Diana M. Varma receives the RGD 2022 Design Educator Award for Eastern Canada

The RGD recognizes design faculty who have made outstanding contributions to student development and pedagogical research. 


We are thrilled to announce that the RGD 2022 Design Educator Award of Excellence for Eastern Canada is presented to Diana M. Varma RGD


Diana is an innovative and passionate lecturer and researcher in the area of graphic communications with 24 semesters of full-time teaching experience at under-graduate and graduate levels having taught 67 total courses (26 unique courses). She has extensive experience developing course materials and assessments for both in-class and online course delivery, including the incorporation of an original podcast (Talk Paper Scissors) into teaching activities that was featured as part of the Hot Docs Podcast Festival in partnership with CBC Podcasts and on Toronto Metropolitan University’s Inspired Teaching. Diana has authored over 150 articles in a leading printing industry trade magazine, as well as several peer-reviewed publications and presented at over 15 conferences across North America on a variety of topics in the graphic communications industry.
"I have known Diana since 2004, as design student, colleague and as her direct supervisor in my previous role as Chair of the program. Diana has demonstrated a level of commitment and professionalism that far exceeds what I would consider a baseline. Her energy and positivity are unwavering. Her is never hesitant to provide support and ideas to the School and she is constantly adapting and expanding her teaching portfolio in ways that significantly benefit our students." — Jason Lisi, Director of Curriculum Quality Assurance, Centre for Excellence in Learning and Teaching, and Associate Professor, School of Graphic Communications ManagementToronto Metropolitan University
"Diana has had several types of roles at the School of Graphic Communications Management, which shows her dedication to students and the broader community. In addition to being a well-respected instructor, she was the School’s first internship coordinator. During this time Diana helped place over 500 students. She also created a remarkable number of resources and co-developed a new program so students could earn hours towards their internships through a variety of interactions with industry. This was possible because of Diana’s entrepreneurial spirit and her unwavering dedication to the student experience." — Natalia Lumby, Associate Chair, School of Graphic Communications Management, Toronto Metropolitan University

Honourable Mentions


Mark-Anthony Karam

Mark is a full-time professor at Humber College. With 20 years of experience in teaching and visual communication, Mark focuses on leveraging education technology that foster accessible opportunities for social collaboration, student agency and promote the inclusion of wellness as a framework for teaching design in higher education.
"Mark strives to develop an immersive, collaborative space that not only puts the students’ learning first, but also gives them an opportunity to embrace their individuality and creativity." — Leslie Harrod, Instructor, Humber College


Lisa Rebnord

Lisa is a Professor and Program Coordinator for Graphic Design at Centennial College, in both the in-person and online programs – and a freelance graphic designer (as time allows!). She has been teaching at Centennial since 2012. A graduate of Alberta College of Art (now Alberta University of the Arts), she made the long trek east to find fame and fortune in the big city. 


"Lisa's enthusiasm, critical feedback and dedication to teaching inspire her students and bring them closer to reaching their full potential." — Sissa Morgado Provisional RGD, Creative Designer at 121 for Reckitt