Campus – The Cord The tie that binds Wilfrid Laurier University since 1926 Sat, 22 Sep 2018 22:23:08 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Campus – The Cord 32 32 42727683 Evaluating the updates and upgrade to the Laurier Waterloo campus Wed, 12 Sep 2018 10:59:37 +0000

Photo by Jackie Vang

In the past year, the Laurier Waterloo campus has experienced some significant progress in the ongoing construction and improvements to the university, including its overall efficiency, both in terms of energy and accessibility, as well as its aesthetic appeal.

The construction has taken place both in and outside of the Frank C. Peters Building, the Turret, Veritas Cafe, 202 Regina Street North and Martin Luther University College, formerly the Waterloo Lutheran Seminary. A new building is also in the process of completion.

According to a WLU news release from April 2016, this project is part of a greater “sustainable energy management initiative,” which began April of that year.

The goal, in cooperation with the provincial government, has been to “provide an innovative financing solution to confront the substantial impacts of energy consumption, both in financial and environmental terms,” said Claire Bennett, manager of Laurier’s Sustainability Office.

“This issue is more relevant than ever considering recent carbon pricing legislation and the decline of energy security from changing weather patterns, resource availability and associated utility pricing.”

Mark Dettweiler, director of planning, design and construction at Laurier, provided some commentary on the changes that have happened since the Winter 2018 term, and have been delayed.

There are a number of things with regard to the Laurier Energy Efficiency Project that are ongoing, soon to be completed projects. One of the most immediately noticeable is a new building that can be found on and around the Clara Conrad Hall, the co-ed residence building near the Athletic Complex.

“Outside of the Clara Conrad [Hall] there’s a new building, which is a battery storage unit,” Dettweiler said.

“We’ve also added a lot of solar panels to the roof of Clara Conrad, the roof of the Athletic Centre … We’re essentially becoming more self-sustainable when it comes to electrical power, so that way we can control our costs a little more.”

Dettweiler explained that these changes are a result of changes to the Ontario system of utilities, where hydro costs have shifted to a time-of-use, on versus off peak hours of electricity consumption.

“Essentially hydro is cheap at night, expensive during the day,” Dettweiler said.

“So the idea is you charge batteries when the electricity is cheap, draw when it’s expensive, save yourself a pile of money and you are able to shed your peak loads, which is something the provincial utilities are encouraging.”

A portion of the campus construction has been prompted by this idea of increasing energy efficiency and sustainability for the university, moving forward.

“We will see solar panels here and there and we’re also doing a lot of the lighting replacements, upgrading the LEDs to reduce energy usage. It’s a multi-year project — same with water fixtures,” Dettweiler said.

The Peters building has seen the largest percentage of the construction budget and will be continuing into the new semester — but is hopefully concluding soon.

“The Peter’s building had a budget of $13.7 million, that involved a complete gut of all the interiors and all of the building systems — totally new mechanical, electrical systems, air handling,” Dettweiler said.

“Really we’re looking at a 40 per cent increase in energy efficiency there, a much better air quality and heat and cooling as well. Plus I think we made the building function a little bit better.”

Photo by Jackie Vang

It used to be like a rabbit’s warren, now it’s a little easier to navigate and know where you are — it’s more open and attractive,” he said.

Like all construction, unfortunately, the Peters Building ran into some delays that have pushed completion beyond the estimated goal of April 30, 2018.

“We had to put some new equipment and electrical rooms, where the only area we had to do that was to drop it in through the courtyard, and that complicated things a little bit,” Dettweiler said.

“I was hoping we would have that done, but we missed it by that much. So we have another couple of weeks of inconvenience on the outside, but we’re getting there.”

This construction has coincided with a plethora of reorganization and movement of other departments and spaces.

“We’ve moved archaeology, women and gender studies and philosophy, languages and literature to the third floor; all of the student’s services, the centre for students success and CTIRE on the second floor; and the first floor is common areas and [it] will have a new food service outlet there in a month or so,” Dettweiler said.

The Turret and Veritas Cafe have also undergone significant renovations, using contributions from the Student Life Levy and Graduate Enhancement Fund to enhance the experiences of undergraduate students at Laurier.

According to a letter from the former President of the Students’ Union, Kanwar Brar, the Turret project has been undergoing a rebranding to make it a more inclusive and attractive space for students, to become both user friendly and multi-use.

This project, with a cost of $2.2 million, was funded by the Student Life Levy and is expected to be available for use by the end of September.

“Our goal is that the complete transformation of the Turret will encourage more comprehensive usage by creating a location functional as both a social venue and an independent or group study space,” said Brar in the statement.

“Accessible to students throughout the day, we will be adding approximately 260 study spaces to the current venue, including approximately 75 group study spots.”

With the summer closure of Veritas Cafe coming to a hasty conclusion, Ellen Menage, executive director of WLU Graduate Students’ Association, provided some information on the goal behind their renovations as well.

The Graduate Enhancement Fund, separate from the Student Life Levy, seeks to support projects that improve the quality of graduate student experiences that couldn’t happen otherwise. The Veritas project in particular has totalled $265,350, and is expected to open Monday, Sept. 17.

The goal of this renovation was twofold: to improve seating capacity, as it will be nearly double the size, as well as improving storage space to focus on local suppliers, fixing an issue that had occurred previously.

As well, the GSA office has moved from beside Veritas and into the Peters Building, in room P111.

The final stage of this construction rests at the 202 Regina St. building, where a series of internal renovations are taking place. The offices currently residing at 255 King St. N., including the Administration, Planning, Design and Construction and Sustainability Office, are going to be moving into that building once renovations are complete.

“It’s been kind of a domino project where Schlegel moved people, Peters, 202 Regina, so basically the last thing is we move out of here and we give up this leased space. All that was put into motion when we started Lazaridis Hall. [We’re moving] within the next six months for sure,” Dettweiler said.

Martin Luther University College has also seen some rather important internal overhauls.

“Essentially a new entrance was put on the Albert St. side, [as well as] a completely new mechanical [system] — they had a very old boiler and no air conditioning, now they have much more efficient heating and air conditioning,” Dettweiler said.

“The interior is completely redone and [so is] the courtyard — so go over and have a look, the courtyard looks great, it’s a very nice, open, public space there.”

As far as future projects are concerned, there is only uncertainty and questions for now.

“We certainly have ideas for the music building, we’re hoping those things come forward,” Dettweiler said.

“[But] at this point they’re not confirmed as going ahead.”

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Dividere Stainless, Laurier start-up, promotes innovative and discrete dual chambered flask Wed, 12 Sep 2018 10:59:22 +0000

Contributed Image

One of many interesting opportunities available to Laurier students is the entrepreneurship option, which offers utilities run by the Schlegel Centre like the Launchpad program — a service through the Communitech Hub, The Accelerator Centre and the Community Innovation Hub that allows Laurier students and alumni to use a workspace at no cost, to help accelerate their start-up businesses.

Two recent Laurier grads who have taken advantage of their resources are Tanner Walters and Erik Daroczi, with their company Dividere Stainless.

Walters and Daroczi met during frosh week at Laurier, but are not typical BBA grads who know the ins and outs of business and just happened to have an idea; in fact, Daroczi graduated with a Bachelor’s of Science in Biology in 2017.

“Tanner’s first idea was actually an app to track busses, but it kind of failed and now Google tracks buses so that wouldn’t have worked.” Daroczi said.

“We used to go out a lot and we would take flasks everywhere we went, but I would carry chase plus my liquor, so the idea was to combine them both into one classy item we could sneak into clubs like Phil’s.”

Dividere is still in the starting phases of their product, and as of Sept. 8 have surpassed their fundraising goal to create the Dividere Dual Chambered Flask.

The flask differs from others on the market for a variety of reasons: the dual-chambered flask was made not only to be able to store two products at once, but because they “enhance the sharability and versatility” according to their website.

The fundraising goal was $15,000, but the Kickstarter campaign currently sits at $16,620.

“We have a lot of other plans, but we really have to laser focus on this one thing so we can finish it and actually build it. We have to now, we passed our goal.”

What separates Dividere is also their approach to connect with their customers; each of their members has written several blog posts that tie into the theme of who they are; young adults who enjoy creating and some occasional liquor.

Blogs that have been released range from titles like “Top 5 Hidden Bars in Toronto” to “Whiskey Basics,” not only trying to reach their audience from a marketing perspective helping them learn more about spirits, but also the nightlife aspect of what their product is all about.

The whole concept of becoming a businessman while a science student came from Erik taking the course SC 200, Entrepreneurship in Science.

“Zach Weston was advertising to science classes something called Entrepreneurship in Science. I had business interests but I never had business class, like I was in science, right? I took his offer to join his class, and then after that I went on to Laurier Launchpad with the business idea. We used the flask idea in Launchpad.”

Since Erik was still in science and had to write his thesis, the business took a break while he was in his fourth year, but the business still blossomed with the help of Launchpad when they continued again in 2017.

“I had all these ideas, and I feel like a lot of other science students are in this position where they have a lot of ideas and ways they think they can change things, but the point is you don’t figure out how to execute. It’s the opposite in business — they teach you how to run a business and there is a little bit of less creativity there,” said Daroczi.

“When you come into Launchpad, they teach you how to validate it, how to make sure there’s a market for it. By the end of Laurier Launchpad, you should know if your product is marketable or not.”

Dividere’s Kickstarter campaign is now in its last 10 days, and now the execution of the product is going to be Tanner and Erik’s main focus.

“We have a lot of other plans, but we really have to laser focus on this one thing so we can finish it and actually build it. We have to now, we passed our goal,” Daroczi said.

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Reflecting on the successes of Orientation Week 2018 Wed, 12 Sep 2018 10:59:11 +0000

Photo by Manraj Rai

Wilfrid Laurier University’s 2018 Orientation Week and Shinerama festivities were a raging success, as Laurier’s Waterloo campus greeted incoming first-years and welcomed back returning upper-years with a fair, carnival and performances by many talented guests.

Additionally, the Shinerama campaign raised money and awareness for cystic fibrosis with a barbecue and car wash.

O-Week, beginning with opening ceremonies on both first-year move-in days, is traditionally packed with various interactive events that allow for incoming students to feel welcomed by their Laurier community.

Among such events are those a part of Shinerama, a long-standing Laurier fundraiser for Cystic Fibrosis research.

Shinerama originated at Laurier’s Waterloo campus in 1961. Back then, they were raising money for cystic fibrosis research by shining shoes.

Looking back on this year’s event is a true representation of how large the fundraiser has become, with the prospect of continuing success in years to come looking optimistic.   

Adriana Marich, this year’s Shinerama Coordinator, and third-year Shinerama committee member discussed the extent of their success with pride.

“Some of the major things we always do is barbecues and food-type events,” Marich said. “This year we did walking tacos to mix it up … we were also selling baked goods, as well as selling things that were kind of necessary at the time. So [for example], at the O-Week concert we were selling bottled water and candy.”

“All together we raised $110,272.68,” Marich said.

A-Team Laurier hosted hip-hop recording artist Nav who performed for Laurier students on Tuesday night, O-Week carnival took place on Wednesday and Laurier’s headphone disco had a great turn-out at the quad on Thursday.

“Not only do I think that [success] is measured by the amount of money we raised, but how the volunteers feel at the end of the week and the experiences they’ve had.”

This amount represents what was raised at the Waterloo campus apart from the Brantford campus, which held a Shinerama — that runs separately.

Last year comparatively, Shinerama raised over $126,000 with nearly 56 per cent of that total being raised on Shine Day alone.

Shinerama’s largest event is always Shine Day, which took place on the final day of O-Week, involved students going into the community to participate in car washes.

Shinerama’s Shine Time on Wednesday invited guest speakers to talk about Shinerama, the significance it has at Laurier and how they have been affected individually by Cystic Fibrosis, inspiring students to support the cause.

“When [the] speakers came, I felt tremendous success just by students being inspired,” Marich added.

First-years who participated in O-Week were placed into four teams that followed the theme, ‘where your legend begins.’

The Gold Astros, Blue Chargers, Green Guardians and Red Riddlers all fought for the title of champions.

While all teams were beaming with enthusiasm and spirit, the title was awarded to the Gold Astros during closing ceremonies.

A-Team Laurier hosted hip-hop recording artist Nav who performed for Laurier students on Tuesday night, O-Week carnival took place on Wednesday and Laurier’s headphone disco had a great turn-out at the quad on Thursday.

The Students’ Union introduced Drake night this year, inciting excitement and an OVO-themed atmosphere and fandom as students danced to their favourite sounds from the 6ix.

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EcoHawks FreeStore event is repurposing otherwise discarded items Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:59:48 +0000

Graphic by Kash Patel

This O-week, the Laurier Sustainability Office and EcoHawks are teaming up for a FreeStore. The pop-up shop will be open for the entire first week of September 2018 and will offer free items to students and the community.

While the pop-up shop is open at Laurier, it is open to the community, including schools like the University of Waterloo and Conestoga College. Items range from kitchenware and office supplies to clothing and accessories.

“We aim to have a triple impact,” said Tyler Plante, Laurier Sustainability Office representative. The FreeStore aims to impact the environment, community and students in a positive way by promoting sustainability, without any costs or exceptions.

“[Sustainability] just makes sense,” Plante said. “It’s about not living wastefully.”

But how is a Freestore promoting sustainable living?
    According to Plante, most items available are gently used and donated.

“I’m really impressed by the clothing that was donated … we [also] have around six panini presses and coffee presses that look brand new,” Plante said.

The Freestore is meant to act as a fun and fast way for people to live a more sustainable lifestyle. Whether they are looking to move out, a new wardrobe or need some essentials for their homes.

“If you’re moving for the first time ever, it’s really tempting to hop on a bus and go to Walmart … but we know [a lot of items] end up on the curb [by the end of the year],” Plante said.

Plante and his team plan on bringing awareness to sustainable living in the community by making it convenient for student budgets and time.

“[It’s a] cool and free option [for students] to refurbish their homes,” Plante said.

Through donations and collections, the team was able to organize a store to help the community and students alike find environmentally friendly items without breaking the bank.

Plante also suggests some simple ways students can live a more sustainable lifestyle.

“One of the first things I suggest is knowing your impact,” Plante said. “There’s something called the ‘Earth Overshoot day … [which] is essentially [the concept that] if everyone lived like me, how long it would take [all of] us to use all of the planet’s resources?”

“When I calculated it, the results were very surprising to me,” he said.

While the FreeStore aims to promote sustainability and reduce waste and overconsumption, Plante suggests that other lifestyle choices can help reduce waste as well.

“Eating a plant-rich diet has a huge impact,” he said. “Cattle [are currently the] third largest emitter of greenhouse gases.”

Sustainability plays a huge role in pushing for a FreeStore. It allows students and the community to practice reducing their waste consumption without financial or time barriers.

Through donations and collections, the team was able to organize a store to help the community and students alike find environmentally friendly items without breaking the bank.

“We are working to solve our waste problem while offering a great way for [students to] furnish their homes or get … textbooks,” Plante said.

While moving out of the house seems intimidating at first, shops like the Freestore aim to help support incoming residents. By offering economic and environmental support, students are able to get the essentials without leaving a dent in their wallets.

While change can be frightening, it can also bring new and exciting opportunities to the table. Participating in local communities and learning how to maintain a healthy and sustainable life can help bring out the best in yourself, the community and within the world.

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A brief history of Shinerama’s impact in Kitchener-Waterloo Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:59:45 +0000

On Saturday, Sept. 8, Wilfrid Laurier’s orientation week celebration for incoming students will host Shine Day, the main event for Shinerama, a charitable fundraiser involving numerous campuses through Canada that raises money for cystic fibrosis research through Cystic Fibrosis Canada.

For those first year students getting involved in O-week, the final day of the celebration features a fundraiser, where students spread out across Kitchener and Waterloo, cheering and raising money from 9 am to 3 pm, hoping for compassionate individuals to whip their spare change at them for a good cause.

Shinerama in Kitchener-Waterloo has a long-spanning and rich history, and it’s success comes as no surprise as it is a hallmark of O-Week at Laurier. Last year, Shinerama raised over $126,000, with Shine Day alone bringing in over $69,000.

The event started at Wilfrid Laurier University in 1961, and since then has grown exponentially in both popularity and scale. Following a partnership with the Canadian Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in 1964, the fundraiser grew. By 1965, Shinerama became a large organization with dedicated events across university and college campuses in Canada.

Shinerama was not always dedicated to the barbecues and car washes that grew it into the fundraising juggernaut that it currently is. It began as a shoe-shining service, but quickly evolved with its popularity to include washing cars, barbecues and collecting donations as well.

Adriana Marich, the Shinerama coordinator for Waterloo, has noticed the impact that Shinerama has been able to make at Laurier, both on the campus and university life as a whole throughout its time.

“Keep an open mind when you hear the speakers during Orientation Week and try to reach out to their stories and identify and relate to them, because it’s gonna help you tremendously.”

“In my opinion, Shinerama and Shine Day are the heart of O-Week; it’s what family and friends in Kitchener-Waterloo know us by — they know [that] the first week of September is like, ‘Oh it’s Shine Day,’ and will see everybody there,” said Marich. “I do think that we made it the heart of O-Week and a big part of what Kitchener-Waterloo stands for.”

Marich recognizes the success of Shinerama, especially in Kitchener-Waterloo, understanding that it is large in part due to the consideration, donation and kindness of those who are current or former students at Laurier, as well as a reflection of the hard work that has characterized Laurier as a school.

“A lot of people that are donating to us are alumni, which is amazing. They [think] ‘Oh I used to be on the Shinerama committee’ or ‘I was a breaker and I was getting online donations,’ so I definitely think it’s a huge part because it started here,” Marich said. “But then I just think that because Laurier’s O-Week is so well known and we’re number one in student satisfaction, a big part of that is going out to Shine Day and having icebreakers and Shine and Go Team and committees like that be around us.”

Marich recounts the history of her own involvement with Shinerama as well, recalling it as a major point of connection between her and her fellow members of residence.

“In first year I went to my Shine Day, and I remember [thinking] ‘Oh yeah, I’m getting close to my floor, but it’s okay, we’re semi-close’ and then as soon as Shine Day hits and you’re outside for eight hours with your floor you’re like, ‘Wow, this is an amazing experience’ and people give you a fifty and you go crazy,” Marich said.

“I had such a good experience that when all my friends were applying for icebreaking at the end of first year I was like ‘No, I need to apply for Shinerama.’ This is my third year now and it’s a big part of who I am. It’s a big part of what this school stands for and I’m really happy to help and support it,” Marich said.

Reflecting on the historical success of Shinerama at Laurier, it is important to look forward as well.

The event would not be what it is without all the various members who contribute to it and get involved, more so because it is what defines the community spirit at Laurier.

“I think it’s really important [to get involved], because I think when you get involved in university, especially after high school ,” Marich said.

“If you go away from home, you identify yourself differently, you find new things you’re interested in or find new groups of people that work well with you.“

“Getting involved really helps with that, because you find the people that are also passionate about different things or want to barbecue and raise money for a good cause,” she said.

For the incoming students, Marich recommends simple advice.

“Keep an open mind when you hear the speakers during Orientation Week and try to reach out to their stories and identify and relate to them, because it’s gonna help you tremendously,” Marich said.

“[And] if you see us on September 8, come give us some donations, chuck your change at us, we’d be happy to give you a sticker, a good smile and some fling bling.”

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Alison Pick named Laurier’s Fall Term Writer-in-Residence Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:59:39 +0000

Photo by Safina Husein

Each year, Wilfrid Laurier University gives out an award and two writing positions in honour of Edna Staebler, a member of the Order of Canada, award-winning journalist and author of 21 books, including the bestselling Schmecks series.

The award given out is the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction, which was created by Staebler herself in 1991 and has been administered by the university.

The award is the only one in Canada for the genre, and has 28 recipients so far. The writer-in-residence is a paid residency at the university for a 10-week residency, and the author dedicates 40 per cent of their time to Laurier projects and programs like classroom visits, leading workshops or lectures and participating in community programming.

The visiting author is a similar position; however, they are only at the university for 2 weeks, from Oct. 22 to Nov. 2, 2018.

The visiting author, this year’s author being Alison Pick, does get time to work on their own projects, but they are also an added value to the Laurier community when they arrive.

“What she does is works with beginning writers at Laurier, looking at their work and giving them professional feedback. She also will be doing one or two public events, and she’ll talk about the writing process, it gives the writers a lot of freedom because we want it to come from their experience,” said Tanis MacDonald, chair of the Edna Staebler Writer-in-Residence Selection Committee.

“I think I’ll take the lead of the professor. I haven’t heard a lot about which particular classes I’ll be visiting, but I’ll see what curriculum they’ve been doing and what content they’ve been covering.”

MacDonald is also an associate professor at Laurier and will be showcasing Pick’s writing in her own courses as well.

“She’ll also do other kinds of public events like coming to classrooms and speaking. I’ll be teaching at least one of her texts, Far to Go, in my Contemporary Canadian Literature course,” MacDonald said.

Rather than just covering the material from an external point of view, MacDonald would rather get the author herself to explain her works.

“I’ll ask her to talk a little about the process of writing each book, as Far to Go is her research into her own family history around the holocaust, it’s a beautiful novel and a very intense novel,” MacDonald said.

“I’m interested in the idea that she would take something non-fictional, but of course had lots of gaps and things she didn’t know and change that into a fictional construct.”

Alison Pick, an award-winning author who also works at Humber College mentoring students in writing by helping with papers they send her, editing their works and answering any questions they may have.

As for her plans at Laurier, Pick is willing to do the same for students here who may have any questions for her.

“I grew up in KW so I feel a real allegiance to the place, my parents still live here so it feels like an extra connection. I love mentoring emerging writers, people who are just starting out or a little bit further on the path,” Pick said.

“I’m looking forward to connecting with people who want to have their work read and also students in creative writing and English classes.”

Her two weeks at Laurier commence at the end of October.

Though Pick is dedicating almost half of her time when visiting to helping out students, the university does give time for each author to work on their own projects as well.

“I’m just starting out a new novel, so I’m at the early stages of it. It will be nice to have a little time and space to plunge in,” Pick said on her upcoming endeavours. When it comes to classroom visits, Pick is flexible as to what topics she would like to cover.

“I think I’ll take the lead of the professor. I haven’t heard a lot about which particular classes I’ll be visiting, but I’ll see what curriculum they’ve been doing and what content they’ve been covering,” Pick said.

Alison will be available for helping mentor students during her visit at Laurier. Help from an award winning author is something valuable to any student looking to improve their writing.

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Laurier’s Startup Fund allows students to gain experience as angel investors Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:59:30 +0000

Photo by Madeline McInnis

At the Lazaridis School of Business and Economics, there are many opportunities for young entrepreneurs to learn the business of managing a startup. Laurier’s Schlegel Centre for Entrepreneurship and Social Innovation is a great way for students to engage in the entrepreneurship core or even look into the social entrepreneurship option.

There are also clubs like Startup Laurier, which help to empower students to engage in their entrepreneurial passions.
     However, many students have passed the stage of building their startup as well as managing it and are now looking into financing.

The Laurier Startup Fund is an innovative way for students to look into how financiers and investors play a role in startups that have passed the beginning stages, as many companies rely on their own funds or family money when they are still small.

Brian Smith, an associate professor at the Lazaridis School, supervises both undergraduate and graduate students during their time with the fund.

“The Startup Fund allows students to gain hands on experience as angel investors. They do that by conducting research or what is called due diligence, on these companies and the analysis involves the examination of these companies’ product development, [as well as an] assessment of [the] market that they’re trying to service and assessment of management — so whether they can execute a plan,” Smith said.

Though the startup fund may seem like an extraordinary project, many of the fundamentals needed to run a business, especially one as innovative as a startup, are taught in business administration programs.

“Basically, everything one studies in a business program is covered in this, in the sense that in order for a company to achieve success, they have to properly identify opportunities and need to be able to have a clear plan to sell into that market,” Smith said.

Though students are the main priority of the startup fund, they also work with experienced angel investors to ultimately come to a decision on whether or not to fund a startup.

“We are trying to encourage young women to engage themselves in finance. Women should not be afraid of finance per se — we want early students, first and second year young women to consider finance because it is an interesting job and there is a demand for young women to take the ranks.”

The fund was created by Laurier BBA alumni Mike Stork, who donated $1 million to the fund along with Hennie Stork in 2014. There was also a gift of $500,000 given by the Marsland family to the fund to give to students to help fund what they think are deserving investments.

“These opportunities are a capstone into students’ studies in business and entrepreneurship. This is a course that takes students into the financing of these companies opposed to how to manage a startup. You need to know how a startup should be managed in order to be a financier, but beyond that you need to understand how financing is done after the early stage,” Smith said.

“It’s specialized, people who actually fund these companies are either wealthy individuals or part of institutions that are dedicated to funding startups.”

As for the actual courses, they are much different then courses like Introduction to Entrepreneurship, where students work first-hand with an up-and-coming startup to look at contingencies, different business models that could work for their product, potential customers and other key processes.

“We’re really not there to finance companies from the start. This would be like adolescence. We give them the fuel to grow, when they’re babies they rely on their own capital, other people’s money and grants.
    They need significant outside funds to be able to grow their company in the later stages,” Smith said.

As for the curriculum where this course is included, the associate professor brings up an inequality in the field.

“We are trying to encourage young women to engage themselves in finance. Women should not be afraid of finance per se — we want early students, first and second year young women to consider finance because it is an interesting job and there is a demand for young women to take the ranks,” Smith said.

Though the fund is available for senior students, any students who look to work with entrepreneurs though they may not be one themselves should research the fund and apply when eligible.

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Welcome to O-week 2018 Fri, 31 Aug 2018 10:59:06 +0000


In grand Golden Hawk tradition, Wilfrid Laurier University will be officially ringing in the 2018-2019 school year with a week of spirited festivities.

Orientation week is the best way for incoming first-years to get comfortable and acquainted with Laurier, as well as welcoming back returning students.

Icebreakers, who are Laurier’s O-Week student ambassadors, have been busy all summer preparing for Sunday and Monday’s move-in days that will commence orientation for first-years.

“An icebreaker is kind of like a mentor; someone they can look up to, someone they can ask questions to, someone that can give them advice”, said Adam Rezkalla, one of the Head Icebreakers for the red team this year.

Volunteers’ preparations for O-Week began at O-Con, which is a mid-summer training session for Icebreakers that involved several days of team-building activities and safety seminars.

“It’s a really good way for teams to bond”, Rezkalla stated.

Executive teams from both Brantford and Waterloo campuses are responsible for creating an O-Week theme each year. This year’s theme is “Where Your Legend Begins”, and first-years that participate will be placed into teams by colour.

This year’s scheduled events will include Drake night, a headphone disco, a carnival, a cheer off, and some special guest performers; Wes Barker, a stunt magician and comedian, hypnotist Jeff West, and mentalist Wayne Hoffman from America’s Got Talent.

Toronto-based hip-hop recording artist NAV will be hosted by A-Team Laurier in the Athletic Complex on Tuesday night.

Tickets for this show will be sold separately from orientation week packages, are only made available to Laurier students and are $30 each.

“We are ensuring that our program is much more targeted [this year] and it doesn’t give an overwhelming sensation to the students,” said Tarique Plummer, President of the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union.

“We’re much more focused on the quality of the program rather than trying to do a lot of things in a short time period.”

“Last year we had back-to-back opening ceremonies for students on one day. This year we have an opening ceremony on the Sunday when students move in, and on Monday when the next set of students move in,” he said.

“[We’re also] paying more attention to the mental and the physical health of our volunteers, something that we are very much mindful of and looking into”, Plummer stated, and Laurier’s O-week consists of various informative events for all students.

Positive Pulse will be returning this year on Tuesday to give students the information they need for maintaining physical and mental wellness.

The Room Burn, a live demonstration of a dorm room being lit on fire, will also be back on Tuesday and presented by the Waterloo Fire Department and SHERM Laurier.

Laurier’s Get Involved Fair, taking place on Friday morning, will give students the opportunity to check out the wide variety of clubs, committees, teams and services that Laurier has to offer.

The Shinerama fundraiser for cystic fibrosis will also play a big role at Laurier’s O-week with several events taking place such as the Shine BBQ, Shine Time and Shine Day, at which all proceeds from each will go towards fighting CF in Canada.

“Our marketing team, specifically for orientation week, have been continuously providing first-year students with updates and introducing them to key individuals, whether it be your head icebreaker or ice breaking team or colours”, Plummer added.

“Students should be amped about what they’ll be involved in”.

A full O-Week itinerary is available online on the Students’ Union website.

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Considerations for cannabis legalization at Laurier Wed, 04 Jul 2018 10:59:41 +0000

Graphic by Kash Patel

On October 17, 2018, the Canadian government will be authorizing the recreational consumption, possession and purchase of cannabis in Canada, fulfilling a major campaign promise made by the Liberal government and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau.

The Cannabis Act, also known as Bill C-45, is a law “that will provide legal access to cannabis and to control and regulate its production, distribution and sale.” Canada is currently the second country worldwide to legalize the recreational use of cannabis nationwide.

Much like tobacco and alcohol, cannabis is going to be treated as a controlled substance, which means there will be restrictions, fines and criminal punishment associated with abusing it. The minimum age to buy, use and grow cannabis for recreational use is 19.

Individuals will be permitted to use or consume cannabis products in your private home, residence or on your private property. Similar to alcohol, cannabis is going to be prohibited in any public space, workplace and vehicle, with a first offence fine up to $1000 — subsequent fines increase to $5000.

This includes any Laurier owned properties, such as the campus, as it is considered a public space. Much like alcohol, educating the general public on the effects of cannabis usage before or during driving must be reinforced with a law of this magnitude.

As stated on the Laurier website, Paul Mallet, an associate professor of psychology at WLU, is “an expert on the behavioural and neural effects of drugs, particularly cannabis, addiction and the effects of cannabis on the body’s natural endocannabinoid system.”

“It’s certainly supported by the data, there have been many many studies that have shown beyond a shadow of a doubt that even when a person is using relatively low levels of cannabis, that their ability to drive is impaired, at least to the extent that it is with alcohol consumption,” Mallet said.

With the legalization of cannabis use in Canada, Mallet is ultimately concerned with  to the implications it could have on the university’s campus and especially with younger people, specifically students.

Mallet supports the legalization bill, due to the positive effect that it will have on minimizing the criminal consequences of cannabis use.

“One of the concerns is when you have prohibition over a substance, you drive the entire market into the black market. That’s where we were — that’s where we still are, in fact,” Mallet said. “I think you can look at it from the perspective of harm minimization — or harm reduction.”

In a similar fashion to safe injection sites, where the intent is to decrease the potential negative effects to society, the goal behind legalizing cannabis is to ensure that its use and distribution can be more closely monitored and controlled, to minimize potential risks.

Risk, however, exists in more than just its immediate use.

“I’ve spent over 20 years now looking at the long term effects of cannabis use on behaviour, on brain function and that includes looking at the long term effects on mental health. There certainly are long term harmful effects of the drugs,” Mallet said.

“But when you weigh that against the potential harm to the individual because it’s prohibited, it leads me to believe or think that maybe the prohibition is not a good idea. Maybe some controlled distribution over it is going to be better for society.”

With the legalization of cannabis use in Canada, Mallet is ultimately concerned with  to the implications it could have on the university’s campus and especially with younger people, specifically students.

Though he is critical regarding an increase in its use, he notes that the research behind it suggests that it won’t stay that way for long.

“Right now the predictions are there’s going to be an initial spike in usage, a novelty effect, something like that,” Mallet said.

“But the predictions are right now that over time there may not be a larger number of people using cannabis — but these are guesses at the moment.”

As to the future implications that its usage, distribution and sale — or the potential issues — that it will have for the Laurier campus as a whole, only time will tell how the legalization bill will impact the school community moving forward.

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Waterloo Lutheran Seminary officially named Martin Luther University College Wed, 04 Jul 2018 10:59:31 +0000


Contributed Image

June 23, 2018 marked Waterloo Lutheran Seminary’s official transition to being named Martin Luther University College.

The newly named Martin Luther University College is federated with Laurier, while students who attend the college ultimately earn degrees from Laurier.

The rename and rebrand was originally announced last September by the 54-year-old building located on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo campus.

It was back in 2013 that the discussion surrounding a new name for Seminary started to take place.

“The board when they made this decision way back in 2013 they started discussion, did a fairly extensive market survey in terms of what the possibilities were for the name change, and there were literally over 100 names that were considered,” said Mark Harris, dean of Martin Luther University College.

“One of the real priorities in choosing the name was … to claim a name that would honour the tradition, the faith community out of whose tradition this school had grown.”

In specific, the new name reiterates that the College is no longer simply a denominational school.

“We are more than just the theological school that was engaged in the training of pastors. In fact, Martin Luther University college has become an enormously diverse, multi-faith community. We have over 31 faith based traditions represented amongst our students,” Harris said.

In March 2017, Seminary announced that it would be undertaking a nine million dollar renovation.

The building has been under construction since. The new building and renovations are said to encompass a community oriented environment when completed.

Along with the new name, the College has announced new visuals to match their new branding.

First, the new visuals reflects the history of Martin Luther University College.

“Martin Luther, the reformer, had a sort of visual identity that was called the Luther Rose, which was a … five-petal flower,” Harris said.

“So the new visual identity encompasses not only some of the stylistic characteristics of the Luther Rose, but also the bells in the bell tower that sits on campus to this day.”

Harris also noted that the bells on campus will be ringing at various hours of the day.

“It’s really a way of once again honouring our heritage, the faith based school, but also the more contemporary visual identity of the bells and the bell tower which are part of who we are at the Laurier campus today,” Harris said.

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