OCAD University announces Carole Beaulieu as Vice-President, Advancement & Board Secretariat

Thursday, September 22, 2016 - 4:00am

OCAD University has appointed Carole Beaulieu as Vice-President, Advancement & Board Secretariat. Beaulieu will lead an amalgamation of the portfolios of Capital Campaign/Development, University Relations and Board Secretariat. This new role will enable the integration of public and private fundraising to achieve the next stage of OCAD University’s fundraising campaign, to align marketing and communications and to further the Board of Governors’ external engagement.

Originally from Sudbury, Beaulieu is an accomplished management, marketing, public affairs and governance executive. In her previous role of Associate Vice-President, University Relations, Beaulieu spearheaded OCAD U’s successful initiative to achieve $27M in Government of Ontario funding for the Creative City Campus.


OCAD University announces Ignite Imagination campaign

Friday, November 20, 2015 - 5:00am

OCAD University has launched Ignite Imagination – an ambitious six-year, $30 million private fundraising campaign, with an additional $30 million goal for government and public support.

To date, some $15.6 million in private funding has been received, thanks to the generosity of donors such as Rosalie and Isadore Sharp, the Delaney Family Foundation, Ada Slaight and many others. Nearly $5.5 million has been dedicated towards enhancing the student experience. In addition, the university has raised almost 25 per cent of its public funding goal.

“By 2018, OCAD University will be transformed through campus expansion in the heart of Toronto’s creative district and through enhanced student experience,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, OCAD University President and Vice-Chancellor. “With the growth of the creative economy, the explosion of digital media and the challenges and opportunities facing society, imagination is recognized globally as not just a want, but a need. Our mandate is not simply to imagine the future but to help create it.”

Leslie Gales, President and Chief Investment Officer of the Midland Group of Companies, is Campaign Chair. Gales is a committed community volunteer and currently holds positions with the AGO Foundation, the Jewish Federation of North America and the National Arts Centre Foundation. “I am deeply impressed by the commitment and passion faculty and staff bring to helping every student achieve their full potential,” said Gales. “My goal is to open doors to other individuals and organizations that might share our vision and help us to meet the university’s needs.”

The Ignite Imagination campaign has four pillars:

• To enhance the student experience through increased scholarships, exchange opportunities and workplace experience

• To foster faculty innovation by funding research that brings new knowledge and approaches into the classroom or studio and draws world-class faculty

• To enrich academic programming with more experiential learning programs to give students a real-world complement to the critical and historical knowledge they acquire

• To build and renew infrastructure by upgrading existing studios and labs and expanding the campus while defining the university’s civic identity and international image

OCAD University’s constant evolution is based in the belief that creativity serves a vital function in society – that imaginations have the unique power to develop real-world solutions to improve and transform lives. Ignite Imagination will support this evolution and shape the future of Canada’s largest and most comprehensive art, design and digital media institution.

We Are Cities: Artful Citybuilding

Black and white poster with yellow text
Tuesday, June 23, 2015 - 10:00pm to Wednesday, June 24, 2015 - 1:00am

We Are Cities is a campaign to create a new vision and action plan for how we can build livable cities – exciting and healthy places to live, work and play. Roundtables are taking place across the country to establish a vision and action plan for better Canadian Cities.

Art and design are vital building blocks in establishing the vibrancy, sense of identity and economic stability of cities. With that in mind, OCAD University will be hosting a roundtable specifically focused on the role of creative culture in citybuilding.

Speakers will share a variety of viewpoints on the role art and design play in our cities and strategies for supporting and utilizing these industries to build thriving and livable cities. In the discussion to follow, we’ll break into smaller groups to begin to articulate a vision for the artful city and devise tactics to bring this vision to life, asking how governments, institutions, developers, businesses and individuals can better engage and partner with creative communities.

Department of Unusual Certainties
STEPS Initiative
The STEPS Initiative
PARTISANS Architecture

Register at http://www.wearecities.ca/5363/artful_citybuilding
Space is limited.

Venue & Address: 
OCAD U Student Gallery, 52 McCaul Street

OCAD U Digital Security Competition Awards Ceremony

Black and pink text
Monday, March 9, 2015 - 8:00pm to 9:30pm

OCAD University has launched its first ever student competition to raise awareness about digital security in an increasingly digital world. Students were challenged to create a campaign centered on any form of Cybersecurity, ranging from hacking and malware prevention, to data back up and privacy. Winners will be announced at the Awards Ceremony hosted by Andrew McAllister, Manager, Academic Computing at OCAD U. All are invited to attend. Refreshments to be provided. Digital displays will present all competition submissions.


Venue & Address: 
OCAD University 49 McCaul St.

Strategic Foresight students' Remembrance project

Logo for Reset Remembrance Project
Tuesday, November 11, 2014 - 4:45pm

Last year, four OCAD University graduate students in the Strategic Foresight and Innovation program were stunned to discover that 16% of homeless people on Toronto’s streets and in shelters served in the military. This spark led Kelly Kornet, Krittika Sharma, Ron Memmel and William Georg to spend weeks researching this issue to try to understand the struggles that veterans face after their release from the military.

This year the team is asking Canadians - and everyone else - to move beyond remembrance and to learn about the struggle veterans face when returning to civilian life.

The project attempts to inform and walk the public through the military journey in order to shed light on the reality of what military personnel experience in the field. The team has worked on a potential solution to help veterans transition back from military life to civilian life and provides a visual map that shows the journey of soldiers transitioning from civilian culture to military culture and back to civilian culture again.

The project and campaign can be accessed though:





OCAD University marketing campaign hits streets, screens and subways

OCAD U Campaign 2014
Thursday, October 9, 2014 - 4:00am

OCAD University launched a multi-platform marketing blitz across the City of Toronto this week. Developed by Toronto agency BT|A Creates, the brand awareness campaign invites prospective students to “turn what you love into a future.”

The campaign imagery, to be found in subways and transit shelters, features the iconic Sharp Centre for Design. This internationally known symbol of OCAD University marks its 10th anniversary this fall.

The tagline “overactive imaginations are a good thing” appeals to the creative, inventive and inquisitive minds who will use skills gained at the university to enter creative, design and digital industries, become entrepreneurs marketing their own work and designs or bring their knowledge to many other industries and contexts, from health care to technology firms.

“Creative thinking and problem-solving skills are what employers are looking for in the workforce,” said Dr. Sara Diamond, President and Vice-Chancellor of OCAD University. “Active, collaborative and experiential learning are intrinsic to all of our programs and nurture these competencies.”

The campaign shines a light on the Digital Futures program, which merges art, design, computing and business skills. Graduates land a range of jobs in mobile app development, video games design, data visualization, product design, wearables and web and multimedia services

Online versions of the ad will extend the message beyond the GTA. They feature colourful animations and images of students at work and will be featured on Facebook, YouTube and targeted websites

The marketing campaign will drive public and student interest to the new OCAD University website. The new website design has a strong alignment and consistency with the OCAD U award winning visual identity, originally designed by Bruce Mau Design (BMD). BMD designed and programmed the new site, with many OCAD U staff, faculty and students also contributing to this project.

Undergraduate applications are now open for the 2014-15 school year and prospective students are currently looking at their post-secondary program options. For further information, visit the website to explore everything the university has to offer.

OCAD University (OCAD U):

OCAD University (www.ocadu.ca) is Canada’s “University of the Imagination.” The university, founded in 1876, is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines. OCAD University is building on its traditional, studio-based strengths, adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinary practice, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies. In the Age of Imagination, OCAD University community members will be uniquely qualified to act as catalysts for the next advances in culture, technology and quality of life for all Canadians.


BT/A (www.btacreates.com) is a full service advertising agency based in Toronto fueled by a creative mandate of elevating consumer engagement and brand experience across all levels of interaction. BT/A has a diverse list of clients and experience in a myriad of sectors including culture, finance, retail, education, and experiential engagement. 


For more information please contact:

Christine Crosbie, Media Relations Officer, OCAD University

416-977-6000 x. 4890



OCAD University and Indiegogo partner to support Canadian innovation

Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 4:00am

(Toronto—October 10, 2013) OCAD University is the first Canadian post-secondary institution to partner with Indiegogo, enabling OCAD U start-ups to be featured under a university-sponsored page.

The unique partnership provides OCAD U start-up companies with valuable campaign marketing support, vitally important in distinguishing these entrepreneurs from the sea of campaigns found among such increasingly popular crowd-funding platforms.

“We have seen that university communities have a wealth of ideas and ideals. We are thrilled to work with OCAD U as the first Canadian university Indiegogo partner to bring these innovative and world-changing ideas to the next level via crowd-funding.  We look forward to working with many more,” said Bre DiGiammarino, Education and Social Innovation Director for Indiegogo.

To kick off the new partnership, OCAD U today kicks off Indiegogo campaigns by start-ups Sprout Guerrilla and PUSH, two incubator companies of OCAD U’s centre for entrepreneurship, the Imagination Catalyst.

Sprout Guerrilla’s crowd-funded campaign supports the company’s “I ♥ My City” project, in which participants are encouraged to create public art pieces out of Sprout Guerrilla’s DIY moss graffiti kits in a display of city pride.

“Moss graffiti can transform urban streetscapes,” said Sprout Guerrilla Founder Julie Forand. “It’s a creative and fun way to make a positive environmental impact in cities. Each person can make a difference, and the more people get involved the greater our impact will be.”

Campaign contributors can earn perks for their donations such as one or more of the moss graffiti kits, custom graffiti kits, “Moss my Business” or “Moss my Community” kits, Moss art by internationally acclaimed illustrator and OCAD U assistant professor Gary Taxali, or even a large-scale custom-painted moss graffiti mural.

Fitness technology company PUSH recently unveiled its PUSH Band, an app-enabled wearable fitness tracker that helps serious gym-goers, professional athletes or athletes-in-training track and analyze strength performance. With no imaginary points or arbitrary scores, PUSH uses scientifically validated metrics such as reps and sets, force, power, balance, speed, explosive strength, one rep max, volume load and tempo to visualize an athlete’s training performance.

“The PUSH Band seamlessly connects with your smartphone to allow for customized workouts, performance monitoring and progress review,” said PUSH CEO and co-founder Rami Alhamad. “It streamlines your progress so your routine constantly adapts to you in real time and over time while reducing the risk of injury.”

Results and achievements can be shared with friends, teammates, personal trainers or coaches for an enhanced social and competitive training experience. Users can compare their performance to others with the PUSH app’s live view where athletes’ data are streamed to a television in real time. PUSH also makes it easy for coaches and trainers to access performance results to visualize trends and compare individual progress to the team as a whole.

The PUSH Indiegogo campaign is already nearly halfway toward meeting its crowd-funded target. The Band will be available for pre-order as of October 10, 2013 for $149 USD, with shipping commencing in May 2014.

Sprout Guerrilla:
Founded on the principles of sustainability and effective environmental design, Toronto-based social purpose business Sprout Guerrilla (www.sproutguerrilla.com) seeks to green the world’s urban centres, one blank wall at a time. Sprout Guerrilla is founded by a SheEO, and is currently being supported by OCAD U’s Imagination Catalyst.

Toronto-based fitness technology start-up, PUSH (www.pushstrength.com), launched from the JOLT program at MaRS Commons. PUSH empowers athletes by providing a way to track workouts and visualize results. The PUSH team has worked tirelessly for the last year to bring the fitness realm a wearable device that generates real metrics — the PUSH Band. No imaginary points or arbitrary scores, just actual data that will help makes users stronger, improve form and reduce the risk of injury. PUSH constantly strives to improve its product with users’ needs in mind, and find innovative ways to make fitness routines increasingly productive and more fun. PUSH is supported by OCAD U’s Imagination Catalyst.

Indiegogo (www.indiegogo.com) empowers people around the world to fund what matters to them. As the largest global crowd funding platform, campaigns have launched from every country around the world with millions of dollars being distributed every week due to contributions made by the Indiegogo community. At its core, Indiegogo is the equal opportunity platform dedicated to democratizing the way people raise funds for any project — creative, entrepreneurial or cause-related. The company was launched in 2008 and is headquartered in San Francisco, with offices in Los Angeles and New York.

The Imagination Catalyst at OCAD U
The Imagination Catalyst (www.ocadu.ca/imaginationcatalyst) is OCAD University’s centre for entrepreneurship and commercialization. The incubator supports and develops entrepreneurial talent among OCAD U faculty, graduate students and alumni. The Catalyst helps launch new companies or products that help drive the local economy and contribute to Ontario’s and Canada’s collective well-being. The Imagination Catalyst is OCAD U’s gateway to the start-up community in Toronto, Ontario and internationally.

About OCAD University
OCAD University (www.ocadu.ca) is Canada’s “university of imagination.” The university, founded in 1876, is dedicated to art and design education, practice and research and to knowledge and invention across a wide range of disciplines. OCAD University is building on its traditional, studio-based strengths, adding new approaches to learning that champion cross-disciplinary practice, collaboration and the integration of emerging technologies. In the Age of Imagination, OCAD University community members will be uniquely qualified to act as catalysts for the next advances in culture, technology and quality of life for all Canadians.

# # #

For more information please contact:

Sarah Mulholland, OCAD U Marketing & Communications
416 977 6000 x327
mobile: x1327