Conference Keynote Speaker: Dr. Jessica Riddell

“Teaching and Learning at Hope University”

In April 2020, Arundhati Roy challenged us to think about how we re-imagine our institutions and communities as we pass through the pandemic “portal”. She says, “Historically, pandemics have forced humans to break with the past and imagine their world anew. This one is no different. It is a portal, a gateway between one world and the next. We can choose to walk through it, dragging the carcasses of our prejudice and hatred, our avarice, our data banks and dead ideas, our dead rivers and smoky skies behind us. Or we can walk through lightly, with little luggage, ready to imagine another world. And ready to fight for it. (  Equal parts philosophical and practical, the Hope University Project seeks to provide thought prompts and offer design principles for people working within university communities towards positive change. The Hope University Project is informed by public scholarship, interviews, summits, focus groups, podcasts, video essays, and a blog series. As we cross the pandemic portal, we have a unique opportunity to imagine post-pandemic pedagogies. We have a once-in-a century opportunity to think differently, dream big, lead creatively, and learn courageously.   

Bio: Dr. Jessica Riddell is a Full Professor of Early Modern Literature in the English Department at Bishop’s University (Quebec, Canada), specializing in early modern dramatic and non-dramatic literature. Dr. Riddell was awarded the 3M National Teaching Fellowship in 2015, the highest recognition in Canada for educational leadership. She holds the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Chair of Undergraduate Teaching Excellence at Bishop’s University; in this capacity, she explores innovative teaching and learning practices, creates mentorship opportunities for students and faculty, and participates in a wide range of consultations at the national and international levels. Dr. Riddell is also the Executive Director of the Maple League of Universities, a consortium of four universities – Bishop’s, Mount Allison, Acadia, and St. Francis Xavier – that share a focused commitment to quality undergraduate education. She works across the four universities to support high impact practices as part of a 21st century liberal education. Dr. Riddell is an active contributor to public scholarship (including as a longstanding columnist for University Affairs Magazine, 2015 – 2020), national media contributor, a keynote speaker at international conferences, and as a visiting scholar in the UK, Norway, and Australia. She sits on a number of national and international boards.

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