Effects of Higher Education Policy and Planning on a Campus Women's Centre and the Provision of Safer Space [article]

Melanie Carroll, University Of Calgary, University Of Calgary, Fiona Nelson
Since the 1970s, higher education has increasingly been coordinated by discourses of quality control, return on public investment, and student engagement. Concurrently, social justice movements have demanded attention to access and inclusion of systematically disadvantaged groups. One way universities have addressed these demands is through designated services. This research investigates one such service, a women's centre, and its struggle to survive during the retrenchment of women's movement
more » ... ains and rise of student engagement measures. Using institutional ethnography, I discover how extralocal texts for student engagement, primarily the National Survey of Student Engagement, shaped university priorities, were activated by local administrators, and created the conditions to amalgamate the women's centre with a centre for community-engaged learning. Administrators' actions, thus, effectively damaged the very engagement they were trying to create by prioritizing extralocal discourses over the local practices of community building, safer space, and engagement already developed within the women's centre.
doi:10.11575/prism/25823 fatcat:hc45233c4na2hjavm2gl4hj7hi