Catherine is Mount Royal’s first tenure track professor of social innovation. Prior to joining academia, Catherine spent almost twenty years in the private sector; in corporate planning, finance and marketing. She has also spent considerable time volunteering and consulting to the nonprofit sector. Her experience is wide as well as deep as she was the President and CEO of a Calgary-based registered charity that operated a social enterprise.
Catherine is passionate about teaching, curriculum design and experiential learning and over the past two years has been involved in course design and ‘test driving’ many of MRU’s new course offerings in social innovation.
as lead instructor, catherine is working with mentors, coaches and community partners to create a learning environment for our second cohort of civic innovation students. once again we have students from ambrose university, university of calgary and mount royal university representing 10 different disciplines. the challenge this semester is an exciting one and centres on how to embed the arts in calgary’s dna? How can we help build a sustainable and vital arts community in our city?
Katherine McGowan, phd, systems mapping
Katharine began her academic career as a traditional Canadian historian - and this eventually led her to be the annoying fact-checker and long-term perspective haver on social innovation at the Waterloo Institute for Social Innovation and Resilience. Her clear joy in public speaking and mild likeability led to a position with Social Prosperity Wood Buffalo (SPWB), a community-based project in Fort McMurray that sought to support a culture of social innovation. This directly led to her current position as Assistant Professor of Social Innovation in the Bissett School of Business.
She has not abandoned her historical roots however, as she is currently delivering a first - a history of/and social innovation course, where she has already subjected serious business students to a frivolous discussion of resilience and the French Revolution. Upcoming topics include the Dutch East India Company, the Canada Health Act, Intelligence Testing, and (sigh) that new flash-in-the-pan, the Internet. Katharine is currently helming/coordination the Apaat tsi kani takiiks, a three-year Indigenization initiative that builds onthe Suncor Aboriginal Business Education Pilot Program here at Bissett. That is, helming it until the incredibly impressive and driven Bissett Aboriginal students mutiny and take over the ship. She can't wait to live in the Canada they are going to (re)build.
Katherine Ziff, Citizen experiment
Before joining Mount Royal University to teach social innovation and entrepreneurship, Katherine Ziff accrued decades of experience developing exhibitions and programs for science centres and museums. She has led projects for public audiences from inception to completion, including developing exhibitions for TELUS Spark, Calgary's science centre, where she rose to Vice President of Content.
In all her roles she is passionate about developing the effectiveness, daring, and originality of creative teams.
Karry Harmer, Human centered design
Kerry Harmer is a designer, maker and educator. Her background in industrial design, product development and education has informed her passion for Design Thinking and Human Centred Design and its ability to act as a trans disciplinary tool for complex problem solving.
In her role as the Maker Studio Specialist, Kerry shares her passion for the social impact that design has in the world through her teaching, program development, outreach, and work integrating creativity, design and technology into curricula using the Maker Studio in the Library at Mount Royal University.
Jordan Piraux, Brand and content Manager
Jordan IS An ALUMNI OF MOUNT ROYAL UNIVERSITY'S Bcmm PROGRAM WITH A MAJOR IN information design and certificate in marketing. jordan'S PASSION FOR MARKETING FOCUSEs ON TELLING MEANINGFUL STORIES AND BUILDING SUSTAINABLE RELATIONSHIPS.
Jordan is the lead designer on multiple projects based out of MOunt royal university including otahpiaaki fashion week and the paul brandt legacy project.
although her second year with vivacity, she believes these challenges are opportunities for institutions to grow and learn together. these projects will help create a better clagry for those in the future.