The inter-orientation of the classroom and the broader community fosters an enriched sense of curiosity and creativity in our students, faculty, staff, and alumni. In the past decade I have sought to make the walls of the classroom permeable and extend important theoretical questions into public spaces. In 2011 my ENG223 Shakespeare class prosecuted Shakespeare for fraud in a Canadian Criminal Court. In Fall 2016 I developed a trial project that prosecuted Satan (from John Milton’s 17th century Protestant Epic Paradise Lost) for Crimes Against Humanity in our senior seminar on Seventeenth-Century Poetry and Prose (ENG321). 

Humanities students are uniquely equipped to thrive in a rapidly changing 21st century economy, but sometimes they do not realize how their course of study builds competencies in writing, analysis, comprehension, and critical thinking skills developed that are highky valued in the workplace. Therefore, I developed new courses that are problem-based and explore experiential learning through the lens of the humanities, including ENG454 Experiential Learning Course on Podcasts, ENG456 Communications, ENG457: Magazine editing and Publishing, and ENG459: Public Scholarship in Editing and Publishing. These new interventions combine research on teaching and learning – with a focus on active and authentic learning – with the disciplinary concepts of English in order to create rich and innovative experiential learning environments. 

Finally, Shakesperience (a course I developed in 2016 and have run annually) immerses students in the full experience of theatre, combining time spent in the classroom with a road trip to the renowned Stratford Festival. This blends the best of page and stage, and encourages a deep engagement with the Stratford Festival as a cultural, educational, and economic institution.
Open to all Maple League students, this course is a model of experiential learning in the humanities. Students travel to the renowned Stratford Theatre Festival in Stratford, Ontario to see six plays, participate in dance and stage-combat workshops, tour behind-the-scenes stages, dress up in vintage costumes in the vast costume warehouse, and meet with cast members, education associates, dramaturges, and academic directors. This all-access backstage pass enables students to view theatre through multiple lenses, which underscores the deeply collaborative nature of art-making and community-building. 


Shakesperience is a an immersive learning experience that turns the Stratford Festival, in Stratford, Ontario, into our classroom. This is an intensive field study course designed to take students on a deep dive to understand the inner workings of North America's largest repertory theatre.


The mission of H&S is to enable students and professors from across Canada to connect and share their research in a comfortable, collaborative environment that fosters the pursuit of knowledge and the love of learning. This is a chance to network, build connections, and encounter different world-views and perspectives all while highlighting undergraduate academia and scholarship.


Maia Herriot, Student Fellow with the Maple League Teaching and Learning Committee

Being a student fellow with the Maple League allows me the extraordinary opportunity to look at my small-town liberal arts education from a macro point of view and ask for more from my school, with assistance from our Maple League peers. The most important and unique part of my involvement in the Maple League, to me, is being able to represent the presence of a student voice in the organization. Sometimes universities lose sight of the student experience as the grounding centre of their institution and from my perspective the Maple League student fellow program is a worthy antidote to that issue — students being the primary people collaborating on and executing much of the work within our cross-campus consortium. 

Lauren Boultbee, Advancement and Communications Student Fellow with the Maple League and on the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Student Advisory Council

Lauren Boultbee is a fourth-year student at Bishop's University. She is in the process of completing her BBA in Marketing and Entrepreneurship, with a minor in Communications and Digital Culture. During her second- and third-year Lauren was head of communications on the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Student Advisory Council, where she mobilized work the council was doing on innovative teaching and learning 

practices as a part of quality undergraduate education. Lauren is now the Advancement and Communications Student Fellow for The Maple League of Universities. In this position she identifies potential funding opportunities and designs a strategic plan to execute successful partnerships. As an active member of the Maple League strategic planning team, Lauren is also responsible for supporting Maple League communications by ensuring that all communications plans are aligned with the Maple League focus statement and key messaging. Her work is focused on giving a strong voice to all Maple League ambassadors, students especially, within the four communities.  

Georges-Philippe Gadoury-Sansfaçon, Stephen A. Jarislowsky and Maple League Research Fellow

Georges-Philippe’s mandate, as the Stephen A. Jarislowsky Research Fellow as well as the Maple League Research Fellow, is to undertake research so that all our decisions and policies are informed by data and underpinned by student voices through a lens of diversity, equity and inclusion. He is in his third year at Bishop’s University, studying both Mathematics and Psychology which allows for exploration of both quantitative and qualitative research. Gathering and 

organizing such data allows for representation of undergraduate education needs through a student lens, thus diversifying the approaches and stands we take toward current and pressing issues. He is curiosity-driven and passionate about challenging the status quo on topics such as education, ethics, inclusivity and climate change. Past and present projects dive into teaching excellence, quality of undergraduate education and student-athlete academic success.  

Frédérique Larouche, Tomlinson Intern for the Jarislowsky Chair and Maple League Student Fellow

Frédérique plays a key role in turning the team’s initiatives and visions into words and images: she creates opportunities for quick understanding and efficient work. Through graphic design, website creation, video production or her many other talents of the like, she ensures that everything we do is presented with a touch of creativity. In addition to propelling the team through her inestimable insight, she is a first-year Sociology student deeply interested in diversity and inclusion. This 

Sally Cunningham, Maple League Student Fellow - Research and Networking

Sally is a third-year Honours English Literature student with a minor in Film and Media Studies. Originally from Vancouver, BC she now studies and works at Bishop’s University. Her role as a Maple League student fellow is in creating connections and fostering collaborations. Sally facilitates requests for research clusters across the Maple League and provides lists of connections interested or working in similar fields. Funding opportunities are then available through the Maple League for research groups. 

appropriately puts the Maple League’s ideas and goals to the test to ensure that these values are at the center of everything we do and that we are at the forefront of undergraduate education innovation.

Rebecca Mesay, Maple League External Relations and Student Advocacy Fellow

Rebecca’s role includes advocating to provincial and federal members of government, coordinating the Maple League Student Council, and connecting with the university presidents of the Maple League. Her role ensures that the student voice is at the centre of all decision-making in the organization.

She is in her final year of study at St. Francis Xavier University for a degree in Political Science and Development Studies with a focus on international politics. During her studies she was a part of various advocacy groups focusing on equity for underrepresented students on campus and also helped to create a formalized tutoring program for student athletes. She worked in the StFX Students’ Union as the Vice President of Residence Affairs and was later elected Students’ Union President for 2018-2019 year. Rebecca is able to incorporate many of the skills that she learned in student leadership to the Maple League with the objective of improving the lived experiences of students across the four institutions.

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Dr. Jessica Riddell

Jarislowsky Chair and Executive Director of the Maple League of Universities