Page 1

a ctivealumni in touch



Published annually for the alumni and friends of the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation

2005 PAC in a nutshell: what’s proposed

Leader of the PAC:

A new Physical Activity Complex (PAC) will be connected to the Van Vliet Centre and include:

proposed new Physical Activity Complex aims to keep burgeoning campus fit, strong, on its toes

A new 35,000 sq. ft. fitness and lifestyle centre with approximately

30 treadmills, 30 elliptical trainers, 60 strength and conditioning machines, 50 stationary bikes (variety), 12 rowing ergometers, 30 televisions, and a wide variety of free weights, benches and accessories

A new 3,500-seat ice arena

Upgraded Clare Drake Arena

Conversion of existing fitness and lifestyle centre into a recreational gym

New climbing wall in fitness and lifestyle centre; exterior climbing wall near basketball courts

Major renovations to men’s and women’s locker rooms

Outdoor sport park with jogging trails, beach volleyball courts, activity spaces and basketball courts


t started with a dream to install a second ice surface in the Clare Drake Arena as far back as 1982 when the Faculty began turning away would-be users because ice time was tight.

The Van Vliet Centre is still without the second ice surface but today the Faculty’s dream is coming close to reality. And it’s morphed into a large-scale physical activity complex, nicknamed PAC, that will not only have the sorely-needed second ice surface, but renovations to the Arena that’ll mean more and better seating and other upgrades, and a new 35,000 sq.ft. fitness and lifestyle centre that will be able to meet the needs of the growing campus population. In doing so, the spectacular new PAC will give physical activity on campus a rocket-like boost. “PAC will help us to fulfill an important mandate we have on this campus very well,” says John Barry, assistant dean, Services, “and that’s to provide quality sport and recreation facilities and programming to all students on this campus.” Barry, who has been working patiently on plans and funding formulae to realise the addition to the Faculty’s existing facilities, says PAC isn’t window dressing, it’s essential to maintain a fit and healthy

Upgrade of main gym amenities

Continued on page 2

University of Alberta

Proposed new Physical Activity Complex…

continued from page 1

campus. “Our current Fitness and Lifestyle Centre is a quarter of the size it should be for the population on campus. At just 8000 sq. ft. it falls far short of the 32,000 sq. ft current standards require,” he says. “Bottom line – the current fitness and lifestyle centre just can’t meet demand.” And with the single sheet of ice in the Clare Drake Arena busy from 0700 to midnight every day, and would-be users turned away often, it’s more than a timely project, it’s long overdue. Concession areas, locker rooms and dressing rooms in the Arena and West Wing are slated for upgrading too. “One of the biggest issues is infrastructure renewal,” says Barry. “It’s 45 years old and deteriorating rapidly and a Band-Aid solution just won’t work anymore. The features we’re planning for the new PAC – enhanced way-finding, developing an outdoor sport park, building indoor and outdoor climbing walls – will add years of life to our facilities and provide more and better avenues for physical activity.” There’ll be more space for research projects too. “That’ll mean a bigger, more centralised space to allow for more collaboration. Different researchers are currently located in different areas of the building and many of those spaces are quite inadequate. With the PAC, researchers in health and wellness can be in closer proximity in a setting more conducive to collaboration.” The best part, says Barry, “is what comes next!” “This is when we actually get past the conceptual stage to design exactly what we want. We’ve done a programming study that’s identified what we need, but now we need to put these needs into a building design.”

a ctivealumni Active Alumni is published annually for the alumni and friends of the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation. Comments, questions, suggestions for stories are welcomed. Please contact

Jane Hurly, communications strategist Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation E415 Van Vliet Centre University of Alberta Edmonton, Alberta T6G 2H9 Ph: 780-492-6821; fax: 780-492-2364 Email: Publication Mail Agreement No. 40063741 Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to: Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation, University of Alberta, E415 Van Vliet Centre Edmonton AB T6G 2H9

If the PAC is built as Barry envisions it, it’ll put the University of Alberta in the number one position for sport and recreation facilities in Canada. “The new PAC will be a good recruitment tool for staff and students too,” says Barry. “For anyone who believes in healthy lifestyle to have the opportunity to come to study or work at a university that has the best physical activity facilities, it’s an added incentive.” Now it’s up to the student body to put the PAC on the table. Funding for the Complex depends on students agreeing – in a fall plebiscite – to a facility enhancement fee of about $38 per year. “Once students agree to it, and we have a partnering source of funding, we’ll proceed to hire an architect and start designing the PAC. We hope to have it constructed by 2008.” Access to the new PAC will be available to University of Alberta alumni at a reduced rate and Barry hopes alumni will support the new venture. “In donating they’d be providing for future generations of physical education and recreation students by enhancing our facilities and making them the best in the world and lending to U of A fulfilling its promise to be the healthiest campus in Canada. Then we truly will be the leader of the pack.”. 

2 University of Alberta

Message from the Dean


his year we accomplished something that’s been needed for 55 years: we have instituted the Faculty’s first Academic Alumni Association.

An academic alumni association will, we hope, bring our alumni community together more closely, strengthen the bonds between our academic alumni and the Faculty - and be a valuable resource for our students. We want you to share your career and life experiences with our undergraduate students and to help us sow the seeds of what it means to become an alumnus in the minds of these young men and women who will help shape the future of this country. Often when students graduate, they don’t completely understand their importance as alumni to their alma mater. This Academic Alumni Association’s mandate is to change that – to build a sturdy, and, I trust, well-trodden bridge between our alumni and the Faculty. For more details about the Academic Alumni Association, please call or email your alumni representative, Wendy Andrews, at 483-2570 or As part of Campaign 2008 – the University’s fundraiser to raise $310M - one of the projects on our wish list is to build a spectacular new Physical Activity Complex by 2008 – which will include a spacious new fitness centre, much-needed renovations to the Clare Drake Arena and a second ice surface. The new ice surface has been needed since 1982; the present fitness centre is filled to capacity and the infrastructure is deteriorating. It’s a project that, when built, will benefit everyone on campus and it will, naturally, be available to you – as alumni of the University of Alberta – to use. I hope that you will, through your generous support, help us to bring this worthy project to fruition. I know Reunion 2005 is months away, but I’d like to extend a warm invitation to you to attend this celebration of the unique relationship between alumni and the University. Reunion 2005 will be held from September 30 to October 2 and we have a wonderful line-up of events for you to enjoy!

“This Academic Alumni Association’s mandate is to change that – to build a sturdy, and, I trust, well-trodden bridge between our alumni and the Faculty.” Mike Mahon

The signature years being recognized this year are those ending in ‘0’ or ‘5’ – if you’re celebrating a milestone year as a graduate of the University, come and celebrate with us! There’ll be so much to see! We’re in the process of branding the Faculty with new signs and banners, and display cases to recognize excellence in teaching and research, and a wall of recognition for doctoral graduates. We’ll have a red-carpet welcome for you at Reunion 2005, and always! Enjoy Active Alumni 2005 and stay in touch. Mike Mahon, PhD, Dean

3 University of Alberta

From your alumni representative, Wendy Andrews


t is with a touch of sadness that I write this final note to you in my role as Alumni Council Representative for the Faculty. I have thoroughly enjoyed my role as your representative on the Cross Faculty Alumni Council and the three years have literally flown by.

“Our vision is to gradually increase attendance by alumni at our Panda and Golden Bear games so that we have standing room only at all our events.”

The position of Alumni Council rep has allowed me to learn more about the Faculty which I have happily shared with my colleagues on the Council. Our excellence in leading edge research, our recent branding initiatives, our award winning faculty members, our new facilities and of course our outstanding athletics teams are all topics I raise at our meetings. The Faculty plays a major role across campus in providing sport, recreation and physical activity opportunities to thousands of students and providing quality facilities for use by students, staff, alumni and the surrounding communities. After leaving Alumni Council, I will chair our new Academic Alumni Association. Please join me in pioneering this endeavour. We will formally set up the Association prior to Reunion 2005. Much work is already being done in contacting potential and existing class reps. A number of you responded to my request for involvement in the Association as a result of my last note and I would dearly love to hear from a few more alumni, both from recreation and physical education We are working hard to encourage record numbers of alumni at Reunion 2008 for the University’s 100th birthday celebration. I cordially invite you to attend Reunion 2005. We have a football game against Calgary on Saturday, October 1 at 2:00 p.m. Come and gather. It does not get any better than this! Our vision is to gradually increase attendance by alumni at our Panda and Golden Bear games so that we have standing room only at all our events.

Wendy Andrews Take a minute and think about what you might do this year to connect to your alma mater. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have ideas or questions. Contact Wendy at 483-2570 or

4 University of Alberta

Jacqulynn Mulyk – successful Alberta artist captures the essence of architecture on canvas “We are nothing without our past.” So goes a line in the biography Jacqulynn Mulyk has scribed on her website. The Vancouver artist has plenty of past – a zigzag trail that’s lead her from a career as a fitness instructor, to a BA in recreation and leisure studies (2002) and finally to a career as an indemand artist whose work graces the walls of countless Canadian homes and businesses. “When I graduated, I didn’t really feel drawn to anything in the recreation field,” she says. “I really enjoyed the educational experience. I felt I was growing and learning a lot but I had no idea how I wanted to apply that degree. I just liked the education.” A love of art had always simmered beneath the surface though. “I would paint at home on tiles and walls but I never really thought it was worth pursuing.” She opted for the RLS degree because “I liked the business side of it.” While a student Jacqulynn became involved in the Student Society of Artists, volunteered at theatre and arts festivals; became a docent at the Edmonton Art Gallery. “It was as though I was trying to immerse myself in art.” A first year course called ‘Art Essentials’ kicked the door wide and she started painting. During her six-month practicum in Hawaii, which she financed from sales of her work, she worked for a special events company. At night, she’d paint at her studio at the University of Manoa, eventually holding a successful show there before returning to Canada. She moved to Calgary after graduation and began carving a niche in the arts scene there. While living in the quaint neighbourhood of Mission, Jacqulynn was captivated by the unique character and charm of houses and buildings there. “I wanted to capture them architecturally - and the vibrant community ‘feel,’” she says. “I love to going outside, putting my easel up and just painting,” says Jacqulynn. It was during one of these sessions on the street that she met Jon Walters – now her fiancé. (They’ll marry in June 2006.) “As an artist I always wanted to be mobile and to travel,” says Jacqulynn, who has relocated to Vancouver. She is

currently creating a new body of work, the buildings on Vancouver’s long-established Commercial Drive. “It’s not so much the architecture, but there’s a life in this district. When you go there if makes you feel good – it’s that life I want to capture, rather than merely a streetscape.” She’s also branching out into other media and beginning work on her first radio documentary. “It’s about older women in extended care facilities,” says Jacqulynn. “My grandmother died in one of these and I’ve always been profoundly affected by what her life there must have been like.” Another project she’s working on is painting scenes from her travels in Belize and Guatemala on driftwood. Lately, she’s been digging through garbage, retrieving the disposable coffee cups tossed away every day in their thousands, for her latest project. She’ll use 200,000 of them to build 4 to 5ft ‘homes’ – a project she says that marries the concepts of shelter – “of which there’s never enough” and our throw-away society creating an environmental headache with its manic consumption habits. Her aim, she says, “is to create an impact, through my work, that we need to reduce the amount of garbage being created and thrown into landfills. If I can contribute to that end then I’d feel like I’d made a difference.” Looking back, she says, “I really appreciate my family’s support, they come out to all my shows when they can and my dad really encourages me to be an ‘artist’.”  You can see Jacqulynn’s paintings at and she welcomes former classmates to get in touch with her by email at

5 University of Alberta

Vince Poscente: Olympian, author and in-demand business strategist helps others reach the top Fast Facts about Vince Poscente CEO of Be Invinceable Group – a business consulting firm Managing partner in a media/communications agency Master’s degree in organizational management CSP, CPAE certified (Certified Speaking Professional, Council of Peers Award for Excellence) Author of two business/selfhelp books 1. The Ant and The Elephant – Leadership for the self 2. Invinceable Principles – Essential tools for life mastery) Past Board of Directors – Canadian Olympic Hall of Fame Former VP, Marketing of North America’s largest real estate investment service Accomplished award-winning real estate sales with world’s largest real estate company 1992 Olympic Winter Games Speed skiing finalist and fivetime national record holder (135 mph/216.7 km/ph)

ince Poscente will try pretty much anything once. The former Olympic speed skier took up that sport of daredevils at 26 just four years shy of the 1992 Olympic Winter Games in Albertville, France – with no funding, coaching or know-how. So vigorously did he apply himself though, he not only scored a berth on the Canadian team for the demonstration sport, but was ranked 10th in the world. And while a medal wasn’t on the cards in the end, he shrugs off the disappointment as just another life experience – but one that changed his life.


“The Olympic experience pushed me into a fascination with human performance and how we can perform at the highest level,” says Vince, who graduated with a BA in recreation administration in 1985 and holds a master’s degree in organizational management from the University of Phoenix. “Doing something extraordinary” and living large was what Vince promised himself in high school he’d enjoy in spades. He learned the hard way, at a classmate’s funeral, the importance of taking life in both hands and wringing every ounce out of it! Listening to the eulogy of a life cut short, he says, “I made a decision then that if life is short, I want to do everything at least once.” He’s lived that lesson with passion ever since. Today Vince is in high demand as a peak performance business strategist with a client list that reads like a ‘who’s who’ of corporate America! Based in Dallas Texas, he’s CEO of a successful business consultancy aptly named ‘Be Invinceable Group’, which every year coaches hundreds of executives and employees in corporate North America to maximise their on-the-job performance with a simple five step strategy he calls the 5Cs. Applying the strategy means having a clear vision, committing totally to your goals, applying consistent strategies, leading with confidence and “controlling what you bring to the environment by influencing what you have control over,” he says. He’s passionate about the vital role the subconscious mind plays in getting us what we want. So much so he’s just authored and published a book about the subject that’s getting plenty of buzz on the business scene. “The Ant and the Elephant” is a quickread – but powerful - parable about how to align our conscious and subconscious minds to achieve the vision we have for our lives. “It’s really about the empowerment of the individual,” says Vince, whose signature wit peppers the footnotes. His success as a speaker – something he’s done for 10 years – was recognised by his peers when he was inducted into the National Speakers’ Association Speaker Hall of Fame recently alongside orators like the late Ronald Reagan, business guru Ken Blanchard and actor and film producer Art Linkletter. “It doesn’t do much for the career,” laughs Vince, “but it’s a very good feeling!”


How does a degree in recreation administration lead to career in business strategy? “I wanted to be involved in the Olympic movement and sports administration,” explains Vince. “Recreation administration offered courses in business and the social sciences and it was a small department and I liked the environment. My undergraduate experience at U of A prepared me to be a citizen who could contribute.”

University of Alberta

Vince Poscente’s 5C Strategy to peak performance Clarity of Vision – identify defining moments and your emotional buzz

Commitment – lead by example as you 100 percent commit to your next steps

Consistency – apply 360° research as you do what the competition is not willing to do

Confidence – accelerate personal confidence without trial and error

Control – design “pre-race” routines for peak performance

“It’s rewarding to be able to enlighten people, help them progress their lives and make their companies more successful. If I can serve with love in some way that enriches the world that would be the biggest reward.” Vince Poscente And contribute he does – helping organisations tap into what he calls their ‘emotional buzz’ – “the thing that gets you out of bed in the morning and fired up all day!” - at meetings as small as 10 exhausted graveyard shift workers at a cardboard box factory, to 16,000 pumped up Amway distributors! “Emotional buzz is when something gives you a physical reaction up and down your spine – that’s the litmus test of whether an idea is worth pursuing,” he says. Today, as a successful entrepreneur, Vince says time with his family, wife Missy and three children Max (7), Alexia (6) and Isabella (4), is precious as he’s on the road so much. “I’m like many dads today who are very aware of the importance of family and of children having their dad around.” So he limits his engagements to 70 each year but admits, “I carry my bags and my guilt when I go away!” Despite the travel, time away from home and long hours, Vince has found his life’s emotional buzz. “It’s rewarding to be able to enlighten people, help them progress their lives and make their companies more successful. If I can serve with love in some way that enriches the world that would be the biggest reward.” 

University of Alberta


The Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre – Building a Secure and Successful Future for Athletics by Wanda Vivequin


hen Edmonton hosted the World Athletics Championships in 2001, an international spotlight shone on the city. The legacy of those competitions lives on today at the University of Alberta’s Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation thanks to some forward thinking by representatives from athletics organizations and the University of Alberta. Their vision to establish the Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre at the U of A was unique and now promises to build a more successful, secure future for the sport. A complementary goal to improve the health and fitness of Canadian young people through the Run Jump Throw initiative is seen as a way of developing a pool of high potential track and field athletes. In September 2004 the Centre’s first director, Kevin Tyler, was appointed. In enthusiastic and optimistic leaps and bounds, this Olympian and top Canadian coach has already laid down significant groundwork for what he believes will become a national base for Canada’s track and field coaches and athletes.

For the first six months the Coaching Centre has been a “one man band” governed by the 2001 Legacy Foundation Board and housed in a small office in the Van Vliet Centre. By the end of summer Tyler hopes to have his small team up and running and settled into offices at Foote Field. “Our aim is to raise the bar for coaching in Canada and our first focus is on developing real grassroots interest and skills in the sport again,” Tyler says. “We have an underdeveloped system and we need to make coaching relevant in athletics again,” he adds. Funding has come from money set aside after the 2001 World Championship in Athletics, a condition set by the federal government when it supported the event. The Centre’s first focus is co-coordinating the successful, school-based Run Jump Throw (RJT) initiative, which focuses on teaching the fundamentals of running, jumping and throwing movements – the bedrock of track and field. Previous RJT programming has revealed that many 12 year olds have lost the ability to hop on one foot.

Hitting the Ground Running – Kevin Tyler Kevin Tyler raced home from the Athens Olympics on August 28 2004 to prepare for the birth of his and wife Lara’s second child. His yet-to-be-born son had other ideas and kept Tyler wondering whether he would make it to work on time for his first day on the job as director of The Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre at the University of Alberta. Finally on September 5th Kai was born and a couple of days later Tyler, along with the family dogs was driving westwards towards

Edmonton for his first day on September 8th. It was a somewhat nerve-wracking start to a new career although stress is nothing new to this worldclass athlete and top-ranked Canadian coach. Tyler left his job as Sports Marketing Manager for running at Nike Canada to join The Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre, something he says was a perfect career move. “It’s something that combines the many aspects of my career to date,” Tyler says.

8 University of Alberta

Tyler is a former track athlete from Simon Fraser University and represented Canada in bobsleigh at the 1988 Olympics. He has also coached a number of elite athletes including Canadian 400m record holder and 2002 Commonwealth Games medallist Shane Neimi. The job of Coaching Centre director is the culmination of all these involvements in the sport and an opportunity, says Tyler, to use his many contacts and experience to secure a positive future for athletics.

Today there are only two to three full time high performance athletics coaches in Canada, and this, says Tyler, is another real issue for the sport. “It’s very difficult to access high performance coaching services in Canada outside the main centres and if coaches are the people who drive the sport, then the Coaching Centre has a critical role to play in its future success,” he says. “We are unique because we are focusing on coaching and one sport.” “Athletics is the one sport that every kid can do. It’s part of growing up to compete with other kids in who can run the fastest, throw the furthest, jump the highest,” he says. Two staff members will soon be appointed by the Coaching Centre to co-ordinate the delivery of, and coach training for, the RJT program. An intern program for coaching students is also planned. “The RJT program is a great way to generate interest in athletics and anything to get kids moving is a good thing,” Tyler says. The Coaching Centre will also become a national base for track and field coaches, their athletes and researchers, all focused on all facets of training and performance techniques. Tyler envisages top athletes and their coaches will eventually be attracted to the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation at the U of A for training, study and the promise of being at the cutting edge of sport science.

Kevin Tyler (l) working with promising young athlete, Tyler Christopher

“Athletics is the one sport that every kid can do.” Kevin Tyler The Centre will also become a “virtual” base for coaches, with access to databases and the latest research. All of this will be discussed at the National Technical Congress being hosted by the Coaching Centre later this year at which 150 people are expected to attend. Tyler says the Centre’s performance will eventually be measured by the • Number of athletics coaches employed fulltime • The quality of teaching material and number of people capable of delivering the RJT program • The reach of the RJT program

“Its all connected, grassroots programming, high performance activity, coaching and sport science he says. “The Coaching Centre will become a unique sports specific centre for coach development committed to developing techniques that enable all athletes to maximize their performances. ” Dean Mike Mahon says the Centre will have a positive effect on the delivery and calibre of coaching education in the Faculty’s degree programs.

• The number of youths competing at athletics events. • The success of club development • Attendance at regional events • Number of medals at international events. “It’s not just a case of throwing more money at the sport,” Tyler said. “It’s about getting smart and thinking ahead and I believe The Canadian Athletics Coaching Centre is a crucial step in the right direction.” 

9 University of Alberta

New Recreation, Sport and Tourism degree offers students fresh study focus; marketable skills t’s just halfway into March but Tom Hinch just can’t wait for September. That’s when the Faculty will see the first intake of high school and transfer students into its brand new Bachelor of Arts degree in Recreation, Sport and Tourism. “The new degree is designed to be “more attractive and connect with students more readily,” says Hinch, Assistant Dean, Undergraduate Programs.


“Whether people are recreating in their home environment, travelling for pleasure or involved in recreational sport, they are doing so in the context of their leisure,” says Hinch. “Developing an understanding of leisure and the ways it is manifest in recreation, sport and tourism will enable students to contribute to the delivery of those services in the communities in which they live and work. Graduates will have an impact on the quality of life in those communities.” Prospective employers will like the look of the BARST degree too, says Hinch. “It’s going to be easier to sell the degree to potential employers because even the degree name makes it explicit as to what kind of career paths or roles graduates might play in an organisation. We feel this degree offers graduates a better chance to get a foothold in the field and enjoy success.” Greater emphasis on management and administration also strengthen the degree’s – and graduates’ - marketability.” Hinch says the structure of the new degree offers plenty of variety and includes opportunities for interdisciplinary and cross-faculty studies. Core courses will be available every year now instead of in alternate years and that’s a strong selling point for transfer students – Hinch hopes to attract many of these to the degree. Also, says Hinch, “There’s a liberal arts foundation in the humanities, social sciences, fine arts and languages.” In addition students can take senior level faculty options for advanced studies in recreation, sport and tourism and they’re able to take up to 12 credits with an out-of-faculty focus. This will enable them to advance their education in something they’d enjoyed and want to explore in more


depth, to bring their degree focus in line with their interests. “Students can take courses that complement their interests not only within our own faculty, but in other faculties across campus.” “The new degree places more responsibility on the student,” he adds. “They’re going go have to think their way through what they want from their degree. Our Undergraduate Programs office is open all year to help them do that.” The BARST degree interlaces more closely with the Faculty’s other offerings which all study sport, but in different ways. “It you put our degrees on a continuum” says Hinch, ”we have a BSc in kinesiology that’s sport science focused; a combined physical education/education degree with a focus on physical education; a physical education degree focussed on physical education and physical activity, but looking more at sport in terms of performance, and the BARST degree which not only looks at recreation and tourism, but also looks at sport in terms of leisure consumption – the reason spectators come to the game or event or will pay to see a sporting event - rather than in terms of sport performance.” The BARLS degree is presently being phased out. Current BARLS students with fewer than 60 credits (first and second year students) are being transferred into the new program and those with more that 60 credits – typically third and fourth year students - are being given the option to transfer into the BARST program. Existing students, says Hinch, are embracing the move to the new degree enthusiastically. Hinch says he’s expecting between 35 and 40 students to enroll in the program this fall. Deadline for admissions has been extended to May 1. “The BARST degree is a better fit with our Faculty and is positioned strategically for challenging career opportunities,” says Hinch. “That’s good for students.” 

“We feel this degree offers graduates a better chance to get a foothold in the field and enjoy success” Tom Hinch University of Alberta

Ryan Williams – Healing Organizational Pain By Wanda Vivequin yan Williams (BA Rec Admin ’98) is an expert at managing pain, yet there is not a lab coat or bottle of pills to be found in his Vancouver offices. The pain this 29-year old company president deals with is what he calls “organizational pain” and his work has already won him a prestigious top American Business Award in 2004.

“My passion is for finding out what people do and why and then helping them by using that information to make meaningful changes.”


Ryan, a former Golden Bears football player, is today president of TWI Surveys, a company that specializes in diagnosing organizational health problems. It is a far cry from some of the work he did while attending the University of Alberta. “I ran a couple of different companies including one being a band promoter running gigs at the Thunder Dome Club,” Ryan says.

and playing football at the U of A, he also found time to run another small company called All the Right Moves. It offered small groups of keen young kids the intensive football coaching that was not possible at the bigger summer camps. Today Ryan continues his involvement with the sport by coaching his old school team at Vancouver College, something he has done voluntarily for the last seven seasons. “We have made it to three provincial champs and are very good at being the bridesmaid,” he laughs.

He joined forces with his father Tudor Williams in 1998. Williams senior was already a respected member of the Canadian business communicators’ community with his own company and together with his son now makes a formidable team specializing in improving company health.

Nurturing young football talent is important to Ryan for more than just sporting reasons. “You can develop a real sense of community with a team and it’s a great way for kids to develop a sense of place,” he says.

It’s all about listening to the people who matter, says Ryan. “My passion is for finding out what people do and why and then helping them by using that information to make meaningful changes,” Ryan says.

On top of all this he still finds time to run the local offices of Delta/Richmond’s Conservative Party MP John Cummings and also developed a strategic business plan for his church.

It was Ryan’s experience on a co-op placement with an American company, The Adobe Group, in the winter of 1997, which convinced him strategic communication, surveying and improving the health of organizations was what he wanted to do.

Ryan says he uses the word pain in his discussions with clients because he believes healing an organization is all about meaningful and productive communication through which everyone is heard.

It opened his eyes to the potential of online surveying and made him realize there were real opportunities for traditional survey companies to use the Internet. It is not, however, something that would have occurred to him when he was recruited onto the Golden Bears from Vancouver College in the Fall of 1995 as a fullback/running back. “My aspirations back then were really just playing football,” Ryan says. As well as training, studying, representing football on the University Athletics Board

Some of his clients to date have included Shell Chemicals, Petro Canada, NorskeCanada, Southern Railway, NEXEN, TELUS, AT&T Wireless, E-Bay and BC Hydro. With these names already under his belt the future looks promising. Asked if a political career lurks on the horizon, Ryan hedges a little but says he would not rule it out right now. Right now he’s focused on healing pain.  Ryan Williams welcomes emails from former class mates and Golden Bears football alumni. He can be reached at or

11 University of Alberta

Off Court with Trix Baker By Wanda Vivequin In another lifetime University of Alberta Pandas basketball coach Trix Baker (Master of Arts in Physical Education, 1985) might have become a professional golfer. She talks passionately about the “other sport” in her life. “I just love playing golf,” says Trix, a Stettler Alberta native whose Dutch parents settled here after WW2. “It’s a perfect sport for my personality because I am so competitive and playing golf is competing against myself,” she adds.


Trix Baker Basketball Highlights 1976: Graduated from William E Hay High School, Stettler, Alberta 1976-81: University of Alberta Pandas basketball player (during this time made three national championship appearances and was named All Canadian three times) 1981-82(86): Basketball coach at Grant MacEwan College, Edmonton 1985: Completed Master of Arts in sports psychology 1986-87: Assistant coach with husband Doug Baker of Mount Royal men’s basketball team 1987- 91: Coach of University of Lethbridge Pronghorns Basketball 1993-99: Assisted Canada’s national basketball team 1991: Appointed head coach of Pandas basketball 1999: Pandas won CIS national basketball championships

Spare time outside the winter months is spent either with 13-year old son Jordan, or on the golf course with husband Doug, who has coached basketball teams alongside Trix for a number of seasons. They made a formidable - often vocal - team over the years, pacing behind the bench and racing along the sidelines trying to get the most out of their teams. Trix is the first to admit her bark is worse than her bite. “I know I have something of a reputation for being quite hard-nosed and vocal on court but I am actually quite a caring person at heart,” Trix says. “My main priority has always been to help players perform to their full potential and sometimes you have to get a little vocal,” she adds. Trix’s life has been completely consumed by basketball. For well over 25 years – more than half her life – she has been a regular fixture either on the bench or behind it at provincial and national levels. “Coaching a team is always a challenge especially in basketball where there is no goalie and success really depends on the performance of everyone,” Trix says. When the Pandas won the CIS National Championships in 1999, Trix says her theories were proven true. “We were the underdogs but we performed well as a team and won,” she says, referring to the win as a real highlight in her life. Trix made her first appearance as a Panda player in 1976 and has been coach of the squad for the last 14 years. She got into coaching partly because she did not want to teach in the school system, something many of her fellow BPE graduates did. After completing the course work for her Master’s degree in 1981, Trix spent time coaching and teaching at Grant MacEwan College. In 1985 she finally submitted her thesis on coach/athlete compatibility. This study has helped Trix understand her players better and to get the best performance from her players. “It’s important to focus on the process and not just the outcome,” she says. Coaching the Pandas has been a demanding job that often takes Trix away from Edmonton. To balance her life Trix says there are three things she absolutely cannot do without: her family, her hot tub/spa pool and sunny days. Without exception, the Bakers spend time in the hot tub every night they are in Edmonton to soak away the pressures of their respective jobs. “It’s a perfect way to unwind at the end of a day and soak away all the stresses,” Trix says. Although basketball means a lot of travel, Trix says she is basically a homebody and right now can’t wait for the snow to melt so she can dust off the golf bag and take to the greens. 

12 University of Alberta

Teaching in Thailand: land of contrasts becomes home to Kari Mohn n any given day at a lively little school just north of Bangkok, Thai children giggle and squirm as they learn English from their young Canadian teacher, who in turn is equally hard at work, mastering the complex intonations of the Thai language.


“I never imagined I’d be working in Thailand,” says Kari Mohn, who completed a Bachelor of Physical Education degree in 2003. She’d specialised in adapted physical activity and the Play Around the World practicum experience, working with some of Thailand’s most needy children, adults and youth, opened her mind to the possibilities of making a real difference elsewhere in the world. And it’s here, at the Global English School – a private Christian school attended by about 250 Thai and Cambodian children, that the Sherwood Park native has found her calling. “I fell in love with Thailand,” she says simply. “I really didn’t know what to do after I graduated,” says Kari. “Play around the World opened my eyes. I wanted to travel. I considered doing an MA or maybe occupational therapy, but really wasn’t sure what direction I wanted to take. Play Around the World was the turning point for me. I wanted to come back.” That wish turned to reality when Kari was approached by Joy Ronald. Ronald is a co-founder of the Global English School, and offered Kari a chance to teach at the school, which focuses on the teaching of English as a second language. Kari leapt at the chance and today teaches her 14 enthusiastic Grade 3 charges English, science, physical education, mathematics, art, health, citizenship and geography. “I’ve learned to read and write a little Thai myself – it certainly helps to be able to communicate!” says Kari, who will stay in Thailand for another year. The former gymnast, who taught the toddler to eight-year olds at the U of A Gymnastics Centre and a member of the Salto Gymnastic Club since age five, organizes schoolwide activity afternoons, children’s day games, and has helped out with overnight camp games. She also runs ‘fitnastics’ classes – using dance and ribbon - every Sunday for women of all ages. Continued on page 14

13 University of Alberta

Teaching in Tailand…

continued from page 13

Diary of a Tsunami survivor Kari and boyfriend, Adam, and some friends decided to spend Christmas at Phi Phi. As it happened, the popular resort area was one of the worst hit by the fateful tsunami of December 26, 2004 “We met up with the others to go for Christmas dinner and discuss our travel plans for the next couple of days. We were all contemplating staying one more day on the island, but decided that there was more to see so we would push on.We caught the only ferry that left to Krabi at 9 a.m. and made it to the port, with no mention of anything wrong, until it was time to get off the boat. All of a sudden the Thai workers started shouting “REO, REO!” and they had a crazy panicked look in their eyes - they wanted us to get off the boat really quickly. I saw a lot of black smoke coming from the engine of the boat we were on and figured the boat was on fire and they were trying to get all of us off before it exploded. Helga and I were pushed off, then the boat left the dock! Adam, Joyce and Hilary were still on the boat. I didn’t know what to do. We were told to get off the pier quickly and all of the boats were beginning to speed away from the dock. We then saw off in the horizon a great wall of white stretching across the entire ocean. I gawked at the sight, still trying to make sense of what just happened. Then I thought,“if that wave

looks that big that far away, we may just be in a little trouble and should probably go somewhere a little higher than sea level.” We went in to find Adam and the others - thank heavens I can speak a little bit of Thai! We were taken to the old pier and two hours later we were all back together again, safe and sound. After watching the news and talking to several victims we found out we had left Phi Phi island just 45 minutes before the tsunami annihilated the place! We stayed in Krabi town for the next few days listening to haunting news reports, victims’ stories, and hearing the sirens. That sound rang in my head for days even after we left. We didn’t witness much damage to property - just a couple of homes floating through the canal. We mostly witnessed the psychological and physical damage it wrought on people. It was dreadful. We didn’t volunteer because we didn’t even know where to start. Instead we tried to get things back to normal and continued with our vacation. Of course we were plagued with guilt, but part of me feels we were exactly where we were supposed to be, doing exactly what we were supposed to be doing.”

14 University of Alberta

“This is a wonderful place to live,” says Kari. “The people are so friendly, the food is wonderful and it’s a fantastic school that is so supportive and welcoming. It’s safe and inexpensive to live here and there are plenty of opportunities for travel.” Kari has travelled in northern and southern Thailand revelling in the pristine beaches and enjoying rock-climbing adventures. “When I look at what I want to accomplish here, I’d say I want to be here for my students, to be a positive influence in their lives,” says Kari. Next year, Kari will teach English as a Second Language (ESL) classes as well. “I will have to use my adapted learning skills to help students who are having not only difficulties with the English language, but also with other different learning difficulties,” she says. “It’s a challenge I’m prepared to face and I’m excited to apply more theoretical knowledge learned at university.” “I’m very thankful to Jane Vallentyne and Play Around the World for opening my eyes to the world and to the pleasure of teaching,” says Kari. “Being a leader for Play Around the World brought out my skills – I’m still testing what works and what doesn’t - but the pleasure of discovery, and the growth and meaning I find here every day is a most enriching, satisfying experience.” Once her teaching experience comes to an end, Kari hopes to return to the University of Alberta to read for a Master’s degree in occupational therapy. “It’s a good career choice, that fits my path,” she says.  Kari Mohn may be reached by email at

Ambitious Foote Field buy-a-seat program launches expansion drive ow do you keep a major sports facility on top its game? Ask the Golden Bears Football Alumni Association! They’re going big with their Foote Field Buy-a-Seat program, which aims to raise $1.5 million to bankroll upgrades and expansions to the three-year old multi-sport complex. Donations to the ambitious fundraiser – $1000 buys a new seat with a plaque inscription of the donor’s choice - will fund the installation of new stadium seating in the main football stands seating area. But, stresses Rick Henschel, former Golden Bear football alumnus and one of the directors of the Golden Bears Football Alumni Association, “this isn’t just for football.” Funds will also provide new and expanded coaches’ meeting, video review and training rooms, administrative offices to house The Canadian Athletic Coaching Centre (the legacy of the 2001 World Championships in Athletics) as well as an expanded indoor viewing area and hosting facilities. It’s an aggressive target, says Henschel. “We want to achieve our target within 16 months, so we can go ahead with the seats and the capital expansion – and have enough money to fund some endowments for Foote Field and the players.” Henschel says he’s passionate about the fundraiser because the football program here underpinned his success at university and in life. “The program supported me in a number of ways: I


developed lifelong friends and memories,” he says. “My success in football and in my education went hand in hand. “So much of who we are today developed at university – and football was such an integral part of that, that most of us see this as an opportunity to give something back to a program which, in many ways, shaped the men we became.” Golden Bears Football Alumni Association president, Tom Richards, couldn’t agree more. “When you look back at the events and periods in your life that really meant something to you, my university experience was one of those defining moments in shaping the individual I have become today,” says the former Eskimo. “I want to ensure that future generations of Golden Bear football players are able to gain a similar experience,” says Richards. “If I can organise a group of guys to enrich that experience, I’m all the happier.” Bob Kinasewich, the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation’s Director of Development and Alumni Affairs, says there’s good reason to invest in this prime facility. “The University of Alberta has the finest athletic program out of all the Canadian universities. Eldon Foote envisioned both the need and benefit of providing a first-class facility to enable a top-ranked athletic program to continue – and to allow high-achieving student athletes to develop and excel in their athletic endeavours. We now need to build on that legacy by providing funds to

upgrade, expand and to ensure future maintenance and operations at Foote Field continue.” Richards says response has been good and football alumni have been incredibly supportive. “There’s money in the bank already!” he says. This is a long-term initiative and Henschel says the alumni association is optimistic. “Ten years ago, our alumni association was just a couple of guys with a few ideas. We’re now to the point where we’re taking in $20,000 to $30,000 in scholarships for the football program. We have momentum and we’re using that to go to the next step. “When you look at a Penn State or Ohio State, where the football program generates upwards of $100 million US per year, I say here’s where we are, there’s the target. Maybe we’re a hundred years away from doing that but if we don’t start today, we’ll never get there.” 

“So much of who we are today developed at university – and football was such an integral part of that, that most of us see this as an opportunity to give something back to a program which, in many ways, shaped the men we became.” Rick Henschel

University of Alberta


Reunion 2004 Lovely to see you again, my friend!

Elna Nash (BPE ’64), Gareth Morgan, Ida Thompson (BPE '64), Marna Claerhout ((BPE '64) and Euni Mattson (BPE '62)

Reunion 2004 was a blast! Many of you came to Pub Night to raise a glass with the Dean and friends from yesteryear.

Gregg Meropoulis (BPE ’74), Tom Richards (AG '88) and Percy Gendall ((BEd '84)

Chuck Moser (BPE '64) and Christine Hunter (BPE '98)

At the Dean’s lunch on Saturday, we recognized alumni celebrating their 25 and 50 year anniversaries with commemorative gifts. We hope that many

Elna Nash (BPE '64)

Myrna Empey (BPE ’64) and former Dean Herb McLachlin

more of you celebrating milestone years will come to Reunion 2005. We loved seeing you here and celebrating your Faculty with you! Reunion 2005 is from

Billie Niblock (BPE '54) Joyce Cutts (BPE ’54)

Deb Larsen (BPE '79), Cheryl Stewart (BPE '79) and Dean Mike Mahon

September 30 to October 2 this year. Come for fun; come to catch up with old friends and new!


Ida Thomson (BPE '64), Myrna Empey (BPE ’64) and Audrey Ackroy, professor emerita

University of Alberta

Class of ‘64

Colin Williams (BPE '73) and Wendy Andrews (BPE '71)

Irvin Servold (BPE '61) and Wendy Duke (BPE '69)

University of Alberta Reunion 2005 and Open House September 30 to October 2 Come home and celebrate!

Reunion 2005 Faculty Events:

Gordon Breitkreutz (BPE '59), Donna Enger (BPE ’59) and Irvin Servold (BPE '61)

Joyce Cutts (BPE ‘54)

 Friday, September 30 Pub Night at Saville Sports Centre 7 to 10 p.m. Pizza and Wings Host bar  Saturday, October 1 The Dean’s Pre-Game Lunch Saville Sports Centre 12.00 p.m. to 2.00 p.m. Football: Bears vs. University of Manitoba Bisons Foote Field 2.00 p.m.

Mike Eurchuk (BPE '64), Glenn Claerhout (BPE '66), Arnie Enger (BPE ’57) and Development Director Bob Kinasewich

Arnie Enger and Kim Gordon (BPE ’77), Pierre Gervais in background

Register for events online University of Alberta


John Primrose – Olympian thrives on business ventures and sport by Wanda Vivequin

John Primrose: Outstanding athlete for four decades 1960: Won Alberta Junior Golf Championships while still at high school. 1962-66: University of Alberta Golden Bear in golf, badminton and volleyball 1962: Selected for Canadian trap shooting team for the first time. Travelled to Cairo for first of 27 World Championships 1965: Graduated with BPE. 1968: Competed in Olympic Games in Mexico City (first of six appearances at the Olympic Games). 1971: Graduated with an MSc. 1974: Won Commonwealth Games gold medal in Christchurch, New Zealand. 1975: Won World Championship in Munich, Germany. 1977: Inducted into the Canadian Sports Hall of Fame. 1978: Won second Commonwealth Games gold medal in Edmonton. 1983: Won second World Championship in Edmonton. 1985: Awarded the Order of Canada. 2004: Selected for Canadian trap shooting team

ohn Primrose (BPE 65, BEd 66, MSc 71) knows a thing or two about bicycle security.


Ask this former World and Commonwealth trap shooting champion, and member of the Order of Canada, about how to stop a pesky thief from stealing a seat or wheel and be prepared for a lengthy discussion! The solution says John, should be arriving from Asia in the next few months. Since 1998, he and a small group of investors have been embroiled in a business venture to produce special locking skewer sets that stop thieves from stealing seats and wheels. “There is enough in this saga to fill a book,” says John from his Edmonton apartment. Always busy, enthusiastic and prepared to talk, John leads an eclectic life. He dabbles in the property market, is an enthusiastic player on the stock market, has a hobby farm outside the city and is still very involved in a sport he has competed in at all levels for almost 50 years. Trap shooting has been described as “playing golf with a shotgun.” It’s a good thing then that John was such a good golfer! He won the Alberta Junior Championships while still at school in Edmonton. Asked how he became interested in trapshooting, he says, “I did a bit of research back then and discovered that

18 University of Alberta

John Primrose at the World Championships in Argentina, 1981 if you wanted to see the world, trap shooting was a good sport in which to represent Canada.” At his first trials in 1962 John won a spot on the national team and travelled to Cairo to compete in his first World Championships, an event he participated in 27 times. At 61, he still has what it takes and remains ranked as one of Canada’s top six shooters. As a young man John was a natural athlete representing the University of Alberta in golf, badminton and volleyball. But it was shooting that took him all over the world, winning two Commonwealth gold medals and two world championships. “It was a great way to see the world,” he says. There aren’t many people who can say they competed at the Olympic Games in each of the past four decades. John has competed at six of them. He taught for a while in Edmonton and Ottawa after graduating with a BPE and BEd, then returned to the U of A in 1968 to read for his MSc in exercise physiology. “I really missed the academic stimulation and wanted to specialize in something. I thought that getting a Master’s degree would open up some more areas to me,” he says.

An invitation to work on further research in Australia led to an extended time in the Southern Hemisphere during the early 1970’s. The studies also gave Primrose an added advantage during his training for trap shooting. “Knowing at a physiological level what it takes to be a good shooter was a real help,” John says. John spent spent many hours at Edmonton’s Strathcona Shooting Range perfecting the techniques that turned him into a world champion. A regret is that few young Canadians are interested in taking up the sport, something John puts down to a change in attitude and the influence of gun legislation in the past few years. While the effects of two motor accidents in recent years have forced John to slow his pace a little, he remains full of plans for future projects to keep him busy. 

Sports Wall of Fame 20th Annual Dinner, Induction Ceremony and Fundraiser Inductees

Thursday, May 12, 2005

Megan Delehanty, BSc 1990; MSc (UBC); PhD pending – University of Pittsburgh

Shaw Conference Centre 9797 Jasper Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta

George Hughes, BSc 1950 Ian Newhouse, BPE 1980; MSc 1983; PhD (UBC) 1987 Irwin Strifler, BPE 1965; Dip. Ed. 1966

2004 inductee Stacey Wakabayashi with U of A president Dr. Roderick Fraser

Event schedule No host reception Silent Auction begins Dinner

5.30 p.m. 5.30 p.m. 7.30 p.m.

Guest Speaker Lori-Ann Muenzer, gold medallist in cycling, 2004 Olympic Games (Athens)

Tickets $150 p.p. $1500 – table of 10 2004 inductee Janice McCaffrey

Ticket purchase Jocelyne Lambert; Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation W1-34 Van Vliet Centre, University of Alberta; Phone 492-3893 Email

Please support the Faculty’s biggest fundraiser for studentathlete scholarships!

Track and field head coach Georgette Reed and former Dean Gerry Glassford

19 University of Alberta

a ctivealumni Return undeliverable Canadian addresses to Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation, University of Alberta E424 Van Vliet Centre Edmonton AB T6G 2H9 email:

40063741 Edmonton, Alberta


i n t o u c h 2005 PAC in a nutshell: what’s proposed Published annually for the alumni and friends of the Faculty of Physical Education and...


i n t o u c h 2005 PAC in a nutshell: what’s proposed Published annually for the alumni and friends of the Faculty of Physical Education and...