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The Scarborough Oral History Collection is a fully searchable digital collection of interviews and oral histories available for education and research purposes. As part of an interdisciplinary course-based research initiative that began in 2013, we made a commitment to preserve the stories collected in a publicly accessible web-based system and to that end worked with the UTSC Digital Scholarship Unit to design and maintain a digital collection built on the Islandora Oral History Solution Pack. The collection currently consists of special collections including: The Stories of Scarborough Collection - audio recordings and transcripts of stories collected by the student researchers as part of their course work; the Stories of UTSC – a collection of oral history interviews conducted with members of our campus community past and present; and the Oral History Collection of Ethiopian and Eritrean Migration – a collection developed as a student independent study research project. For more information on these collections please contact: Christine Berkowitz or

Interview with Carla Neto

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Carla Neto speaks about her work as a social activist at Women's Habitat, working in a variety of positions for over 24 years and helping vulnerable women and children get the support they need. The focus of the interview is immigrant women and how Carla continues to assist these women.

Interview with Saarah

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Sarah discuss her personal experiences as a Muslim woman, her activism, her study of Canadian indigenous history, and her practicum experience in Toronto women's and refugee shelters.

Interview with Leslie Chan

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Leslie Chan discusses his history at UTSC as an undergraduate student, teaching assistant, and later professor. He begins by discussing what drew him to the campus and his relationship with faculty, and he also talks about the school’s student clubs. Professor Chan also touches upon his experience in residence, as well as living in the Scarborough community. He also reflects on how UTSC, in terms of its library, study spaces, and services, has changed over the years.

Interview with Nesha Haniff

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Nesha Haniff speaks about her book "Blaze a Fire" and how it weaves together class, gender, race, and multiple other aspects to portray the stories of 28 Caribbean women. Nesha briefly touches upon the process of creating "Blaze of Fire", primarily in regards to her connection with her publisher, Sister Vision Press. She talks about her ambition for "Blaze of Fire" to serve as a high school teaching tool that allowed students to reconsider their view of women. Nesha remarks that "Blaze of Fire", which was published in the late 1980s, was ahead of its time in terms of the integration of gender studies into the classroom.

Interview with Zoran Piljevic

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Zoran Piljevic, the current Director of Information Instructional Technology Services from 2008, reflects on the role of IITS at UTSC. He touches upon his involvement in the physical expansion of the campus and the widespread integration of technology into UTSC’s classrooms. Additionally, he comments on the early integration of television into the campus and speculates on its lack of success being connected to the ways in which this teaching model, and online learning, is limited in regards to the interaction between students and instructors. Zoran also touches upon the tensions that exist between UTSC and UTSG from an IT perspective, with the central IT serving the divisions in St. George while UTSC and UTM exist on the periphery as a campus and a division.

Interview with Deb Parent

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Deb Parent reflects upon her experience in feminist activism. Deb discusses her journey in identifying herself as a lesbian and coming out in the late 1960s. Deb also mentions how she crossed paths with, and became involved in, organizations such as Gays of Ottawa and the Rape Crisis Centre and the profound impact these organizations have had on her life and her view of the importance of incorporating one's own perspective when helping others address oppression. In particular, Deb reflects on her takeaways of self-empowerment, intersectionality, and community from her involvement in initiatives such as the Take Back the Night March and her role as an instructor of Wen-Do self-defence classes.

Interview with Carolyn Ferns

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Carolyn Ferns talks about her position as the policy and government relations coordinator at the Ontario Coalition for Better Child Care. She expands on the liberatory view of education involved in the realm of early childhood education and how it can be improved through politics and public policy. Carolyn discusses collaboration with other childcare organizations when working on initiatives surrounding the provincial budget and Childcare Worker and Early Childhood Educator Appreciation Day. In doing do, Carolyn also touches upon the ways in which these childcare organizations interact with and are impacted by the federal and provincial government.

Interview with Martha Friendly

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Martha Friendly discusses her career and involvement in childcare and research advocacy. She speaks on her role in the development of child care research, activism, and policy in Canada and Internationally. She expands on the history and evolution of child care theory, research, funding and resources, activism, politics and policy in the context of Canada, as well as comparatively in the United States, and internationally. She explains how child care research is impacted by governments, politics, and policies. Martha also mentions how child care research shows child care impacts society in many different ways. She elaborates on its role in the economy. Martha also discusses how social attitudes and perceptions on child care have shifted over time, including her own understandings and beliefs. She speaks on social reform regarding child care and its origins dating back to World War II and the women's movement.

Interview with Kathy Grant

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Public historian and founder of the Legacy Voices Institute, Kathy Grant briefly discusses her academic history, military career and her inspiration to become a Historian: her father, Owen Rowe. Kathy describes her father's life, education, military career, and activism. She speaks about her father's involvement in the West Indian Domestic Scheme (1955–1967) and his collection of historical materials that document the black community. Kathy also describes the Domestic Scheme in detail and comments on the work of other activists, including Donald Moore.