Fostering Connection and Change Through Furniture

Headshot of Jennifer Ayow

When physical spaces are intentionally designed with different layouts and types of furniture, this can foster collaborative environments that meet various needs. In this blog, Jennifer shares her experiences of looking for a study space after graduation and how this exploration helped create positive change in other areas of her life. Jennifer’s personal experiences align with the classroom redesign research conducted by the Innovation Hub through Transforming the Instructional Landscape (TIL)

Jennifer Ayow, Blog Writer, Honours Bachelor of Science, Neuroscience Major, Psychology and Digital Humanities minors

Alternative Reading Week 2024: Integrating Inclusivity in the Workplace

Group photo of students at the Innovation Hub participating in Alternative Reading Week

In February 2024, the Innovation Hub provided a series of workshops during Reading Week for students participating in the Alternative Reading Week program through Centre for Community Partnerships. The aim of the workshops were to apply design thinking methods to a “wicked problem”: How can workplaces be more inclusive? Our facilitators, Cheryl, Mike and Lidiia shared the importance of embedding inclusivity and constructive discussion in event organization. 

Written by Mike He, Digital Communications Coordinator, Master of Information, User Experience Design 

The Brain Science of Storytelling: Finding the Connection Between Storytelling and Academics   

Ava standing in front of trees and flowers.

At the Innovation Hub, we use storytelling as part of our design thinking approach to create meaningful, impactful messages. Ava reflects on the brain science of storytelling through its connection to her undergraduate studies in Cognitive Science and Psychology.  

Written by Ava Hawkins, Blog Editor & Digital Content Writer, Honours Bachelor of Science, Cognitive Science & Psychology  

Nothing For Us, Without Us Film Reflection: The Importance of Equity-Driven Advocacy  

Lois smiling outdoors.

As part of an ongoing dialogue about anti-Black racism in Canada, the School of Cities at U of T premiered a documentary about how Canadian city planning harms Black communities. Lois, Cheryl and Paul attended the film screening and reflected on the importance of shared responsibility in advocacy and equitable consultation—things that are important to the work at the Innovation Hub.  

Written by Lois Lee, Blog Editor & Digital Content Writer, Master of Information, User Experience Design and Archives & Records Management  

Team Reflections: The Multiple Facets of Communications 

Communications team sitting together indoors

The Innovation Hub Digital Communications Team reflected on their work in the past year and how working at the iHub fostered their personal growth. They highlight the use of collaboration and storytelling within the team, recognizing that even though there are different roles, working together and sharing stories can help to inspire change.

Written by the Innovation Hub Digital Communications Team

Looking at the World Through Stories 

Katrina outdoors in front of leaves.

Stories have existed throughout much of history and even now we are fascinated by them and enjoy them regularly. Katrina reflects on how and why stories offer new ways to look at the world. 

Written by Katrina Sze Ching Soong, Qualitative Data Archivist, Honours Bachelor of Arts, English & Philosophy Double Major, History Minor 

Honouring Individuality: How Accessibility is Constantly Evolving

Lois smiling outdoors.

Accessibility is fundamentally about accommodating and celebrating individual experiences; therefore, it is important for us to actively think about how we can reimagine accessible practices in new and creative ways. Lois spoke with 3 disability advocates in the U of T community to discuss how we can begin to take a more proactive and innovative approach towards accessibility. 

Written by Lois Lee, Blog Editor & Digital Content Writer, Master of Information, User Experience Design and Archives & Records Management  

Prototyping as a Mindset

Cheryl smiling while sitting outdoors.

When submitting work for feedback, it can feel like “conventional” expectations always demand complete, polished submissions. Cheryl reflects on how taking a more iterative approach helped her build confidence, closer relationships, and stronger finished work. 

Written by Cheryl Nong, Research Coordinator, Honours Bachelor of Science, Psychology and Neuroscience Double Major 

How Rekindling Creativity in My Life Led to Empowerment

Lois smiling outdoors.

In this blog post, Lois shares how she accidentally rekindled her passion for creative endeavours during her work at the Innovation Hub and how this empowered her to dive into creative pursuits outside the university. 

Written by Lois Lee, Blog Editor and Digital Content Writer, Master of Information, User Experience Design, and Archives & Records Management

How Student Participation Can Combat Social Inequality

Ruth Smiling

Equity-focused research methods aim to inform us of our participants’ needs, not justify why those needs aren’t met. Ruth shares her experience exploring equitable research methods. 

Written by Ruth Rodrigues, Master of Education, Social Justice Education, Qualitative Data Archivist Team Lead