December 2013 InsideLaurier
The December 2013 edition of Wilfrid Laurier University's InsideLaurier newspaper.
Inside DECEMBER 2013 WILFRID LAURIER UNIVERSITY Waterloo | Brantford | Kitchener | Toronto (l-r): David McMurray, vice-president of Student Affairs, Annie Constantinescu, WLUSU president, Peter Baxter, director of Athletics and Recreation and Rob Donelson, vice-president of Development and Alumni Relations cut the ribbon to officially open the new Fitness Centre on Laurier’s Waterloo campus. Fitness Centre celebrates grand reopening Renovations include expanded space and state-of-the-art equipment By Mallory O’Brien A large crowd filled the new entrance of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Fitness Centre as students, staff, faculty and friends of Laurier celebrated its grand reopening Nov. 13. The Fitness Centre’s $5.3 million renovation upgraded the existing space and added an additional floor that doubles the size of the centre. Laurier students were major supporters of the renovation, contributing $5 million through the Student Life Levy. “Not only have students been involved in the money side of it, but students have also been involved intimately in the design — what it looks like and how it functions — and delivering the instructional and training programs that happen here,” said David McMurray, vicepresident: Student Affairs, at the event. “Laurier would not be able to function in its athletic and recreation objectives and goals without students.” The Fitness Centre is now more than 20,000 square feet, houses two additional fitness studios, and contains nearly $1 million of additional equipment. Included in the equipment additions are improved cardio machines, two full sets of circuit training machines, free weights, stretching and core training equipment, and a TRX training station. The expanded entrance allows easier access to the facility while also providing a social space for students. In addition, the updated facility features a divisible exercise area that allows for circuit training, personal and group training, and women’sonly workout times. “This is not only a celebration of the building, but also what it facilitates in terms of community,” said Peter Baxter, director of Athletics and Recreation. “This newly expanded complex encourages the meaningful learning of all aspects of the student experience. I thank all the stakeholders involved in incorporating within the design of the complex our key aim, which is encouraging and integrating scholarship, educationally purposeful activities, reflection and leadership.” Baxter said the centre’s beautiful new design will support student health and wellness by allowing students to accomplish their lifestyle goals. For Laurier’s high-performance student athletes, the fitness centre represents one of the best training and conditioning facilities in Canada. Laurier’s excellence in sport is captured in the large, historic mural that decorates the new entrance. “With student wellness being such a prominent topic in the postsecondary sector, it is important as a student to see that the Athletics and Recreation department and facility is dedicated to ensuring that wellness programs are easily accessible and tailored to various student needs,” said Annie Constantinescu, president and CEO of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Students’ Union. All corners of the new Fitness Centre are being embraced by students, staff and faculty, including the new stairway to the second floor. 6 Meet Matt Park, manager at Laurier’s Toronto Office and superhero flick aficionado. 7 Geoff Nelson forges community partnerships to study housing for people with mental illness. 8 Laurier welcomes parents and students at campus open houses. Photo: Sandra Muir Inside DECEMBER 2013 president’s message Laurier’s campuses are infused with “passion capital” There are times when something has become so ingrained in one’s identity, when something comes so naturally to a person or a group, that it is almost a surprise to be recognized for it. Such is the case when I learned that Laurier had once again been selected as a finalist in Canada’s Passion Capitalists awards. The concept of “passion capital” resonates deeply at Laurier. It is reflected in our vibrant sense of community, our highly engaged student body, and the enthusiastic commitment of our faculty and staff. Because it has been a central part of who we are as an institution for more than 100 years, it sometimes takes an outsider looking in to remind us that such passion is both rare and valuable. Laurier is unique; our passion capital is a defining quality, and it is indeed worthy of recognition. Canada’s Passion Capitalists is a national award program that was inspired by the book Passion Capital by Paul Alofs. In his book, Alofs defines passion capitalists as people and organizations “guided by a strong set of values and beliefs that form the basis of a distinctive culture that fuels their performance. They are courageous; often having to overcome significant obstacles. They build strong brands anchored by their culture, which guide their strategies, the people they hire and promote, and the way they operate.” Laurier was measured against these criteria, along with other organizations from coast to coast, and was selected an Ontario finalist. This is a significant honour. At Laurier, our passion capital manifests itself in many ways. At the core is our collective energy to combine academic excellence, community engagement and leadership for the purpose of contributing to society in tangible ways. We highlighted it during our centennial in 2011; it fuelled the development and celebration of our employee success factors; and it drove our strategic and collaborative approach to multi-campus governance. We continue to show it in our research activity, in our integrated and engaged learning model, and in the integrated planning and resource management process Their energy and enthusiasm shape the Laurier experience and help our students develop into highly engaged citizens who have the skills to secure bright futures for themselves and to contribute meaningfully to the world around them. It is this passion that is our most valuable asset as an educational institution, and it is this unique attribute that will secure our reputation and our future for years to come. We know that Laurier inspires lives of leadership and purpose. Our people bring passion to all that they do, and they are deeply committed to engaging with society and providing the highest quality education possible. To me, this is what passion capital is all about, and I am pleased that we are being recognized and honoured for who we are. Max Blouw talks with author and Edna Staebler award recipient Carol Shaben during her recent visit to Laurier’s campuses. being led by members of the Laurier community to help set a strategic path for the future of this university. Our passion capital also resonates with the broader community: we continue to attract high-quality students and high-quality faculty and staff, and we continue to attract the generous support of individual donors as well as business and government partners. The essence of our passion capital comes directly from our people. Laurier’s students, staff, faculty, alumni and friends are passionate individuals who, collectively, invigorate all that we do as a university community. Max Blouw President and Vice-Chancellor Professor receives Polanyi Prize Centre for Sustainable Food Systems launches Laurier researcher Diane Gregory’s investigation into low back pain has been recognized with a 2013 John Charles Polanyi Prize, one of the most prestigious academic awards in Canada. Gregory, an assistant professor in Laurier’s Department of Kinesiology and Physical Education, and Health Sciences, received her award at a ceremony on Nov. 25 at Massey College in Toronto. Gregory’s research focuses on intervertebral discs as a source of low back pain. Her research sets out to determine the relationship between the mechanical and physiological environment of the spine and their relationship to injury. “Eighty per cent of individuals will suffer from low back pain at some point in their lives, making it an extremely common ailment,” said Gregory. “My research focuses on understanding and ultimately preventing low back injury and pain. “Winning this award so early in my career makes this award even more exciting, and I hope that my research will help put Laurier on the map in the area of spine health.” The John Charles Polanyi Prize is valued at $20,000, and is awarded annually to outstanding researchers in five different fields. This is the fourth time a Laurier researcher has won a Polanyi Prize. Past Laurier recipients include Joel Faflak (2001), Quincy Almeida (2007) and Jennifer Esmail (2013). By Elin Edwards The Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems officially launched in November with a series of events at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. The Laurier Centre for Sustainable Food Systems, led by Alison Blay-Palmer, a widelypublished associate professor of Geography and Environmental Studies at Laurier, brings together researchers from a variety of disciplines to study sustainable food systems, and to increase opportunities for more sustainable food systems by disseminating their knowledge through local, national and global networks. More information is available at wlu.ca/ research/food. The opening event began with a panel discussion on sustainable food systems. Panellists included a mix of researchers and community members who are experts on a range of food sustainability topics. A reception celebrating the launch was then held, followed by keynote speaker, Bryan Gilvesy, recipient of the Ontario Minister’s Award for Environmental Excellence in Small Business and the Canadian Farmer-Rancher Pollinator Award. Gilvesy is the owner of the Yu Ranch and eastern Canada lead for community-developed, farmerdelivered Alternative Land Use Services. Send us your news, events & stories Email: email@example.com Deadline for submissions: January 13 All submissions are appreciated, however not all submissions will be published. We reserve the right to edit all copy for accuracy, content and length. InsideLaurier is published by Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing (CPAM) Wilfrid Laurier University 75 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3C5 InsideLaurier welcomes your comments and suggestions for stories. Tel: (519) 884-0710 ext. 3341 | Fax: (519) 884-8848 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org InsideLaurier (circ. 2,100) is published eight times a year by CPAM. Opinions expressed in InsideLaurier do not necessarily reflect those of the editor or the university’s administration. InsideLaurier Volume 8, Number 4, December 2013 Editor: Stacey Morrison Contributors: Erin Almeida, Lori Chalmers Morrison, Kevin Crowley, Elin Edwards, Kevin Klein, Sandra Muir, Mallory O’Brien Available online at www.wlu.ca/publicaffairs. Printed on recycled paper Feb Next issue of Inside February 2014 2 DECEMBER 2013 Inside NEWS What’s new and notable at Laurier Nominations open for Laurier teaching awards Teaching Support Services is accepting nominations from the Laurier community for the Award for Teaching Excellence and the Teaching Assistant Award of Excellence. The Award for Teaching Excellence recognizes one full-time faculty member and one contract academic staff member who excel in teaching. Recipients will receive a certificate, a permanent notation in the university calendar and a spot in Laurier’s Teaching Hall of Fame. Nominations are due to the Faculty/School dean by Jan. 15, 2014, and to the Office of Educational Development by Feb. 1, 2014. The Teaching Assistant Award of Excellence recognizes the outstanding achievement of one undergraduate and one graduate teaching/instructional assistant at Laurier. Recipients will receive a $500 scholarship, a spot in Laurier’s Teaching Hall of Fame and a framed certificate at convocation, at which time a citation will be read. Nominations are due March 1, 2014. For eligibility requirements and further information about both awards, visit www.wlu.ca/edev/ awards and choose Institutional Awards from the left-hand menu. marks in the annual Maclean’s Rankings of Canadian Universities, placing in the top 10 in its category for best overall in Canada. Laurier improved in numerous key areas, including best overall, highest quality and most innovative. This year, Laurier improved in its category in total research dollars spent, student services, and scholarships and bursaries, among others. Compared to other Ontario universities in the comprehensive category, Laurier ranked third for highest quality, fourth for best overall, and fourth for most innovative. is Jan. 6, 2014 (early registration recommended). For more information, email email@example.com or phone 519.884.0710 ext. 3173. Shohini Ghose named 2014 TED fellow Shohini Ghose, an associate physics professor at Laurier, has been named a 2014 TED Fellow, one of only two Canadians chosen for the prestigious program. Ghose was chosen as an expert and innovator in her field, and joins 20 other international, interdisciplinary TED Fellows, including scientists, conservationists, educators, artists and musicians. “TED is all about creativity, curiosity, inspiration and collaboration,” said Ghose. “It is a huge honour to be a part of this amazing community of people from around world.” Each year since 2007, the TED organization has chosen a contingent of Fellows from applicants who demonstrate remarkable accomplishment in their fields of endeavour. The Fellows, according to the organizers, are “courageous, accomplished young innovators from around the world,” handpicked to raise international awareness of their work. Among her duties as a TED Fellow, Ghose will deliver a Ted Talk on her work at the Vancouver TED conference, which runs from March 17 to 21, 2014. Photo: Kevin Klein LEAP winter campus open for registration LEAP (Laurier Enriched Academic Program) offers on-campus winter enrichment day camps for gifted and highly able children in Grades 1-9. Designed and led by certified teachers, LEAP camps feature a huge fun quotient, and employ innovative and creative approaches to learning through engaging activities. Sensational Saturdays 2014 Enrichment Camps are now open for registration. The camps run for six Saturday mornings from 9 a.m. to noon, Jan. 25 to March 1, 2014. Camp descriptions, registration information and volunteer applications are available at www.wlu. ca/leap. The registration deadline Acclaimed writer and sports broadcaster Stephen Brunt visited Laurier’s Brantford campus to talk about his career, Canadian sports journalism and the relationship between sports, culture, journalism and business. Laurier launches new certificate program for graduate students Teaching Support Services has launched a new certificate program of university teaching and learning specifically developed for masters and doctoral students, and postdoctoral fellows. The University Teaching Certificate (UTC) provides graduate students with the opportunity to develop their knowledge and skills in teaching and learning and to practice teaching in a supportive environment. Based upon 10 core competencies Laurier earns top marks in Maclean’s rankings Laurier has again earned high (e.g., student learning, teaching strategies, assessment, ethics in university teaching), the UTC program is structured around three key program components: general principles of pedagogy, practice and analysis of teaching, and teaching documentation. “Laurier fosters a culture that values excellence in teaching and learning,” said Pat Rogers, associate vice-president: Teaching and Learning. “We are thrilled to be able to provide this certificate program to our graduate students to prepare them for excellence in their careers.” IPRM template distribution begins By Lori Chalmers Morrison IPRM’s Academic and Administrative Priorities Teams began the program review phase of IPRM prioritization in November. Two IPRM Town Halls were held last month to give Laurier community members the chance to hear an overview of IPRM, its purpose and next steps, and most importantly, to give people a chance to ask questions of the Planning Task Force co-chairs, Kim Morouney and Mary-Louise Byrne, and IPRM working group representatives. For those who were unable to attend either the Brantford or Waterloo Town Halls, a video of the Nov. 18 Town Hall is available on the wlu.ca/IPRM website. Templates are being distributed to academic and administrative areas in three staged groups. The distribution of programs in each group ensures a balance across administrative and academic areas, between large and small areas, and is based on the complexities of each program and the ability to provide data for each. Programs in each group will have six weeks to complete their templates. The academic and administrative programs in the first group have received their templates complete with program-specific data, and are currently attending training sessions and completing their templates. The training sessions are being led by co-chairs from either the academic or administrative priorities teams as well as members of the Institutional Research team to answer questions about the data provided. The second and third groups will receive their templates in January and February, respectively. Blank evaluation templates, definitions of an academic program and an administrative program, lists of programs in each group, along with the template completion schedule, evaluation rubrics, evaluation criteria and additional information about the IPRM process can be found in the “Academic Prioritization Info & Templates” and “Administrative Prioritization Info & Templates” at wlu.ca/IPRM. Template tips: • Review all the template information provided on the wlu. ca/IPRM website. • If you are an academic or administrative unit leader, think about who else you will need to work with in your area to complete the templates; if you are a member of an academic or administrative unit, talk to your area leader to determine how you can have input into the template. • Attend training sessions. All faculty and staff who might contribute to the evaluation templates are encouraged to participate in training sessions, listed at wlu.ca/ IPRM. • Set aside ample time to consult, complete, review and submit your template. • Ask questions. As prioritization proceeds, the Resource Management Team continues to work in a parallel process. The team has reviewed a range of budget models and resource allocation processes from Ontario, Canadian and U.S. institutions. Team members will begin conducting internal stakeholder interviews with the Laurier community, and will also provide opportunities for wider input. For further information, or to ask questions, visit wlu.ca/IPRM. Design open houses provide look at new recreation centre Design open houses for the new Laurier-YMCA Athletics and Recreation Centre in Brantford were held for students and the public in late November with partners from the YMCA of Hamilton/Burlington/Brantford and Cannon Design. This updated rendering highlights the building’s incorporation into the slope and the suspended glass structure on Colborne Street. Exams begin on Laurier’s campuses IPRM Planning Task Force co-chairs Kim Morouney (left) and Mary-Louise Byrne at the Nov. 18 Town Hall on the Waterloo campus. Students hit the books in the Science Building atrium on the Waterloo campus. Exams run from Dec. 5 to Dec. 18. 3 Inside DECEMBER 2013 Putting a human face on social causes Philip Marsh is Laurier’s 10th Laurier researcher shows anthropomorphizing creates a deeper connection of why seeing a human face on a campaign has an impact, but we definitely feel a deeper connection to it,” says Aggarwal. “When we see an entity feeling pain we would feel guilty if we could have done something to prevent it. We also wouldn’t want that burden on ourselves so we would act accordingly to help that entity.” People are not motivated to support social causes because it involves a personal sacrifice of time, money and effort. It’s only when they stop to consider the consequences of not participating — and feel guilty as a result — that they begin to comply. Using energy conservation, recycling and the environment as social causes, the researchers found that drawing a human face showing emotions on the poster increased support for each cause. In one experiment the researchers put eyes and a mouth with a caption that read “Please feed me food waste” on a bin for organic waste. The face on the bin looks sad because of an Canada Research Chair By Elin Edwards By Mallory O’Brien Companies often put a personal face on products in an attempt to reach a deeper connection with consumers. Now new research in the upcoming edition of Psychological Science shows the same idea can be applied to social causes. Putting a human face on the campaign for a social cause actually increases support for it, according to the study from a team of researchers from the University of Toronto Scarborough, Wilfrid Laurier University and Hanyang University (South Korea). Pankaj Aggarwal, a professor in the Department of Management at UTSC and the Rotman School of Management; Hae Joo Kim, assistant professor of Marketing at Wilfrid Laurier University and Hee-Kyung Ahn, assistant professor of Marketing at Hanyang University, South Korea, found that anthropomorphizing social causes is effective because it appeals to people’s sense of guilt. “We are not consciously aware apparent lack of participation in recycling food waste. They found participants were more likely to place food waste in the bin with a human face compared to the ordinary, non-anthropomorphized bin. “Not only did we find participants felt guilty about not complying with the social cause, but they also felt guilty about harming another being, in the form of an anthropomorphized light bulb, waste basket or tree,” says Kim. Government agencies and charities use a variety of expensive and often ineffective financial instruments, such as fines, to encourage participation in social causes, says Aggarwal. “It’s hard to induce pro-social behaviour,” says Kim. “Because the pro-social duties such as recycling are spread across society, people feel less individually responsible and often slack off.” Putting a human face on a social cause, says Aggarwal, may offer an inexpensive yet highly effective means of gaining more support. Philip Marsh has been named Tier 1 Canada Research Chair in Cold Regions Water Science at Laurier. The appointment was announced Nov. 14 by the Honourable Greg Rickford, Minister of State for Science and Technology. Marsh joins Laurier’s Department of Geography and Environmental Studies after 30 years as a research scientist with Environment Canada at the National Hydrology Research Centre in Saskatchewan. During that time, he spent 25 years as an adjunct professor at the University of Saskatchewan where he supervised many PhD and MSc students, including Laurier Associate Professor Bill Quinton. Marsh’s research has been carried out in Canada’s far north with the goal of understanding water-cycle processes, and the environmental impacts of climate change and northern energy development. His research has informed policy development at a federal level and helped develop operational models used by Environment Canada. Building on his past work, Marsh’s Canada Research Chair program will use an integrated approach, involving the often separate disciplines of hydrology, ecology, and climatology. Working in existing long-term research sites at Trail Valley Creek and Havikpak Creek near Inuvik, NWT, he will examine the effects of interrelated changes in climate, boreal forest and tundra vegetation, snow and permafrost on streamflow and lake levels. Marsh joins two other CRCs in cold regions and water research at Laurier: Bill Quinton, Canada Research Chair in Cold Regions Hydrology, and Jennifer Baltzer, Canada Research Chair in Forests and Global Change. Marsh becomes Laurier’s 10th Canada Research Chair. He has also joined the ranks of researchers in the Laurier Cold Regions Research Centre and the Laurier Institute for Water Science. Photo: Kevin Klein Faculty participate in Inspired Change Summit By Mallory O’Brien Faculty and friends of Laurier gathered together Nov. 20 for the Inspired Change Summit: Innovation in UniversityCommunity Enterprises, to discuss ways to raise the profile of social entrepreneurship in universities. The event began with a keynote from Jonathan Isham, faculty director of the Centre for Social Entrepreneurship and professor of Economics, Middlebury College, who discussed how to teach social entrepreneurship. Campuses and students around the world are transforming entrepreneurship to be a little more social, and transforming social organizations to be a little more marketable. “To teach students about social entrepreneurship is, in the end, to teach them about themselves,” he said. The day also included two panel discussions that showcased local community-university entrepreneurial partnerships and student projects conducted through the Laurier Launchpad program, break-out seminars and a poster session. The summit was part of AUCC’s Open Doors, Open Knowledge: Community-University Engagement initiative. Name: Siobhan Bhagwat Job Title: Intermediate Administrative Assistant, Alumni Relations & Annual Giving Book Title: My Life as an Experiment: One Man’s Humble Quest to Improve Himself Author: A.J. Jacobs The adage “write what you know” doesn’t work for Jacobs, who believes his real life is boring, so he initiates social experiments and becomes a human guinea pig. This collection of essays detailing 10 of his experiments, is an interesting and humorous read with some startling insights. Jacobs does not just begin an experiment (i.e. being radically honest in all aspects of his life), he provides his reader with tidbits of his research as well as a reflective summary about his experience. And although he’s careful to not overgeneralize, he hints at possible societal impacts of certain behaviours. (l-r): Panelists Mike Morrice, executive director Sustainable Waterloo Region; Bronwyn Oatley, associate at Studio Y; Jonathan Isham, faculty director, Centre for Social Entrepreneurship at Middlebury College, and Deb McLatchy, Laurier vice-president: academic and provost. New home of business and mathematics takes shape What are you listening to? Name: Dwayne Bereziuk Job Title: Technical Support Specialist, Brantford Radio Show: Jamie Cullum on BBC Radio 2 and Jazz FM At the end of November, construction crews began installing structural steel and reinforced concrete at the site of the new home of the School of Business & Economics and Department of Mathematics on University Avenue. Jamie Cullum’s first major label album, Twenty Something, rapidly became the fastest selling jazz album in UK history, selling 2.5 million copies. Since April 2010, he has been presenting a weekly jazz show on BBC Radio 2 and Jazz FM. The show often leads to a vigorous search of at least one featured artist. Recent examples include Matthew Halsall and Gregory Porter. So whether you’re jazz veteran or just starting to dabble, Jamie’s program is sure to entice. 4 DECEMBER 2013 Inside Staebler Award winner Carol Shaben visits Laurier campuses Carol Shaben, who won the 2013 Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction for Into the Abyss: How a Deadly Plane Crash Changed the Lives of a Pilot, a Politician, a Criminal and a Cop (Random House Canada, 2012), attended two public events Nov. 13 at Laurier’s Waterloo and Brantford campuses. In Brantford, she particpated in a question period with Assistant Professor of Journalism Bruce Gillespie, which touched on her background as a CBC journalist, her personal connection to the story, and the work that went into creating the book, among other things. Later that evening on the Waterloo campus, Shaben was presented with her award and signed books for students, staff, faculty and community members. In Into the Abyss, Shaben reconstructs a 1984 commuter plane crash in northern Alberta that killed six passengers and wounded four others, including Shaben’s father, a prominent cabinet minister. “It’s a stylishly written, fast-paced tale of redemption that’s more gripping and engaging than you might expect,” said Ute Lischke, award juror and Laurier professor of English and Film Studies. people at Laurier For a complete list of appointments visit www.wlu.ca/hr New appointments: Megan Chipman, academic program assistant (Brantford campus). Patricia Cummings, counsellor/ psychotherapist, Counselling Services (Waterloo campus). Katie Dagg, donor relations assistant, Development (Waterloo campus). Phil Dolmage, cooordinator, web and technology, Athletics & Recreation (Waterloo campus). Ashley Donsberger, records and registration administrator (Brantford campus). Bruce Hanna, project liaison, Geography (Waterloo cammpus). Margaret Haskell, academic program assistant, Dean’s Office (Brantford campus). Ruth Knechtel, research facilitator, Research Services (Waterloo campus). Jan McPedran-McLeod JumpStart to Higher Ed coordinator, Learning Services (Waterloo campus). Erin McQuiggan, third-class operating engineer, Physical Resources (Waterloo campus). Max Pottier, facility and technical support, SBE (Waterloo campus). Daniel Phillips, student advisor and admissions coordinator, Seminary (Waterloo campus). Julia Thomson, manager, communications, Development (Waterloo campus). April Turner, research assistant, Faculty of Social Work (Kitchener location). Jamie-Lee Wheeler, academic advisor, CAU (Brantford campus). Communications, Public Affairs and Marketing (Waterloo campus). Heidi Anston, administrative assistant, Dean FHSS, Dean’s Office, Brantford campus. Francis Doyle, alumni relations officer - SBE, Development (Waterloo campus). Samah Katerji, counsellor/ psychotherapist, Counselling Services (Waterloo campus). Lauren Korody, development Assistant, Development (Waterloo campus). Donna Kubica, manager, health and safety, SHERM (Waterloo campus). Antonio Araujo appointed to new AVP position on Brantford campus Antonio Araujo has been appointed assistant vicepresident: campus administration & Special Constable Services effective Nov. 1. This role will support the multi-campus structure in the Finance and Administration portfolio and is aligned with recommendations from the Presidential Task Force on Multi-Campus Governance and the administrative working group recommendations. Araujo will provide integration and coordination of the functional units within Finance and Administration on the Brantford campus. In addition, he will have direct leadership and accountability for Special Constable Services across all campuses, and will continue to be a key member of the senior leadership team on the Brantford campus. In his role, Araujo will be the senior representative of Finance and Administration at the Brantford campus and will report to Jim Butler, vice-president: Finance and Administration. Rob Donelson receives fundraising award Laurier’s Vice-President of Development and Alumni Relations, Rob Donelson, has been named Outstanding Fundraising Professional for 2013 by the Golden Horseshoe chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP). Earlier this year, Donelson was reappointed as vice-president: Development & Alumni Relations for a second five-year term beginning next July. Prior to joining Laurier in 2008, Donelson led multimillion-dollar fundraising campaigns for St. Joseph’s Healthcare and St. Mary’s General Hospital. He also played senior roles in development and alumni affairs at St. Jerome’s University in Waterloo. “Throughout my career I’ve been associated with organizations that I believe really make a difference in people’s lives and truly transform society,” said Donelson. “I’ve learned that you don’t reach any level of success or achievement without collaborating with others. Teamwork and partnership are essential to our success.” Under Donelson’s leadership, Laurier became only one of two universities in Canada to be accepted into the Ethical Code program of Imagine Canada, a public endorsement of the university’s responsible solicitation and management of financial gifts. He is a director of the Canadian Council for the Advancement of Education (CCAE), and has spoken at several national and international conferences of the Canadian Association of Gift Planners and the CCAE. 5 Changes in staff appointments: Erin Almeida, marketing and communications officer, Roy Vinner, junior systems analyst – web, ITS (Waterloo campus). Retirements: Geraldine Ahrens, supervisor and accounts payable administrator, Financial Resources (Waterloo campus). Lorraine Bernard, reference associate/cataloguer, Library (Waterloo campus). Joy Mitchell, coordinator, Employment Services, Career Services (Waterloo campus). Lois Wood, associate registrar, admissions (Waterloo campus). (l-r) Accounts Payable staff members Mary Dawson, Marjorie Pellar and Geraldine Ahrens in 1986. Ahrens recently retired after 41 years of service at the university. Photos: Tomasz Adamski, Kevin Klein Inside DECEMBER 2013 A look at staff and faculty across campus coffee with a co-worker Name: Matt Park Title: Manager, Administration and Marketing Where you can find him: Laurier’s Toronto Office. Drink of choice: Grande bold from Starbucks (but currently enjoying the Christmas Blend!). When Matt Park isn’t managing Laurier’s Toronto Office, you can often find him enjoying a superhero flick at the movie theatre. How long have you been at Laurier? I started off as a student in 2004 and graduated with an Honours Political Science degree. I returned to Laurier in November 2011 and began my career in the President’s Office as an Administrative Assistant. What is your typical workday like? The only thing typical about my day is riding the TTC to work and back. Each day is really different for me, which is why I love my role. In the morning, I will often check emails and review budget documents. Most afternoons, I’m either at meetings or events with alumni, external partners, faculty or staff. There are only two full-time staff members at the Toronto Office, so I’m sort of like a jack-of-all-trades. What do you like to do in your spare time? Right now, I’m currently taking online courses to complete my diploma in Business Administration at Laurier. When I am not busy doing schoolwork, I’m still trying to furnish my new apartment in Toronto. There are so many wonderful little furniture shops downtown; I like to spend my weekends trying to find pieces that are just right for me. What is something people would be surprised to learn about you? Well, there are a couple of things that I think people would be surprised to learn. First, when I’m not at work, in my typical suit and tie, I love to throw on a pair of jeans and a hoodie — that’s what I’m most comfortable in. The other thing is I’m still a kid at heart and love all the comic book movies that are coming out: Iron Man, The Avengers, Thor. I’m the youngest of four boys, and my brothers and I always used to play super heroes. Today, we all live in different cities or countries, so watching these movies reminds me of all the great memories we’ve shared. What do you like most about working at Laurier? As an alum and now an employee, I get to experience first hand what a great community Laurier truly is. Every day, I have the pleasure of interacting with such a diverse group of people. I enjoy meeting with other alumni and hearing about their time while they were students here. And the best thing is, we share so many commonalities. What are your plans for the future? I’m really enjoying my new position at the Toronto Office. There are so many ways to grow the office, I feel like I have just scratched the surface. I really want to help others become more engaged with us — there is so much potential. If anyone is downtown, drop in for a visit, or feel free to call or email me. I’d love to hear from you! By Erin Almeida coming Events For a complete list of events visit www.wlu.ca/events Heard on Twitter Check out what the Laurier community has been tweeting about at twitter.com/lauriernews. Laurier also has official sites on Facebook at www.facebook.com/LaurierNow and YouTube at www. youtube.com/LaurierVideo. Wonders of Winter: A Festival of Lights When: Until Dec. 31, 2013 5:30 p.m. – 10:30 p.m. Where: Waterloo Park Cost: Free (donations accepted) A winter tradition in the region, enjoy a hot cider while taking in more than 80 displays with a total of 100,000 lights. Email Etiquette When: Dec. 12 1 p.m. – 4 p.m. Where: Rm. GRH102B, Brantford campus. Cost: Free To register with this Learning and Organizational Development workshop (part of the Employee Success Factor Certificate program), visit wlu.ca/hr. White Christmas at the St. Jacob’s Country Playhouse When: Dec. 15 2 p.m. Where: St. Jacob’s Country Playhouse, Waterloo Cost: $36/adult, $22/youth A Laurier alumni event for the whole family. Join fellow alumni at Drayton Entertainment’s production of this classic family favourite. Tickets can be purchased at laurieralumni.ca. Seasonal Holiday at Laurier — University Closed When: Dec. 24, 2013 – Jan. 1, 2014 Times Square in Harmony Square When: Dec. 31, 2013 6:30 p.m. – 12:30 a.m. Where: Harmony Square, Brantford Cost: Free Ring in the New Year with music and fireworks. Kids can celebrate early with a countdown and fireworks at 8 p.m., followed by the real deal at midnight. For more information, visit harmonysquare.ca. From the Big Bang to Black Holes: Canada’s Role in the Global Quest for the Stars When: Jan. 8, 2014 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. Where: Milton Centre for the Arts, Milton. Cost: Free The Laurier Milton Lecture Series presents Shohini Ghose from the Faculty of Science. She will take audience members on a journey through time and space to explore the development of modern astronomy and Canadian contributions to this amazing story, from ancient Inuit traditions to Commander Hadfield’s inspiring musical messages from space. Erratum Addendum by Gordon Monahan When: Jan. 8 – Feb. 15, 2014 Where: Robert Langen Art Gallery, Waterloo campus Cost: Free This work is based on Marcel Duchamp’s Erratum Musical @TonyClementCPC – Nov. 21 Exciting! RT @LaurierNews: Tony Clement to visit #Laurier’s Waterloo campus Nov. 22 to announce nation-wide appathon: bit.ly/1fWcDTK @FBITatUOIT – Nov. 20 @DeanAdam_wlu We think the #AskDeanAdam session is very entertaining and educational. What a fun way to get to know your Dean of Students! @BPattersonCOU – Nov. 20 Look who COU @OntUniv Chair Max Blouw and I met yesterday at Queen’s Park? #cdnpse #onpoli @Kathleen_Wynne pic.twitter.com/ AcY6k78494 @techtriangle – Nov. 15 Philip Marsh named Canada Research Chair in Cold Regions Water Science at Laurier sco. lt/7UTSbZ#WRAweso… @ LaurierNews @CarolShaben – Nov. 14 Extraordinary people, incredible university @LaurierNews. Edna Staebler Awards showed me what an inspired learning community looks like. composed in 1913, considered to be the first piece of “chance music.” Monahan took the original note sequences and generated new variations by applying the compositional processes of inversion and retrograde. The new sequences are transposed to several resisters of the piano, and are recorded and played back in inderterminate order. Music at Noon When: Jan. 9, 2014 Noon – 1 p.m. Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall, Waterloo campus Cost: Free Bring your lunch and enjoy the music of the Jason White Trio with Pam Patel, vocalist. Women’s Varsity Hockey When Jan. 17 & 18, 2014 7:30 p.m. Where: Sun Life Financial Arena, Waterloo Recreation Complex, Waterloo Cost: Varies. Cheer on the Golden Hawks as they face-off against Ryerson University on Jan. 17 and the University of Toronto on Jan 18. For a full schedule and tickets, visit laurierathletics.com. 6 DECEMBER 2013 Inside research file Transforming housing for those with mental illness Geoff Nelson researches the long-term impact Housing First programs have on the disadvantaged By Elin Edwards As our Canadian winter days get colder and darker, “going home” means warmth, light, comfort and safety. In any given year, however, about 300,000 Canadians experience homelessness. Add mental illness, addictions, chronic health problems or disabilities to being homeless, and the impact on the most disadvantaged members of society is staggering. For more than 30 years, Psychology Professor Geoff Nelson has focused his research on finding practical, evidence-based solutions through community partnerships. For the past five years, Nelson has been part of a national qualitative research team for the At Home/Chez Soi project, based on the Housing First approach to homelessness and mental illness. The largest research program of its kind in the world, the investigation, funded by the Mental Health Commission of Canada, involves more than 2,200 participants and 100 researchers in five cities. In a society filled with a mishmash of social programs First in the federal budget, including the renewal of the Homelessness Partnering Strategy (HPS). Ten Canadian communities, which overlap with the PHSI project partners, will devote at least 65 per cent of their HPS funding to Housing First. An important resource for the Community-of-Practice will be the toolkit Nelson developed with the At Home/Chez Soi project. The Mental Health Commission has provided extra funding for a broader Canadian Housing First Toolkit, which Nelson and his collaborators hope to have finished by March 2014. The Canadian Housing First Toolkit will take their research and make it practical and usable for community members, presented in friendly, clear and plain language. Encouraged by the “alignment of forces” in community and agency response to Housing First, Nelson sees the potential of the project growing even larger. “With so many initiatives going on, if we can bring them together, we will have an even bigger impact.” the long run is more effective in keeping those in need off the streets and out of more expensive care. The results of the Housing First/Chez Soi project, which was completed in March 2013, are being analyzed and so far are positive. The interactive National Film Board documentary, At Home (athome.nfb.ca), suggests university, community, and government partners across Canada were awarded a $586,000 Canadian Institutes of Health Research Partnerships for Health System Improvement (PHSI) grant. “It’s all about scaling up Housing First across Canada,” said Nelson. A logical next step, the three-year grant is entitled “ With so many initiatives going on, if we can bring them together, we will have an even greater impact. ” and approaches, from volunteer shelters to subsidized group homes, Housing First is based on the simple notion that giving people a home first, rather than insisting on pre-conditions of sobriety, clinical treatment, rehab or therapy, not only treats them with more dignity, but in the results have many positive “Transforming Treatment Services outcomes, and asks the question and Housing for People with “Will this lead to its widespread Mental Illness in Canada: A adoption across Canada in 2013 Systems Approach to Integrated and beyond? The story is still Knowledge Translation.” Armed unfolding.” with a practical implementation plan, Nelson will lead researchers Nelson is now playing an even larger part in that unfolding story. and practitioners working with six or seven sites across Canada In June 2013, Nelson and his new to the Housing First model, helping to establish and then evaluate their programs. A national Housing First Community-of-Practice is one of the basic components of the PHSI grant. This community includes advocates, leaders in the fields of homelessness and mental health, researchers, people with lived experience and the new participant communities. This group of people with shared interests and experience will come together to help each other. “From the time we first applied for this grant, the landscape has changed in Canada, with more of a push for Housing First happening now,” said Nelson. One encouraging piece of the new program is increased resources for consultation, one of the mechanisms for sharing knowledge about Housing First programs with new participant communities. Another key piece is increased sources of funding for Housing Geoff Nelson The less you know, the more you share By Sandra Muir When it comes to planning trips, buying products online, or deciding where to dine, people often rely on the opinions of others to help with purchase decisions. But new Wilfrid Laurier University research suggests that word-of-mouth recommendations may be less altruistic than people think. Word-of-mouth recommendations are typically considered trustworthy because they don’t come from a source with a profit motive, such as advertisers or salespeople. However, a study by Grant Packard, an assistant professor of marketing in Laurier’s School of Business & Economics, suggests there may be a different cause for concern when it comes to using this source of product information. “Surprisingly, we found that people who feel deficient in their product knowledge are particularly motivated to share their opinions about products with others,” said Packard. “They do this to compensate for their perceived knowledge deficiency; in short, talking about products suggests you have something useful to say about them.“ Packard co-authored the research with David Wooten, a professor at the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business. Across four experiments, they found that individuals who believed their actual product knowledge fell short of their ideals were more, rather than less, motivated to write online product reviews. They also intended to share their product reviews with more people via email. “What was most surprising was that people who were satisfied with their high levels of expertise about products wrote significantly fewer reviews than those who believed they lack sufficient knowledge about the same products,” said Packard. How can you tell if a friend or online reviewer is trying to compensate for their lack of product knowledge? In one of the authors’ experiments, participants Grant Packard were asked to write a movie review. Those who believed their movie knowledge was insufficient talked more about themselves and spent more time sharing their opinion. They were also less likely to be critical about the movie. “They’re more positive about the product because choosing and using a great product reflects back on them as being a smart consumer,” says Packard. Packard says the research demonstrates dejection as the psychological state underlying the effect. People are not purposely sharing their “lessthan-ideal” knowledge to be malicious, but rather to make themselves feel better because they are disappointed about not being as knowledgeable a consumer as they wish they were. “Our findings show that the growing use of and trust in word-of-mouth, such as through online consumer reviews, should be tempered by the possibility that self-interest may be motivating the source,” he said. 7 Inside DECEMBER 2013 in the classroom Checking in with students Instructor: Kristiina Montero, assistant professor, Faculty of Education Class: EU410 Language and Literacy Education The first thing Kristiina Montero does at the beginning of each class is have students gather in small groups to see how their classmates are doing. During these “check-ins,” students pass around a “talking stone” or other object, which acts as a symbol for others in the group to listen attentively to the person who is holding it. “The first reason I do this is to help foster a collective classroom community where we can learn from and with each other — myself included,” says Montero. “The second reason is to emphasize that in teaching we must first and foremost treat each person in the classroom as a whole person. “Lastly, ‘check-in’ helps students understand that at different times in the intensive teacher education program, all students are stressed or struggle with the workload – they are not alone. I also get the opportunity to engage with students on a personal level, which helps me deliver the curricular elements of the course that help prepare these future primary classroom teachers to teach kids critical literacy skills and abilities.” By Mallory O’Brien Kristiina Montero, top left, listens to students during “check-in” time. Students can choose to share whatever they want, or they can choose to pass. Campuses welcome visitors at open houses 8 Photo: Mallory O’Brien