Liberal Arts 101 wins Pillar Community Innovation award
November 23, 2018
King’s University College is pleased to congratulate the Liberal Arts 101 program on winning the 2018 Pillar Community Innovation award in the Community IMPACT category. The award was announced during an awards ceremony on November 22, 2018 attended by more than 1000 people.
Associate Dean of Students Doreen Vautour, describes Liberal Arts 101 as “education in its purest form – a group of people gather together in a love of learning. The community that develops among participants is inspiring.” Vautour and Dr. Alison Meek, Associate Professor in History, are the program coordinators for Liberal Arts 101.
"We are very pleased to receive this award. It is great recognition for the founders of the program, and a great tribute to the participants," Vautour says.
Liberal Arts 101 is a free, non-credit, university experience for people who have an interest in learning and who may have experienced barriers to a traditional university opportunity in the past. Participants meet weekly for seven weeks in the fall and cap off the program with a graduation ceremony. Each of the seven sessions includes a dinner, a lecture by a King’s professor, and small group discussions led by King’s upper-year students. The subjects of this year’s lectures includes history, religious studies, psychology, political science, sociology and management and organizational studies.
All program costs (food, transportation and a child care subsidy) are covered with funding from the Academic Dean’s Office. There are no previous educational requirements and only a minimal level of English comprehension (the ability to read a newspaper, for example) is necessary to participate.
The Liberal Arts 101 program was founded in 2008 by Mary Carol Watters, the now retired Dean of Students, and Barbara Decker Pierce, the now retired Director of the School of Social Work. Last fall, the program, organized by Student Services and the Academic Dean’s Office, had an overwhelming response, with every lecture spot filled within weeks and requiring a waiting list. There were 29 graduates ranging in age from 19-80.Each summer, recruitment posters are sent to over 50 community agencies, attracting a diverse range of students, including new Canadians, seniors, and those working to overcome mental and physical health challenges.
In a media release, the Pillar Nonprofit Network praised Liberal Arts 101 for speaking “to the inherent value we all share as lifelong learners who deserve the opportunity to engage and contribute to our communities in meaningful and empowering ways.”
Habitat for Humanity Heartland Ontario and My Sister’s Place were the other two finalists nominated in the Community Impact category.
Media coverage of the awards can be found at:
The London Free Press: https://lfpress.com/news/local-news/overdose-prevention-site-wins-community-innovation-award
You can view a broadcast of the live-stream of the awards at https://www.facebook.com/Pillar.Nonprofit.Network/videos/1522549014556338/
Watch the video about Liberal Arts 101 at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U-CB1aF440Q&list=PLkpOJhFuTo-XGi0dht049ohsrmqROFWFH&index=8