Plaques honour research, advocacy legacy

Paul Mayne // Western News

Faculty of Education professor Peter Jaffe helps announce a university heritage plaque celebrating the contributions of the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children (CREVAWC) Thursday at the Faculty of Education. Recognizing two more research moments for the university, Western announced a pair of heritage plaques this week honouring CREVAWC and the Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel.

The past continues to be on display across campus as the Centre for Research & Education on Violence Against Women & Children (CREVAWC) and Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel were unveiled this week as the latest heritage plaques celebrating significant research-related moments in the university’s history.

Inspired by the Freedom Trail in Boston, Research Western created the series of digitally linked heritage plaques in 2017 to encourage people to visit new areas on campus while learning about historical and ongoing research contributions. The project’s accompanying digital component allows for continued addition of material, including links to current research in related areas.

Two plaques, voted on by the Western community, will be cast biennially: one from a STEM discipline and one from a social sciences, arts and humanities-based discipline. Each will be affixed to a relevant building on campus and provide a link to additional media online.

The Writer-in-Residence program and the contributions of Zoology professor Helen Battle were celebrated in 2017.

In 1994, Western partnered with Fanshawe College and community services dedicated to improving services to abuse victims, perpetrators and their children (London Coordinating Committee to End Woman Abuse) to submit the successful proposal that established CREVAWC.

The centre found its home in the Faculty of Education – an ideal base given its commitment to preventative education.

The centre remains committed to the development and application of knowledge on the prevention of violence against women and children and vulnerable adults by promoting innovation, collaborative relationships and gender equality.

“This is an incredible sense of pride for everyone. Your accomplishments have been no less than stellar,” said Vicki Schwean, Faculty of Education Dean, announcing the heritage plaque Thursday. “Through your advocacy and research, you have not only made a difference in the life of victims of domestic abuse, but to our population as a whole your knowledge mobilization, community-based initiatives and significant applied research. It is important that each and every one of you at CREVAWC know that your colleague in the Faculty of Education have the greatest  respect and admiration for each of you.”

The first-of-its-kind Boundary Layer Wind Tunnel Laboratory at Western is considered the birthplace of the modern practice of wind engineering with its researchers having made countless structures the world over safer and more economical – including the CN Tower, the Willis (formerly Sears) Tower and The Confederation Bridge. The facility has even tested NASA rockets.

Construction of the first tunnel began in the spring of 1965, opening officially on Nov. 25, 1965. The second opened on May 14, 1984. Led by a team of researchers and engineers, the wind tunnel has continued to make significant contributions to the science, practice and teaching of wind engineering.