2017 Past Events

FESTIVE DINNER december 12, 2017

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The University Women’s Club had the pleasure of celebrating the season with the sweet voices of the Kai Syrian Children’s Choir. We also shared our festive dinner with their parents, and received warm wishes from our special guest, Mary Jo Leddy, founder of Romero House.


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The meeting was attended by many members, and the financial results as of September 30, 2017 were presented by our new Interim Treasurer Kathy Nolan-Garner Reports from Shaloma Gauthier on the Charitable Giving Committee, and from Jane Hamer on Discretionary Spending were presented and members voted to support the recommendations. There was real enthusiasm expressed by the members for the individuals and organizations receiving these gifts – Romero House, Inspire, Sistering, an Iqaluit student and a student at Innis College

Dr. Adam Chapnick on multiculturalism november 6, 2017

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Dr. Adam Chapnick, professor, author and foreign policy expert, captivated the audience with his lively, informative talk about multiculturalism in Canada, comparing it to other countries. His presentation, and his responses to the numerous questions afterwards, revealed an in depth knowledge of multiculturalism and its impact on the world. A thought provoking presentation about a timely topic.

SPOTLIGHT ON US october 10, 2017

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The "spotlight" on Georgina on October 10th hardly seemed adequate to accommodate her brilliant story. It's a story of her unpaid volunteer work (eg as a Rotarian) burgeoning into a consulting career helping two worthy charities in the mental health sector (Pathway Clubhouse in BC and Progress Place in Toronto) to step up their game with increased visibility (new logo and novel publication methods) and imaginative fundraising. It was readily apparent that Georgina's magnetism was a significant factor in addition to her indomitable will. Success on all counts but presented by Georgina as an unfolding of a natural evolution.

WELLNESS WEDNESDAYS october 4, 11, 18 & 25, 2017

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Woof, worrywart, wrinkles, whatchamacallit… these were just some of the "w" words discussed in the Wellness Wednesday discussion group led by Marianne Anderson The group met once a week for 4 weeks to learn and share information (and misinformation!) concerning all aspects of wellness, particularly for women in middle age and beyond. Topics included waistlines, wine, health care, relationships and more. But a key takeaway was that there is so much more to wellness than these obvious ones that first come to mind. Such as WONDER… consider a baby's toes, a wagging tail, an orchid, morning dew. And some good advice on the "w" word WHINE… just don't!

MEET & GREET october 2017

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The last Thursday of each Month come join us in the Pub to welcome new members, reconnect with fellow members, chat and enjoy.


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The University Women’s Clun hosted an amazingly successful fundraising evening. Over 200 people gathered at the Faculty Club, which was transformed into a festive 'Night in Seville'. Guests were treated to sangria, wine, tapas, hors d'oeuvres and serenaded by classical guitar. The highlight of the evening was a beautiful flamenco dancer in her flaming red dress, with castanets and stomping heels.

The Silent Auction of 40 items included art, antiques, jewellery, gift certificates, theatre and sporting tickets; plus there were numerous raffle and door prizes, all thanks to our generous donors. When it was all tallied up, we were delighted and proud to report that we will be giving $15,000 to Romero House.

Its founder, Mary Jo Leddy, addressed the audience reminding us of the importance of a warm welcome - whether to our fellow University Women's Club members or to new refugees to Canada. Like last year, this year's donation from UWC to Romero House will be used to buy laptops for young women, providing them with a crucial tool for success in Canada. We are fortunate to have such a strong relationship with this wonderful organization.


Merle Amodeo, a published author, read several poems from her book, After Love. Read in her calm soft voice, her beautifully written poems evoked vivid thoughts and emotions from her appreciative audience.


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Jo-Lynne Sutherland treated members and guests to an insightful talk featuring photos and facts about her six years in Saudi Arabia. After her presentation, outlining past and present Saudi politics, religion and "baby steps" forward concerning the rights of women, coupled with her candid commentary, listeners were bursting with questions.


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The patio was packed with UWC members and friends who wanted to express their gratitude to Judith for the loyalty and dedication she has shown to UWC for the past 9 years. Glasses were raised, kind words were spoken, a lovely gift was given, and Patricia Joyce, CFUW Regional Director Ontario Central presented her with a special Certificate of Recognition.

DONNA JEAN MACKINNON on gutsy pioneers in pre-feminist times

june 12, 2017

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Donna Jean MacKinnon’s new book Newsgirls: Gutsy Pioneers in Canada’s Newsrooms brought our focus back to a time when women journalists were carving out a place in a male dominated profession. With excellent visuals illustrating the ten ground breaking female reporters as well as the fashion of the time, Donna Jean MacKinnon, a former reporter for the Toronto Star, not only helped us vicariously relive 1930 – 1960 but also made many of us reflect upon our own careers and the battles that we fought as women entering a profession or that others fought before us to make our transition possible.


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Despite the damp weather, spirits were high as we boarded the Stratford bus on May 25th, to see Twelfth Night, a romantic comedy, directed by Martha Henry. The production was excellent, filled with joy and mischief with a particularly strong performance from Sarah Afful as Viola. Everyone enjoyed themselves and each other on this delightful day, which has become an annual tradition for our members.

DR. MARCEL DANESI on puzzles and the aging brain may 15, 2017

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Dr. Danesi is a Professor of Semiotics and Anthropology at the University of Toronto. In the area of puzzles, he has written various academic and research-based books. He also writes puzzles for the Toronto Star, Reader’s Digest, and a puzzle blog for Psychology Today. He has also written several bestselling puzzle books for Harlequin, of which The Total Brain Workout is deemed one of the best puzzle books on the market. Dr. Danesi challenged and entertained us with a fascinating talk about puzzles and the aging brain. Combined with fine dining, it was a well attended “food for thought” evening.

MICHELE BOMBERRY - dinner speaker april 24, 2017

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Michelle Bomberry, a member of the Six Nations of the Grand River Territory and Director of Post-Secondary Education at Indspire, gave a lively informative presentation about the valuable work being done by Indspire in support of indigenous people. Our contribution of $4,500 is being matched by the Government of Canada.

PAOLA GOMEZ - luncheon speaker march 8, 2017

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Paola Gomez kindly and quickly stepped in as guest speaker at the International Women’s Day Luncheon, when Jodie-Lynn Waddilove had to attend to urgent family matters. A human rights lawyer from Colombia, and refugee herself, Paola’s compelling personal story and passion for women’s rights, moved and inspired the audience of approximately 120 members of the University Women’s Clubs of the Greater Toronto area.

MEET & GREET February 27, 2017

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Twenty UWC members gathered in the casual relaxed setting of the Faculty Club Pub to get to know one another better over drinks and dinner. Dawn Whitmore, DeeDee Poole, MargMcGiverin and our President, Judith Lewis told nostalgic stories about their days on St George Street when club spirit was high, despite financial challenges. Judith gave some brief remarks about her time as President, reminding us all of the Club's important mission, providing scholarships for young women who wish to pursue post secondary education. A plaque listing all UWC Past Presidents starting in1903 was unveiled and will be hung in the Faculty Club. The evening was filled with fellowship and fun, with all those attending expressing their pleasure in belonging to the University Women's Club.

DR. CHARLIE KEIl - dinner speaker february 6, 2017

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Dr. Charlie Keil, professor of Cinema Studies and Principal of Innis College is a lecturer with a specialty in American film, and interests in directors as authors, documentaries and the stars. Dr. Keil will speak about film and all that it entails, preparing us for the hectic awards season. It was a fascinating talk, giving insights into the origins of contemporary cinema, what makes a great film, a great director and an award winner.

DR. ELIZABETH SMYTh - luncheon speaker January 23, 2017

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Dr. Elizabeth Smyth is a Professor of Curriculum Teaching and Learning and Vice-Dean at the School of Graduate Studies, University of Toronto. Dr. Smyth, will speak about her most recent book Changing Habits: Women’s Religious Orders in Canada. Her talk was warmly received and sparked numerous questions and a lively discussion afterwards.

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