A Guide for New 3M National Teaching Fellows (2016)

Prepared by Shannon Murray
3M National Teaching Fellowship Program Coordinator


This page is currently being updated.

I. The Phone Call

  • Congratulations! I’ll give you a lot of information during this phone call and follow up with an email, but the most important thing to remember right now is that you need to keep the good news a secret from your colleagues. Macleans Magazine is the official media sponsor of the program, and they are the ones who make the official announcement in the February student issue. The moment that’s out, you can tell the world!
  • Remember that as a new fellow you get
    • A lifetime membership to the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education
    • A four-day, all expenses paid retreat at the Fairmont Banff Springs Hotel with your fellow 3Ms
    • Membership in the 3M Council.

II. The Announcement

  • When Macleans publishes, usually around the second week in February, I will immediately send a press release with the citations to all the media contacts you have identified in your nomination package, as well as to the nominator and other administrators listed in that dossier.
  • Enjoy the attention and the celebration! You have deserved it. When there is any publication, celebration, news release, or anything identifying you as a new 3M, could you keep a copy of the media releases and forward them to me, please? We make a celebratory binder in thanks to 3M Canada each year, showing them the kind of impact the fellowship has on campuses across the country.
  • This is the time to speak to your department head, Dean, or AVP to ask for support in getting you to the June STLHE conference.

III. The Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education conference:

  • June 21-24, 2015 at the University of Western Ontario, London .
  • This is a supportive, exciting, and above all useful conference for teachers in post-secondary education: if you haven’t had a chance to attend before now, I know you’ll enjoy the experience! This is where you will be introduced to each other and to the STLHE membership as the cohort of 2016 .
  • New Fellows are expected to attend the STLHE conference if at all possible. These first two events are ones we urge you all to attend:
    • Beginning the Journey: This is a chance for the new cohort to get to know one another and to meet the facilitators of the retreat. Normally this is during the lunch hour on the first or second day of the conference; I will email you the fixed date, time, and place when the conference organizers let me know . There is no charge for this event.
    • The Conference Banquet: At this banquet, you will sit together at a special table, along with any guests you would like to bring. During this banquet, award winners are celebrated, and you will be asked to come up to the stage, receive a certificate. One of you will speak on behalf of the cohort. [Insert information about banquet fee when we know it .] This banquet is normally on the Thursday night of the conference, but I will let you know for sure when the program set.
  • And here are another three events during the conference that will help initiate you into the fellowship:
    • The Reunion Dinner: 3Ms from every cohort get together once a year at this reunion dinner. It is a chance to meet other teaching fellows as well as this year’s 3M student fellows. The 3M Council organizes the event and will send information about the venue and cost in the spring.
    • The 3M Council Annual General Meeting: This meeting is often paired with another event for 3M fellows.
    • The 3M Welcome to My Classroom presentations: Each year at the STLHE conference, three sessions are reserved for 3M fellows to demonstrate what their classrooms look like. Please consider submitting for the 2017 conference, and do come experience the classrooms of your fellow Fellows.
  • Costs: 3M does not cover the cost of travel to the conference or the conference fee, I’m afraid. We urge you to speak to your Dean or VP as soon as possible about having your University support your travel and conference fee. New 3Ms do have to pay to attend the conference, but all 3M’s are lifetime members of the society itself, so you needn’t pay the STLHE membership fee. If you would like help contacting your Dean or AVP, I would be happy to assist you.

IV. The Retreat: Banff Springs Hotel, November 4-8

Before the retreat:

  • Costs: 3M covers the complete cost of travel, food, accommodation, and scheduled activities at this retreat. I will take care of arranging for the hotel and food, as well as the bus from Calgary to Banff, but we ask you to make your own travel arrangements to Calgary . Please note, if you are flying, we ask that you book economy class tickets. You will be reimbursed for those tickets as well as for parking and meals en route after you return. We can also reimburse you for travel by car if that is less expensive than flying.
  • Travel plans: For flights, plan to arrive in Calgary no later than 3:00 on Friday, November 4. The Banff shuttle takes about two hours, and our first event at the hotel starts at 5:30 . Tuesday, November 8 is our travel day, you can plan to leave any time on that day; remember that the Banff shuttles take two hours to get to the airport and start at 7 am, going every two hours. If it will take you more than one day to get to Banff, please let me know in advance. If you like, join the President’s Club for the Fairmount group before you arrive. Just a reminder that we ask that you do not bring guests or pets to the retreat.

During the Retreat:

  • Your Rooms: We have rooms in the Gold Floor, so when you arrive, bypass the main registration desk and take the elevators to the fifth floor, where you’ll be checked in. Email ahead if you would like to request an early check-in. The floor has a private lounge where there is tea and coffee throughout the day, free appetizers in the early evening, and an honor bar – as well as wonderful fireplaces and an unbeatable view. All our breakfasts will be served in this room, with a wonderful buffet, between 7and 9.
  • The Discussions: The core of the retreat is a facilitated discussion with 9 other engaged and engaging teachers and educational leaders. Nothing else is required of you as a group, though some cohorts have decided on a project or presentation. You will set the agenda for that time, with the help of your two facilitators. You’ll find a sample scheduleat the end of this document, and I’ll send you the final one when all arrangements with the hotel have been made.
  • Costs: Food and drink are all covered by 3M at the Banff Springs hotel. Other charges such as spa treatments (and I urge you to think about the spa!) or purchases at the shop should be taken care of by you.
  • Food: If you have any dietary restrictions or allergies, please let Tim know (admin_tim@stlhe) when you tell him your flight arrangements. The hotel has been very accommodating of any requests.
  • Spa, pools, and hiking: the spa at the hotel is wonderful (though expensive), but do book ahead if you want a treatment; some free time is built into the schedule for such activities. A cheaper alternative is to get a day pass to the spa (use your Fairmont President’s Club card) to use their many mineral pools, steam rooms, hot tubs through the day. The hotel pools are also stunning– including an outdoor heated one –, so remember your bathing suit! And the area around the hotel is perfect for scenic hikes, so bring warm clothes and good shoes or boots.
  • Dress: Please bring clothes you are comfortable in for the discussions. Dress for dinner if you wish, but the only formal occasion is the banquet on the final evening, where there will be pictures.
  • Pictures: if you like, take pictures through the retreat that you can share with your cohort through a dropbox folder.
  • Activities: Along with the meals and the great conversation, I’ll arrange a couple of outings: usually an evening of bowling and other games and a trip up the Banff Gondola, which offers a lovely hike at the top if you’re interested. If anyone has mobility issues (or acrophobia!), please let me know.

After the Retreat:

  • Receipts: please send all your receipts to Tim as soon as possible after the retreat – by November 25 if possible. He issues cheques the first week in November. Remember to include any receipts for extra baggage or airport partking.
  • The new cohort: It has become a tradition for the last cohort to mentor the new, so if you agree, you’ll be contacted in February after the next announcement with the name of a new Fellow to contact.

V. The Rest of your Lives!

  • STLHE: The Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education, for which you have a lifetime membership, strives, as its website says, “to be the pre-eminent national voice, and a world leader, for enhancing teaching and learning in higher education. STLHE supports research, its dissemination, increased awareness, and application of research through scholarly teaching and learning.” It supports the Educational development Caucus and the 3M Council as well as a variety of special interest groups for Graduate teaching assistants, the college sector, and the Scholarship of Teaching and Learning. STLHE hosts a conference once a year in June, moving from east to centre to west. https://www.stlhe.ca/
  • The 3M Council: You are also now a member of the 3M Council. The Council of 3M National Teaching Fellows is a community of award-winning teachers who are lifetime members of the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education (STLHE), and a constituency within the STLHE. The Council shares the aims of the STLHE, advises the 3M National Teaching Fellowships Program Coordinator, and undertakes projects that enhance teaching and learning in Canadian post-secondary institutions. https://3mcouncil.stlhe.ca/about/
  • Other ways to get involved: Once the retreat is a distant, happy memory, we hope you’ll stay connected to the Society and to the Fellowship, and there are so many ways to do so. Here are a few:
    • Attend STLHE conferences in June; they alternate from east to centre to west and back each June.
    • Come to the annual 3M reunion dinners and 3M Council AGMs at the STLHE conference.
    • Subscribe to the STLHE listserv or the EDC listserv.
    • Participate in – or start – a project through the 3M Council.
    • Apply for a SoLE grant through the 3M Council. The 3M Fellows Leadership in Education Grant Program supports educational leadership initiatives in Canadian Higher Education. A compelling effect of this grant program will be to mobilize 3M Fellows involved in educational leadership and allow them to continue, or expand, their leadership roles in Higher Education, transforming Canada’s cultures of post-secondary teaching. A grant of up to $7,500 is available for collaborative initiatives between 3M Fellows, or between Fellows and other colleagues.
    • Volunteer to review conference submission for STLHE conferences.
    • Join the adjudication committee for the 3M National Student Fellowships (contact Maureen Connolly mconnolly@ubrock.ca).
    • Run for a 3M Council executive or a STLHE Board position.