If you are an undergraduate student at the University of Guelph looking for a unique and fun classroom experience, you might want to check out Ideas Congress (ICON), the course labelled by Maclean’s magazine as a “cool course” to take.
“Cool Courses: Ideas Congress (ICON): The course is grounded in real-world issues. Students work in teams to create a pitch for a sustainability project, building the problem-solving and teamwork skills so valuable in the workforce.” Maclean’s Magazine, 2018
Every fall and winter, ICON brings together students from all programs and (almost all) years of study from across campus to work with a community partner on a broad social issue. In the past we have worked on issues such as environmental sustainability, energy conservation, food insecurity, food waste, and more.
This fall we will partner with the City of Guelph to determine accessible solutions to reduce or eliminate single-use plastics both on and off campus. This is a huge interdisciplinary and multi-sectoral challenge, which means we need as many brains and as many disciplines in the classroom as possible.
As part of the ICON classroom, we’ll spend time developing our solutions to this challenge while learning how to work better in an interdisciplinary team setting. The skills you will gain from ICON are skills that the Royal Bank of Canada indicated in their 2018 report Humans Wanted: How Canadian Youth Can Thrive In The Age Of Disruption are essential in the current and future job market.
- If you’re wondering if your discipline is the right discipline to take on this challenge – it is!
- If you’re passionate about improving life and making our community a better place – this class is for you.
- If you want a unique learning experience that connects you with our community and challenges you to do something much bigger than the typical assignments or reports you’ve had to do in other classes – you should join ICON.
Learn how to be interdisciplinary. Learn the skills that will set you apart.
If you are interested in registering for ICON, you can do so in several ways.
- As a first year student, you can register for the ICON First Year Seminar (UNIV1200). This should be available online soon.
- As a senior student, you should chat with your academic advisor to see if you are eligible to register for an independent study course in your major. If so, it’s very likely you can use your major’s independent study course code to register for ICON. A list of courses that other students have used in the past are provided in the image below. If your independent study course isn’t listed, that’s okay, as it’s quite likely it will still be possible to use it to get you into ICON.
- As a senior student, you can register for UNIV4200 (fall) or UNIV4210 (winter).