Today’s blog post comes from Khushmol Dhaliwal and Malcolm Snow. Khushmol is a master’s student at the University of Alberta, and Malcolm is an undergraduate student at Memorial University of Newfoundland. On the OC-SNP National Executive, Khushmol serves as the Recruitment Coordinator, and Malcolm as a Chapter Representative.

This has been another exciting year of chapter events across the country. This is a summary of the incredible events that local chapters hosted this year (2019-2020). Thank you to all the amazing work these local chapters do in bringing awareness and action around obesity and obesity-related diseases.

  • The University of Waterloo Chapter held a panel discussion about the newly released Canada’s Food Guide. The panelists included the chapter’s faculty advisor and a postdoctoral student specializing in nutrition. Engagement was high as students’ and faculty participated in the event by asking questions, contributing ideas, and creating a discussion.
  • Western University conducted a faculty-supported research study examining the perceptions of Health Science and Medical Science students on weight stigma and obesity as a disease. We are excited for the results of this expansive study and look forward to sharing what they discovered.
  • Laval University collaborated with various student societies to increase engagement. They offered a “professional photo” event that allows prospective chapter members to expand their professional portfolio.
  • The University of Guelph had success in running trivia events and documentaries showing (e.g., “What the Health”). Following these documentaries, they had faculty members and postdoctoral students give presentations about the documentary that challenged the positive and negative aspects of the movie.
  • McMaster University has been running a Career Seminar Series consisting of faculties, graduate students, and postdocs discussing research. Topics included career development opportunities, postdoctoral stories, careers outside of academia, as well as scientific discoveries and new clinical guidelines.
  • Ryerson University held a Speaker & Networking event aimed to develop obesity acceptance within society.
  • York University played a hands-on role in organizing efforts for COSM 2020, which has unfortunately been postponed until next year.
  • Simon Fraser University hosted games and trivia nights to attract membership, educate new members about the chapter, and to inform people about obesity.
  • The University of Alberta held a mixer event with Dr. Mary Forhan who discussed her work with Obesity Canada around bariatric rehabilitation strategies, and Marielle Terhart, who gave a talk centered around “Seeing your body as wanted: A look at fashion, pop culture, and the omission of fat bodies.”

This is a quick overview of some of the wonderful events held this year by various chapters from Obesity Canada. Overall, the chapters continue to advocate for obesity awareness by hosting these events. We hope that this serves as inspiration for the work Obesity Canada continues to do into the future.

The National Executive is currently planning a webinar to be hosted sometime in the future. This is a collaborative event with local chapters, and we cannot wait to share more details with you in the future. Keep an eye out for more details to be released soon!