SJU Update 2017

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Pantone Green: 343c Gold: 139c

CMYK Green: 98/0/72/61 Gold: 0/37/100/23

Pantone Green: 343c







CONTRIBUTORS Suzanne Bowness Sue Brubacher Kierra Cali Marilyn Caird Nancy Harper Sandra Moon Viola Poletes Montgomery Pamela Riseborough Barb Trotter Kira Vermond


IT’S ACADEMIC Exploring the hidden side of human nature, art, theology, and culture.

DESIGN Insignia Creative Group




MAKING THE CASE FOR LIBERAL ARTS Recruitment and Enrolment Gold

2017 Vol. 35 Published annually and distributed electronically. Please direct content feedback and story suggestions to

ADDRESS St. Jerome’s University 290 Westmount Road North Waterloo ON N2L 3G3


LIBERAL ARTS A SPRINGBOARD TO QUANTUM SUCCESS Dr. Michele Mosca: World Authority on Quantum Computing Found Inspiration at St. Jerome’s University.



4 A MESSAGE FROM ADVANCEMENT........................ 6 ALUMNI REFLECTIONS............................................ 7 GRADUATES CARVING THEIR OWN PATHS.............. 8 MAKING THE CASE............................................. 13 IT’S ACADEMIC................................................... 18 COVER TO COVER............................................... 24 PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE..........................................


QUANTUM SUCCESS .......................................... SERVICE LEARNING TAKES THE CLASSROOM


30 GRADUATES RETURN HOME............................... 32 OUT INTO THE WORLD.......................................

Follow us on Twitter: @StJeromesUni

Find us on Facebook: St. Jerome’s University


Look for us on Instagram: @StJeromesUni

BOARD OF GOVERNORS John Arnou Hayley Barnes Steven Bednarski Jim Beingessner, Chancellor Katherine Bergman, President and Vice Chancellor Frank Boerboom Mary Ellen Cullen, Vice Chair Ernest Doyle Francis Doyle Cathy Horgan, Chair Ken Lavigne Tony MacKinnon Ted McKechnie Rev. Murray McDermott, C.R., Provincial Superior Toni Serafini Kathy Smidt Robert Truman Dan Weber Laura Zilney

PRESIDENT’S MESSAGE St. Jerome’s University distinguishes itself as a liberal arts university with a difference. For over 150 years, we have impacted lives by remaining focused on the vision of our founders of educating the whole person: providing learning opportunities that encourage intellectual, spiritual, physical, and social development. Over the years, our graduates have taken these values into the world, working with the community to make it a better place. Our graduates and their influence on society, culture, and thought are the legacy of St. Jerome’s University and the wings of our future. In today’s rapidly changing world, degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math are highly valued and the importance of a liberal arts education is commonly overlooked and undervalued. However, St. Jerome’s University is challenging this perspective as we continue to experience increased enrolment growth. Indeed, our recruitment efforts have received international recognition. Jay Smith, Manager of Recruitment and Admissions, and Sue Brubacher, former Registrar and now Director of Alumni Development, were awarded gold this year for their recruitment publications in the Council for Advancement and Support of Education — District II Accolades Awards. Our success stories are many, including the stories of the graduates featured in this issue of Update. Alumni such as Dr. Michele Mosca, a world authority on quantum computing, acknowledges, “I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for St. Jerome’s University.” Or award-winning journalist Patrick Maloney who describes his studies at the University as “One of the best times of my life.” These are just two of the people who recognize that their liberal arts education played a key role not only in their success, but also in the values that influence their decisions. We continue to build on our strengths. Not only do we have the space necessary to develop programming and partnerships that are transforming the student experience, but we are also building new programming that prepares our students to be the visionary leaders of the future. St. Jerome’s University faculty and staff are committed to creating a nurturing educational environment for our students to explore their passions. The faculty are engaged, active scholars, and we are proud of their professional successes. For example, Dr. Steven Bednarski won international recognition as one of five recipients of the 2017 D2L Innovation Award in Teaching and Learning, awarded by the Society for Teaching and Learning in Higher Education. Associate Dean Dr. Cristina Vanin has guided greater understanding of The Saint John’s Bible, currently on display at the University, through her community work and her in-depth interview on CBC Radio’s Tapestry program. Dr. Maureen Drysdale is the principal investigator on a successful Canadian Institutes of Health Research grant to examine student wellness.

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At St. Jerome’s University we acknowledge and celebrate the value of a liberal arts education. We will continue to build the leaders of tomorrow: leaders who seek truth, who have the humility to work with others, and who demonstrate the courage to advocate for the dignity of all, so that we can continue to work together to build a more just society.

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Dr. Katherine Bergman, President and Vice Chancellor


Distinguish ourselves locally, nationally, and internationally as a liberal arts university

Our Future

Build dynamic and collaborative partnerships

Our Catholicity

Encourage the intellectual, spiritual, and social development of the whole person

Our Culture

Foster a respectful, inclusive community

Teaching and Learning Research

Nurture an environment that values excellence in scholarship, research, and creative activity

Our Story

Inspire a lifelong commitment to independent and discerning learning


KEEP CONNECTED Connections are an important part of our journey at St. Jerome’s University. They keep us on task with our studies as students, they foster friendships beyond the classroom, they bring leadership to learning, and they build the supportive community that our university is well known for. When students graduate, many of those connections are not lost and are most certainly not forgotten. The memory of the St. Jerome’s University experience may become distanced by jobs, new families, and keeping up with a busy world, but a text from a former classmate, an article in the news about a former professor winning an award, or an invitation to join in an alumni event can make time disappear. Whether you choose to keep your connection to the University strong, through volunteer participation, donor support, or visits once a year, we continue to value your connection to the mission of our University. At the University we would like you to remain an important part of our community and to start a new chapter of engagement.

DEVELOPING BONDS FOR THE FUTURE Possibilities. Opportunities. Community. Not only are these three of my favourite words, but they are also three words that describe what St. Jerome’s University strives to provide to its students. When I was offered the role of Director of Alumni Development, I immediately began to dream of the potential to renew and maintain meaningful connections with our upper-year students and young alumni. As the Registrar at St. Jerome’s University, my favourite part of the job was connecting and building relationships with our students, and moving into this new role, I am looking forward to the opportunity

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Through the development of more substantive opportunities for alumni to become involved, we hope that the legacy of community will extend well beyond the first day you stepped foot on campus. We recognize your value as recruiters, mentors, volunteers, and donors. Your decision to support St. Jerome’s University in any of these ways demonstrates your belief in the University and its important role in a liberal arts education. It is for that reason that we are focusing on bringing your skills back on campus to help us with a mentoring program for our students. I look forward to sharing more information about these opportunities in the future. Keeping connected keeps community alive. I hope that you will consider this opportunity to take an active role in the student leaders of tomorrow, through volunteering your time in this way.

Viola Poletes Montgomery Director of Advancement

to extend that. Deepening those relationships for students and young alumni will provide a bridge, strengthening the bonds that have been built and developed during their time at St. Jerome’s University. As we embark on this exploratory journey together, I would love to hear your thoughts and ideas! I am planning some focus groups to provide a forum for you all to share your thoughts so you can help to shape how we move forward as a community. I look forward to reconnecting with all of you!

Sue Brubacher Director of Alumni Development

ALUMNI REFLECT ON THEIR LIVES AT ST. JEROME’S UNIVERSITY. Celebrating 50 years! Ruth Kinler (nee Casagrande, BA ’68) and new husband Richard take that trip down the aisle, at Resurrection College in 1967. The couple, who now lives in Texas, recently came back to the place that brought them together. Five months after they met at a retreat held at the then St. Jerome’s College, Ruth Casagrande and Richard Kinler were married. Officiated by Father Norm Choate, C.R., former chaplain and president of the University from 1979 to 1989, the couple made their connection official in May 1967, building on the legacy of good things that happen at St. Jerome’s University. The couple visited the University in June to take a tour of the place where the two came together. What was once Ruth’s residence are now administrative offices



in Sweeney Hall. Richard attended the University of Waterloo and across the creek also looks very different than he remembers. Each step together along nowchanged pathways brought back stories of the School Sisters of Notre Dame, and life on campus. The Fireplace Lounge holds special memories for the couple. On their recent tour, Richard was quick to share that they both attended a dance in that familiar space. He said he told his friend by the end of the evening, “I’m going to marry that girl.” Ruth confessed that she had told her friends the same. It was love at first sight. Fifty years later, two sons and four grandchildren join in celebrating the couple’s meeting. Ruth and Richard’s lifetime of memories together sprouted from one chance meeting at a dance.

DO YOU HAVE A STORY TO SHARE? Send it to or and yours may appear in an upcoming issue of Update Magazine. UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 7

ST. JEROME’S UNIVERSITY GRADUATES CARVING THEIR OWN PATHS They are as far away as Seattle and San Francisco Bay, and as nearby as Hamilton and Kitchener, but these St. Jerome’s alumni are as alike at the core as they are different, each with a strong sense of who they are and their place in the world. Here are just a few of our graduates who have had an impact on the fields in which they work.

ANDREW ABRAHAMOWICZ (BMATH ’02) Andrew Abrahamowicz’s life trajectory has taken him from the prairies of Saskatchewan to Waterloo in central Canada to Seattle on the west coast of the United States, but his faith has always grounded him. Now occupied with two young children, a busy volunteer schedule with his local parish and a satisfying job at a startup, he is looking to stay put, at least for a little while. Faith was part of what drew Abrahamowicz to St. Jerome’s University, where he graduated in 2002 with a bachelor’s degree in mathematics with a focus on computer science. “I had come over from Saskatchewan, so it was my first time getting away from the prairies and into Southern Ontario. It was a nice, close-knit community, which was good for me at the time. Being Catholic myself, that was a familiarity,” he recalls. He remembers living in residence, playing ultimate Frisbee and broomball on the grounds around

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St. Jerome’s University, and getting involved with Campus Ministry. After graduation, Abrahamowicz took a co-op placement in Seattle with Amazon, which led to a full-time position in software programming. After a few years, he moved to the calendar app startup, Cozi (recently acquired by Time Inc.), and finally to his current role at an enterprise data storage company Qumulo, where he helps build internal developer tools. Abrahamowicz says he has gravitated toward startups because he likes to help build tools that make people more productive, efficient, and happier. “The opportunity to actually provide further value is very rewarding and fulfilling for me,” he says. He adds that he also likes smaller organizations. “It’s nice to actually be on the front lines and make contributions and have an impact that way.” While he doesn’t get back to Waterloo much these days, Abrahamowicz says he remembers his time warmly. “I recall really working hard to figure out what my personal values are. Those really lead me and guide my decision making,” he says.

DICK CALLAHAN (BA ’62) Dick Callahan’s voice has become a familiar backdrop to millions of American sports fans, and it’s all thanks to a chance opportunity at St. Jerome’s University. Now the stadium announcer for the Oakland Athletics Major League Baseball team — more familiarly known as the A’s — Callahan got his start calling games when the college athletic director was looking for a fill-in for a basketball game at St. Jerome’s University, and Callahan was looking for a way to stay with the team after being sidelined on crutches. The coach asked about his experience announcing games, “I said, ‘Yeah, I did all my high school games.’ Well, the truth of the matter was, I’d never done a game,” Callahan recalls with a laugh. Fast-forward 50-odd years and that confidence has carried Callahan through a career announcing everywhere from a local Kitchener radio station just after graduation to Philadelphia, St. Louis, and finally Oakland, where he has announced games for Saint Mary’s College of California, the University of California, the Golden State Warriors professional basketball team, and the Oakland A’s. Another career highlight was announcing the 1994 United States versus Russia Basketball World Championships in

CHERI CHEVALIER (HONS. BA ’96) She may have graduated 20 years ago, but ask Cheri Chevalier when she last saw her St. Jerome’s University residence mates and the answer is more immediate: last weekend. “There’s a core group of my very closest girlfriends that were all in residence with me: literally my roommate from first year, the two girls across the hall, the one on the left and the right of me in that hallway. Those girls have stayed with me all the way through,” recalls Chevalier.

Toronto at Maple Leaf Gardens and the SkyDome. Until three years ago, Callahan was announcing baseball, football, and soccer, then cut back to just calling for the A’s, which still adds up to over 80 games a season. He also runs a successful insurance business with one of his three adult daughters. Besides playing basketball, Callahan has other fond memories St. Jerome’s University, which he attended when it was in the Kingsdale area. He graduated with a bachelor’s degree in Latin and English in 1962. Originally a clerical student, he had come to the college from his native Scranton, Pennsylvania, to explore his calling, ultimately deciding not to continue toward the priesthood. “One of the main reasons that I was able to do that was Father Murphy, who was my spiritual advisor. He said to me, ‘If the doubt persists, listen to the doubt.’ I’m now 50 years out and I’ve used that [counsel] so much over the years,” says Callahan. He adds that he often passes the advice along to the sports journalism classes where he is regularly asked to speak. Yet the conviction he’s followed throughout his life is to go after what you want without invitation. “If your ship doesn’t come in, swim out to it,” says Callahan. “You can’t wait for people to do things for you. It’s a world of your own initiative and if you see the opportunity, you’d better jump on it.”

Despite all of her success — a 20-year climb that has seen her rise through the ranks to her current role as the general manager for the Microsoft Office portfolio in Canada — her closeness with these friends is the thing she values most from her time at St. Jerome’s University. “It was always about the community, attending church at Notre Dame Chapel, giving back and understanding who it is that you want to be in the world. And trying to live your life in a way that reflects that,” says Chevalier in reflecting on her time. Originally from Sarnia, Ontario, Chevalier was a liaison on the student council for the women’s residence,



FROM STUDENT TO SCRIBE: ALUMNI FICTION David Morrell (BA ’66) First Blood, 1972

helping to arrange joint events from Stratford outings to snowball fights in the quad. Taking advantage of the co-op placements offered through the University of Waterloo, Chevalier’s two terms at Microsoft became a permanent full-time job after graduation with an honours Bachelor of Arts in 1996 (she now also has an MBA from Wilfrid Laurier University). Starting in the desktop productivity team, Chevalier worked on the launch of Windows 95, then Hotmail, MSN, and MSN messenger in Canada. From there she moved to the commercial side, leading the small business marketing and operations group, before moving into business management. Today, she runs marketing, strategic planning, and operations for the entire Microsoft Office division, a challenge she loves. “Technology is just an incredible place to be and the field is just changing so much,” says Chevalier. Mother of two boys, Chevalier lives in Hamilton but loves to travel the world (she just crossed off the 40 country mark from her bucket list with a trip to Russia and Scandinavia). She’s also passionate about volunteering and, as an English and business major, about the value of an arts degree.

“I’ve had 20 years of a wonderfully engaging career that has allowed me to take on progressively senior roles and it comes down to creative and critical thinking, and the ability to collaborate, and communicate effectively.”

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Gerald Lynch (Hons. BA ’76)


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PATRICK MALONEY (BA ’00) Patrick Maloney is a journalist, so he knows how to spot a good story, even in his own life. “I remember at St. Jerome’s University there was a poster on the wall: ‘What do you want to do with your degree?’ On it there was an alumnus who was a writer at the London Free Press, and I remember thinking, ‘That would be such a cool job.’” Now 17 years after his graduation in 2000, with a Bachelor of Arts majoring in political science, Maloney is living that dream: he’s an award-winning journalist with the London Free Press, covering city hall. Many years and successes later, Maloney still recalls his time at St. Jerome’s University fondly. “It was a really huge part of my life. As I get older — I’m turning 39 this year — I look back and I can tell you it was one of the best times in my life,” he says. Now a father of two, Maloney says he is reminded of the sense of community regularly — every time he hears from friends of that era. “You really get to know people and you get very close with friends

NICK ROEHRIG (BMATH ’67) Although this year marks the 50th anniversary of his graduation, Nick Roehrig remembers receiving his degree vividly. “A beautiful spring day, short sleeves, sunny. May 26th, 1967. It was in Seagram Stadium [now University Stadium], but outdoors on the football field,” he recalls. The day was also special because of some firsts: Roehrig was the first in his family to attend university, and also part of the first class to graduate with the newly conceived Bachelor of Mathematics, from the freshly established Faculty of Mathematics.

and classmates and people that you live with. My best, strongest friendships I ever had, I made at St. Jerome’s,” he adds. After his time at the University, Maloney went on to a postgraduate degree in journalism at Humber College. He was then hired at the Peterborough Examiner before landing at the London Free Press, where he’s spent the last 14 years rising through the ranks. He’s been a city hall reporter since 2010. “It’s demanding, but it’s also really fun and really interesting,” says Maloney about working as a journalist. “People open up to you in ways that they never would if you weren’t a reporter. It’s such a privilege,” he says. As part of a team that won a National Newspaper Award in 2010 for the coverage of the Tori Stafford murder, Maloney has also won Ontario Newspaper Awards, and more recently covered scandals at London’s city hall, including the criminal charges against its former mayor. Equal to the high-profile stories, Maloney likes to write the “nuts and bolts” stories on topics like funding for affordable housing. “More than anything, it’s just the feeling that you are helping people understand their city, or one component of their city, a little bit better,” he says.

He also appreciated the opportunity to be in a community of faith. “I took religious education courses every year and I found those to be, from a life standpoint, very engaging for me. We had a chance, not only, at the University, to grow in a lot of ways academic, but it also gave me a chance to grow in my spiritual life as well,” he recalls. Other factors made the year pivotal as well. “1967 was a banner year for me. It was the centennial year, so all kinds of celebrations were going on. I graduated, of course, and that was the year I started teaching. It was also the year that my wife Olga and I got married,” he says. Later, the couple had two children, Natalie UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 11


and Christopher (both of whom went on to attend the University of Waterloo, with Christopher also at St. Jerome’s University), and now has three grandchildren as well. After graduating, Roehrig started teaching mathematics at St. David Catholic Secondary School in Waterloo, where he stayed until 1993, eventually taking on the role of vice principal and principal. After that, he taught at St. Benedict Catholic Secondary School in Cambridge and moving on to the St. Louis Adult Learning Centre until he officially retired. He then began working part time for the Waterloo

JOHN SHEWCHUK (BA ’86) Born and raised in Kitchener, John Shewchuk counts his Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Jerome’s University (and MA in history from the University of Waterloo) as the pinnacle of an educational trajectory through the local Catholic school system. Now he’s returned as a senior executive in that system, as Chief Managing Officer of the Waterloo Catholic District School Board. Shewchuk has regularly been called on by St. Jerome’s University to speak to students about the value of an arts degree, and proudly complies. His career path exemplifies that potential: he’s worked for an Ontario MPP, at an advertising agency, and for 11 years at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs before joining the school board in 2001. As Chief Managing Officer, Shewchuk is in charge of the board’s public communications — which includes serving as chief spokesperson — and several other responsibilities, including emergency preparedness and accessibility compliance.

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A significant St. Jerome’s University memory comes from his first day as a university student when he


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Catholic District School Board for another nine years. He was even current St. Jerome’s University president Dr. Katherine Bergman’s high school math teacher. Roehrig says he still has affectionate memories of St. Jerome’s University: of the sense of community, of playing intramural hockey, and of some excellent mentors and professors, naming several without hesitation. He also keeps in touch with many classmates. “I made some lifelong friends, people that I have kept in touch with all my life,” he says.

watched a professor silently fill the board with names of important Canadian history texts, suggesting that students should try to read all of them. “To say I was intimidated was probably putting it mildly,” recalls Shewchuk. The irony? “Professor McLaughlin, Ken, became a mentor to me and to this day is a very great friend,” he adds. Shewchuk even ended up assisting the professor on a number of books over the years. Shewchuk also appreciated the intimacy and collegiality at his alma mater, even as a nonresident student. “People seemed more open, more participatory,” he says. “The professors would really go out of their way to take time one on one with you. When the classes are small and you’re hanging out in the coffee shop, you get to really know people,” he says. Full circle back to Kitchener, Shewchuk is married and has a daughter in her early twenties. He also volunteers in the community, including as past chair of the Waterloo Region Crime Prevention Council, and works with several local charities and participates in community initiatives. He says his campus experience gave rise to this great variety in his life. “St. Jerome’s University fit my personality and fit my outlook on the world. It positioned me to be able to go out and do the things that I’ve been able to do.”

MAKING THE CASE FOR LIBERAL ARTS RECRUITMMENT AND ENROLMENT GOLD WINNING RECRUITMENT BROCHURES SHOWCASE THE UNIVERSITY’S STORY Over the 2016 Christmas break, Jay Smith, Manager of Recruitment and Admissions, was in the middle of busy holiday festivities with his family when it suddenly dawned on him: He hadn’t received news about which schools had won the Council for Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) awards.

Smith had a vested interest in the results. For the first time since he’d started working at St. Jerome’s University six years before, the University had submitted two student recruitment brochures for the CASE District II Accolades Awards — St. Jerome’s University Admissions 2016 and Your St. Jerome’s Journey: From Pin to Ring and Beyond. UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 13


CHANGING TIMES The CASE win is an indication that St. Jerome’s University is doing something right too.

Earlier that year, Smith, Sue Brubacher (then Registrar and now Director of Alumni Development), and their team worked for two weeks — with help from the Office of Student Success, Office of Student Experience, and Campus Ministry — on the submission package. They pulled together information that ranged from itemized project budgets to quotes from St. Jerome’s University students. Even though Smith and Brubacher were proud of their work, they didn’t expect to win. The competition is fierce, given that they were up against potentially hundreds of Canadian and United States institutions in their allocated district.

“Honestly, we thought, ‘Wouldn’t it be just great if we get an honourable mention just to say we’re on the right track?’” Smith says now. Instead, validation came in the colour gold. Smith admits that, with Christmas celebrations in full swing, he completely forgot to check the results online. So he was as surprised as anyone when he received word from Brubacher a couple of days later that the brochures hadn’t just placed, but they won the big prize.

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“I get this text from Sue, ‘Whoo-hoo! We won! We got gold! Can you believe it?’ ” says Smith, laughing. “It was really exciting because we certainly weren’t expecting that at all. The award was so validating for us — our peers recognized the quality of what we’re doing.”

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As tens of thousands of Canadian students are increasingly moving away from the liberal arts at the post-secondary level — a trend that started over a decade ago — many universities and liberal arts colleges in North America are struggling to draw young adults to courses without a strong science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) focus. Statistics Canada data showed a six per cent enrolment drop in programs such as English, languages, and history in 2015. “The trends are clear,” says Dr. Scott Kline, Vice President Academic and Dean. “There are headwinds for those of us who are in liberal arts, and especially those of us with traditional humanities programs.” Part of that drop can also be attributed to changing demographics — a decline in the university-aged population certainly doesn’t help. But many university students have also moved away from liberal arts and humanities degrees because of career concerns. STEM degrees, it is believed, equal well-paying jobs. While there is some truth to that belief, a study by the Education Policy Research Initiative in Ottawa claims that students who take social sciences and humanities enjoy more career stability. They avoid the booms and busts of the technical professions. They also enjoy healthy career advancement over the years and actually fare quite well when it comes to lifetime earnings.

BUCKING THE TRENDS Making a pro-liberal arts career point hasn’t been a priority, however, when communicating with prospective St. Jerome’s University students at school liaison visits or at the fall Open House. The University is focusing more on what it offers — a holistic education that fosters critical thinking, personal support, leadership opportunities, rigorous academic standards, and a sense of belonging — rather than a direct path to specific jobs. For those efforts, the University has actually seen a surprising increase in enrolment numbers.

“The last couple of years have been record years for us, recruiting students into honours arts. The last two incoming classes have been our largest in our history,” explains Kline. That uptick can be attributed to the energy, hours, and focus St. Jerome’s University professors and staff have given to the task of creating a university experience that appeals to students seeking a vibrant academic community and challenging but supportive co-curricular opportunities.

are unhappy or disillusioned by October, retention drops. “When I’m allowed to focus on more specific, targeted groups who we know are going to be successful here, we actually do better. The students who come here enjoy it — and they refer us to others like them. It’s a pretty good cycle,” he says. Since those early days, recruiting has changed. It now hones in on prospective students who want something different from their university experience than what larger institutions can give. Smith calls them “traditionalists,” who know that career is important, but they’re not necessarily going to university to prepare for one career. They want to focus on their education, but also explore, knowing they have options when they graduate. All academically registered St. Jerome’s University students are co-registered in the Faculty of Arts at the University of Waterloo. They have access to all the facilities, activities, and courses offered on the main campus “across the creek.” Kline says, “St. Jerome’s University adds value to the University of Waterloo because we complement what they do. We are attempting to bring students to the Waterloo campus who would not otherwise come here.”

To attract these students, St. Jerome’s University has had to define clearly, what its strengths are. Smith remembers talking to prospects back when he first started his job and trying to convince them to choose St. Jerome’s University over competitors such as Wilfrid Laurier University or the University of Guelph. Without a clear understanding of how St. Jerome’s University was different, he felt he was casting the net too wide. “We would talk to people, ask what they were interested in and say, ‘Yep, we can do that!’” he remembers. “Then another student would be looking for something totally different and we’d say, ‘Yep, we can do that too.’” That tactic never works long term. It’s easy enough to attract, say, 400 new students by offering them the moon, says Smith, but if many of those same students

“Many of our students are looking for a close-knit community and a supportive academic environment,” says Kline. “These students tend to like the academic options of a large research university but some may feel that they’re going to get lost. St. Jerome’s



University offers all the advantages of being on a large campus, but we also provide a supportive community to help launch students in any number of directions.”

LEARNING TO WRITE, WRITING TO LEARN In a way, creating the two recruiting brochures actually helped solidify Smith and Brubacher’s understanding of St. Jerome’s University’s identity. Writing the text meant Smith needed to understand the school inside and out. It also meant taking the brave step of moving a little way out of the University of Waterloo’s shadow and changing the look, tone, and feel of the St. Jerome’s University brochures. The team wanted to tell the St. Jerome’s University story using its own voice, rather than being seen as a tag-a-long for the University of Waterloo. Breaking free meant the team didn’t feel limited.

“We took a step back,” says Smith. “We said, ‘Let’s stand up for who we are. We need to develop a message that is confident and promotes our identity.’” Creating the new look required changing and tweaking everything from layout and font choices to writing style and even paper stock. The brochures discuss what it actually feels like to be a student at St. Jerome’s University rather than focusing on career outcomes. “It gets referred to as being a little bit ‘campy’ looking, but we’re OK with that,” says Smith, explaining that the brochure headers are all in a font called 3D, which is often found on overnight camp brochures. The craft paper has a trendy, but down-to-earth, feel to it too. “I think that’s what we’re actually going for. We wanted to connect with our students.”

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It seems to be working. Back in 2015, when the first incarnation of the brochures were released, the team conducted focus groups at high schools. Some already


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knew about St. Jerome’s University. Others did not. After flipping through the brochures, they soon spoke up and expressed their opinions on what the school must be like. “They could give us a description of St. Jerome’s University’s space based on just a quick flip through the brochure,” Smith says. They also threw out some words to describe the school based on what they saw in the pages. Community. Support. Comfort. Fun. Leadership. Belonging. All of these words came rushing out. “There was even the word, ‘adventurous,’” says Smith. “That wasn’t one we’d ever heard before about St. Jerome’s University.”

KNOWING OUR AUDIENCE The CASE win is even sweeter for Smith and Brubacher because of their ability to create the brochures on a much smaller budget than some larger schools allocate. They believe their hands-on approach to writing the brochure’s content is a key to its success — it conveys the message of engaging prospective students where they are, fully understanding their challenges, concerns, and hopes that go along with a university education. “Our recruiting success is a good indication that we know who our students are and who our audience is. That comes from the fact that we’re the ones involved at every level,” he says. Ultimately, although Smith is the first to admit that the team’s prize-winning recruitment brochures aren’t the sole reason for the new increase in enrolments — that can be attributed to a coordinated team effort – they haven’t hurt. They have certainly helped staff internalize the St. Jerome’s University message and identity. In fact, every time he grabs a stack of the new brochures for a school visit, he’s reminded of how far St. Jerome’s University has come in terms of establishing and conveying our individuality and telling our story. All he has to do is take a sniff.

“When I first open up a fresh box there is a smell. It’s the type of paper we use,” he explains. “It’s a unique smell, and it’s different from the main campus brochures — but in a complementary way,” Smith says with a smile.



What does it take to create a lasting body of work as a researcher, specialist, and professor? Years — or make that decades — of following an inspired idea and never letting it go. Whether they are uncovering the truth behind dads and breastfeeding, the connection between William Blake and lead singer Jim Morrison of The Doors, or pushing boundaries for Chaucer enthusiasts, these St. Jerome’s University professors make the grade.


NORM KLASSEN GETS TO THE HEART OF THE CANTERBURY TALES Anyone who has ever read Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales will likely remember it for its bawdiness: anger, gossip, revelry, and drunkenness are prominent themes that provide grittiness to the tales. Readers may also recall its free-flowing language, written in rhyming couplets and in iambic pentameter (10 syllables per line), which meant that Chaucer sometimes had to turn sentences around to make them work. Widely considered to be one of the most important works in English literature, it’s often taught in a way that highlights those worldly — and oh, so human — traits and deeds.

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Dr. Norm Klassen, a professor of English literature and a Chaucer expert, believes there’s much more to The Canterbury Tales than the mundane stories told by pilgrims making their way from London to the Shrine of Saint Thomas Beckett in Canterbury. Instead of focusing on traditional readings, which typically

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provide insight to political and social conventions in 14th-century England, Klassen reads The Canterbury Tales as a work of Christian theology. “Look, if you’re going to treat this guy seriously, you’ve got to treat him like he’s a Christian poet,” says Klassen. “He’s a Christian theologian. He’s thinking something through in Christian terms.” Written between 1387 and Chaucer’s death in 1400, The Canterbury Tales tells the story of 30 pilgrims — including Chaucer as narrator — who meet at the Tabard Inn on the south side of the Thames, just outside medieval London. It is springtime and they’re set to make the three- or four-day journey to Canterbury. To pass the time, the group has a storytelling contest, with each person expected to tell two stories there and back, or 120 in total. Only 24 were written. The collection is generally believed to be incomplete.

Yet that idea of enduring togetherness, despite arguments, anger, and failures, is at the very heart of Christianity and its view of freedom — when trust leads to flourishing. Pope Francis himself said in 2014, “It is true that walking together is challenging, and at times can be tiring: it can happen that some brother or some sister creates difficulties, or shocks us. ... But the Lord entrusted his message of salvation to a few human beings, to us all, to a few witnesses; and it is in our brothers and in our sisters, with their gifts and limitations, that he comes to meet us and make himself known. And this is what it means to belong to the Church.”

Klassen has spent decades considering how readers and researchers alike might think about Chaucer’s works, by not merely merging his interests in literature and theology, but also by looking at the work of art as theology. His new book, The Fellowship of the Beatific Vision, examines what it is to overcome tyranny and oppression. Part of the solution is not found in the actual tales, he believes, but in the idea of pilgrimage itself. Pilgrimage — a journey to a sacred place or shrine and often with other people — is a religious symbol meant to convey the idea of seeking God by making a journey through time to eternity. “Pilgrimage is an important symbol. That’s a pretty basic idea for the book — and it’s an idea we have increasingly stopped talking about,” he says, explaining that some recent research espouses the notion that Chaucer was actually satirizing pilgrimage.

Klassen admits it took him about 10 years to start the book and write the introduction — he is quick to add that the delay was not due to an epic case of writer’s block. He knew his work would push boundaries and he was not sure how a book like The Fellowship of the Beatific Vision would be received. It turns out, very well; the book recently took third place in the Association of Catholic Publishers Excellence in Publishing Award. “How do I have this conversation with fellow Chaucerians who don’t accept my premise and who are not interested in the Christian narrative? Who think it’s retrograde and trying to turn the clock back?” he says. “At the end of the day I just had to say, ‘Bag it. This is how I read it.’” While some readers believe Chaucer is less interested in the beatific vision than in worldly pursuits and that the tales are far more important than the journey, Klassen believes there’s room for exploration. “For my money, all I’m trying to do is invite readers into a reading that takes seriously the symbolic possibility,” he says.




TRISTANNE CONNOLLY EXPLORES THE WIDE WORLD OF WILLIAM BLAKE Poet. Painter. Bookmaker. Deep thinker. These are just some of the creative pursuits William Blake is now known for today. For Dr. Tristanne Connolly, Professor of English at St. Jerome’s University, it’s that interplay between art, culture, design, and philosophy that has kept her spellbound, and willing to spend decades researching and specializing in his work. “He lends himself to very exciting multidisciplinary approaches. If you’re talking about the creative process and print culture — everything involved in making books — he’s a fascinatingly unusual figure,” she explains. Despite the fact that Blake was born in London about 200 years before Connolly, one might argue that they actually have a love of free-flowing and seemingly divergent interests in common. Not only has Connolly written a book, William Blake and the Body, but she has also edited essay collections with titles that range from Sexy Blake to the recently published Canadian Music and American Culture: Get Away From Me with Dr. Tomoyuki Iino, an English literature professor at Sophia University in Tokyo. Connolly is a poetry editor for The New Quarterly and co-organizes the Canada Council-supported visiting writers series at St. Jerome’s University, The Reading Series.

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The Latin phrase et cetera may be the best way to describe her work.

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Although Blake is best known as a canonical poet now, he was known more as an engraver and illustrator of books during his lifetime. His wife, Catherine, helped him print and colour his illuminated poetry, giving us


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the iconic “The Ancient of Days,” the frontispiece for his book, Europe: a Prophecy, engraved on 18 plates. Only 13 known copies exist. Connolly, who is now at the final stages of co-editing a new collection of essays about Blake and animals, says his work resonates with contemporary artists, writers, and musicians of previous decades and today. Bob Dylan. Allen Ginsberg and “Howl.” Tangerine Dream and Tyger. Philip Pullman maintains that Blake influenced the His Dark Materials trilogy. The Golden Compass author, as President of the Blake Society, has been heavily involved in saving and preserving Blake’s cottage in Felpham on the Sussex coast. Connolly herself has written about the connection between Blake and Jim Morrison, lead singer of the psychedelic rock band The Doors, in the essay collection, Blake 2.0: William Blake in TwentiethCentury Art, Music and Culture. The band took its name from “the doors of perception,” a phrase found in Blake’s engraved poem, The Marriage of Heaven and Hell. She believes his illuminated books can even be seen as a precursor to comic books and graphic novels. “When I teach the superhero course here at St. Jerome’s University, we talk about Blake. We talk about word and image together,” she says, “and Blake’s works interweave text and design as thoroughly and excitingly as the most innovative graphic novels today.” In a roundabout way, Blake has even been instrumental in introducing Connolly and her research to Japan, where she is a Visiting Fellow at the Institute of American and Canadian Studies at Sophia University. She knew her colleague from University of Tokyo, Dr. Stephen Clark, because they had both completed their PhDs on Blake at Cambridge University years ago. They still co-edit collections and were both on the organizing committee for an international travel writing symposium that took place in November 2017, in Tokyo.

She says being a Canadian cultural ambassador in a country where excellent work is being done on English literature is fulfilling — and eye-opening. At one point during a talk that presented a survey of Canadian literature, she could not understand why no one in the room seemed to know the book Anne of Green Gables. They did not perk up until she started explaining the plot. It turned out that in Japan, the

book is named Akage no An (Anne of the Red Hair or Red Haired Anne). Yet even far from home, Connolly’s mind isn’t far from Blake, and the support she receives from St. Jerome’s University allows her to follow her research wherever it might lead. “It’s an ongoing process,” she says of her research. “It’s a whole sequence of surprises.” UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 21



“As soon as somebody tries to take control of us, we reassert our own sense of autonomy,” he says. “It’s really important for us to be able to do things on our own.”

Fathers! Learn everything there is to know about breastfeeding. Be a cheerleader. Encourage nursing past your baby’s first six months.

Rempel likens the parenting team approach to playing a game of doubles badminton. Not only does winning depend on coordination and communication between the two players, but both have to be flexible enough to pitch in whenever needed regardless of their individual strengths and weaknesses.


Many of us might assume this is what it would take for a father to have a positive impact on the amount of time a mother breastfeeds their baby. We’ve heard the experts on the importance of breastfeeding. The World Health Organization recommends that mothers exclusively breastfeed infants for the child’s first six months to achieve optimal growth, development, and health. Breastfeeding beyond six months is recommended, especially in developing nations, as breast milk contains antibodies that help babies fight off viruses and bacteria. There have even been positive links made between breastfeeding and brain development. So, supportive fathers mean longer breastfeeding and healthier babies, right? Well, it’s not that simple. At one point, Dr. John Rempel, St. Jerome’s University Professor of Psychology, made that leap too. He and his wife, Dr. Lynn Rempel, a professor in nursing at Brock University, have studied the father’s involvement in supporting breastfeeding in places as far away as Botswana and Vietnam. There was only one problem with the hypothesis, he discovered. “Surprisingly, some types of father involvement were associated with the mother breastfeeding for a shorter time,” says Rempel.

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It turns out that in some cases having a “too” supportive and involved spouse or partner reduces the woman’s sense of independence and efficacy. She pushes back.

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“You don’t have the luxury of saying, ‘I’m a specialist and I don’t deal with that part at all,’” he explains. Rempel also likens it to a strong badminton match: one player cannot take over the game. Both have to trust each other and hold back if their partner has the play under control. The concept is the same for involved dads who want to help support breastfeeding during those first precious months and years of their children’s lives. In North America, research has shown that when fathers are appropriately involved in the lives of their children and family, the children do better socially, intellectually, cognitively, and emotionally. Rempel wanted to explore this concept further in other countries. Working with his wife and research colleagues in Vietnam at the Hanoi School of Public Health, the team secured a $270,000 grant from the Saving Brains program, an initiative of Grand Challenges Canada funded by the federal government, to promote breastfeeding and father involvement. Vietnam was an interesting country in which to conduct the research, as many fathers are still expected to act in traditional ways — as breadwinner, remote and uninvolved in child care. Even so, more contemporary fathers were looking to challenge that and change their own roles. Breastfeeding was used as the way to gauge the fathers’ involvement in support of mothers as it is a very defined behaviour in which fathers play a supporting role. It has a clear beginning and end. And there’s a behavior outcome too.

“You can do some fairly rigorous research in a comparatively short period of time,” says Rempel. Partnering Vietnamese health professionals made home visits to observe fathers’ involvement in support of the mothers. The project included the creation of “fathers’ clubs,” to encourage fathers to interact more often with their children. Hospital training sessions were also held for the new fathers. Rempel remembers hearing stories about midwives and nurses handing newborns to dads right after birth. Some men simply could not believe they would be the first person to hold their own child. Traditionally,

fathers were expected to stand back. “They could immediately start to connect with their infant,” says Rempel. “But we’re not asking fathers to do something they don’t want to do. We’re giving them permission to do something they would like to do from the get-go.” Instead of exclusively standing back — or, the alternate, being too supportive — Rempel says, “Be aware, communicate, coordinate, respond when needed — and otherwise stay out of the way and trust mom to handle it.” UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 23


Beyond the Suffering of Being: Desire in Giacomo Leopardi and Samuel Beckett

Dr. John Greenwood

Reading the Humanities: How I Lost My Modernity

Dr. Norm Klassen

The Fellowship of the Beatific Vision: Chaucer on Overcoming Tyranny and Becoming Ourselves

Dr. P. Whitney Lackenbauer and Peter Kikkert, Eds.

Lessons in Northern Operations: Canadian Army Documents, 1945-1956. Documents on Canadian Arctic Sovereignty and Security, Volume 7

Dr. P. Whitney Lackenbauer and Ryan Dean, Eds.

Canada’s Northern Strategy under Prime Minister Stephen Harper: Key Speeches and Documents on Sovereignty, Security, and Governance, 2005-15. Documents on Canadian Arctic Sovereignty and Security, Volume 6

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Dr. Myroslaw Tataryn and Maria Truchan-Tataryn

Ukrainian translation of Discovering Trinity in Disability: A Theology for Embracing Difference

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Pantone Green: 343c

NOMINATIONS OR EXPRESSIONS OF INTEREST FOR THE BOARD OF GOVERNORS, ST. JEROME’S UNIVERSITY St. Jerome’s University is seeking volunteers to fill upcoming vacancies on our Board of Governors.


Successful candidates will advise, govern, oversee policy and direction, and assist with the leadership and promotion of St. Jerome’s University, its mission and vision. The Board encourages applications from individuals with a wide range of experience, especially in White educational institutions, working with federated and areas related to finance and/or human resources.

The University respects, appreciates, and encourages diversity. Applications from all qualified individuals are encouraged. Interested individuals should send a letter of introduction that highlights their reason for seeking membership on our Board and an up-to-date résumé by email to Kierra Cali, administrative support to the Board of Governors, | 519-884-8111 x28237

Situated in the heart of the University of Waterloo campus, St. Jerome’s University is a public Roman Catholic university federated with the University of Waterloo. As a publicly funded institution, our multi-cultural community welcomes individuals from all faith traditions and backgrounds.



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Just months after becoming the 23rd Prime Minister of Canada, the Right Honourable Justin Trudeau made headlines for explaining the basics of quantum computing to a crowd of unsuspecting journalists. It was no coincidence that Mr. Trudeau was on the University of Waterloo campus when he launched into his 90-second mini-lecture. Waterloo is globally renowned for its quantum research, both at the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics and the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC), and with St. Jerome’s University alumnus Dr. Michele Mosca (BMath ’95) helping to found both these institutes, we are proud to have played a part in that success. During its June 2017 graduation ceremony, St. Jerome’s University was honoured to present Mosca with the prestigious Fr. Noam Choate, C.R., Lifetime Achievement Award, the highest level of recognition for extraordinary accomplishments in a graduate’s professional life. With no slight intended to Mr. Trudeau, who actually did an admirable job of describing quantum computing, Mosca is a world authority who has helped create the framework for the exploration of the field. In fact, he is both a cofounder of ICQ, and a founding member of Perimeter. Mosca arrived at St. Jerome’s in 1990 on the heels of being awarded a national bronze medal in the Descartes Mathematics Contest. Mentored by the late Dr. Scott Vanstone, a St. Jerome’s University mathematician and leader in the then emerging field of cryptography, Mosca completed his undergraduate at the University, earning a Bachelor of Mathematics. While on campus, Mosca saw the importance of the liberal arts as a framework for viewing the world and our place in it, including the ability to envision how disparate ideas could be linked, overlapped, and put into focus. How did Mosca become captivated by the unravelling of such complex, puzzling ideas? During graduate work at Oxford University, he encountered quantum computing. The appeal of defining the fundamentals of cybersecurity broke through his initial skepticism, and his timing was good — he was able to work with pioneers in this exciting new field. Keeping a

long-distance eye on their former student, Vanstone and other researchers associated with a fledgling cryptography centre at Waterloo were inspired to invite Mosca to form a quantum-computing group. His joint-hire position involved teaching combinatorics and optimization for the University of Waterloo, but it was the people at St. Jerome’s University who went out on a limb to offer the tenure-track position that enticed him away from Oxford. “I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for St. Jerome’s University,” he says. His pathway next led him to help establish the Perimeter Institute and the IQC and to become a driving force in developing what he calls the Canadian “Quantum Valley.” While serving as a Canada Research Chair at the University, he was encouraged to follow his vision. Recollecting his early years as a faculty member at St. Jerome’s University, he says, “There was appreciation and recognition that it was also my role to have an impact in all of these other places. It’s one of the things St. Jerome’s University does — to have a positive effect beyond its borders. So I do think that even though St. Jerome’s University wasn’t directly involved in the founding of only one of these knowledge centres, it’s appropriate that their part [in the field overall] is well known.”

LEADERSHIP INCUBATION Mosca remembers St. Jerome’s University as something of an undergraduate leadership incubator. “There’ve been so many role models — countless examples of situations where people said ‘okay’ and took a leadership role — either at Waterloo, or nationally and internationally. Whether it’s introducing elliptic curve cryptography or Beyond Borders or starting new programs or even co-founding the University of Waterloo, time and time again St. Jerome’s University has stepped up and effected change far beyond its own walls. I guess I grew up seeing that again and again, so that when I realized there were opportunities beyond my own personal research, I had plenty of role models to refer to as inspiration, and for guidance and support.”



The value he places on nurturing the next generation echoes St. Jerome’s University’s values. He counts among his most satisfying accomplishments his mentorship of students, paying tribute to their success: “Some are in academia, some are in industry, some are in government now, and they’re all having a huge, very beneficial impact on the world.” If he catches a glimpse of his influence, he sees it as passing along the personal care and direction he received from his own supervisors. He identifies many of his achievements as the kickstart to initiatives that persist without his subsequent involvement: the graduate program, the quantum cryptography summer school for high school students, and other efforts to excite young people about math and physics. “I get them off the ground and then watch others take them to new heights. I like to plant trees that will bear fruit for a long time to come.”

COLLABORATIVE COMMUNICATION His global perspective and commitment to addressing human and political considerations are evidence of a multifaceted outlook that transcends technical considerations. “The main philosophy at St. Jerome’s University is educating the whole person and you witness that in many ways. It’s somewhat reflected in how I do my work. Even though most of it is very technical, l also think about things such as how we can collectively do this better.” Viewing quantum computing as holistic and interdisciplinary, he seeks breakthrough avenues for protecting and rebuilding cyber infrastructure to ensure the world’s safe enjoyment of its benefits. “We want to see these tools have a positive impact on society, so there’s a lot of work to be done there. The hard part is typically not the technical aspect but often the social and human side of those challenges. How do we get a community of people from different backgrounds and interests to agree on a way that they can together accomplish something that’s greater than the sum of the parts? I’ve spent a lot of time trying to

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reach out to the people involved in the non-technical side of what needs to happen. To find out where they’re coming from and how we can work together to get the message out — whether that’s talking with companies or governments or standards agencies.”

VISIONARY ALTRUISM What is he working on right now? “There’s actually a bigger opportunity that I’m trying to champion.” He compares the Internet to a house whose construction evolved based on an unplanned and therefore inadequate foundation. “You’re not just going to go ahead and rebuild the foundation because you’re living in it and it’s far too disruptive and not worth the money and effort involved in a long, uncomfortable transition. For all sorts of political, social, human, and business reasons, we just never get around to it until something really bad happens to provide the political will. A colleague likes to say that it’s much easier to sell people pain killers when they’re in pain than to sell them preventive measures.” Applying this analogy to quantum-safe cryptography, he sees a historically unique situation, calling it a bit of a fluke that the problem was discovered decades before its effect will be felt. “We actually have a chance not only to avert the collapse of our systems but actually to rebuild the foundations in a very disciplined, methodical way and make them stronger than was previously possible. So I really want to urge the world to take advantage of this opportunity.” Remarkably, a classic definition of quantum offers a fitting description of Mosca: “a discrete quantity of energy proportional in magnitude to the frequency of the radiation it represents.” He is certainly a past and present quantity of energy to be reckoned with, and the magnitude and brilliance of his achievements reflect the enormity of their significance for our future. Identifying his current positions requires a nine-line table — and those are just in Waterloo. He reaches out worldwide to advise governments and industry, and to establish international associations and conferences.

Praised as “an exceptional scientist and a remarkable young leader,” he has received prestigious recognition: inclusion in both Waterloo Region’s and Canada’s Top 40 Under 40, the Premier’s Research Excellence Award, Fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, Canada Research Chair in Quantum Computation, and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal.

“I get them off the ground and then watch others take them to new heights. I like to plant trees that will bear fruit for a long time to come.”

Successful graduates are often referred to as shining stars, but Mosca might more appropriately be compared to a cyber knight. He is committed to guiding us safely through the dark passages in unknown computing territory. He is leading the charge to protect our information-dependent society from the potential perils of the quantum age. And at his disposal is an arsenal of cross-disciplinary skills that extend well beyond the technical; skills underpinned by critical thinking and spiritual understanding.


SERVICE LEARNING TAKES THE CLASSROOM OUT INTO THE WO RLD Imagine you’re rumbling down rural roads in Peru — and suddenly your bus breaks down. What would you do? Panic and call home, or pull together with fellow riders to come up with a plan? This is the type of scenario St. Jerome’s University professors and staff have been addressing this past year as they revamp SJU in Peru, an 18-day, international service learning program where students broaden their horizons to understand global, environmental, socio-economic, political, and cultural issues beyond the classroom. The experiential program places students side by side with partners in Lima, Chiclayo, and Cusco, working at coffee co-operatives and women’s shelters, while gaining a deeper understanding of their perceptions of the world. As part of the recent overhaul, the seven-year-old program now includes an academic component.

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“This is providing academic credit and academic structure around the experience as a way to really enhance their education,” says Bess Mitchell, Outreach Programs Coordinator. “It’s equally important as the service and reflection piece our students use to dig deep into these experiences.”

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SJU in Peru’s academic leanings follow in the footsteps of other service learning programs at St. Jerome’s University, such as Beyond Borders, an academically centered international experience that consists of two half-credit courses and a 90-day placement abroad for upper-year students. The University’s newer local social justice service learning program, Encounter•KW, also allows students to get academic credit for work — classes, readings, and writing a research paper — completed outside the experience. Mitchell explains that once the Encounter•KW academic structure was in place, it was time to introduce the model to SJU in Peru. The timing was right, says Kyle Scholz, Faculty Liaison at the Centre for Teaching Excellence, who helped facilitate the process of turning the Peru experience into an academic program. As part of this process, academic staff work with students, guiding them on how to become more resilient in adverse situations on the road. Planning meant rethinking the program to ensure success for the next group. Now, students have an expanded predeparture experience that helps them understand their perceptions, introduces them to diverse ideas so they have a better sense of what to expect in Peru — and how to support each other while there. “By having more long-lasting, meaningful relationships with one another, you have a community of trust built in,” says Scholz. “If you don’t know what to do in adverse situations, you at least know you can count on one another.” The final course assignment is not simply an exploration of thoughts and feelings about the trip either, but requires further research about a social justice issue in Peru as well as in the KitchenerWaterloo area.

but are also serving locally. Recently, they participated in the Saturday Suppers at Stirling Mennonite Church, where they helped to host and serve a meal for the community, especially those who may not have sustainable access to food. They also read works written by Pope Francis about the culture of encounter.

“Sometimes we don’t even recognize there are people around us who are struggling. So we’re looking at these local issues and inviting students to imagine what poverty means — because they are going to encounter poverty in Peru,” she says. “The academic component brings depth to the critical thinking that’s going on.” Honing the ability to critically analyze experiences is one of the main goals of any successful service learning program at St. Jerome’s University. “What doesn’t work is going abroad and feeling like they’re on a type of tourism holiday. That’s not what our students are doing,” says Dr. Scott Kline, Vice President Academic and Dean. He has been a champion for incorporating an academic component into the already rigorous service learning experiences. While the community-based experience is an education in itself, by combining classroom and fieldwork for credit, St. Jerome’s University offers an education that will have a lifelong impact on each student. “They are put in some difficult situations, but we provide support while they’re there to help them think through what they’re facing,” Kline says. “We put students in places where they experience firsthand what community development looks like on the ground.”

Dr. Cristina Vanin, Associate Dean and a professor in the Department of Religious Studies, is co-creating the academic components. She says students are not only studying indigenous issues in Canada and Peru, UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 31

GRADUATES RETURN HOME A HAPPY HOMECOMING Dr. Toni Serafini (‘93) and Glen Lombard (‘06) are two grads who were so impacted by their time as students at St. Jerome’s University that they came back to build careers at the university. Serafini is currently a professor in the Department of Sexuality, Marriage, and Family Studies (SMF), a department where she has historically served as Chair, and Lombard was Director of the Office of Student Experience for many years. They may have taken different pathways, but both demonstrate how a life started at the University can come full circle.

GLEN LOMBARD Lombard’s path to his position as Director of St. Jerome’s Office of Student Experience started back in the second year of his undergrad, when he got into residence. In some ways, you could say he got in and never left; and vice versa. His stay led to a summer job working in the residence office for two summers. After graduation with a Bachelor of Arts degree in political science (he recently added to that education with a Masters of Design in Strategic Foresight and Innovation from OCAD University), he took a contract as a Liaison Officer recruiting high schools to the University. Breaking away to work as a graphic designer in Toronto for a year, he landed back at Waterloo, at St. Jerome’s University. Lombard also met his wife Karen at the University, when they were both student leaders in second year. They now have two children.

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To Lombard, many elements at the University have remained consistent since his undergrad days. “The type of student that we attract is really not all that different than the type of student that I was in my first year, eager to do something, invest yourself in your education and your work,” says Lombard. “There was something more to St. Jerome’s that made it unique. From meaningful conversations with faculty and staff to dinnertime conversations with peers that went well past the dinner hour. People were interested in talking about the things that really mattered in the world.” But he adds that physically the campus has grown significantly. “Our footprint has doubled since our campus renewal started, and no part of this facility has been untouched in that whole process. It looks very different than it did when I was a student here,” he says.

Lombard says he likes his job for the diversity of the work. As Director of Student Experience, Lombard is responsible for ancillary operations, student life and leadership, and St. Jerome’s social justice programs, including the Beyond Borders program, SJU in Peru, and other local initiatives. He also valued the atmosphere. “I’ve heard students say it’s not just a place, it’s a feeling,” he says, and although Lombard left the University in a professional capacity this year, he continues to be very much a part of its culture, “I think that really resonates with me because it felt like an important a second home.”

“I’ve heard students say it’s not just a place, it’s a feeling. I think that really resonates with me because it felt like an important a second home.” UPDATE MAGAZINE, VOLUME 35 | 33


TONI SERAFINI Her first memory of St. Jerome’s University is of having the Registrar reassure her parents that she would be nurtured. “He said, ‘Don’t you worry, we’re going to take really good care of her,’ and my mom was so relieved,” recalls Serafini. In many ways, this moment is representative of her entire experience and the attitude she herself takes, imparting that personal touch with her own students. People have been the most important element of her St. Jerome’s University experience, especially the professors who taught her as an undergraduate psychology major, “Drs. John Theis and [the late] John Orlando were my mentors. I called them ‘my two Johns’. Even after graduating we stayed in touch, and they were paramount in my decision to pursue graduate studies in a clinical field.” A third John, Dr. John Rempel, provided her with her first post-undergrad research experience — including a conference presentation and publication — and is now her colleague at the University. These people and relationships all set the stage for her current career as a therapist, instructor, and researcher. After exploring clinical placements through the University of Waterloo’s co-op program, Serafini completed her Master of Science in Couple and Family

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Therapy and then doctorate in Family Relations and Human Development at the University of Guelph. Inspired by her experiences with St. Jerome’s University faculty, she realized she also wanted to teach. “I taught my first course and I was hooked,” recalls Serafini. “I love the students. I love the interaction.” After working as a contract academic staff member (then known as a sessional lecturer) — which led to a definite-term appointment — Serafini secured a tenure-track position in SMF. She has been a permanent part of the University since 2009, and a department chair for the past five years. She is also a Registered Psychotherapist; maintains a small clinical practice; and conducts research on identity, relationships, and sexuality. While she found it strange at first to be in meetings with faculty she first met when she was a student, it was also exhilarating. “Now I’m at the table with them, making decisions about the University and student experiences. It’s exciting and humbling,” she says. While the atmosphere feels similar to her

undergraduate days, she is also glad to see growth and changes, such as more activities and a dedicated space for non-residence students. Serafini says that what she remembers receiving as a student is what she now tries to give as a professor: staying in touch with students and taking a real interest in their lives. “In many ways, I think my professors mentored me to be the kind of instructor that I am today,” she says.

“I taught my first course and I was hooked,” recalls Serafini. “I love the students. I love the interaction.”


LECTURE DATES AND SPEAKERS OCTOBER 13, 2017 SCIENCE AND FAITH IN HARMONY: “THE HEAVENS DECLARE THE GLORY OF GOD” Anton Koekemoer, PhD In his 2014 World Day of Peace message, Pope Francis reminded us that we are, fundamentally, relational beings — related to each human person and to the earth, our common home. Because we are constituted by relationships, we build a community of justice and peace only by looking upon and treating each other and the earth with dignity, mercy, and compassion. In the 2017-2018 lectures, our speakers invite us to think critically about the value and meaning of many different types of relationships: between science and faith; between the present and our history; between art and the word. They will consider the impact of Pope Francis’ commitment to mercy and justice, the intersection of culture, architecture, and human rights, especially for indigenous peoples, and the ongoing work to overcome the injustice of the death penalty. As part of hosting A Year with the Saint John’s Bible, our three fall lectures will help us understand the powerful interplay of images and text in this first handwritten and illuminated Bible in more than 500 years.

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Cristina Vanin, PhD Lectures Coordinator


To register, access live streaming on the night of a lecture, or see video footage of past lectures, please visit All lectures take place in the Vanstone Lecture Hall (1004), Academic Centre (SJ2). 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Doors open at 6:45 p.m. 36 |


BRIDGES Lecture Series Arts



Arithmetic, geometry, music, and astronomy were at one time linked under the umbrella of the liberal arts. However, recent decades have seen the increasing separation of these fields. As university programs become more specialized, the gap widens and the respective approaches and lexicons of the Faculties of Arts, Science, and Mathematics grow increasingly distant. The Bridges Lecture Series aims to rediscover points of affinity among academic disciplines.

LECTURE DATES AND SPEAKERS NOVEMBER 22, 2017 PERFUMERY: THE ART AND SCIENCE OF SMELL Luca Turin (Physiology and Biophysics), and Saskia Wilson-Brown (Art) JANUARY 31, 2018 POLAR PROJECTIONS: CONCEPTUALIZING AND RENDERING ARCTIC SPACES Whitney Lackenbauer (History), and Ruxandra Moraru (Mathematics)

FEBRUARY 28, 2018 BEYOND THE IMITATION GAME - FROM DIEPPE & JAMES BOND TO BLACKBERRY & QUANTUM ENCRYPTION Peter Berg (Mathematics), and David O’Keefe (History) MARCH 21, 2018 RECURSION: THE LOOPS THAT MAKE THE WORLD GO ROUND J. Andrew Deman (English Language and Literature), Josh Neufeld (Microbiology), and Naomi Nishimura (Computer Science)

To register, access live streaming on the night of a lecture, or see video footage of past lectures, please visit All lectures take place in the Vanstone Lecture Hall (1004), Academic Centre (SJ2). 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. Doors open at 6:45 p.m.



OUR MISSION St. Jerome’s University is a public Roman Catholic university federated with the University of Waterloo and historically associated with the educational vision of the Congregation of the Resurrection. We are committed to learning and academic excellence; the gospel values of love, truth, and justice; and the formation of leaders for the service of the community and the Church. In all of our activities and practices, St. Jerome’s University functions within the context of the Roman Catholic tradition and the principles of academic freedom.

OUR VISION At St. Jerome’s University we steward each student’s unique talents, nurture their ability to think critically, and inspire them to become life-long learners who seek knowledge and truth, act with compassion, and advocate for human dignity for all. We educate our students to become informed, courageous citizens who have the humility to work together for the common good and the courage to lead by example to build a more just society.

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