Second Annual Carleton Graduate Mentoring Award for Faculty nomination

Even though she did not (to my knowledge) win the Second Annual Carleton Graduate Mentoring Award for Faculty, I’d like to share my nomination for Eva Mackey here in case folks are interested in working with her or taking one of her classes, because she is The Best.

I like to joke that Professor Eva Mackey of the School of Canadian Studies ruined my life. I cannot walk down the street without applying the framework of critique and awareness that her class inspired in me. This has the unintended side effect of occasionally alienating my fellow walkers, but more often it serves as an illuminating and engaging point of discussion for my students in my own work as a Teaching Assistant and instructor.

In her Fall 2010 course “Decolonising Canada,” under her careful, entertaining, and brilliant guidance, I honed my critical thinking skills. Professor Mackey inspired us and helped us find the tools to conduct insightful, conference-award-winning projects by supporting our development as skilled researchers.

Through her efforts at arranging guest speakers, cultivating an exciting and inclusive seminar format, introducing fascinating primary source materials in the classroom, and supporting collaborative research processes, Professor Mackey gave our class an enriching and life-altering experience that fully embodied the principles of Canadian Studies. I use the critical thinking tools I gained from working with Professor Mackey every day in my current work. She has decidedly transformed my worldview (for the better!), and I know she has had a similar impact on other graduate students.

Her course was so popular that she had to teach two separate sections to accommodate all of the interested students. This popularity is a reflection of the quality of her teaching as well as the relevance of her research to life in contemporary Canada. In my own project for “Decolonising Canada,” Professor Mackey encouraged me to contact prestigious scholars in the fields of Indigenous studies, visual culture, and history.

My interdisciplinary paper on depictions of Indigeneity in political cartoons [was warmly received at the 2012 Association for Canadian Studies in the United States conference] thanks in large part to Professor Mackey’s support, inspiration, and probing questions during the preliminary stages of the research. In the classroom and out, Professor Mackey puts her students first, supports first-rate research, and advocates thinking critically about everything.

In her role as the MA supervisor for Canadian Studies, Professor Mackey has implemented beneficial changes to the degree process and supported student research initiatives. Through her exceptional service to graduate students, including me, she has transformed my life and research as well as that of others in the School of Canadian Studies.

As a token of appreciation for the amazing experiences I have  working with her, I submit this nomination to the Second Annual Carleton Graduate Mentoring Award for Faculty. Thank you for recognizing the outstanding educators among us here at Carleton, particularly Professor Eva Mackey, who really ruined my life in the best way possible.

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