Stephen Hayes’ involvement with the University of Winnipeg (U of W) dates back to 2002, when he started as a student. He has both an undergraduate degree in English literature and a master’s degree in cultural studies, English language and literature, both from the U of W.
Hayes’ love for academia coupled with a desire to inspire people motivated him to pursue teaching.
“There is no better arena to combine those two pursuits than teaching,” he says.
He is a pioneer in cross-cultural communication and teaches several courses, including effective oral communication, cultural studies, resume building, organizational behaviour, ethics and corporate social responsibility and essential skills for managers at Professional, Applied and Continuing Education at the U of W.
When asked about what has changed over the years, Hayes points out that “the student expectation has changed. The level of education of students goes up every year, and so does the desire for practical, tangible and individualized feedback.”
Hayes’ approach to teaching involves storytelling that ingrains and illustrates academic concepts with humour sprinkled throughout.
“My teaching is style laid-back, interactive and discussion-driven,” he says. “I pride myself on getting to know my students really well and tying in humour to help solidify academic points.”
Hayes continually strives to motivate students and adds value to his lessons through personal and professional experiences. A piece of advice Hayes would give his students is: “If you don’t like something, change it. Be the change engine you want to see in an organization, a city or a country.”