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Arts & Science Program

2018 New World of Work Forum

This inaugural forum, designed exclusively for Arts & Science students, is a unique opportunity for you to engage with emerging themes in the new world of work and gain a better understanding of how your Arts & Science education can be applied in the “real world.” Featuring leading speakers as well as Arts & Science alumni, the forum will guide you through the concepts of entrepreneurship, technology, and social responsibility. Get ready for a day of influential speakers, personal workshops, creative networking opportunities, and practical skill-building sessions. Lunch and a light breakfast will be provided! $5 deposit, refundable upon attendance.

Keynote Speakers

Nigel Etherington Headshot Nigel Etherington
Director and co-founder of Isla Power, an advisory service focused on furthering sustainability and corporate responsibility and founder of Planet and Company. Board Chair of the Efficiency Capital Corporation and former board member of the Canadian Solar Industries Association. Click here to view Nigel’s presentation slides.
Hamoon Ekhtiari Headshot Hamoon Ekhtiari
Founder & CEO of Audacious Futures and Founding Director of Studio [Y] at MaRS. Member of the Governor General’s Canadian Leadership Conference, AdR Fellow at University of Cambridge, recipient of University of Waterloo’s Alumni Achievement Medal, and Canada Millennium Scholar.


Heather Farnworth Headshot Heather Farnworth
Upon graduating from the Arts & Science program in 1985, Heather went on to receive her MBA from Western University and began work at IMAX Corporation immediately thereafter. She held various Senior Management positions –from Director of Sales, which saw her relocating to East Asia to establish an Asia-Pacific office, to Director of Worldwide Strategic Partnerships, where she conceived and led a strategic sponsorship/partnership initiative for the company. Following her near two decades at IMAX, Heather joined the Ontario Science Centre as Director of International Sales and Featured Products in 2005. In this capacity, Heather manages the International Sales Team’s efforts to expand current international marketing activities, the development and negotiation of sales of exhibits and exhibitions, and the development and implementation of business strategies for touring travelling exhibits.
Cary Ferguson Headshot Cary Ferguson
Cary is a lawyer practicing energy, climate change and environmental law and policy at DeMarco Allan LLP, Canada’s first climate change and clean energy law firm. He regularly appears representing a wide range of clients on matters before the Ontario Energy Board, including First Nations, electricity generators, energy storage companies, and industrial energy users. Prior to joining DeMarco Allan, he provided strategic regulatory advice at the Ontario Power Authority and the Independent Electricity System Operator, focusing on electricity system planning, northern development and First Nations issues. Cary holds a Bachelor of Arts and Science (Honours) from McMaster University, a juris doctor from the University of Toronto, and a Certificate in Transnational Legal Studies from the Centre for Transnational Legal Studies, London. He sits on the boards of the Toronto Chapter of Young Professionals in Energy and Raconteurs Storytelling Projects, the executive of the Climate Change Lawyers Network and the Association of Power Producers of Ontario’s Conference Planning Committee. In his spare time, Cary enjoys photography, restoring old leather shoes, and hiking.
Erin O'Neil Headshot Erin O’Neil
Erin O’Neil graduated from Arts & Science in 2008 and proudly calls Hamilton home. She has worked in various roles in advancement communications at McMaster University for the past seven years and recently completed a master’s in philanthropy and nonprofit leadership at Carleton University. Erin is the founding chapter lead of Hamilton Ladies Learning Code, a volunteer mentor with the G(irls)20 Girls on Boards project, and the founder of Broad Conversations, an experiment to foster conversation on a broad range of topics relevant to feminist broads in Hamilton. Broad Convos consists of a newsletter, discussion evenings and social hangouts, plus a radio show on CFMU 93.3 FM. Erin sits on the board of Cobalt Connects, a Hamilton arts service organization, and on the management committee at the Sexual Assault Centre of Hamilton and Area (SACHA). She joyfully participates in local Hamilton culture, and is particularly fond of live, loud music in the city.
Shohreh Soltaninia Headshot Shohreh Soltaninia
Shohreh is a Policy Advisor at the Ontario Public Service’s Policy Innovation Hub. As a Policy Advisor, Shohreh works with public servants across ministries to apply non-traditional and human-centred approaches to complex policy issues. Prior to joining the Hub team, Shohreh worked at Metrix Consulting, in Toronto, as a learning system designer and spent a year in Cambodia working with a social enterprise organization to advance socio-economic outcomes. Shohreh is a 2011 Artsci alumna and has a M.A. in International Security from L’institut d’études politiques in Paris, France, and a MSc. in International Political Economy from the London School of Economics in London, United Kingdom.
Emily Trudeau Headshot Emily Trudeau
Emily Trudeau graduated from the Arts & Science Program at McMaster in 2014, with a combination in History. From there, she went on to study Russian History and Politics at the Centre for European, Russian, and Eurasian Studies at the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto. During her Masters, she spent a year abroad, studying and working in St. Petersburg, Russia; Uppsala, Sweden; and Budapest, Hungary. In 2016-2017, Emily was awarded a place in the Ontario Legislature Internship Programme (OLIP), a ten-month non-partisan internship. OLIP interns work for a government and opposition MPP at Queen’s Park and participate in comparative study tours. Today, Emily now works as a Legislative Assistant for a Member of Provincial Parliament at Queen’s Park.


9:30 a.m. Registration and Breakfast
10:00 a.m. Introductions and Opening Remarks with Dr. Gary Warner
10:15 a.m. Keynote Speaker, Nigel Etherington
11:20 a.m. Workshops
12:00 p.m. Lunch and Human Library
1:00 p.m. Skill Session on the Unspoken Norms of the Working World
1:50 p.m. An Interview with Hamoon Ekhtiari
2:40 p.m. Reflective Activity and Concluding Remarks

Forum Project Management Team

Danielle Canagasuriam Headshot Danielle Canagasuriam
Completing the final year of her undergraduate Arts and Science degree, Danielle will be graduating in June of 2018 with a Combined Honours in Communication Studies. As the Speaker, Skills, and Social coordinator for the 2017 Combining Two Cultures conference and an alumna of the Institute of Liberal Studies 2017 Freedom Week, Danielle is well-versed in the intricacies of facilitating a poignant, effective forum.
Nick Maizlin Headshot Nick Maizlin
Nick is a third-year student in the Arts and Science program. In high school he co-founded, a site about tech and video games that went on to gain almost 2 million views and reached number 1 on several subreddits. In his spare time he loves watching movies and writing short stories. He is a firm believer in having your fingers in as many pies as possible.
Sophia Silverton Headshot Sophia Silverton
Sophia is in her final year of Arts and Science, graduating with a minor of Sustainability and a minor of Economics. Someday she hopes to reconcile the two, both in her own mind and in the world around her. To get there, she has held an internship at Environment Hamilton and has her sights on a Masters of Environmental Governance at Albert-Ludwigs-Universität Freiburg.

Forum Alumni Mentors

Bruce Miyashita Bruce Miyashita, 1984
Bruce Miyashita is an independent advisor in the field of business process improvement. For over 30 years Bruce has combined “left brain” scientific methods, analytical tools, and statistics with “right brain” approaches from the arts and humanities to improve business operations and to stimulate change. He credits this approach primarily to his undergraduate degree experience in the Arts and Science Program at McMaster in the early ‘80s. His focus has been on advising, coaching, and training in organizations that prioritize process excellence and are committed to the cultural, human resource, and strategic implications of that undertaking. Prior to launching in 2012 his own training organization, Miyashita Advisory, he held several senior executive positions focused on business process improvement and strategy implementation. These included his role as Consultant at McKinsey & Company (1988-1996), Director of Strategic Initiatives at Bombardier (1997-1999), Vice-President, Six Sigma, Maple Leaf Foods (1999-2011) and Head of BMO’s Process Centre of Excellence (2012-2015). In May 2015, he founded the Tom & Nancy Miyashita Foundation focused on local not-for-profit organizations helping to improve education and life-skills for young adults. The Arts and Science Program is a beneficiary of this Foundation.
Evan Jones Headshot Evan Jones, 2001
Evan Jones has quickly become a prominent figure in the digital media industry and has achieved both national and international success as a creative leader and innovator. After graduating from the Arts & Science program in 2001, Evan went on to study interactive media at Sheridan College and attend the Interactive Art and Entertainment Programme at the Canadian Film Centre. Evan is the founder, partner and creative director of Stitch Media, with offices in Toronto and Halifax. His international clients include Microsoft, Disney, FOX, CBC, Bell, Discovery, Showcase, the National Film Board and the Movie Network. He specializes in creating interactive stories for primetime television, books, web, mobile and games, and is a two-time Emmy Award® winner for his innovative work in these areas. Evan’s work has been recognized as one of the Top 10 New Media Groundbreakers of the Decade, and this year was nominated for Canada’s Digital Media Producer of the Year. This year, his company has won the national Digi Award for Best in Digital Advertising and the United Nations World Summit Award for Best in E-Culture.
Stephanie McLarty Headshot Stephanie McLarty, 2003
Stephanie McLarty is an award-winning young entrepreneur and champion of responsible and sustainable corporate practices. Stephanie graduated from the Arts & Science program in 2003. She traveled internationally, taught English overseas, and pursued a master’s degree in peace and conflict transformation. Returning home, she found work assisting in the disposal of surplus equipment at Rogers and realized there is an increasing need to dispose of equipment sustainably. In 2010, Stephanie launched REfficient, an online reuse marketplace and services for businesses. REfficient helps companies get rid of unwanted equipment by selling it to small and medium-sized businesses at up to 90 per cent off the cost of new hardware, connects companies to recycling services and also provides clients with detailed sustainability reporting. Stephanie was a finalist for Ontario in the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award, one of the most prestigious business awards in Canada, and she was one of three Young Professional Leaders appointed to the International Electrotechnical Commission in 2010. REfficient has been recognized by the Canadian Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade as one of the top companies in the clean tech sector and the company is a certified Women’s Business Enterprise through WEConnect Canada. Stephanie recently moved REfficient from Mississauga to Hamilton, where she now lives. The company also operates hubs in Vancouver, Edmonton and Halifax and, since its launch in July 2010, has kept 430,000 kilograms (equivalent to about 40 school buses) out of landfills.
Jackie Brown Headshot Jackie Brown, 2014
Jackie is the most recently graduated of the alumni mentors. She currently oversees all of the arts and culture programs at two community centres in Toronto, but has recently become very interested in the notion of the “future of work” and how the job market is already changing rapidly in response to advancements in technology. She has done some independent investigation in this area and is now considering pursuing academic research on the subject. She is particularly interested in the role that interdisciplinary education can play not only in teaching students critical thinking skills, but also in preparing them more directly for fulfilling careers in the innovation sector. She recently co-taught a one-unit module on the topic of Urban Placemaking (ARTSCI/ISCI 3IE1) that delved into the use of arts-based practices, environmental resources, social enterprise, and civic engagement tools as a collaborative process for animating public and private spaces to strengthen the social and cultural fabric of a city and for reimagining underutilized properties.

Forum Location

Google Maps McMaster Innovation Park
175 Longwood Rd S #105
Hamilton, Ontario


The inaugural New World of Work Forum was featured in the McMaster Daily News. Read the story here. Please also enjoy the following interviews with our alumni mentors.