Congress 2013 a win-win for UVic and region

The 2013 Congress of the Humanities and Social Sciences at the University of Victoria was a resounding success, drawing approximately 7,800 delegates, hundreds of volunteers and thousands of community members to campus from June 1 to 8.

“I would like to take this opportunity to congratulate and to thank Congress planners, organizers and volunteers for all their hard work and commitment,” says UVic President David Turpin. “Participating scholars as well as community members enjoyed the events, performances, lectures and hospitality, and were incredibly impressed by our campus and our people.”

Nearly 70 academic associations encompassing the social sciences and humanities participated in Congress, offering a total of 1,800 presentations and meetings. While 2,600 delegates stayed in university residence rooms, the rest booked local hotels. The boost to the local economy was an estimated $9 to $12 million.

“The event was world-class, the leadership spectacular and the hotels were full. What a great event for Victoria,” says Bruce Carter, CEO, Victoria Chamber of Commerce.

“We owe a huge vote of thanks to the University of Victoria community for this exceptional festival of arts and ideas. Our success is their success,” says Antonia Maioni, president of the Federation for the Humanities and Social Sciences, organizers of Congress.

Three UVic signature events offered an unprecedented line-up of musical and social programming for Congress delegates, UVic staff and faculty and community members. WorldFEST multicultural day, the Indigenous Circle Celebration and Dedication Ceremony, and a concert by legendary musician Buffy Sainte-Marie brought more than 4,000 people to campus to soak up the atmosphere. University food services staff with Degrees Catering worked extended hours, filling a total of 762 orders for association meetings and receptions. Among the supplies was 330 kilograms of coffee, producing 36,000 cups of the hot beverage.

“Our staff and volunteers have been outstanding in making this a truly welcoming and memorable event,” says Catherine Mateer, Congress 2013 chair and UVic’s associate vice-president academic planning. “Delegates from across the country and around the world have enjoyed dynamic presentations, stimulating scholarly exchanges and cultural and social events that have exceeded expectations. They will have a very positive, lasting impression of Congress 2013 at UVic.”

Next year’s Congress will take place at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ontario.

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Media contacts

Denise Helm (UVic Communications) at 250-721-7656 or

In this story

Keywords: congress, community

People: David Turpin, Bruce Carter, Catherine Mateer

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