Montrealer Tanisha Mélanie Campbell is a 30-year old student who, like many of us, sought to make use of her extra time during the COVID-19 pandemic. Being the first in her family to graduate from university, she did not have the luxury to learn how to make in-animate objects out of cake or TikTok videos and so she enrolled In Bishop’s University’s Knowledge Mobilization Graduate Certificate Program. The online learning experience was quite new to her but since she could pour her mental resources into this new educational platform it was a challenge worth tackling. The courses were extremely informative in explaining how communication skills and methodologies play a substantial role in bringing key information to the target stakeholders in the right format at the right time – it all began to make sense. As we swipe and click through the different sources on what information to believe regarding the COVID pandemic, the role of Knowledge Mobilization became clear. “I need to be in this role – one way or another,” thought Tanisha as she then applied this sense of urgency to her field of immediate interest: EDI representation within the higher educational context. During her role as a Knowledge Mobilizer within the Maple League of Universities, she co-created opportunities to apply the teachings and skills she recently learned and collaborated with other students to bring a variety of products advocating for change in the higher education setting. It was truly enriching and encouraging to witness how the perspectives of students and faculty consolidated into one big picture and she was able to visualize how she wanted to contribute to the process.
On a more personal level, Tanisha noticed a few internal changes: She gained a strong sense of autonomy as she implemented her new-found knowledge and other transferable skills to help her colleagues; she often had a sense of accomplishment and fulfilment as she worked with others to disseminate information, and; she noticed my awareness shift as she made links between faculty and student perspectives and the unspoken nuances in between. Using her new-found knowledge and intrinsic motivation, Tanisha endeavors to bring positive change in the education system through her official role as the Maple League Student Fellow in charge of Knowledge Mobilization and Community Engagement.