Keynotes

Dr. Arthur Levine
President, Woodrow Wilson Foundation

Arthur Levine is a global thought leader addressing issues facing today’s educators. He is the sixth president of the Woodrow Wilson Foundation. Before his appointment at Woodrow Wilson, he was president and professor of education at Columbia University’s Teachers College. At the Harvard Graduate School of Education, he served as chair of the higher education program, chair of the Institute for Educational Management, and senior lecturer.

Dr. Levine writes brilliantly about the state of modern education and is the author of 12 books and dozens of articles and reviews, in publications including The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, Education Week and The Chronicle of Higher Education. His most recent book is Generation on a Tightrope: A Portrait of Today’s College Student.

Dr. Levine has received numerous honours, including Carnegie, Guggenheim, and Rockefeller Fellowships, and 25 honorary degrees. He is a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences and currently sits on the boards of Say Yes to Education and Motivis Learning.

Dr. Levine will discuss continuing education’s crucial role in a world where globalism and computer automation threaten traditional labour markets.

Dr. Mike Smit
Professor, Dalhousie University

Dr. Mike Smit is an award-winning professor in Dalhousie’s School of Information Management where he studies the intersection of people, information, and technology. He draws on his background in computer science to explore how we can best leverage emerging technology to benefit people, organizations and society, while also mitigating risks changing technology poses.

This fascination has led to deep and broad explorations of technologies like cloud computing, social media, Big Data, and artificial intelligence. He has unpacked these technologies, and the social change associated with them, for regional, national and international audiences. His work in advocating for increased data literacy to respond to technology shifts has led to curriculum development, research projects, and organizational change.

Broad collaborations have allowed him to examine the role of computing and information in contexts like ocean science, healthcare, culturomics and humanitarian assistance. The resulting research articles are published in a broad variety of venues. He has received various research and teaching honours, including most recently Dalhousie’s Early Career Faculty Award of Excellence for Teaching.

Dr. Wanda Thomas Bernard
Canadian Senator

Senator Wanda Thomas Bernard is a leading figure championing diversity and inclusiveness in Canadian society. She is a highly regarded social worker, educator, researcher, community activist and advocate of social change.

In 2016, Dr. Thomas Bernard was appointed Special Advisor on Diversity and Inclusiveness at Dalhousie University and is the first African Nova Scotian to hold a tenure track position and be promoted to full professor at the university. She has worked with provincial organizations to bring diversity to the political processes in Nova Scotia and teach community members about Canada’s legislative process and citizen engagement.

Dr. Thomas Bernard is a founding member of the Association of Black Social Workers which helps address the needs of marginalized citizens, especially those of African descent. As a former member of the Nova Scotia Advisory Council on the Status of Women and its past Chair, she was instrumental in the development of advice to ministers regarding frameworks for gender violence prevention and health equity. At the national level, she has served as a member of the National Coalition of Advisory Councils on the Status of Women. She has received many honours for her community leadership, notably the Order of Canada and Order of Nova Scotia.

Senator Bernard will offer an inspirational perspective on how our sector can help to break down societal barriers and improve lives.