Blending the arts and culture with youth engagement and social advocacy has been an emblem of Zoe’s professional work.

As Senior Coordinator of Integrated Learning and Community Engagement at Hart House, she has developed rich, dynamic and diverse programming that has touched the lives of students at the University of Toronto and throughout the community. 

She developed the Hart House Hip Hop Education program that connects students with the Hip Hop community. The program supports values of social justice, representation and collaboration while exploring the principles of Hip Hop. Her Black Futures series looks at Afrofuturism as a way to reflect the experiences of today’s Black leaders, artists and youth, blending past with future through arts and dialogue. Through her work on the annual Hancock Lecture, Zoe supported students to organize and deliver talks on topics of concern to youth. 

Panellists at the Black Futures Artist Talk
Black Futures Artist Talk

Zoe has collaborated with U of T partners to deliver events for Indigenous Week and SOAR Aboriginal Youth Gathering. She has served for many years on the planning committee for the International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (IDERD), has supported the Student Life Day of Learning programs and Student Life Professional Network and has worked with the Multi-Faith Centre, First Nations House, and the Centre for Community Partnerships on a number of programs.

At Hart House, she has acted as staff advisor for the Hart House Social Justice Committee and the Hart House Music Committee providing opportunities for student leadership and the development of programming initiatives such as engaging with local artists and performers to bring their works to campus. Her stewardship of the Hart House Good Ideas Fund helped bring to fruition 27 student-led projects to build community and celebrate inclusion, representation and understanding tri-campus. 

Students sitting in Hart House Library at the Humanz of Hip Hop event.
Humanz of Hip Hop.

Zoe’s support of wellness programming throughout the University has included Massage Mondays, the Hart House $5-Buck Lunch, Hip Hop Yoga and Black self-care workshops, as well as the campus-wide Mindful Moments and Exam Jam activities. 

The University-wide Jill Matus Excellence in Student Services Award is given to individuals who have gone above and beyond expectations and have demonstrated excellence in the area of student services. With her efforts towards developing inclusive, meaningful and engaging experiences for students across all three campuses, Zoe is well-deserving of this honour.