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Diversity is a reality, while equity and inclusion are actions and choices in everyday life. At HEC Montréal, EDI is everyone’s business.
Understanding the many different life experiences and encouraging discussions among those who are traditionally under-represented in the halls of power and their allies are keys to successful coexistence. It’s important to create a welcoming and respectful environment, while appreciating the potential of every member of the broader HEC Montréal community.
To achieve this we are offering three distinct but complementary activities. The goal is to offer students, faculty and staff a space where they can gather, discuss and work together on themes relating to EDI.
You can sign up for a single activity, or two or all three. It’s up to you!
Three panelists from different backgrounds talk about their experiences and share their views of EDI, using concrete examples drawn from the academic community and the labour market. Their stories will help to establish parallels valuable for analyzing EDI challenges and opportunities at HEC Montréal.
Jean Elsliger, Director of Student Services, HEC Montréal
Jean has been working at HEC Montréal for close to 20 years, where he is known for his vast network of contacts throughout the School. He has been the Director of Student Services since 2017. He is particularly comfortable in a multidisciplinary environment where the organization values collaboration and respect. Jean spent a dozen years working in community organizations in Quebec, and with international co-operation agencies in Africa and South America, in the 1990s.
His versatility, as shown by his education in management as well as economics and social work, gives him a rich and varied outlook when dealing with problems. In his personal life, Jean has been a volunteer since 2016 with GRIS Montréal, which works to demystify different sexual orientations and gender identities. He has hung up his hockey skates and now plays golf and tennis.
Chris Bergeron, VP of inclusive creativity, Cossette
For nearly 40 years, Chris Bergeron lived as a straight man. She enjoyed great professional success from early on in her career:
Then she came out as a trans woman and began living as her true self. Being suddenly exposed to the reality of a visible sexual minority fundamentally changed her view of the world.
Both at home and abroad, Chris now actively advocates for diversity, inclusion, and the rights of transgender people by sharing her story on the public stage.
She now heads up a multidisciplinary team of strategists, community managers and multiplatform content creators at Cossette.
Habi Gerba, President and Designer, Gazelles
Habi is the young creator at the helm of Gazelles, a Montréal business specializing in tailor-made fashion for women in management. She gives a boost to powerful women in their climb to the top, by fitting their image to their ambitions.
After studying fashion design at Cégep Marie-Victorin, she earned a degree in business management from HEC Montréal. In 2016, her involvement in many areas won her the Lieutenant-Governor’s Youth Medal, and in 2021 she received the Black Designer of Canada Award of Excellence.
Her “Osez” podcast gives listeners an intimate peek into the secrets and life experiences of successful women including Isabelle Hudon (BDC), Jessica Harnois (Vins Bù) and Kathy Baig (Ordre des ingénieurs du Québec). It is not only a celebration of entrepreneurship and intrapreneurship, but delves into the many routes to the top, personalities, different industries and ambitions and encourages women, particularly girls, to pursue their dreams.
Habi is the President and spokesperson of the Junior Chamber of Commerce of Montreal, the world’s largest such organization. She also sits on the Board of the Chamber of Commerce of Metropolitan Montreal.
Marc-André Laurier Thibault, President and CEO of Ensemble Inc.
Marc-André has a certificate in communication and triple training in management, specializing in the management of workplace cooperation and conflicts, occupational health and safety, and industrial relations. He is fascinated by public relations, politics, communication and strategy, and is currently the President and CEO of Ensemble Inc. Its mission is to promote the employability of diversity in all its forms by bringing together diversity resources under one roof and uniting the business world.
He himself suffers from cerebral palsy and has had to undergo several surgeries that have affected his academic and professional experience. He regularly gives talks and interviews to encourage the inclusion of diversity in Quebec firms. Over the years Marc-André has held different roles as a consultant, speaker and communications officer for academic, community, government and private organizations.
Members of the HEC Montréal community are invited to share their visions and needs. The issues raised in this consultation will help shape the School’s new EDI action plan.
TATA Communications room, Côte-Sainte-Catherine building – Consultation with faculty members and non-teaching staff
Investissement Québec room, Côte-Sainte-Catherine building – Consultation with the student community
A great opportunity for HEC Montréal community members to continue the conversation in a relaxed, informal setting.
Hydro-Québec Atrium, Côte-Sainte-Catherine
The event will take place in French.