This blog post is the third installment of What’s Your Why, a new blog series aimed at highlighting the importance of connecting back to the “why” that drives you and the work you are involved in. This week we will be featuring the story of our Writer & Editor, Spencer, who shares his experience supporting the research we do at the Innovation Hub.
The Writer & Editor at the Innovation Hub communicates the insights from our project-specific work in our final reports to our partners and the broader U of T community in an easy-to-understand, accessible format.
Written By: Spencer Ki, Writer & Editor
I’m the resident jack-of-all-trades for the writing needs that arise in the research process — from kicking off the main text of a report to constructing fictionalized personas to nit-picking grammar with a fine-toothed comb. I’ve also supported some writing needs outside of our research deliverables, such as the text for our recent website overhaul. As you might’ve guessed, unlike most of our team, I don’t have a particular project focus. Instead, it’s been my pleasure to contribute a small part to various projects, and it’s accordingly been my privilege to witness the full breadth of the support we provide to the University.
I’ll admit that I wasn’t terribly familiar with the Innovation Hub before applying to work here — I was vaguely aware that it did consulting work for multiple units at U of T, but I didn’t know much more beyond that. However, when I saw the job description, it immediately caught my interest. Not just because I matched the skillset, but also because of the Innovation Hub’s vision and mission described — designing the University not just for, but with students. At the time, I found it equally parts perplexing and refreshing to see an actual unit of the University take such an inclusive stance on the importance of student input.
Empathy at its Core
Even after a year of working here, I’m always pleasantly surprised by how we seriously prioritize the student perspective every day. In many ways, everyone working at the Innovation Hub is a ‘professional empathist’ — empathy isn’t just a ‘nice to have’ skill here but the core foundation of our work. With every project I lend a hand with, I’m continually fascinated by the range of attitudes and opinions that students hold and the myriad of ways we can help improve their university experience. Indeed, being exposed to this work has really helped me grow — not just professionally as a writer or editor, but as someone continuously navigating a multicultural, multifaceted, and generally diverse society