Confessions of the Acting Associate Chair – Week 15 (promo week)

As the Beatles sing “And in the end, the love you take is equal to the love you make”, I present the love sharing, touchy feely, happy to be finished but sad to be done, looking forward to the future week 15 – Promo week edition of the confessions e-mail.

Promotion Meetings
It was so interesting visiting each of the promo meetings for the first time and dare I say a little revealing! For example did you know they have donuts and muffins in the IMP meeting, enjoyable adult beverages in the broadcasting meeting (for after the meeting of course!) and just like the life drawing classes, the AFD meeting is conducted completely in the nude? OK I might have made that last one up, but promo week for me this year was very busy but lots of fun. The passion each of the programs and for the matter each of the faculty has for each one of their students was an inspiration, and something to be truly proud of. You should be commended for not only putting your all into each class, but taking part in this last opportunity to catch and save or even let go of the students that need it.

I also love that CAB, GRA and AFD make a marathon day out of it. Going over all of their students transcripts (over 300 for GRA alone) and they still take the time to have a complete faculty / curriculum meeting after they finish with the transcripts. Thank you all for working as hard as you do for your program, courses and students.

Pot Luck
We did have a small handful of people enjoy the first SCA potluck, Tuesday and Wednesday so thanks to all who contributed and dropped in. I enjoyed Karen’s deviled eggs, Pat’s Almond squares, and Jed’s smoked pork but it was the fun we had just getting together in a casual way that I enjoyed the most. I look forward to setting up another potluck in the future and getting even more people out to break bread.

Baby News
Congratulations to part time DMA/MFD instructor, Brendan Sera-Shriar and his wife Jessica on the birth of little Kael Michell on the 25th of April. For a quick picture introduction, take a look at Kael’s very own website (

Guest Lecture
Congratulations to Jim Zubkavich and all who helped organize the inaugural Valery Tokmakov Animation Innovation Lecture Series that featured celebrated Canadian animator Jacques Drouin and paid great tribute to Valery. I am told it was a great turn out and a huge success.

In closing
334 paragraphs, 1,532 lines or more then 13,400 words in a little over 16 weeks and if you said to me week 0 that I would have been able to write this much, I would have called you loony! When I accepted this job in late December, I did it with 3 goals in mind. One to get to know the other programs within the School of Communication Arts, second to get to know some of the great faculty that we have within our walls and last to learn and grow as a manager and person, and in the end I have gained tremendously from this experience. Admittedly it was a lot easier always having an end date in the back of my mind, and there are a couple of things I have “shifted” to the bottom of my pile, and subsequently have left for Mark to work out, but I have truly loved this experience and thank Jed and Mark for giving me the opportunity.

I am back to the Faculty group on Monday and have a non-teaching summer so look forward to spending some quality time with my family. I also look forward to starting my very own blog, were I will continue to write a weekly observation style recap of my family and life on Fridays. Actually committing theses thoughts in the form of words on paper has proved to be a large part of my growth over the last semester so I don’t want to stop. Thanks again to all who have helped me along the way and in the end I have this to confess: I am one lucky guy, and I will work hard to remember this everyday!

Thanks! 14 (+2) down and 0 to go.

Confessions of the Acting Associate Chair – Week 14

I had such a good week I wrote two openings and just could not pick one…
The frantic exam week and why did I ever think that it was a good idea to give out so many projects that all have to have marked by Monday edition of the week 14 Confessions e-mail.

The Carr’s are moving, almost packed, shrink-wrapped and bubble packed, “oh my god where did we get so much stuff” week 14 edition of the confessions email.

I understand that this is a big undertaking, and I may be just a little crazy for thinking I could do it all myself, but I think it would be a lot of fun to take a couple of minutes out of your promo meetings and dig into some fantastic home made grub in the form of a pot luck. The signup sheet is in the SCA lunchroom (S2080B) and we have 4 or 5 names on it to this point, but I think we can do MUCH better. If you are able to contribute and as such take part in the event on either Tuesday or Wednesday, please sign up today or send me an e-mail with your contribution.

Jed Reception
It was great to see so many out on Thursday afternoon for Jed’s end of semester “take a breath” reception. Not only attended by a great number of faculty and staff, it was very nice to see Mark Jones back in the building. It was also great to meet Mark Ingram, the coordinator of the new SCA Acting program and it was especially nice to see our new president, Dave Agnew.

Thanks also to Jed for presenting me with a gift, and his kind words. The thank you speech that I wished I had given goes something like this “Thank you Jed and Mark for giving me the opportunity to see things from a different position. I only hope that I will take all that I have learned in this role and continue to grow as a manager, coordinator professor and person. Thanks also to the staff for accepting me and not giving me too much of a hard time. Thanks also to those who have given me so much positive feedback over the last 14 weeks, I have enjoyed every minute of the job.”

SCA Media awards
I have only missed a couple of theses shows over the last 7 or 8 years, and I was sorry that had to miss this years’ considering all of the positive feedback I have received about it. Word is that even the new college president in attendance was very impressed with the professionalism of the student run event. Congratulations to the TV faculty and students for once again dismantling the entire airpack studio and successfully re-assembling in the YORK Theater next door, congratulations to the CMP faculty and students for running such a great show and thanks to all of the staff, parents and students who contributed to the success of the event, including all the nominated students from CMP, DMA, JBC, RTVR and RTVT.

Marks Due
Just a reminder your marks are all due by Monday morning at 10:00AM. If you have a second today, login to myseneca ( select “Employee Services” from the tabs along the top, and in the “Enterprise Applications” module select “Faculty Tools”. After you login one more time, select “Grade Students”. If you are able to get to this point in the process, you will have no problem doing this before Monday and if you do have a problem, you will be able to work with the computer help desk (416-491-5050 x 2129) on making sure you are able to login in advance of the deadline.

After you submit your marks, please don’t forget to send your final mark breakdowns to Karen and your program coordinator. This can include your print off of the final marks as submitted via my Seneca, but should also include either a spreadsheet print out or a printout of your grade book on blackboard or for those not in the electronic mood, a printout of your personal mark log.

Seneca and the School of Communication Arts has played a key role in the very popular design and technology event – Flash in the Can over the last couple of years, and this year it is even bigger with Seneca as a key sponsor, the provider of the cyber café, and we also showcase our student work at our very own booth. The event starts Saturday and runs until Tuesday. Special thanks to Mark Jones and Joseph Bodick for their organizing skills and thanks also to Hassan Assiri, Adrian Klymenko and Luis Marmelo for providing all the computers for the event.

Brian Thomas
It was the late 70’s and in Toronto when you wanted in depth news coverage and thought provoking commentary of what was going on in the world you listened to the radio. News names and voices you can still hear today including Dick Symth, Mark Daley, Brian Williams, Rick Hodge, Brian Henderson and Seneca’s own – Brian Thomas. Investigative journalism at its best with the only interview ever conducted with Steven Truscott, by CHUM’s Brian Thomas. His amazing work is now being recognized by the Canadian Film Institute at their AV Trust Masterworks at a Gala in Ottawa on Monday. Congratulation to Brian on your well deserved award.

In the Screening room
Last Friday the TV faculty and students presented their year end screening of the 4th semester TV work, and judging from the positive feed back from all who attended the students have completed some incredible work this semester. Also, congratulations to the JBC students for screening their semester ending documentary work this past week at the first ever Doc Fest.

Portfolio Night
CAB has become an official sponsor of the annual portfolio review night for know as PORTFOLIO NIGHT 7 Toronto to be held June 11th, 2009. It is the world’s largest advertising portfolio review and this year they will be hosting over 12 international cities and is the “centre” of the creative advertising world website. Visited by “adlanders” and agencies personal daily. Our profile will be on the event site, which will run worldwide at

Animation Book
The second edition of the ARTbook has been released this week and it looks FANTASTIC. Student work included is from all 3 years of the ANI program. Students purchased 2 pages each and are beautifully featured in this great looking book. With special thanks to Isabelle Babici for coordinating the ARTbook committee, Jim Zubkavich for handling the printing and Jim Graves and Lara (The Design Girl) Graves for layout and student advisement. Purchase a book today for $25.00 from Isabelle up in the AAC.

In closing
With the e-mail more then 300 words more then it normally is, I will close with just a short observation. One faculty member that I had met for the first time on Thursday told me that reading my confession e-mail was a highlight of her week, and that she liked it because she felt like she was part of the big team. OK here is the post game press conference, in the locker room after the big game. By the way, we won!

“Well I just can’t say enough good stuff about this whole team. Right from the training staff to the big guy over there, they all put in 110% the whole time, and just never gave up and it paid off, we won this 14 week tournament, we made it and I could not be prouder’. Ohh gosh I think I am going to cry”

Have a great marking weekend and see you next week for promotion and potluck!

Thanks! 14 (+1) down and 1 to go.

Confessions of the Acting Associate Chair – Week 13

Flip-flop, flip-flop I saw my fist pair of flip-flops this morning, so I am happy to share the SPF 50 smothered, short wearing, put the sun glasses on and the music up loud, best weather yet, week 13 confessions e-mail.

Friendly Competition
For the 3rd year, 2nd semester AFD students were responsible for coming up with a mural design for the York Region CSV (community safety village) and this year’s winning design was created by Genuman Ho, Phillip Trieu, Gordon Chan and Michael Alves, from Jim Graves’ section of the AFD271 class. These students managed to edge out their competition, from the other section with both a strong final design and an excellent presentation, which effectively addressed the needs of the client. PC Phil Houghton from YRP said, “I think all of the murals were outstanding and truly captured what we asked for in the projects. It was hard to choose the actual winning one but this Project 0189 was able to capture a variety of units actually working as well as a variety of YRP officers in action.”

As always, Bill Suddick is now working closely with “Project 0189” on the final execution of the actual full size 8′ x 12′ mural. Special thanks should go out to both Phillip and Jed for their continued support of this great opportunity provided to our AFD students.

Doc Fest
Journalism Broadcast invites all students and faculty to the 2009 JBC DocFest at The Hive, 4-6pm on Tuesday April 21. Come watch some very cool productions about weekend warriors; Iraq War resisters; a haunted building; belly dancing; and a mockumentary documentary about documentary making!

SCA Media Awards
A little less than a week left for ticket sales and preparation for the SCA media awards ( April 23rd. It looks like it will be another great event, and all are encouraged to order your tickets today and support this student run event. Also, don’t forget about Jed’s “thank you” reception at 4:00PM in the afternoon of awards day, Jed will host a reception that will be a great time to take a breath at the end of a very busy semester.

Well the lunchroom is almost finished, and with the end of the semester here, it seems it would be a good time for a little get together event to utilize officially kick it off. The first annual “Promo Week – SCA potluck lunch and great food celebration” is ON. I have put up a signup sheet on the bulletin board, and would like all who are interested in participating either the Tuesday or Wednesday of the Promo week (April 28th and 29th) to add their names and contribution. If you do not have your name on the list, you will not be eligible to participate, so I would strongly encourage you to put you name on the list for sure. Your contribution does not have to be a food item we will need plastic plates and utensils, drinks or even desserts. If you have any questions about the requirements, please let me know. I have already talked to a number of you and so far, it seems like it will be popular.

Faculty Forum 2009 Evite
Real Education: Classroom, College, Community is the focus for the one-day forum for all faculty, teaching staff, chairs and deans dedicated to collaboration, conversation and community building. Being held at the Newnham Campus – SeneCentre, May 5, 2009 from 8:30 – 5:00. This will be a great event to cover, teaching and learning strategies, opportunities to speak with colleagues in an open dialogue, resources and services available to faculty and teaching staff and professional development. For more information, contact Bev Brewer ( or 416.491.5050 x2883)

In closing
I start collecting the content for these e-mails almost after I hit the send button the week before, but the main building is Thursday night, and Friday morning. Well, the thinking anyway, the writing starts about an hour before it hits cyberspace. I look for things in my daily routine that remind me about something that I try to tie in as the main message, so the nice man driving the Audi, who passed me this morning waving his hands at me got me thinking. I am not sure exactly what I had done, but either he was trying to tell me that my sunglasses are too big for my face, or he felt that I needed to keep my eyes on the road more. It is possible that I was grooving to the tunes a little too loud and my mind drifted for a second off my inside the line responsibility, but what a nice man to share his feelings so openly on a public highway. If I can take anything from it to share with you, it would be that it is ok to look stupid and make funny arm, finger gestures to passing motorists, if in the end it makes you feel better about your own driving or life.

I do know this, I will be happy to get week 14 started next week, but I may take a different route in on Monday to do so.

Thanks! 13 (+1) down and 1 (+1) to go.