Laurier to host Congress 2012


This year from May 26 to June 2 Wilfrid Laurier University in partnership with the University of Waterloo will be hosting the Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences.

Congress is a conference that will be held over the course of eight days and hold different events and lectures from several keynote speakers. Sheldon Pereira, the project manager for Congress, said that some of the main objectives are “for students to recognize that academics are always looking to innovate and engage each other in conversation that will help stimulate research that has really relevant application” and “to showcase the great work and research that [the university does] in the humanities and social sciences.”

The event is hosted annually at a different Canadian university each year and welcomes “over 60 to 70 different associations to have their annual meetings,” Pereira shared. The congress is open to the community and with a variety of events planned their will be something for everyone to enjoy.

Some of the guest speakers that will attend Congress 2012 include “Margret Atwood, Jane Urquhart, Thomas Homer Dixon, Janine Brodie, Mary Eberts and a couple of other really exciting names,” Pereira gushed.

Aside from the “big thinker lectures” events will take place daily, including a scavenger hunt by the Canadian Society for the Study of Education (CSSE), the Canadian Association of Geographers (CAG) and Run for Life. This scavenger hunt is self-scheduled and delegates will get to work with “geocaching technology and some of the tools and mechanisms that the teacher use,” said Pereira.

The Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences is the “largest annual gathering of academics in North America,” Pereira explained. In hosting the Congress this year Laurier will get to “raise the profile of the work [the university does] in the humanities and social sciences” and hosting also gives the university the chance to strengthen “relationships within the university walls,” he continued.

Students are strongly encouraged to get involved with the Congress 2012, “I would like to stress the volunteer opportunities that are available, if not taking in a lecture or a big thinker or attending an evening festival. I think volunteering for this event is really a way for students to understand the culture of academia in Canada but then also participate in something that’s very high profile for the institution.”

The conferences schedule and all of the information on the events taking place during Congress 2012 can be found on the Congress website ( and volunteer applications can be found on the Laurier website.

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