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September 12, 2002 Concordia events over the summer



Participants in the Centre for Arts in Human Development's arts therapy program perform Pinicchio.

Audiences swept away by Pinocchio

The Legend of Pinocchio, the fourth original musical production by the Centre for the Arts in Human Development, had four performances in mid-June in the F.C. Smith Auditorium.

The script was based on the children’s classic about a puppet’s quest to be a real boy. Many of the actors were participants in a unique program of arts therapy — art, music, movement and drama — for people with disabilities from readaptation centres around Montreal. Also active in the production were students from Venture High School.

Classes of elementary schoolchildren attended the dress rehearsal, and one teacher was moved to write a letter that said, in part, “Not one of my students had a negative comment about the play. They were swept away by the whole presentation.

“As a physically challenged teacher, I was putting myself in the shoes of the actors and the teaching staff, studying how much organization, evaluation and work were necessary to make the play run so smoothly.

“It became very clear that drama and music are healing instruments in the world of education. Each actor appeared strong, proud and in control. This is due to your positive attitude and expectations.

“Talent is hidden in all of us — drama lets it come out. Thank you for showing me the light.”

Community development program celebrates a decade

In June, nearly 1,000 community workers from 287 organizations took part in the 10th Summer Program of the Institute in Management and Community Development, including a tenth anniversary celebration.

For a decade, the week-long bilingual Summer Program has provided busy grassroots organizers with valuable opportunities for reflection, sharing insights and experiences, and generating new ways to effect social change.

Sessions varied widely: how to make a video about your community organization, how to use theatre and the Web, and effective approaches to fundraising. Participants came from across Canada, including the North, and from such countries as Peru, Mexico and South Africa.
Sixty-two parents involved in their children’s education through the Third Avenue Resource Centre once again attended enthusiastically. A ceremony will be held on the Loyola Campus in November to award them with participation certificates.

For the first time, two bilingual two-day forums were held to focus on social justice, environmental activism and sustainable development. Reports on these sessions should be up on the Institute’s new Web site at www.instdev.concordia.ca.

Several students participated in the Summer Program for credit by way of an Applied Human Sciences course on community development.
The Institutein Management and Community Development, which is part of Concordia’s Centre for Continuing Education, also launched a leadership project funded by Centraide. This is a one-year training program that brings together 15 community organizers from Montreal, Longueuil and Laval every month.

Summer school for teachers held at Concordia

Schoolteachers need to stay current, so for 10 days in July, Concordia’s Education Depart-ment held a Summer Institute on the downtown campus to help about 55 “co-operating teachers” upgrade their skills.

“It’s our way of thanking them for allowing student teachers to practice in their classrooms during the semester,” said master’s student Susan Turner, who was coordinator of the Summer Institute.

The program, which was prepared by Concordia University student instructional designers, provided inspirational speakers and about 35 workshops. Topics were various—technology, crafts, dance, math, reading, group dynamics and dealing with bullying were among them.
Turner is an expert in experiential learning — learning through doing — and that was a strong element in the presentations. “Students are expecting to be as entertained in the classroom as they are by video games and blockbuster movies,” she explained. “The only way a teacher can compete is to challenge students with classroom experiences.”








Yves Gaucher

Tribute to modernist Yves Gaucher

The late Yves Gaucher (1934-2000, below) was a radical printmaker and a modernist painter of international reputation. A teacher in the Faculty of Fine Arts over many years, he influenced many of Canada’s finest artists. This summer, a show mounted at Concordia’s Leonard and Bina Ellen Art Gallery captured the variety and originality of their work.

The show was curated by David Elliott and included work by Danielle Blouin, Marc Garneau, Betty Goodwin, Antoinetta Grassi, Christian Knudsen, Jennifer Lefort, Brigitte Radecki, Marc Seguin, Vladimir Spicanovic and Jana Sterbak (whose work will represent Canada at this year’s Venice Biennale, the Olympic Games of art).


Conference on Pattern Recognition

On the theme of “Pattern Recognition for Humankind and the Environment,” about 1,000 computer scientists from 60 countries met in Quebec City for a conference from August 11 to 15.

The conference is the 16th biennial conference held since 1973 by the International Association for Pattern Recognition, which started in 1973. The general chair of the organizing committees was Concordia professor Ching Y. Suen, a well-known expert in the field.

This edition focused on computer vision and robotics, pattern recognition, neural networks, document analysis, image and signal processing and biomedical and multimedia applications. A number of companion events were held in Southern Ontario the week before.