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"The State of Canada’s Multiculturalism" panel

"The State of Canada’s Multiculturalism" panel on the Friday morning of the Political Studies Students' Conference // Bill Featherstone

33rd annual student-led conference a great success

A successful 33rd year for the annual Political Studies Students' Conference

January 28, 2017 — 

This year’s Political Studies Students’ Conference concluded in the early afternoon this past Friday, in the bright sunlight shining into the Great Hall of University College. The 33rd annual conference was previously highlighted in a UMToday story earlier in the week.

The keynote address was given by Paul Wells at the McNally Robinson bookstore at Grant Park, and was given to a standing room only crowd on one side of the store. The talk addressed topics of Canada-US relations in light of recent events.

A full audience at the Political Studies Students' Conference 2017

A full audience at the Political Studies Students’ Conference 2017 // Bill Featherstone

Panels included questions from the future of Canadian federalism to Canada and environment. Voices on the panels included well known University of Manitoba voices such from within the political studies department, including Andrea Rounce, Jim Fergusson, and others, as well voices from outside the department, like Lori Wilkinson and Niigaan Sinclair from sociology and native studies respectively. Voices were also present from outside our own University, including Brigadier General Chad Manske, Nadia Verrelli of Lakehead University, as well as several others.

Audiences were often full through the three days of the conference, including a fully seated keynote, and only a few chairs to spare during panels. Students lead during question periods with thoughtful, important questions prompting deeply smart answers from panelists. Faculty and members of the public prompted significant exchanges during the question and answer periods throughout the conference.

The Political Studies Students’ Conference is, as its name suggests, a student-led initiative. Assisted by faculty advisor Andrea Rounce, the student organizers lead the way throughout the event, including planning and management of the events. Of her roll in the conference, Shreya Ghimire, one of the five student organizers, says the conference has “given me the opportunity to make enduring connections with other people in the university community, like students  and faculty members, who I respect and admire. It’s also a nice feeling to be involved in putting together something that a lot of people end up enjoying and benefiting from.”

One attendee of the conference asked what they thought said they “enjoyed the conference greatly,” and continued that they were “glad of the opportunity to learn more about Canada and the world with members of the community, from on- and off-campus.”

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