New Canadian Sociology Award in honour of Mary Jo Nadeau

The Graduate Program in Sociology, York University, is pleased to announce the launch of the Mary-Jo Nadeau Activist Scholar Award (the M.J.).

This award will be given annually to a full-time PhD student in Sociology whose work demonstrates a commitment to anti-racism, feminist inquiry, and is in solidarity with local and global struggles for social justice.  The purpose of the M.J. Award is to support a Ph.D. student whose dissertation research reflects the principles of activist scholarship that informed Dr. Nadeau’s work. The value of the award is $1000.00, and a student can hold the award only once.

Mary-Jo Nadeau completed her Ph.D. in Sociology at York in 2005.  Many of you will remember her seemingly boundless energy and commitment to making a better world for all.  Mary-Jo was involved in anti-poverty campaigns, labour struggles within and beyond the university, and Palestinian solidarity work, including advancement of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions movement. She was committed to anti-racist feminist social justice in her scholarly research, the courses she taught, and the labour unions she fought for.

Mary-Jo was an inspiration to many, as these testimonials from two of our current doctoral candidates demonstrate so well:

M.J. perfectly modelled what a scholar-activist looks like in my early years as an undergraduate student at the University of Toronto. Her course had a profound impact on me and my ultimate decision to pursue graduate studies. She has shaped who I am as an activist, researcher, and educator.
Rawan Abdelbaki, PhD Student

Mary-Jo was truly an inspiration. After taking one of her courses, my life would never be the same. Her devotion to social justice and her desire for real change sparked my passion for sociology. Mary-Jo taught me that I could make a difference in the world. She led by example, and I will forever be honoured to have known her.
Grace Barakat, PhD Student

Mary-Jo died on 9 January 2021 after a long illness. We wish to honour Mary-Jo with this award and contribute to sustaining her legacy for future activist scholars.  Through the M.J. Award, we also honour our graduate students who carry on the work that Mary-Jo so dearly wished to be able to continue.  We ask for your assistance in making this possible.

We will be grateful to receive your contribution to this award.  The award is to be held in an expendable account, meaning that we will be fund-raising for one time only, and the award will be allocated for as long as funds remain in the account.  Once we achieve or surpass our fundraising goal you will receive no further requests for contributions.  The current fund-raising campaign will be your only opportunity to contribute to this award.  Our target is to raise $20,000.00 in this campaign.  Thanks to a generous donation from Mary Jo’s partner and family, we are off to a promising start and will be able to begin disbursing the award in the current academic year.

York University has established a dedicated donation page for the M.J. Award.  All contributions are tax deductible and contributors will immediately receive an e-tax receipt.  There are two ways to make your contribution:

1. Online: we have setup a donation page for The MJ Award: You can use this link to make your contribution. Since this is a dedicated donation page, all gifts made on this page will be coded automatically to go towards the Award.

2. Cheque:  Cheques can be made payable to York University and mailed to the following address:

Division of Advancement
York University
West Office Building
4700 Keele St.
Toronto, ON M3J 1P3

Please write ‘The MJ Award’ in the memo line.  Please print and attach the online donation form, including your contact information, and submit it with your cheque to ensure that the funds are attributed towards the MJ Award.

We thank you for your donations.

Debi Brock, Associate Professor, Department of Sociology
Eric Mykhalovskiy, Director, Graduate Program in Sociology
Mark Thomas, Chair, Department of Sociology
(The M.J. Award Fundraising Committee)

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