their complexity and multiplicity, locally and globally.

Nancy’s Chair in Women’s Studies

The Nancy’s Chair in Women’s Studies was established at MSVU in the mid-1980s. Endowed by well-known Toronto-based feminist and philanthropist Nancy Ruth, the Chair raises awareness of women’s issues by bringing to campus distinguished scholars in women’s studies and activists who have contributed to the advancement of women.

Dimensions: Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Canada pilot program

MSVU is one of 17 universities and colleges from across Canada – and the only Nova Scotia institution – selected to work with the Tri-Agency Dimensions team to foster increased research excellence, innovation and creativity within the post-secondary sector across all disciplines through increased equity, diversity and inclusion.

NSERC Atlantic Chair for Women in Science and Engineering

MSVU holds one of five NSERC Chairs for Women in Science and Engineering in Canada. The Chair’s program provides opportunities for girls to engage with relevant role models and have hands-on Science experiences, and for professional women working in Science to network and discuss challenges they face. The Chair raises awareness of these issues to leaders throughout Atlantic Canada and advises them on action plans.

Centre for Women in Business

The Centre for Women in Business is the only university business resource centre in Canada dedicated to helping women succeed as entrepreneurs through exposure, connection and learning. This includes business management training, one-to-one business advice, trade missions, networking and a membership program designed to develop and support women in business.

Inclusive Excellence Principles

Canada’s universities have adopted seven Inclusive Excellence Principles to advance equity, diversity and inclusion on campus and in society. These principles and accompanying action plan, developed by Universities Canada’s Board of Directors and Education Committee with in-depth input from the full membership, are designed to advance universities’ efforts to improve the participation and success of under-represented groups within the academic community.

Special Advisor on Indigenous Affairs

In 2017, The University appointed its first Special Advisor on Indigenous Affairs, Patrick Small Legs-Nagge.

EDIA Advisor

In 2021, the University appointed its first Equity, Diversity, Inclusion and Accessibility Advisor, Delvina Bernard.

Harassment and Discrimination Advisor

MSVU’s Harassment and Discrimination Advisor acts as a confidential, fair and impartial resource to the University community on all aspects of harassment and discrimination. The Advisor offers advice and support to any student, faculty or staff member who has concerns about harassment or discrimination. The Advisor also works to resolve informal complaints of harassment and discrimination and, when required, refers formal complaints to an external investigator for investigation.

Committees

MSVU is home to several committees – made up of members from across our University community – whose work contributes significantly to our efforts to advance EDI, for example: the Internal and External Aboriginal Advisory Committees, the Students of African Descent Advisory Committee, the 2SLGBTQIA+ (Pride Advocacy) Committee, and the Employment Equity Committee.