The President’s back-to-school get together

Newly appointed Concordia President and Vice-Chancellor Graham Carr met with students on Jan. 8 at the SP Atrium on the Loyola Campus. It was Carr’s first official event, as his five year mandate began on Dec. 12, 2019.

‘’I think it’s a great way for the whole community, students, faculty and staff to get an opportunity to get together at the beginning of the semester, before the semester gets too stressful,’’ said Carr. “To say ‘welcome back,’ and wish the best and success for the year ahead.’’

Carr revealed that he plans on continuing initiatives that have already been implemented at the university, such as Indigenous relations, sustainability and growing research.

As students, faculty and staff gathered, doctorate biology student Safa Sanami remarked that the event ditched plastic entirely. All the food was served on washable platters, no cutlery was used, drinks were distributed in large jugs and attendees were invited to bring their own cups.

The university has put these new initiatives into effect to improve its recycling, all while promoting ways for students to have fun, while highlighting that no act is insignificant to help the planet.

According to biology graduate student James Perry, cutting back on single-use and consumable products is essential.

‘’I like the idea that these plates and drinking glasses are compostable and recyclable, as opposed to mass-produced items that are not often made of recyclable materials,” he said. “Although, there isn’t an advanced and efficient upcycling or recycling system in place, I feel that we are improving and are more conscious than a year ago.”

It seems that Concordia University will be looking for more ways to evolve during this new era, as Carr also mentioned that he plans on doing more complementary things to improve Concordia’s teaching agenda and offering a panoply of opportunities to its student body.


Photos by Britany Clarke


Students voice evaluation concerns

Confusion over whether Graham Carr will not have to undergo a review

Newly-appointed provost, Graham Carr, will not  be receiving a review for his previous position as VP of research and graduate studies as he enters his new role, a move which some students on senate were concerned about.

During a Concordia senate meeting on Oct. 7, former CSU academic and advocacy coordinator Marion Miller asked Concordia president Alan Shepard if an evaluation committee will be struck to review Carr. What Miller didn’t know when she posed the question was that it had already been decided that Carr would not undergo a review for his position as VP of research and graduate studies.

“He didn’t answer my question at all,” said Miller, adding that Shepard briskly stated, “you know the answer to that, Marion.” Miller said she genuinely did not know the answer to the question.

Sofia Sahrane, the CSU academic and advocacy coordinator, also tried to address the issue with her own questions, Miller said. Sahrane already had some insight on the subject, Miller said, including that an evaluation committee had been assembled but Carr would not be evaluated, since his role had just changed.

Miller said Sahrane specifically asked why Carr’s evaluation would not be taking place and how it was possible for a senior administrator to fulfill a top academic position for 10 years without a review.

“I’m not saying that Graham Carr has done some problematic things in the past five years, but I think even for the best of the leaders and management it’s important to still have input and have a review,” Miller told The Concordian.

Concordia University spokesperson Chris Mota clarified that Carr nor anyone in this position would not need to undergo a review, as Carr is starting a brand new position.

Mota said Carr was not reviewed for his position as VP of research and graduate studies because he was leaving that position. “You don’t evaluate someone when they’re leaving, you evaluate them if they want to renew for a second mandate.”

She said the evaluations are either done at the end of the fourth or beginning of the fifth year of the mandate. “Graham chose not to seek renewal, he chose to go for the position of provost,” said Mota. “When you say ‘was there any review for that’ well you can’t review somebody when they’re entering a position, he hasn’t done the position, there’s nothing to evaluate.”

Regardless of Carr’s employment with Concordia since 1983, Mota said he was treated like any hire. She said for any job—he would have undergone a search process to see if he has the qualifications or not. “He earned the job,” she said.

“If he wants a second term as provost at the end of the fourth year or the beginning of the fifth of the current mandate that he’s in, he will be evaluated.” Marion said in regards to Mota’s comments, she wishes there was more input from the Concordia community in the appointing of Carr as provost.

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