Welcome to Hamilton: Mapping the Narratives of Immigrant and International Student Communities

Challenge:
Where do the immigrant and international student populations reside and congregate, and how do these communities access information?
 Where is Hamilton?

Where is Hamilton?

Student Names:
Saima Ahmad, Justin Axent-Saipovski, Rachel Cheung, Michael Dennis, Yousif Eliya, Aditya Harchand, Rebecca Hicks, Sabrina Musto

Staff Member:
Tammy Hwang (Business Development Officer, Global Hamilton)

Instructor:
Margaret Secord, Cole Gately

Course and Department:
Health Sciences 3DD6, Engaging the City

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Immigrants positively affect and diversify our communities by adding skills to the local labour force, while also increasing the size and productivity of the local economy. Immigrants are not only vital for the development of the community due to their work and educational backgrounds, but also for their innovation and ability to enrich cultural life. The City of Hamilton created Global Hamilton to 1) raise awareness of Hamilton as an immigration destination, 2) promote entrepreneurship and 3) help engage newcomers and immigrant communities to connect with the city. That being said, connecting with and engaging newcomers to Hamilton can be an ongoing challenge.

Saima, Justin, Rachel, Michael, Yousif, Aditya, Rebecca, and Sabrina identified areas where immigrant and international student populations have chosen to reside and congregate within Hamilton. They then developed strategies of engagement and located resources that are available to newcomers within the Hamilton area. Finally the students looked at cities demographically similar to Hamilton and how they have attempted challenges such as newcomer population retention.

Next the students of the Health Sciences Engaging the City class will create marketing and communication plans to reach international students and newcomers about events, projects, and initiatives happening in Hamilton. They are planning to collaborate with upper year McMaster University students to build a primary research project, where researchers will coordinate and execute focus groups and face to face interviews with immigrant communities.

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