Maureen Hynes was Coordinator of the School of Labour from its inception in 1992 until her retirement in 2010 and did much of the research and outreach that led to its establishment. She is an experienced adult educator, facilitator, and trade union activist. Her M.Ed is in Curriculum from the Ontario Institute of Studies in Education.
Before being part of the School of Labour, Maureen was the college's Multicultural/Anti-Racism Coordinator and helped usher in the college's Policy on Race and Ethnic Relations. Before that, she taught English as a Second Language at the College for about 12 years; in the ESL field, she has done teacher training, in Toronto, London, Cuba and China.
Writing has always been an important part of Maureen's life, and in 1981, her first book, Letters from China, a memoir of her teacher training experiences in Chengdu, China, was published by Women's Press in Toronto. In 1989, with her colleague, Miriam Baichman, she wrote Breaking the Ice: Basic Communications Strategies, an ESL textbook with accompanying audio-tape, published by Longman NY Inc.
In the early nineties, Maureen's interest in creative writing took off and she began working on poetry and fiction. She has been selected twice for the 5-week Writing Studio program at the Banff Centre for the Arts, and in 1995, her ground-breaking poetry collection, Rough Skin, was published by Wolsak & Wynn (Toronto). This book won the League of Canadian Poets' 1995 Gerald Lampert Award for best first book of poetry (check the link to the League for samples of her poetry).
Maureen's second collection of poetry, Harm's Way, was published by Brick Books, London, in the spring of 2001.
Maureen is poetry editor for Our Times, Canada's national labour magazine, and she has been on the Board of Mayworks, Toronto's annual Festival of Working People and the Arts and the Office Workers Career Centre. She was an active member of her local, OPSEU Local 556, and also a member of the OISE network, Work and Lifelong Learning (WALL).