Events listed below are co-ordinated by the Arts & Science Alumni Office as well as by various Arts & Science academic units.  For a list of all U of T events, please see the U of T Events Calendar

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Backpack to Briefcase (b2B) Women & Gender Studies Mentorship Meal – Winter 2018

February 5 @ 5:30 pm - 8:00 pm

Mentorship Meals bring together alumni, faculty and students from the same discipline where you can enjoy a delicious meal while engaging in conversations about future career paths and the possibilities your degree can open up.

To be added to an invitation list for this event, please fill in our Registration Form to confirm your interest in attending. Dinners are restricted to 15 student attendees and final registration will be on a first-come, first-served basis. 

Please read below attending alumni for more information. This is part of the Backpack to Briefcase (b2B) Mentorship Meal series.

Confirmed Faculty:

  • Dina Georgis, Associate Professor & Undergraduate Coordinator
  • S. Trimble, Professor

Confirmed Alumni:

  • Eun Young Choi, JD Candidate at Osgoode Hall Law School
  • Caitlin Gladney-Hatcher, Fund Development Coordinator, Rose of Sharon Services for Young Mothers
  • Usha Shanmugathasan, Kindergarten Teacher, Havergal College

Alumni & Faculty Bio 

Eun Young Choi, JD Candidate at Osgoode Hall Law School

Eun Young Choi is currently a JD Candidate at the Osgoode Hall Law School. She previously worked at the Canadian Alliance of Physiotherapy Regulators as an Examinations Officer, coordinating bi-annual clinical exams for physiotherapist candidates at 9 sites across Canada. Her other work experiences include academic and market research. She holds a Masters degree in Women and Gender studies from University of Toronto with a focus on transnational migration and immigration policies. When she’s not in the library, she is a fan of the Toronto Raptors and finding great restaurants in the city.

Professor Dina Georgis, Associate Professor & Undergraduate Coordinator

Dina Georgis’ work is situated in the fields of postcolonial and sexuality studies. She draws on psychoanalytic concepts to think through how expressive and political cultures are responses to the queer affective remains of the past. Her book, The Better Story: Queer Affects from the Middle East (SUNY, 2013) considers the emotional dynamics of political conflict, the stories and subjectivities they produce, and what it means to make an ethical relationship to conflict. She has also published essays on memory and  the Lebanese civil war and, separately, on queer Arab ontologies. In collaboration with Dr Sara Matthews (WLU) and artist duo Bambitchell (Toronto), she is presently working on a project supported by SSHRC Development Research Creation entitled “Surveillant Subjectivities: Youth Cultures, Art and Affect.”She supervises graduate students in the following areas: Postcolonial Studies, Affect Studies, Queer Theory, Psychoanalysis, Aesthetic Expression, Trauma and War, Memory Studies.


Caitlin Gladney-Hatcher, Fund Development Coordinator, Rose of Sharon Services for Young Mothers

Caitlin Gladney-Hatcher completed both her M.A. (2013) and Hons. B.A. (2011) from the WGSI at the University of Toronto. During her time at the WGSI, Caitlin worked as a Teaching Assistant and part of her MRP was published in Atlantis: Critical Studies in Gender, Culture & Social Justice. Over the past five years, Caitlin has held many different roles in various industries including social services, publishing, public relations and digital marketing. Since December 2016, Caitlin has been working in a role that aligns well with her skills and passion for social justice at Rose of Sharon Services for Young Mothers as the organization’s Fund Development Coordinator.


Usha Shanmugathasan, Kindergarten Teacher, Havergal College

Usha graduated from the University of Toronto in 2006, receiving an Honours Bachelor of Arts with High Distinction in the areas of Women’s Studies and Equity Studies.  The following year, she received her Bachelor of Education from OISE/UofT specializing in the Primary/Junior divisions, and has since been working as a teacher for the Toronto District School Board. She is passionate about the early years with a focus on early years mathematics, S.T.E.A.M and coding. She strongly believes in innovation, research and capacity building in education. Usha was part of the original Faculty that opened Fraser Mustard Early Learning Academy, the all-kindergarten school in the TDSB where she was the Lead Math Teacher. During her time at Fraser Mustard E.L.A. she shone a light on the importance of early years mathematics for educators, and families, and created innovative programs such as Math Studio and Expressive Arts. She delivers and facilitates professional development for educators across Ontario, and is currently on the Science Teachers Association of Ontario’s writing and presenting team for the brand-new Kindergarten S.T.E.A.M resource. She was also a former K-12 Learning Coach for the Toronto District School Board. She is currently pursuing her Masters of Education at OISE/UofT in Educational Leadership and Policy.


Professor S. Trimble, Department of Women & Gender Studies

I engage with the fields of cultural studies, bio politics, and transatlantic studies in order to think through the gendered, racial, and generational politics of social reproduction.  My work has focused specifically on British and American representations of apocalypse, considering the “new world” fantasies that shape visions of The End: the kinds of violence that such fantasies authorize; the counter-histories of capitalist modernity that they reanimate; and the multiplicity of possible futures that they sometimes open up. For more information please visit my website.


Student Biography

Zara Ahmad, 2nd year undergraduate

Zara Ahmad is a second-year undergraduate student at the University of Toronto, pursuing a double major in neuroscience and computer science. In her high school, she was the president of the Women’s Empowerment Committee and the Equity Representative of the Student Council. Currently, she is the Outreach Director of Students for Change, a University of Toronto recognized club that aims to empower women and girls. Zara has a cat named Bam Bam who loves to stalk squirrels. She is interested in attending the Backpack to Briefcase event to interact with, and learn from, alumni of a field that is often minimized and disregarded.


Emma Brommer, 4th year undergraduate

Emma is a fourth year BA candidate specializing in Women and Gender Studies and minoring in Equity Studies. She wanted to attend tonight’s dinner with alumni to discuss opportunities available to her directly out of undergrad. She aspires to one day attend law school, however, would like to first find immediate work opportunities out of undergrad that contribute to her passion for equity work and/or would benefit from her feminist and anti-oppression knowledge. She hopes that talking with alumni about their experiences after undergrad could help her approach job and career searching more strategically and with improved confidence.

Taylor Cenac, 3rd year undergraduate student

My name is Taylor Cenac, and I am a third-year student pursuing a Women and Gender Studies Specialist and a minor in Writing and Rhetoric. I chose to study Women and Gender Studies because of all my options, it interests me the most and challenges my ways of thinking. However, while I have become more convinced that I want to pursue a post-graduate degree, I do not know where I see myself after my academic studies. I have always been a creative person and greatly enjoy writing, both fiction and non-fiction work. I want to get my academic work (essays and fiction pieces) published but have occasionally suffered from lack of confidence especially in the highly academic atmosphere. I look forward to meeting and speaking with you (alumni) who may have experienced what I am currently going through and have advice!


Ayisha Lineo Gariba, 2nd year undergraduate 

Ayisha Lineo Gariba is a filmmaker, photographer, illustrator, graphic designer and entrepreneur originally from Ghana and Lesotho. Ayisha’s primary mediums include digital art, photography and film. She enjoys exploring issues of identity specifically societal expectations of race, gender and sexuality through her work. Ayisha is currently enrolled in Women and Gender Studies and Linguistics at the University of Toronto. She hopes to continue learning, taking risks, sparking conversations and above all else, advocating for positive social change. I would like to attend this event in order to learn more about what alumni are doing with their degrees. I am curious about some of the different paths or options that are available to me after graduation. Another reason I would like to attend is because this event is a good networking opportunity.

Misha-Louise Gilchrist, 2nd year undergraduate

My name is Misha-Louise Gilchrist and I am currently undergoing a double major in Sociology and African Studies. I grew up in the suburbs of Whitby, ON with my single mother who fostered a love of perpetual learning within me from a very young age. Being a female black child in a white privileged environment was never easy. Sometimes it felt as if everyone was counting on me to fall so they could rise, from teachers to peers. Thankfully, my mother raised me in such a way that failure was never to even be considered, let alone an option. Now, I am considering a doctorate in Sociology so that I can fulfil my dreams of becoming a professor, despite the hardships I have faced in this program. I am hoping that Backpacks to Briefcase will help defrost my career path and open up great avenues of conversation.


Holly Hobson, 3rd year undergraduate

I am in my third year and currently on exchange from the University of Exeter, England. I study English Literature as my major but I have really enjoyed taking a WGS course this year and the ability it has given me to question the various stereotypes and assumptions that are so embedded in pop culture. I am quite a creative person and love discovering all the different neighbourhoods, their art, and of course their food, that Toronto has to offer. So far, I have completed an internship in marketing and an insight week in asset management and am currently exploring what jobs my skillset would best fit. By attending this meal I would love to find out more about the potential paths WGS has opened up for alumni and the experiences they have had in applying for jobs and carving out their own careers.

Katherine Hoffman, 3rd year undergraduate

I wish to learn more about possible career options in my field of study. I am passionate about the following streams and their relationships to one another: bioethics, philosophy, woman and gender studies, ethics in law, ethics in government, society and knowledge formation, and more. I would love to talk to alumni and peers as a way to expand my knowledge of these fields of study and what job opportunities can come from them. I am also very interested in pursuing a Masters degree in either Bioethics or Woman and Gender studies and would love to hear others experiences in their Masters and PHD studies. Ultimately, what I want to take away from this dinner is a sense of what the working world is like for students with my interests and most importantly strategies in how to get a job where I am able to pursue what I love.

Stuart MacLeod, 3rd year undergraduate

My name is Stuart MacLeod, I’m a third year undergraduate in both the Women and Gender Studies Department and the Sexual Diversity Studies department. Having initially applied to University of Toronto under the Political Science umbrella, I quickly changed my majors to focus more intensively on WGS and SDS. This decision has opened my worldview up in ways I could not have even comprehended prior to attending post-secondary. The result has been a far more critical approach to the way I consume culture, and navigate socio-cultural spaces. My goal in attending this event is to find ways I can utilize the knowledge gained from
my degree in a meaningful way, impacting not only those I come across in my day-to-day life, but contributing to a socio-political movement based in empathy with a desire for equity even beyond identitarian modes of understanding.

Monica Mazzilli, 3rd year undergraudate

My name is Monica Mazzilli and I am a third year student. I’m currently completing a double major in women and gender studies and equity studies. I am interested in attending the backpack to briefcase event because I am curious to learn the variety of job opportunities available with my degrees. I am also interested in listening to the journeys and paths that women and gender studies alumni have taken, since graduating from U of T. I think this event is a wonderful opportunity to connect and learn from people who have been in my place and have since been successful in various ways.

Sarah Pilato, 4th year undergraduate

I’m a fourth-year student studying Women and Gender Studies and Political Science. I am interested in development, and ideally, I would like to have a career in the development sphere. I’m interested in attending this b2B student mentorship meal with Women and Gender Studies alumni, as I feel uncertain about my future and how to translate what I’ve learned in Women and Gender Studies into a career. I think I would greatly benefit from this alumni meal, as it would provide me with advice from those who have previously been in my position. As I feel unaware of the possible different career paths my degree could take me in, I am as well interested to learn about what the alumni have done with their degrees and what they had done after they graduated to be where they are now.

Yenonjoo Jamie Seo, 3rd year undergraduate

My name is Yeonjoo Jamie Seo and I am currently in my third year of my undergraduate studies, pursuing a double major in Criminology & Psychology and a minor in Women & Gender Studies. I found out about this opportunity through one of my professors, Dr. T., and it immediately drew my interest. Ever since I found a passion for gender and equity studies, I have been fortunate enough to have had many opportunities both on- and off-campus to work with and for marginalized populations. As well, I am currently interested in pursuing a law degree or a Ph.D. in Criminology, with a particular interest in critically analyzing how Canadian criminal law (and immigration law in particular) benefits and protects some lives at the expense of (less fortunate) others. Therefore, I believe that this dinner would be a great opportunity for me to meet and connect with former graduates and current staff to learn more about potential futures/opportunities within the field of WGS.

Celeste Yim, 4th year undergraduate

Hi! My name is Celeste Yim, I’m a non-binary Korean-Canadian student comedian. I’m currently finishing the fourth year of my Women&Gender- Book&Media-English degree. During my time at the WGSI, I have used my studies to explore various kinds of writing for page, screen, and stage. My work has appeared in The Globe & Mail, VICE, MTV, and The Huffington Post. In 2017, I was named a fellow at The Second City Toronto, one of “Canada’s Top 100 Most Notable Women” by Flare Magazine, and “racist to whites” by a Twitter user. At the b2B event, I hope to gain a better understanding of the professional landscape for anti-racist writers with decolonial academic backgrounds and meet other angry creatives.

Nicole Young, 5th year undergraduate

My name is Nicole Young and I am a 5th year double major Equity Studies and Religion student. I am graduating in June of this year, and I could not be any more excited to begin the job hunt. I took a 5th year in my undergrad because I had only discovered the Equity Studies program until my third year of university and I absolutely fell in love with it. I want to attend this meal with alumni from Women & Gender Studies because I want to learn about how to implement all that I have learned about in school into my future career. By networking, I hope to find connections in order to find a career that I can express my passion for equity and participate in social change on a daily basis. Thank you for your time, and I hope to join the Mentorship Meal.


Yeji Kwak, 3rd year undergraduate

I was born in South Korea and then I came to Canada in 2008. I study human geography and equity. Recently, I started to think about what am I going to do after I graduate. I need to prepare for future and still I have no idea what can I do and what I want to do. Also, I do have several questions to ask but I had no chance to meet alumni to build my professional network and hear advices. I would like to attend this event because this is going to be a great opportunity for me to have a sense of idea what am I going to do after I graduate. From meeting people is going help me to learn about careers I may wish to pursue in the future.

Miriam Zeina, 2nd year undergraduate

About a year and a half ago, a couple of weeks away from the end of the term, I withdrew from all my winter courses and walked away from my (third-year-in) undergraduate in Neuroscience at the UofT. I found myself struggling to reconcile my past ideas of a career and hold my best self accountable to the path I was on; I was lost in finding my place among like-minded peers, and my course of study no longer held my interest in a way that served me in my life. I’ve returned this winter to pursue my first and truest love: Literature&Critical Theory, with a minor in Women&Gender Studies. Though I love the way these programs challenge us personally and intellectually, I am still very new to exploring the fields that may follow — I’m hoping this dinner can help open up my vision toward a future that might make sense to me, or at least get me thinking about the possibilities in which I can apply myself looking forward.



February 5
5:30 pm - 8:00 pm


Backpack to Briefcase