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Pamela Can(ada): UniSQ alumni leads food literacy charity in Ontario

The intricate interplay between food, community and education have been a core theme in the career of activist educator Pamela Farrell.

The University of Southern Queensland alumni currently leads GROW, a food literacy charity in Ontario, Canada that serves a neighbourhood of more than 2800 people facing serious food insecurity.

She is also a lecturer in teacher education at University of Calgary and was recently appointed Honorary Consul of Switzerland to Alberta. She recently received the President's Award from the University of Calgary and won the UniSQ Education Alumni of the Year Award in Education.

“My career has been characterized by a diverse range of experiences, each building upon the skills and knowledge gained in previous positions,” she said.

“These experiences have all contributed to my current roles as an education lecturer and as an advocate for equity and inclusion in educational settings.”

Dr Farrell said her studies directly led to the founding of GROW. The service has made a significant impact since its founding more than three years ago.

“We have been able to support food security for those living on low incomes, particularly among single women-led households and individuals with disabilities,” Dr Farrell said.

Her diverse career all began after graduating from University of Southern Queensland in 2006 with a Bachelor in General Studies, majoring in education.

Dr Farrell returned to University of Southern Queensland for postgraduate study, achieving a Masters degree in Education specialising in Special Education in 2009.

She has since also been awarded her Doctorate at the University of Calgary.

“My time at UniSQ provided a strong foundation for my career, and I am grateful for the knowledge and skills I gained during my studies,” she said.

“It has propelled me forward in my pursuit of making a meaningful difference in the field of education.”

“The community development course I took remains vivid in my mind.”

“It served as the cornerstone for my current role as an activist scholar, as it taught me about community development and deepened my understanding of the fundamental challenges faced by marginalized social groups.”

Dr Farrell said she remained dedicated to continuing her positive impact on the fields of education, food literacy and international relations.

“Overall, my goals across these three roles are interconnected, as they all revolve around enhancing personal and life experiences, promoting equity and inclusion, and fostering meaningful collaborations,” she said.

Learn more about education at the University of Southern Queensland.

woman with food in the background
Pamela has also recently won the UniSQ Education Alumni of the Year.