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VOLUME 57 ISSUE 21 • FEBRUARY 15, 2017


Features, page 10






Police look into unsolved sexual assaults

The Students’ Union hires new team of VP’s

A selection of tunes to groove to this February

Raising, loving and giving up a guide dog

Goalie Colin Furlong lets nothing past

News, page 3

News, page 5

Arts & Life, page 15

Opinion, page 17


2 •



If money wasn’t a concern, what would you do for reading week?


The Cord




“Private villa in Bora Bora.” –Joseph Flaifel, fourthyear business administration

“Dominican Republic.” –Alexandra Christakis, second-year communications


Training guide dogs has been a popular way to get involved in the community among Laurier students. Check out page 17 for one student’s experience.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY: FEB. 15 1903: first Teddy Bear introduced in America, made by Morris & Rose Michtom 1933: President-elect Franklin Roosevelt survives assassination attempt

“Morocco.” –Muiz Chunara, firstyear computer science

1936: Hitler announces building of Volkswagens 1950: Walt Disney’s “Cinderella” released 1964: Beatles’ “Meet the Beatles!” album goes #1 & stays #1 for 11 weeks


1965: Maple Leaf becomes official flag of Canada

–Christian Mair, fourthyear global studies

Compiled by Nathalie Bouchard Photos by Marco Pedri






LEAD REPORTER Nathalie Bouchard

ARTS & LIFE EDITOR Manjot Bhullar


EDITOR-IN-CHIEF Bethany Bowles




WEB DIRECTOR Brian Phillips




NEWS EDITOR Safina Husein

ONLINE EDITOR Andreas Patsiaouros

NEWS EDITOR Shyenne MacDonald

VIDEO EDITOR Garrison Oosterhof

1978: Escaped mass murderer Ted Bundy recaptured, Pensacola, Florida


CONTRIBUTORS Karlis Wilde Mary Ferguson Alexandra Juraschka Mira Busscher Alex Trkulja Victoria Panacci Thandiwe Gregg Kanisha Bortey Destiny Charles Khadijah Plummer Cheyenne Gold Norelle Bladon Emily Waitson Josh Goeree Olivia Nasner Sam Tundup Josh Awolade Simran Dhaliwal Philip Su

EDITOR’S CHOICE “Embrace the excellence and magic inside you” by Norelle Bladon “WRPS to evaluate unfounded sexual assault cases” by Kaitlyn Severin

ADVERTISING INQUIRIES All advertising inquiries can be directed to Care Schummer at or 519-884-0710 ext. 3560.

COLOPHON The Cord is the official student newspaper of the Wilfrid Laurier University community. Started in 1926 as the College Cord, The Cord is an editorially independent newspaper published by Wilfrid Laurier University Student Publications, Waterloo, a corporation without share capital. WLUSP is governed by its board of directors. Opinions expressed within The Cord are those of the author and do not necessarily refl ect those of the editorial board, The Cord, WLUSP, WLU or CanWeb Printing Inc. All content appearing in The Cord bears the copyright expressly of their creator(s) and may not be used without written consent. The Cord is created using Macintosh computers running OS X 10.10 using Adobe Creative Cloud. Canon cameras are used

for principal photography. The Cord has been a proud member of the Ontario Press Council since 2006. Any unsatisfied complaints can be sent to the council at The Cord’s circulation for a normal Wednesday issue is 4,500 copies and enjoys a readership of over 10,000. Cord subscription rates are $20.00 per term for addresses within Canada. The Cord has been a proud member of the Canadian University Press (CUP) since 2004.

PREAMBLE The Cord will keep faith with its readers by presenting news and expressions of opinions comprehensively, accurately and fairly. The Cord believes in a balanced and impartial presentation of all relevant facts in a news report, and of all substantial opinions in a matter of controversy. The staff of The Cord shall uphold all commonly held ethical conventions of journalism. When an error of omission or of commission has occurred, that error shall be acknowledged promptly. When statements are made that are critical of an individual, or an organization, we shall give those affected the opportunity to

2003: An estimated 6-11 million people around the world take to the streets to protest against war with Iraq

reply at the earliest time possible. Ethical journalism requires impartiality, and consequently conflicts of interest and the appearance of conflicts of interest will be avoided by all staff. The only limits of any newspaper are those of the world around it, and so The Cord will attempt to cover its world with a special focus on Wilfrid Laurier University, and the community of Kitchener-Waterloo, and with a special ear to the concerns of the students of Wilfrid Laurier University. Ultimately, The Cord will be bound by neither philosophy nor geography in its mandate. The Cord has an obligation to foster freedom of the press and freedom of speech. This obligation is best fulfilled when debate and dissent are encouraged, both in the internal workings of the paper, and through The Cord’s contact with the student body. The Cord will always attempt to do what is right, with fear of neither repercussions, nor retaliation. The purpose of the student press is to act as an agent of social awareness, and so shall conduct the affairs of our newspaper.

Quote of the week: “All these girls are commenting emojis on my Instagram pic ... I wish they’d say something meaningful.” - Lead Photographer, Marco Pedri about social media comment etiquette







WRPS to evalute unfounded sexual assault cases KAITLYN SEVERIN SENIOR NEWS EDITOR

On Feb. 3, The Globe and Mail published a 20-month investigation that focused on police-reported sexual assault allegations. The investigation, titled “Unfounded: Why Police Dismiss 1 in 5 Sexual Assault Claims as Baseless,” collected data on sexual assault complaints from various police services across Canada. The report found that several police services recorded some complaints as being “unfounded” — simply meaning that the report filed was dismissed. While the report found that 19 per cent of sexual assault complaints in Canada are dismissed as being baseless, it was also publicized that the unfounded rate in the Waterloo region sits at 27 per cent. Only a few days after the investigation was published, the Waterloo Regional Police Service’s police chief Bryan Larkin announced that he was ready to take action on this issue. As reported by CTV News Kitchener, Larkin said that police would be reviewing previous sexual assault cases that were deemed unfounded. The service will also be launching a task force to re-evaluate how the police can properly approach sexual assault. Larkin also released an open letter to sexual assault survivors and the community on Feb. 9. In his letter, Larkin recommended a “multi-faceted approach,” which will include an internal review and audit of sexual assault investigations deemed unfounded. He also discussed the launching of a collaborative task force that

will include community leaders and stakeholders to analyze the number of unreported sexual assault allegations and investigative practices. “Admittedly, the issues we are facing are complex, will require time to properly review, evaluate and develop a forward-thinking approach. That said, this is a community concern and through a collaborative effort that is handin-hand with our community, we are confident that we can develop a more conducive approach to sexual violence within our society,” read the open letter. The Sexual Assault Support Centre of Waterloo Region (SASC) will be working with the WRPS on establishing their task force. Sara Casselman, executive director of SASC, said that while advocates and community leaders have been dealing with this issue for many years, the centre commended The Globe and Mail for their investigation on unfounded sexual assault reports in the country. “It’s been an outstanding issue, but no one had previously put together so much information and presented it so cohesively before so kudos to them for the work they did,” she said. “I think it does a really good job of exposing something but I don’t think it’s something that people integrated in this world didn’t know about, so I’m especially grateful that it has spurred action and that cases are going to be reviewed and that our regional police are going to be doing something about it,” Lynn Kane, coordinator of the Gendered Violence Task Force, said.


The Sexual Assault Support Centre of Waterloo Region will be working with WRPS to create a task force in K-W,

Last Wednesday, the centre released their own open letter to the Waterloo region. Throughout the letter, the centre gave recommendations to the police on what steps they need take to investigate sexual assault allegations and complaints. “We have seen improved practices in sexual violence response in our community services, in health services and in policing, amongst many others. We value working together to address sexual violence,” read the letter. Included in their recommendations was the “Philadelphia Model,” which suggests that police give sexual assault centres access to review unfounded cases. According to Casselman, the model was inspired by events that had taken place in Philadelphia, where every year survivor advocates, feminist lawyers and members of sexual assault centres reviewed all cases the police deemed “unfounded” for the year. “[The model] had a significant

impact in terms of reducing their unfounded statistics because there’s a number of reasons why some cases might get labelled “unfounded,” and for those of us working in the field, we’re able to spot those things,” Casselman explained. Casselman also noted that one of the most important aspects police need training on is the impact of trauma on memory. She explained that when an individual has experienced a sexual assault and reports it to the police, the report may come out fragmented and there may be gaps in memory. “They’re trained to look for gaps; they’re trained to look for inconsistencies, but the reality is if someone has experienced trauma, stories will come out that way: fragmented; disjointed; gaps and that’s just part of the process.” Casselman also pointed out that police need training on sexual assault myths that exist in mainstream media and society and

how they may replicate within the criminal justice system, such as the myth that women regularly lie about their sexual assaults. “That truly is a myth. False reporting rates for sexual assault are no higher than false reporting rates for any other crime,” Casselman said. Casselman also emphasized the centre’s help line and office hours for those dealing with sexual assault, or those who know someone dealing with it. The centre also has a partnership with the university, including the Diversity and Equity Office. Specialized councilors are on campus two days a week and also provide public education services to students. “Together, with SASC, we’re working on responding to disclosure workshops for staff teams, the coordinator they have of the male allies’ program is doing work with Laurier Athletics and Residence,” Kane said about their work with SASC.


Laurier Brantford opens own Hall of Nations SHYENNE MACDONALD NEWS EDITOR

On Feb. 15, Wilfrid Laurier University’s Brantford campus will be celebrating diversity with the grand opening of a Hall of Nations, which will be located on the Davis Fuels Walkway. “For the most part, it’s been an empty hallway with a vending machine and some tables that people could use as a quiet study space,” said Nick DeSumma, chair of the Students’ Union board, chief governance office and a student at Laurier’s Brantford campus. “Through the Student Live levy in Brantford, last winter of 2016, there was an application put in by the Centre for Student Life and Engagement to utilize that space as a Hall of Nations. Just as Waterloo has in the dining hall, so the application was approved for funding.”

Approximately 50 flags will be raised and displayed along the walls. Five of the 50 flags will recognize First Nations territories: Haudenosaunee Confederacy, Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nations, Anishinabek Nation, Metis Nation of Ontario, as well as Qalipu Mi’Kmaq First Nations. The countries being represented will be: Afghanistan, Australia, Bangladesh, Barbados, Botswana, Chile, China, Colombia, Croatia, Czech Republic, Ecuador, Egypt, Eritrea, Ethiopia, France, Germany, Ghana, Haiti, Hong Kong, India, Iraq, Jamaica, Jordon, Myanmar, Netherlands, Nigeria, Norway, Pakistan, Peru, Poland, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sri Lanka, Tanzania, Trinidad, Tobago, Turkey, Ukraine and the United Kingdom, with separate flags for England and Ireland, the

United States of America, Vietnam and Zimbabwe. “There are students on campus who have ties to the countries,” DeSumma said, explaining the process of selecting which countries would be represented. “It’s to show and celebrate the diversity of the Brantford campus, and hopefully strengthen the connection between international and Aboriginal students in the Brantford Laurier campus and community.” In 2010, Laurier’s Waterloo campus underwent a similar project with 70 countries represented. It was described as an acknowledgment of diversity throughout the Waterloo campus by the then Diversity and Equity Office manager, Adam Lawrence. “As a student on the Brantford campus, I really like it. I think it’s a great initiative. I always loved


Approximately 50 flags will be feautred in the Brantford Hall of Nations.

when I went to Waterloo for the first couple times, a few years ago, seeing flags in the dining halls; I thought that was one of the most amazing pieces that Laurier had to offer,” DeSumma said. DeSumma also noted how the display represented the diversity and inclusion within the Laurier

community. “Regardless of which campus I was from, regardless of what country my family originates from, I felt like I was included. So seeing that on the Brantford campus, for me, I appreciate and want to be able to celebrate that diversity that we have at Laurier,” DeSumma said.

4 • NEWS




Uptown commences with streetscape improvements SAFINA HUSEIN NEWS EDITOR

The City of Waterloo, in partnership with the Region of Waterloo, will be working towards improving the uptown streetscape starting this spring. The roadway improvements were proposed to begin on King Street from the ION tracks south of Erb Street and would continue up to University Avenue. The construction, in phase one, will include a single travel lane in each direction in order to create wider lanes and additional space for emergency and delivery vehicles, dedicated left turn lanes on various streets, street parking stalls on the east side of the road and segregated bike lanes on both sides of the street, amongst other aspects. Eric Saunderson, senior project manager, explained that the idea was initially started through the need for upgraded street lighting. “What started off as a street lighting project eventually turned

into something much larger. When we started looking at the street lights, the sidewalks needed to be replaced and that turned into looking at landscaping improvements and the configuration of the roadway,” Saunderson said. “There is a need for wider sidewalks and given the amount of pedestrian activity in uptown.” As well, as a result of narrow travel lanes, the area has some of the highest collision rates in the region. “Safety was a pretty important part of the design process which led the team to consider reducing a number of travel lanes and assessing what those impacts would be,” Saunderson said. The project will be completed in various stages. Stage one will include work on King Street north of Erb Street up to Bridgeport Road. Stage 2A will work on Erb Street from Waterloo town square to the west side of King Street. Stage 2B will be King Street from the ION tracks to north of Erb Street. Lastly, Stage three finishes King Street

from Bridgeport Road to Elgin Street. The first stage originally started at the Waterloo Town Square as it would continue on with the work being done under the ION Project. However, changes were made after hearing concerns from businesses who have been surrounded by construction since GrandLinq began their LRT work a few years ago. “We met with the Uptown Waterloo BIA and considered a few different alternatives to approaching the project. We were able to change our staging approach to allow more space in that particular block and our first stage … so that the block south of Erb Street would be completed much later in the summer,” Saunderson said. Through the improvements, the project aims to accommodate all modes of transportation. “It should be a destination for people, in contrast to choosing other routes. So by introducing these elements, we can attract more cyclists to the core and create a more comfortable environment .”

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The 2021 games will be held in Ontario for the very first time in 20 years.

Region bids for Canada Games SAFINA HUSEIN NEWS EDITOR

Waterloo Region is one of four cities currently bidding to host the 2021 Canada Summer Games. The upcoming games will be held in Ontario for the first time in 20 years since it was hosted in London in 2001. The Canada Summer Games, which started in 1967, provides an opportunity for Canadian provinces and territories to unify. It also gives athletes a first step into their competitive careers, allowing them to compete against other athletes in various provinces or territories, similar to the Olympics. All four cities — Ottawa, Sudbury, Niagara Region and Waterloo Region — passed phase one, which included a visit from the leaders of the Canada Games who were able to look at each city’s plans while conducting a technical report to ensure the cities are both strong and capable enough to host the games. The committee for the bid was brought together about a year ago by the regional tourism office who saw the bid as a great opportunity for Waterloo Region. The process continued forwards once the city councils of Waterloo, Kitchener and Cambridge voted to unanimously support the bids this past December. Teddy Katz, spokesperson for the team presenting the Waterloo Region bid, explained that the Waterloo Region is the perfect location for the games due to its tight-knit community. “Whenever we put on these events, the community tends to respond well. So we have a good track record in terms of hosting similar sporting events such as the LPGA [Ladies Professional Golf Association]; they’ve always been popular and well-attended, so we think this would make a great fit [sic],” Katz said. For Laurier students, the games will also provide numerous opportunities such as placements, internships and volunteer opportunities. As well, Laurier’s campus would be used as a focal

point during the games due to its accessibility and compactness. “Of course, Laurier has had great sporting success, too. It has had a long history with some athletes who have actually competed in the Canada Games.” Katz said that various students at Wilfrid Laurier University have gone on to participate in the Canada Games and even the Olympics. He mentioned Cheryl Pounder, a previous captain of the Laurier Women’s Hockey Team who participated in the Canada Games and twice in the Olympics. The games also brings forth immense benefits to the location in which they are held. For example, the chosen location will see an investment of six million dollars from the federal and provincial government to put towards sport and recreational infrastructure. “The investment will bring infrastructure up to the national standards needed for the games. If this money is going to be spent somewhere, we feel it would be best spent in our region,” Katz said. As well, the games have a solid track record for allowing the cities who host them to come out without debt or having to invest large amounts into infrastructure amongst other aspects. “The interesting thing is the games, in their 50-year history, have never run a financial deficit. And I think part of that is the size and scope of the games, how they’re smaller so we’re not talking about investing in the way that you would see in a larger sport events like the Pan Am Games or the Olympics,” Katz said. In fact, the Waterloo Region would have to build few buildings or infrastructures to host the games. Instead, the committee has planned to upgrade the existing facilities so that they meet national standards. For example, new tennis courts would be added to Chicopee Ski Resort and beach volleyball courts would be built at RIM Park. “It would be a great legacy in the community, not just around the games, for years to come from a sports and recreation view.”

NEWS • 5



From left to right Nelly Song, Courtney Collard, Nathan Reeve, Stephanie Bellotto and Anthony Tomizza

Vice presidents are hired for 2017-18 year KAITLYN SEVERIN SENIOR NEWS EDITOR

After a rigorous and thorough hiring process, the Wilfrid Laurier University Students’ Union has officially hired their executive team for 2017-18. After being elected as Students’ Union president on Jan. 26, Kanwar Brar, along with current president Tyler Van Herzele and various administrative members of the Union, worked to hire Brar’s new team of vice-presidents. “The marking process for the application — the proposal — started the day after [election day] and then round one [and] then round two were then followed by subsequently,” Brar said. The incoming vice-presidents were officially announced on the Students’ Union Facebook page last Wednesday, Feb. 8.

While the official transition period won’t take place until Feb. 27, Brar emphasized that the team will be working closely together in preparation for their upcoming budgeting season. “We’re looking forward to the budgeting season coming up and our official transition does start the Monday after Reading Week, so that’s when we’ll be working closely as a team, preparing the budget, so I’m really excited about that,” he said. The 2017-18 executive team includes many returning members of the Students’ Union, including current director Stephanie Bellotto, who has been hired as VP: university affairs. In her time at the union, Bellotto has participated in outreach campaigns in university affairs and has also been a part of Local Advocacy Week, where she

engaged with local representatives on advocating for student issues. “We advocate on behalf of students at all levels of government [including institutional and regional],” Bellotto said. “We make our education more accessible and affordable for all students.” Anthony Tomizza has also been hired as the VP: programming and services on the Waterloo campus. Through his role, Tomizza hopes to increase the awareness of all programming and service committees that are offered to Laurier students. “It’s a changing diversity each year of what students want to see from us, so it’s really important to really grasp what they want and have some strong volunteers able to work and run those different events and campaigns to get a broad outreach to students,” he

said. The VP: finance and administration will be Courtney Collard, who hopes to work closely with volunteers and inspire more students to become involved with the Students’ Union. “The role encompasses kind of HR issues and concerns regarding volunteers and also doubles and deals with the financial side of things, so organizing budgets for all of our operating committees as well as the Union in general,” she said. Nelly Song, the incoming VP: clubs and associations, hopes to fully represent the students involved in university clubs on the Waterloo campus. “I’ll be representing the whole clubs and associations department and representing the students who are within the clubs and associ-

ations and just overseeing all the clubs and the faculty association,” she said. Lastly, Nathan Reeve will be the incoming VP: programming and services for the Brantford campus. In his role, Reeve hopes to hear more about what students want for programming and services in Brantford. “Alongside my team, I look forward to developing new programming that promotes collaboration and isn’t afraid to try new things,” he said. “In all aspects of the department, I look to see where we can find areas of growth and development.” In upcoming weeks, the associate VP and orientation and transition coordinators will be announced. The incoming VP’s will officially begin their terms at the start of May 2017.

“Someone threw a beer bottle at me,” he said, relating an anecdote during the lecture about playing at the Kent Hotel. Before the lecture, Angus came into the foyer to strike up various conversations while getting to know his audience. He also commented that his speeches often change in those moments, in order to better speak specifically to that night’s crowd.

“[There are] a lot of requests and pressure to run for NDP leadership,” Angus said, when asked about his future with the party. He suggested a clear as well as necessary purpose for the future of Canada, regardless of which party or politician was at the helm and should be highly focused upon. “Reconciliation isn’t going to be a hashtag anymore [sic]; we need to make it real,” Angus said.


Charlie Angus expresses his passion for activism KARLIS WILDE STAFF WRITER

Charlie Angus, Member of Parliament for Timmins-James Bay, gave a lecture to a large crowd on Feb. 9 at Wilfrid Laurier University. “I don’t want to be prime minister no more. I want to be a paramedic. They help people.” These words were spoken to Angus by a girl raised in an Indigenous community and are a practical reflection of the overall purpose of his talk — discussing the disenfranchised state of the federally operated Indigenous school’s program. Angus, a prominent activist for Indigenous children’s rights, championed the cause of Shannen’s Dream, a movement begun at age 13 by the late Shannen Koostachin. Koostachin responded to institutionalized problems within the Indigenous school system, provoked by her own experiences. The talk also promoted Angus’ book on that topic, which was written in 2015, Children of the Broken Treaty. Angus described the book as the “story of how the children fought

back.” The book functioned as a vehicle by which to discuss something that is extremely important to Angus; his passion and enthusiasm for fighting against this system of injustice was palpable. He explained that the children of Canada are our main resource, “our primary responsibility.”

Every child in this country is going to get what they need ... we have to make that happen.

-Charlie Angus, member of parliament

“Every child in this country is going to get what they need … we have to make that happen,” he said. His talk especially focused on pronounced governmental inaction to the needs of children in

negative conditions. “Suicide is like a contagion… you’ve got to move in quickly to keep it from spreading [sic].” “[W]hen a First Nation declares a state of emergency, nothing happens … You couldn’t design a system worse than [The Department of ] Indian Affairs.” He continued by asking: “is it some kind of specialized incompetence, or is it the continuation of the politics of denial?” Angus iterated that the roots of the issue are systemized. “Don’t blame Stephen Harper,” he said. “[The] pattern is repeated government after government.” This was just one of many of Angus’ visits around Waterloo. In the preceding day, he also hosted a beer hall conversation, a talk at the University of Waterloo and another at Communitech discussing topics in regards to innovation. His focus for his visit to the region was primarily to see “what lessons can we learn applied in Waterloo that could be applied elsewhere,” as well as to bring back memories — his first experiences in Waterloo were when he was playing in punk bands.


6 • NEWS



Chez Choi helps the homeless NATHALIE BOUCHARD LEAD REPORTER

Following a CBC Kitchener-Waterloo Radio article, Geoffrey Nelson, psychology professor at Wilfrid Laurier University, spoke about his four-year research project about homelessness and mental health. Nelson implemented this study, At Home Chez Choi, to prove that housing greatly benefits those with chronic homelessness, mental health struggles, addiction and other factors that contribute to homelessness. “The study was a research demonstration project funded by the government and the mental health commission of Canada testing an approach called housing first for people with serious mental illness and lengthy histories of homelessness,” Nelson said. “Oftentimes these people have other complications including addictions to drugs and alcohol,” he said. Prior to this study, a similar approach has primarily been used in the U.S. in a number of large cities. The goal of the study was to see how this approach would work in a Canadian context. “The goal of the study was to first approach how effective housing

first was to combat homelessness and improve people’s quality of life.” Another goal was to see how well this approach worked in different Canadian communities, different sizing and different ethnic makeup,” Nelson said. The findings of this study concluded that housing first programs greatly benefit people’s ability to recover and seek treatment for their addictions and mental health struggles.

The federal government made an intentional shift to repurpose the homeless partnering strategy in large communities... -Geoffrey Nelson, psychology professor

“We found that peoples’ quality of life had improved and the engagement in community functions had improved which had a more

positive, life-changing impact then having people seek treatment as usual without the housing first benefit.” The study helped implement other housing first programs as well as implementing a homelessness tool kit in dealing with these social issues. “One of the things we did was develop a housing first tool kit for Canada which is a resource for Canadian communities and how they can implement in that particular approach,” Nelson said. Following the end of the study, the federal government offered a review which then created a shift in the way the federal government was spending money on homelessness initia-tives. “Prior to this project the, [federal government] took the funds and dispersed them in any way they saw fit and now after the Home Chez Choi project … the federal government made an intentional shift to repurpose the homeless partnering strategy in large communities. Now, two-thirds of the money now goes into the housing first approach,” Nelson said. “This has also been very successful in pushing communities to implement a housing first approach with training and tools


At Home Chez Choi study will attempt to aid citizens within the K-W region.

like the housing first tool kit so that Canada is becoming a world leader in chronic homelessness because of its research and policy change.” Nelson hopes that there will be a shift in the way that people look at homelessness. Due to the success of the housing first initiatives, people can now recognize the impact that rent supplement and assistance can go in transforming the lives of those experiencing homelessness, men-

tal health and addiction. “There is hope and the hope is inspired by people coming together and the hope is inspired by research that shows what works and what doesn’t work. In the past, we have had people with many different ideas about programs trying to serve this population.” Nelson said that when you provide people with rent assistance, it makes strides towards combatting homelessness.



‘Packing with Purpose’ was an event that aided people experiencing homelessness in the Kitchener-Waterloo community. The group supplied aids such as band-aids to keep on their person.

Hillel Waterloo brings the community together NATHALIE BOUCHARD LEAD REPORTER

On Tuesday Feb. 13 from 8-9:30 p.m., Hillel Waterloo hosted an event called Pack with Purpose, located in Bricker Academic building on Wilfrid Laurier University’s Waterloo campus. The event was for both Jewish and non-Jewish students from both Laurier and University of Waterloo. In partnership with OneRoof Youth Services in Kitchener, the event involved guided discussions surrounding homelessness as well as packing emergency kits for people experiencing homelessness within the community. The event was hosted by Aaron Subel, first-year representative of Hillel Waterloo with assistance from Emily Goldstein, director of Hillel Waterloo. The initial discussion focused on

the ideals of various Jewish texts which examined philosophies surrounding giving, generosity, humility as well as the merit of charity. This particular event was called Pack with Purpose, as individuals created emergency kits and planned to send them to OneRoof Youth services in Kitchener where they will be distributed out to the those experiencing homelessness. “Hillel is a club which aims to enhance Jewish life on campus. We have Friday night dinners for Shabbat, social events and ‘lunch and learns’ where we have lunch and learn about Jewish topics together,” Subel said. The packing consisted of setting up the various supplies in an assembly line fashion with bags that were filled with a fresh pair of socks, lip balm, snacks, band-aids and other necessities. “This is one of our first social

justice events we’ve had this year and I really thought that this is something that could really help us, so I thought, why not make a social justice event,” Subel said.

Our mission is about community building and coming...A lot of the Jewish faith is focused around being the best you can be... -Emily Goldstein, director of Hillel Waterloo

Goldstein provided some insight on Hillel’s name and why it is so

important that Hillel continues to plan and host these social justice oriented events. “Hillel is basically the Jewish Club on campus and it’s really important for us to give back to the community.” “Hillel, the elder, is a Jewish wise person and the famous quote by him is ‘If I am not for myself, who is for me? And when I am for myself, what am I? And if not now, when?’” Goldstein said. Goldstein also touched on the importance of implementing the Jewish faith within their activities because of the strong foundation of charity and giving that the religion provides insight to. “Our mission is about community building and coming … A lot of the Jewish faith is focused around being the best you can be and our club really focuses on those values.”

Goldstein also explained how activities like packing emergency kits puts perspective on how we should remain humble enough to give back to the community. “Activities like these really put things in perspective — that people really have much more difficult struggles than us.” Nearing the end of the evening, over 100 emergency kits had been made for OneRoof Youth Kitchener. “At university, after my first semester here, I realized that everyone is really busy with their work and with their lives,” Subel said. “Trying to get through university, we don’t really have time to give back to someone else or other people,” he said. “So, I thought to make an event that gets people together that helps the other members and homelessness in the community.

NEWS • 7


‘Fight for $15 and Fairness’ advocates for change SHYENNE MACDONALD NEWS EDITOR

On Feb. 14, in the Wilfrid Laurier University concourse, a campaign called $15 and Fairness had a booth promoting awareness for their cause, as well as to hand out some Valentine’s Day candy. The campaign’s goal is to raise minimum wage to fifteen dollars and provide fairness and stability within the workplace. “This is about the community and the groups on campus that are not getting a fifteen-dollar minimum wage and are not being protected,” Matt Thomas, electronic resources librarian, said. “We’re a university, we should be providing good jobs not only to people on campus like food workers, but I think also our students. The increase in precarious labour and low-wage labour in our province is astonishing,” Kimberly Ellis-Hall, contract academic staff, said. “Precarious labour [are] jobs that are contract, part-time, short term, or temporary,” Ellis-Hall explained. “There’s a huge wage differentiation you can see at Laurier between full-time and part-time faculty. There are virtually no benefits, no sick days, and tend to be

low-income.” 11 campuses around Ontario are involved in the $15 and Fairness Campaign, but the most notable participant is York University. The movement is backed by York University Graduate Students’ Association, who have publicly shown support through organized protests and online informational videos. “Students and staff and faculty are all rallying around and saying you know what, this is not the way people on campus should be treated,” Ellis-Hall said. York, as well as Laurier and many other Ontario universities, have a contract with the food service company Aramark. Aramark allegedly pays their standard employees the minimum wage of 11.40 per hour. The claim is that this is not enough pay for employees, parttime or full-time, to live off. “One of the figures that I found shocking was the percentage of low-wage workers in Ontario in 2004 was 22 per cent, in 2014 it was 33 per cent... Precarious labour and low wage labour is now becoming more than norm,” Ellis-Hall said. Kevin Crowley, director of communications and public affairs for Laurier also released an official


statement to The Cord via email in response to the $15 and Fairness campaign. “The minimum wage in Ontario is established by the provincial government. The majority of Laurier employees already earn at least $15 per hour and many earn much higher. Wages for Laurier employees are influenced by three primary factors: the minimum wage required by provincial law; market wage rates for comparable work at other universities and workplaces; and negotiations between the university and the unions that represent employee groups,” read the statement. Because food services, as well as cleaning services at the university, are provided by outside sources, Laurier does not set the wages for workers on the campus.

“It’s completely within the university’s mandate to go to a company like Aramark and say you have to pay fifteen dollars an hour,” Ellis-Hall claimed. Aramark is responsible for the food services within the Terrace Food Court, Starbucks, Second Cup and Tim Hortons. “There’s the Second Cup in the library. I go there all the time. Some of those people have been working there for a long time. They know what they’re doing, they know the community, they know us,” Thomas said. This is not the first time concerns have been raised about Laurier’s contract with Aramark. In 2013, Aramark and Ryerson came into trouble regarding what the company was costing the school. However then, Laurier made a

statement to remain with Aramark. $15 and Fairness’ strategy has been to gather signatures from university students, staff and faculty and submit a petition to local MPP’s, as well as submitting labour law reviews that would implement reform to the current legislation. “Society says that if you work really hard and you get your undergrad degree and your university education, there’s this promise implicit of a good job. Here’s the problem: we can’t live up to that promise anymore,” Ellis-Hall said. “Since 2000, 25 per cent of all jobs have been part-time, 40 per cent have been temp. So, you’ve got 65 per cent of new jobs created in this province. Since 2000, that doesn’t equal the ideal kind of job that many students think they’re going to get when they’re done their undergrad degree.” $15 and Fairness is not a campaign just limited to Canada, there have also been “Fights for Fairness” in the United States. “Laurier administration constantly says there’s supposed to be a community feel on the campus, that we’re not a big faceless university like [larger schools] … but I don’t feel that anymore. There’s so many ways that that is just being pushed away. It’s disappointing,” Thomas claimed.







Dear Life Dear Life is your opportunity to write a letter to your life, allowing you to vent your anger with life’s little frustrations in a completely public forum. All submissions to Dear Life are anonymous, should be no longer than 100 words and must be addressed to your life. Submissions can be sent to no later than Monday at noon each week.

Dear Life, Roses are blue Violets are red All i want to know is If Van Herzele and Blouw are sharing a bed Sincerely, A boy who misses his ape (who read the china article) Dear Life, Seeing all the red and pink on campus makes me really happy. Sincerely, Happy Valentine’s Day! Dear Life, I am an avid reader of both The Cord and The Sputnik. The sex issue is a particular favourite of mine. I was pleased to see The Cord’s issue be inclusive of all genders, sexualities and races as well as informative, such as daddy-dom relationships. There was an emphasis in all articles about consent and sex-positivity. I learned a lot and was so pleasantly surprised that there was an article regarding biphobia, because it is not talked about enough. So thank you The Cord and to The Sputnik, do better. Sincerely, Brantford Student Dear Life, Bethany Bowles has the most beautiful hands at Laurier. They’re soft and supple and look beautiful typing away making the cord. Keep those hands moist. Sincerely, Hand enthusiast Dear butt model from last week, Your butt is perfect the way it is! Sincerely, Positive Vibes Dear Imposter Syndrome, I can do the thing! I just have to learn - right? Sincerely, Worried

Dear Twenty One Pilots, Though I don’t understand your name (there are only two of you and I don’t think I’d trust either of you to fly a plane), I really loved the Grammys speech. You give me hope that a little guy sitting here in my underwear can make it far. Sincerely, Fifty-six lawyers Dear Film Profs, If you assign a three hour movie, I’m not going to watch it, no matter how good you say it is. Sincerely, Where is the time in my life for that Dear Sexual Assault Survivors, With the numbers of unfounded cases shown by the Globe and Mail report in the last week, I know a lot of us are feeling disheartened. I just wanted to say that, despite what everyone may make you think, you have some control over your situation. Coming forward about your sexual assault is a choice, and not one that you have to make if you’re not comfortable doing so. Your experience is yours, and there is a choice in what you do with it. If you want to report it, I hope that your case is understood with care and compassion. If you want to keep it to yourself, I hope you treat yourself with the very same care and compassion. My story (trigger warning ahead) is one that I hope a lot of people can find hope in. I was sexually assaulted by a boyfriend who took “not today” as a “definitely tomorrow.” He stopped only after I had a severe panic attack, and the first person I told, my best friend at the time, told me that “at least he stopped,” rather than offering any of the love or compassion that I needed. I didn’t tell anyone else for years, but the next person I told was my best friend, who turned current boyfriend six months after I told him. Never in my life have I felt so loved and accepted. It’s not like it’s easy by any means - I had a panic attack our first night sharing a bed because I was too afraid to say no to him. But he stopped and held me because he’s a stand up guy who knows the value of another human life: who genuinely cares about me. In my mind, I still often question if I’m worth any of the love and acceptance that he offers me. I’ll never report my sexual assault, but I’m learning to deal with it. It’s been a long time, but I can love again. If you take anything from my story, please let it be this:

what one person says or does to you does not define who you are. There are people out there who will love you no matter what, and it’ll feel absolutely amazing when you do. No matter how life-consuming it seems, your life goes on. Do what’s right for you, and even if things don’t get better, you can start to make peace. Sincerely, Hurt then, loved now Dear a boy who misses his ape, Roses are red, violets are blue, I am so thankful that I have you. Sincerely, A girl who loves the boy who misses his ape

Dear Blueprint contributors, You are seriously all so talented. Sincerely, Creative writing is underrated Dear Life, Just taking a moment to appreciate chicken fried rice. That shit is great yo. Sincerely, True love Dear Life, Shoutout to Dr. Chang for being such an awesome prof. She’s always so nice and fun, wish all profs cared about their students like her. Sincerely, Grateful Hawk

Dear Valentines Day, I know you’re just a corporate holiday meant to celebrate capitalism. But this year I’m in love and you aren’t so bad. Sincerely, Kinda get what all those silly cards are talking about now. Dear Life, Is there a guy out there who wants more than just a hook-up? I know it sounds silly but I would love to have someone to go through life with. Sincerely, #Hawkwants love



10 •



Obsessive compulsive disorder is often associated with organization and cleanliness. We often see fictional characters with cutesy, obsessive habits and their OCD can be magically cured when they fall in love. The idealized version of the mental illness is far from the reality. “When you hear that someone has OCD, it’s like, “oh they clean all the time!” Well, no, that’s not what it is. And I can’t control it. Just because you don’t see me doing something doesn’t mean it’s not going on in the back of my head,” said Katherine MacGregor, a student at the University of Waterloo. The reality behind OCD is much scarier and disheartening than the cultural representation. “The disorder is comprised of compulsive behaviours, thoughts and obsessive thoughts,” said Julie Gamble, a registered nurse with certification in psychiatric and mental health care at the Wellness Centre. Typically, the compulsive behaviours are used to provide temporary relief from the obsessive thoughts. According to OCD UK , the leading national charity supporting people with OCD in the United Kingdom, there are four main strains of OCD: checking, hoarding, contamination and ruminations. Checking can involve obsessively making sure that something is how it should be, whether it be memory or physical objects, to make sure that nothing has gone wrong or ha been forgotten. This is where the stereotype of switching on and off the lights can come from. Hoarding, like the type that can be seen in popular television shows such as Hoarding: Buried Alive, is also a classification of OCD. The compulsion to keep all physical objects can stem from an obsession of always being prepared, the fear of being hurt by throwing something away, or as a response to emotional trauma. Contamination is the strain that is most often portrayed: hand washing, cleaning and organization. What isn’t typically shown is the obsessions behind the compulsions. “It’s something that they cannot help themselves doing and it often gives a very temporary relief when they do engage in things like hand washing or cleaning,” said Gamble. The compulsion to clean often comes from the obsessive thought of making their loved ones sick if they don’t. To someone with the contamination strain, something as simple as leaving dishes in the sink could manifest into giving a loved one food poisoning when they try to use that plate the next time. That’s a lot less quirky and cute than thinking of them just being organized when they finish a meal. The last strain, rumination, is a blanket term to cover the rest of the intrusive

thoughts. It could manifest in anything from numerical counting to excessive perfectionism. “I have numerical OCD and a lot of that has to do with balance,” MacGregor explained. “Certain numbers in my head are really good: like four, 14, eight, are good numbers, where other numbers like three, 13, and numbers with no order are considered bad.” For MacGregor, this obsession can manifest in many different types of compulsions, even in something as simply as working out. “So say I do 18 arm stretches on one side, I have to do 18 on the other, or else I feel like that arm is going to get broken,” she said. OCD, just as much as some of the more common mental illnesses, can seriously impede on a student’s ability to preform in a university setting. For one, the obsessions and compulsions take up an extraordinary amount of a student’s life. Compulsions are not something that they can ignore during midterm season when they need to study. “Sometimes they can get caught up in that perfectionist kind of approach so much that it delays their ability to get that paper handed in on time,” said Gwen Page, the associate director of the Accessible Learning Centre. The Accessible Learning Centre provides accommodations for students with disabilities, including those with OCD. However, as OCD is more rare than some other mental illnesses, Laurier doesn’t have specific resources to assist students with it from a medical standpoint, though the university can assist students in finding other resources. “At Laurier, we can definitely refer you to some local resources. We have a few different practitioners, as well as a few different clinics that have multiple practitioners … who specialize in the treatment of obsessive compulsive disorder,” said Gamble. In my attempt to get diagnosed at Laurier, I was diagnosed with other mental illnesses, but there was no way to scan for OCD. I was also unaware of the resources in the greater community.


If anything, I think this shows the emphasis placed on the more common illnesses — like depression and anxiety. Though I applaud the attempts to treat the majority of students, I’m a bit concerned for students who may slip through the cracks without the support system that I have. The accommodations at the Accessible Learning Centre at Laurier attempt to help students with OCD as much as possible by creating a plan that is never one-size-fits-allwith-OCD. “We ensure that our accommodation plans are incredibly individualized, so it’s not like every student with a mental health issue gets [one plan] and every student with a learning disability gets [another],” explained Page. A diagnosis is one thing, but the individual experience is something else entirely. “We can have great documentation from a treatment provider but that may mean something on paper, but manifest differently for the student,” Page said. As the Accessible Learning Centre tries to provide the resources for students, they understand that OCD doesn’t prevent anyone from having success. Like any mental illness, people with OCD are not completely defined by their mental state, it just means they may have to do things in a different way than the average. Look at the famous examples: Howie Mandel, Leonardo DiCaprio, Amanda Seyfried. They’ve all been incredibly successful with their OCD, not despite it. At a more everyday level, MacGregor showed her personality as soon as I sat down with her, joking that I should lie and say her occupational title was a doctor. Her OCD is just one part of her, but she has so many other beautiful layers that make her the person that she is. Everyday things can become difficult, but we persevere to the point where people may not even notice. Even with my rumination of having a mistake, I’m still able to write this article. OCD can be dangerous. It can completely take over a person’s life — but it doesn’t make them any less of a person. That being said,


breaking the stigma around OCD has become incredibly difficult. “OCD in general, you see it in Glee and The Big Bang Theory and it’s portrayed so negatively, as if it’s a joke. Oh, Sheldon has to knock so many times! That’s the closest to my strain that I’ve seen and it’s a joke to people,” MacGregor explained. “If Penny had an eating disorder, that wouldn’t be a joke. That would be [a] really serious manner. Every single episode you have OCD as the butt of a joke and that’s why I think it’s the hardest for people to understand and accept it.” The word choices of everyday people and objects can have an impact on people’s lives. Until we stop using OCD as a descriptive word to describe someone with organizational skills, the stigma will still be prevalent. It’s not a joke to those who actually experience it. “At [a store in the mall], they had a pillow with ‘obsessive Christmas disorder,’ [written on it] and it was just like great! My disease that could kill me is on a pillow!” MacGregor claimed. But representation can work both ways. “It was actually Howie Mandel coming out and explaining all the different spectrums that made me understand and look more into my OCD,” MacGregor confessed. With initiatives like Bell Let’s Talk, the stigma around all mental illnesses is starting to wane. It is important, however, to break the stigma even in the less common illnesses. “I am seeing a lot more [students coming forward about mental illness] because of the other initiatives on campus and in the community,” Page said. “All those education efforts are certainly making a difference on what we’re seeing.” But as we head forward and the stigma begins to break, we have to be mindful of all mental illnesses. “Because OCD is more rare, the more rare disorders tend to come behind the rest of them,” Gamble explained. If you or someone you love has OCD, it’s important to learn as much as you can about the individual illness. “If you feel like you have anything, you know yourself the best … so I always encourage people to come in and ask some questions and we can help direct from there,” Gamble explained. No one has to be knowledgeable about everything, but it’s important to listen to the people who are in the situation. “There are great resources online to help family and friends [of those with] with mental health issues and how you can assist them because the signs aren’t always very noticeable,” MacGregor suggested. “It’s just keeping the discussion going and educating people is the biggest thing.”

12 •

Arts & Life




A spotlight on Moonlight KARLIS WILDE STAFF WRITER

The 2017 Oscar race is, unfortunately, with incredible historical precedent. The arguable frontrunner for Best Picture, La La Land, takes the concept of jazz, a black-originated and still predominately black form

of art and both whitewashes and romanticizes it. It’s fitting that Barry Jenkins’ Moonlight, a bildungsroman with an entirely black cast, will likely lose to La La Land — it’s like Elvis Presley outselling Chuck Berry. By adapting the historically strained methods of the black community, our predominantly white culture sells cultural caricatures to itself, ignoring and compromising the values inherent to those products. It’s up to the individual to realize that Moonlight is the most import-

ant film of the past year. It may not be the best film of the year — it may not even be as good as the compulsively watchable, gorgeous La La Land — but Moonlight straddles the line between art and reality. The film’s protagonist, Chiron, is portrayed by three actors at three distinctly different ages. Their performances work to administer exceptional, yet unusual cohesion: Alex Hibbert, Ashton Sanders and Trevante Rhodes give superlative performances as the child, teen and adult iterations of Chiron,

respectively. But the film’s quality is especially cemented by the performance of Mahershala Ali, who plays a conflicted mentor to Chiron, all the while slinging crack on the street — including to Chiron’s degenerate mother. It isn’t a predictably mapped film. In fact, in many ways, it’s startlingly mundane. But the visually immersive direction and the quiet, sparse, thoughtful dialogue between characters highlights the incredibly neutral perspective. Moonlight is a film that inhabits its own space; when Chiron, a weak, bullied child follows his mentor’s path by selling drugs on the street, it isn’t shown as a last respite of despair. It’s a tiny victory, the slightest assertion of strength and absolute self-dominance. In committing himself to a life of crime, he is finally granted a rewarding shred of power and dignity. Virtually nothing in the film is sensationalized — the romance that blooms between Chiron and his childhood friend Kevin, is understated, sweet and sparked by a particular onscreen energy and chemistry between the actors. If anything, the stunted, uncomfortable dialogue works so well because it underscores the lucid nature of body language. What makes the picture the ob-

jective best of the year? Is it effects, dialogue, direction or maybe the visuals? It’s nearly impossible to state a singular, objective purpose to the multivalent medium of film. But by a modern, cultural context, Moonlight is the film that the world needs. Anything that can bridge a gap, making something as distant and specific as a gay black kid steeped in the gang culture of Miami into something universally real and relatable to even white, heterosexual Canadian audiences, and without the slightest sign of pandering, is hard to overstate the importance of. In a superficial way, the bits and pieces of Moonlight feel like a direct response to the #OscarsSoWhite boycotts of 2016. But the reality is much more amazing than that.Moonlight is an expression — a small film with big ambitions and a very real soul. Through non-conformity, Moonlight transcends. However, how the Oscars play out doesn’t really matter. History and perspective adjust to reality. Forrest Gump beat out the far superior The Shawshank Redemption in 1994 and The King’s Speech overtook the flawless The Social Network in 2010. Ten years from now, here’s hoping (and believing) that the world will still be talking about Moonlight.


Make novel use of your February Reading Week

Not so Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella

All the Missing Girls by Megan Miranda

How to Murder Your Life by Cat Marnell

The Color Purple by Alice Walker

The Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

If you were a fan of the Shopaholic series, Sophie Kinsella’s newest book will not disappoint. Kinsella perfectly captures the “young woman in a big city” trope, much like Rebecca Bloomwood’s character in the Shopaholic series. This trope resonates with newly graduated people who have dreams bigger than their wallets. In her newest novel, main character Katie is obsessed with how she is perceived on social media, even though her life, in actuality, does not at all reflect this. When she is fired from her job, all her nightmares become a reality when she has to give up her life in the city and move back home. This novel will be an enjoyable read over Reading Week, but may also hit a little too close to home for upcoming graduates.

With the Hollywood success of Gone Girl and The Girl on the Train, comes All the Missing Girls, a new mystery story by Megan Miranda.This novel tells the story about the disappearances of two young women — a decade apart and told in reverse. This novel recounts the story of Nic, a young woman who leaves her hometown after the disappearance of her best friend Corinne. Nic returns home ten years after Corinne’s disappearance, only to find that Corinne’s ex-boyfriend Tyler’s new girlfriend, Annaleise, is also recently missing. Confused yet? Through these two disappearances, Nic learns the truth about her friends, family and what really happened to Corinne. Best to keep the night light on for this one.

Just out at the end of January, Cat Marnell’s memoir has been receiving positive praise in it’s short time on shelves. At 26, Marnell was working at Lucky magazine as an associate beauty editor. Glamorous, right? What most people didn’t know about her was that she was also addicted to prescription drugs. She admits to manipulating Upper East Side doctors for excessive pill prescriptions. She also talks candidly about her bulimia, self-loathing and party-girl lifestyle. This memoir shows the side of fashion journalism that is not usually seen but is necessary to talk about. She discusses her ambition, her desire to be successful and her inability to say “no” while racing to the top spot at prestigious fashion magazines.

Published in 1982, The Color Purple In honour of Black History Month, is cannonized for literature about this novel, while an intellectual intersectionality. Walker deals with commitment, should be on everyrace, sexuality, class, gender and one’s must read list. familial issues all in one beautifully This novel is by no means new; it put together novel. was written in 1952 and follows the Walker’s ability to make the journey of an unnamed protagoreader empathize for these charnist as he navigates life as a young black man living in Harlem during acters that don’t feel fictional is a the Civil Rights Movement. triumph. The Invisible Man has been Walker tells the story of sisterlinked to Homer’s The Odyssey, as it hood and friendship, all the while is structured in a way where it realemphasizing the importance of strong relationships women ly isn’t about anything in particular build with one another. The main — more so, it’s about one man, character, Celie, becomes stronhis adventures and the interesting people he meets along the way. ger, more independent and more This novel is brilliant, powerful confident as she befriends other and works as an allegory for every strong women. If you’re looking single black person who fought for a heart-wrenching story with a for equality in America during the heart-warming ending, this is the Civil Rights Movement. one you should pick up this Black History Month. Compiled by: Bethany Bowles, Contributed Images

ARTS & LIFE • 13


BLACK HISTORY BLACK HISTORY MONTH “History tells the many tales of black people who have had the strength and resilience to overcome incredible circumstances, not just selfishly for their own benefit, but for the welfare of the entire race. With this skin colour, I’d like to believe that we inherit some of that history and some of that legacy.” - Samson Balogun third-year communication studies

“It’s more important right now that we remain strong, resilient, reliable, wise, effective and most importantly, informed. That’s what it means to be a black man.” -Tristan Broomes third-year global studies

“Being a black woman means knowing that the child you bring into this world will automatically be hated by some for the colour of their skin and that terrifies me more than anything else.” - Nisheida Price fourth-year political science


14 • ARTS & LIFE




On Friday Feb. 10, the Beating The Odds conference was held in the Turret on the Wilfrid Laurier University Waterloo campus. This event is dedicated to inspiring and educating black high school students in the Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge area to pursue post-secondary education. The conference was created 12 years ago by Laurier alumnus David Green, as there were an alarming rate of high school students in the K-W and Cambridge area who weren’t pursuing a college diploma or a university degree. A decade ago, statistics quoted that black students had a 70 per cent drop-out rate in the Waterloo region. Currently, the rate holds at 50 per cent. Abigail Appiahene Afriyie, vice-president of the Laurier Association for Black Students, explained how Green established this conference as a way of promoting higher education through the Laurier community. “Because he felt like we needed to do something as a Laurier institute to kind of promote higher education,” she said. The BTO conference, whose theme this year was resilience,

also celebrated its twelfth year on Friday. According to Afriyie, she, along with eight other team members, had been planning and organizing this conference since Oct. 2016. “… There’s a team of eight of us who have been working around the clock to basically find entertainment, speakers, renting out the space and just all the planning that goes [into the event].”

There’s obviously differences every year, like different things that are always good and bad but I would say this year’s a success. -Abigail Appiahene Afriyie, VP of Association for Black Students

This year, over 120 secondary school students participated in the day-long conference. Students had the opportunity to listen to keynote speakers, as well as participate in a workshop hosted by the Career Centre on resume building and job searching, led by several Laurier


alumni community members. Later in the day, several entertainment acts from around the Greater Toronto Area performed for the students, as well as guests who stopped by the Turret during the day. The acts included Toronto-based dance group Real 3D, a group that hopes to connect those of all backgrounds in order to paint a picture of inclusivity. RISE, a Scarborough-based community group, also per-

formed during the day. The group is comprised of various artists, activists and revolutionaries who have come together to establish a safe platform for self-expression through performance arts. “[RISE] basically use art as an expression of your emotions, your life struggles, [etc.],” said Afriyie. The last act of the conference was Lola Waheed, a Laurier alumna who performed an interactive dance with the students.

All-in-all, Afriyie believes the conference has seen success every year. This year was no different in terms of educating high school students about what achieving a post-secondary education might mean for them. “Every year is a success. There’s obviously differences every year, like different things that are always good and bad but I would say this year’s a success.”


Embrace the excellence and magic inside you NORELLE BLADON CORD ARTS

When I was 14, I used to pack my flat iron in my school bag. Wedged between my lunch box and pencil case, this seemingly crucial feat of proactivity occurred every Sunday like clockwork; as though I had thought to offer God the words of a church sermon in exchange for biblically flat hair. Between classes, I’d take my chance to patrol my head for any potential frizz and by lunch, it was fair game for a makeshift salon in the girl’s bathroom. Maybe sole vanity drove me to the brink of anxiety every time the weather offered rain, snow or anything above the regular humidex, but ask any other black girl who grew up in a predominantly white suburb about their relationship with their hair and they’ll probably tell you a similar story. They’ll recall sitting on their bathroom floor, perm stinging their scalp, the smell nauseating at best. They’ll tell you about getting their hair braided back for eight hours at a time in the name of a protective style. They might even tell you about cutting all of it off and making the journey to start everything over


again after being at wits end. It’s cyclical: black girls are entered into a dangerous game of assimilation from the very minute they are taught the ways with which they are to interact with the world around them — and hair is just a fraction of this cycle. Myself and so many other black girls came of age alongside media saturation of women who looked nothing like us. The number of black female role models I had growing up could be counted on one hand. There was no such thing as black-positive spaces or publicized rallies for black lives and the towns

in which we were raised made nothing more clear; we were consistently told that everything about us was not the norm and never would be. This lack of normalization of our beauty standards is, at its core, a deficit in both understanding and solidarity with black women. Blackness is never allowed to be affliction-less in its synonymy with womanhood. The demonization of black women is so unrelenting in its intersections with every aspect of our lives that it’s no surprise it functions as a trickle down system of marginalization in young girls. Black women are seen as too

harsh and never quite feminine enough; never conceded to be anything more than loudmouthed, angry or sassy. From Blue Ivy’s looks to Malia, Sasha and Michelle Obama’s very existence in the White House, black women and girls are never too young or too accredited to avoid being targets of racial violence. Our slang terms popularized, our hairstyles bastardized and our bodies and features appropriated: it seems everybody wants to cash in on blackness without having to face the reality of our stigmatization.

And still, people ask why we are so angry in the continuous policing, erasure and silencing of black women’s existence in our current social climate. Internalized anti-blackness runs deep and its only viable cure is unabated representation and discussion. Representation matters; representation has been and will continue to be fundamental to every black woman and girl who is asked to come to terms with their identity in a system that continuously erases and stigmatizes black voices and identities. We must, as a society, uplift the voices of black women just as loudly as the voices of other women of colour. We must recognize, encompass and celebrate every form of black womanhood and identity and we must relentlessly ensure that black girls have a space of inclusivity and reassurance adopted around them. As we celebrate Black History Month, celebrate the black women around you. Celebrate the black women whose strength has and will continue to hold their communities strong in the face of adversity. To all my black girls and women: know that you matter. Know that your beauty is not defined by a eurocentric standard, and know that regardless of how you define your womanhood, you are important and valued every month of the year.

ARTS & LIFE • 15


Black History Month Music Playlist

“Jab FOREVER” by Skinny Banton

“Zombie” by Fela Kuti

The song “Jab FOREVER” by Grenadian Soca artist, Skinny Banton, rings with black pride. It has an infectious rhythm and melody that pulsates in your veins and encourages celebration. While the song hints to elements of Grenada’s carnival (Jab is French patois for “Devil” — a folklore character in carnival celebrations), it also speaks to the transatlantic slave trade. Despite all of the horrible things that black people have endured, we still rise to greatness. Over the powerful beat that carries throughout the song, it is a note to respect your roots and never forget where you came from, as the chorus echoes: “Black as ever, we go be black forever”. - Thandiwe Gregg

Fela Kuti is not only a well-known African artist, but he is a political activist who used music as a means to fight for the lack of freedom in his native country: Nigeria. Fela Kuti’s music was the epitome of the African musical genre — Afrobeats. This song, was released in 1976 and starts off with the strong sound of the horn as a way to reveal an important message to the ‘zombie’ — that being a soldier of the Nigerian Army. Given the political strains that those who identify as ‘black’ face, “Zombie” is a must-have on this playlist. Music is used as a means of expression, and this song accurately expresses liberty and freedom from systematic control that minorities tend to face. Black power! - Kanisha Bortey

“War” by Bob Marley & The Wailers

“Rhythm Nation” by Janet Jackson

The beauty of Reggae music is in its ability to stay true to the origin stories of Afro-Caribbean culture, honouring Africa as the motherland with early Rastafarian principles from leaders like Marcus Garvey. The 1976 song “War” by Bob Marley & The Wailers is one of countless examples of the way Reggae is not an umbrella genre for Jamaican music, but is an activist avenue for the African-Caribbean diaspora and all those who can relate. Reggae also conveniently has a worldwide reach with its infectious, Ska-inspired rhythm. This song was directly inspired by a speech from Emperor Haile Selassie of Ethiopia that was addressed to the United Nations in 1963. - Cheyenne Gold

It would be terrible if one of the Jacksons were not on this playlist. Janet Jackson released “Rhythm Nation” in 1989 for one reason only: to bring the many individuals from different backgrounds together and unite everyone through their love of music. Not only that, her military-style dance in the music video reveals social consciousness from a political standpoint by using an upbeat sound. Jackson notes that we should “join voices in protest to social injustice” — completely relevant to our 21st century generation. Her music was influential back then and continues to be influential even today. You go Janet! - Kanisha Bortey


“Happiest Man Alive” by Machel Montano Soca is a Caribbean musical genre which originated in Trinidad and Tobago, but has developed significantly as a style of music all across the Caribbean islands. It is played in a wide range of countries worldwide. Trinidadian soca singer, Machel Montano has been one of the most influential soca artists in the world. “Happiest Man Alive” is one of those energetic, feel good types of songs that brings people together to say we’re alive and we’re proud of who we are. - Destiny Charles

“Mortal Man” by Kendrick Lamar Kendrick Lamar’s 2015 album To Pimp a Butterfly took the world by storm. Packed with allusions and dramatizations concerning myriad facets of Black history, the album is undoubtedly in a league of its own. The final track, “Mortal Man,” is the ideal reflection of all of the systematic issues the album addresses. It scrutinizes both historical and contemporary perspectives on blackness, while taking an intimate glance at his attempt to grapple the power and influence that his fame provides. - Khadijah Plummer

“Don’t Touch My Hair” by Solange Knowles The title of this song is pretty self-explanatory. Solange wrote this song as a means to express the fact that black women should accept the strands they wear and that nothing should compromise how they choose to wear them. The politics that come with black hair are unsettling. Black girls are taught to hate their hair the moment they realize what ‘beauty’ means in Western society. When you see a black girl rock her new braids and her edges are laid, you can marvel at it — but please, do not touch it! - Kanisha Bortey

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16 •




Effort to understand the less common mental illnesses Being able to empathize with someone suffering from an illness can help to break the stigma, but it doesn’t always manifest in understandable ways. People often don’t have the stereotype of their illness. You don’t have to be a soldier to have PTSD, nor do you have to excessively clean to have OCD. Everyone’s experiences are equally real and valid. No one would tell someone with diabetes to will their body into making more insulin. No one would tell a cancer patient to exercise away their tumour. Hidden illnesses are still illnesses, even if you don’t fully understand them or have not experienced them. The more overwhelmed people get and the more they show outward symptoms, the more seriously they seem to be taken. If you don’t understand something, ask questions. Never make assumptions — be cognizant of the fact that mental illness does not come in one shape or form.

There’s more to mental illness than the big guys: anxiety and depression. It seems to make a lot of sense. These are the mental illnesses that we see in the media and the more common illnesses in our university setting. Maybe that’s why real representations of other illnesses are so startling. Looking at OCD, the HBO show Girls jumped into properly representing the illness. Rather than showing it as some cute cleaning obsession, the character blew out her ear drum because her compulsion was to clean her ear so many times. PTSD is another example of a misunderstood mental illness. After a particularly graphic Game of Thrones episode like “The Red Wedding,” the internet was full of people joking that they had PTSD. We understand anxiety and depression. We’re less likely to talk about them colloquially because they’re more common; they make more sense to us.

Sexual assault report statistics may deter survivors The point should be in making the process more accessible and less traumatizing for the people who really need the support. Survivors never asked to be part of this situation and they are under no obligation to be martyrs for the next wave of people who come forward with their sexual assaults. The Waterloo Regional Police, in response to the article, told The Record that they’ll be looking into the 27 per cent of sexual assault reports that have gone unfounded, as reported by The Record. We trust that they will. We trust that they’ll do their best to make up for the past. What we really hope, however, is that the strides they are taking to make the process more beneficial and exclusive are exclaimed as loudly as possible so survivors know that this setback isn’t the end of their journey.

An investigative piece by the Globe and Mail released recently shows that a startling number of sexual assault cases in Ontario are dismissed as unfounded — meaning nothing is ever done after the assault is reported to police. There is so much emphasis placed on reporting the sexual assault that it’s incredibly disheartening to see that a large number don’t seem to be going anywhere. Here’s where it gets tricky to be a part of the media — to publish a story like this shows the startling reality of sexual assault cases. It creates an opportunity for these gaps to be fixed in our system. What it isn’t going to help is the survivors. After seeing a report like this, there doesn’t seem to be a point to come forward if they’re just going to have to relay their experience and have nothing come of it.

These unsigned editorials are based off informal discussions and then agreed upon by the majority of The Cord’s editorial board, including the Editor-in-Chief and Opinion Editor. The arguments made may reference any facts that have been made available through interviews, documents or other sources. The views presented do not necessarily reflect those of The Cord’s volunteers, staff or WLUSP.



DIRECTOR Matt Burley

CHAIR Meghan Roach


VICE-CHAIR Abdiasis Issa DIRECTOR Maddy Cutts DIRECTOR Mynt Marsellus

PRESIDENT Meghan Roach FINANCE MANAGER Randy Moore randy@rcmbrooks. com ADVERTISING MANAGER Caroline Schummer care.schummer@

EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR Lakyn Barton lakyn.barton@wlusp. com HR MANAGER/CORPORATE SECRETARY Taylor Berzins


Art isn’t all about awards MANJOT BHULLAR ARTS & LIFE EDITOR

It’s the recognition we don’t get that makes us crave it more, but it’s the recognition we do get that inflates our egos. I suppose there really is no way to come out on top, even when you do. Our culture revolves around a constant need to rate things and know who’s the best and who’s the worst in virtually any category — music, film, business and even in education. At times, knowing who’s the ‘best’ can be crucial when, for example, you’re buying a car for your family, or pursuing post-secondary education. More often than not, however, ratings are always subjective, even when the defined parameters are seemingly unbiased. With awards season in full swing, every weekend is booked off to watch if our favourites of the past year are going to get the recognition they deserve – or the recognition we think they deserve, as critics ourselves. Buckle up for some intense Twit-

ter battles over if La La Land truly is the ground-breaking film many critics say it is, or if the millennial infatuation with Stanger Things will be mirrored by the who-knowshow-old critics determining the results. But does all of this even matter? Not one bit.

That person, group or cast will still be your favourite even if they don’t win. And if they’re not, then your definition of success is rooted in all the wrong places.

Sure, your excitement of seeing your idols walk up a temporary staircase to receive an award and recite a speech validates the time and energy you spent all year to push forward their celebrity status, but it doesn’t do much else. That person, group or cast will still be your favourite even if they don’t win. And if they’re not, then your definition of success is rooted

in all the wrong places. If someone’s artistic expression makes you feel a certain way, that should be good enough. That should be your award to them. The tears, the laughter and the anger you may have felt are all the accolades a work of art should be worth. If art can’t make you feel, a shiny trophy isn’t going to do anything other than be a paper weight or a dust magnet. This doesn’t, however, negate from the fact that certain awards are seen as pinnacles of success, such as the Grammys and the Oscars. Artists and actors are people too, and like viewers, they must also crave validation for their art. But my plea to them is the same: don’t get caught up in the red carpets and opinions of a subjectively ‘esteemed’ critic. Especially in the space that entertainment occupies today, a connection with your fans and viewers is just as fulfilling. Awards should really only be a supplement to your success, not the focus. If viewers and listeners find a deeper meaning within your art, then I’d like to think you’ve achieved success. You’re making your art to express emotion and in hopes that others connect with it. That’s far better than trying to appeal to a prudish board of critics.

• 17




Guide dog training is no walk in the park OLIVIA NASNER OPINION COLUMNIST

What’s it really like to train a service dog? In one word, the answer is “hard.” The more complicated answer would be mentally, physically and emotionally draining, but entirely worth it. I will paint you a picture of the journey I took starting Sept. 25, 2015. As you begin your year-to-ayear-and-a-half commitment with your 8-week old puppy, things will change as soon as you hold the puppy in your arms for the first time. Your daily schedule will change to now involve at least three twenty-minute walks. You’ll have the opportunity to explore the unique sights of Waterloo, like the beautiful Waterloo Park and the historical Voelker House on Young St. that looks like it belongs in Stars Hollow. You will have enlightening experiences interacting with strangers

who tell you their personal stories of how a service dog has impacted someone in their life. One story that resonated with me was a boy with autism who was too afraid to get on the school bus every morning until he met his service dog. His dog gave him the confidence to walk on that same bus, now without fear or anxiety.

That’s the ability dogs innately have: to make people smile simply from the sight of their droopy eyes and wagging tails.

While training your service dog, you will also interact with harsh, critical people who can cast a shadow on your day with few negative comments. “Wow, looks like he’s not going to pass.” “Clearly you have got a lot


more training to do.” Sadly, I’ve experienced these very comments on numerous occasions. Along the way, you will meet new friends who are on the same journey as you, who understand your struggles and joys on a deeper level. They will be standing next to you in the middle of a muddy field watching about 10 black labs run around, throwing their bodies into puddles. You will also receive daily smiles: smiles from strangers, professors, friends and family. That’s

the ability dogs innately have: to make people smile simply from the sight of their droopy eyes and wagging tails. You will educate strangers in the grocery store on the many types of service dogs and the integral roles they play in bettering lives, leaving people slightly more knowledgeable on the topic after just a few minute long conversations. I chose to volunteer for the NSD puppy raiser program because I am an animal lover who wants to have a positive impact on our world. I ended up learning more than

I ever imagined: about myself, human capabilities for compassion and the animal-human connection. About 16 months later, you will receive an email that shatters your heart, stating that it is time for your dog to enter advanced training, where he will be one step closer to becoming a certified service dog. You must drop your fully-grown companion off at the same centre where you picked him up from many months ago, when he was smaller than the size of his current head. But you know that you endured the many mentally, physically and emotionally exhausting days so that one day your dog will belong to someone else. And that “someone” needs him even more than you do. As I write this piece, I am preparing myself to say goodbye to my 18-month-old Labrador and Bernese mountain dog cross named Diesel in a few days. It will be one of the toughest days of my life, but this experience will not leave me feeling empty. As much as the dog changed your life, he will change someone else’s in an immeasurable way. When your journey ends, your dog’s is just beginning.

Lumos brings magic to life Charity shows the light that can be found in the darkness



The magic of J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series continues in her charity work

After watching the newest installment of the Harry Potter film franchise, I began to remember the magic that the words of J.K Rowling brings to our hearts. Now, when I think of magic, I definitely don’t mean the whole argument of whether it’s real or not in the context of the paranormal. What I mean by “magic” is the freedom and power to imagine and let it bring happiness, even during times of hardship and pain. When I think of magic, I think of a life changing experience; I think of an 11-year-old Harry Potter being rescued by the wonders of magic, during his childhood that was filled with abuse at the hands of the horrible Dursleys. As the years went by, I began to see how magic gave this fictional hero of mine the hope and imagination for a better world filled with happiness, despite losing many loved ones at the hands of unfortunate events. As I think of the most realistic example of this paranormal force, I think of Lumos.

Lumos is a charity founded by J.K Rowling in 2005 that works to help the millions of children in orphanages and institutions regain their lives and rights to loving families. After hearing Rowling consistently preach her mission to help these children, I believed that if she could change our perception of magic, she could accomplish this goal.

Magic can come in many forms and my idea of magic has always been determination and imagination to make the world a better place.

Behind some of the horrifying statistics, it’s sad that the children in orphanages and institutions are likely to turn to prostitution, drugs, crime and suicide. As Lumos began its crusade, deinstitutionalization grew. In 2010, the Bulgarian government adopted Lumos’ philosophy,

allowing them to adopt a national strategy on deinstitutionalization. This strategy would outline Bulgaria’s vision to achieve social inclusion and the safety for all its children by stemming away from institutions and replacing them with family and community based services that would provide the love and care these orphanages failed to do. I think it’s amazing how Lumos is not attacking and showcasing the workers at orphanages as criminals. Intead, it shows them how they can create a better environment for the children. There is so much more to say about this charity and Rowling. I would recommend to anyone to look at the work Lumos has done to help children who suffer in institutions. So many have found a loving family and the care they need to survive and be successful. Lumos is a paranormal force — a lot like the magic spell needed in times of darkness and unhappiness in Harry’s story. Magic can come in many forms and my idea of magic has always been determination and imagination to make the world a better place. As Albus Dumbledore said, “Happiness can always be found in the darkest of times if one only remembers to turn on the light.”



WATCHING PEOPLE Observing others is a great pastime that sparks imagination



As someone who is quiet and reserved by nature, I have picked up a specific pastime that requires no energy and can be done practically anywhere: people watching. People watching is something that I have acquired a love for and I use it as an entertainment method to make time pass more quickly. I do it out of habit now and it’s led me to embrace my surroundings, combat my anxiety and appreciate how unique every single person truly is. I live in the heart of downtown Kitchener: an area that is never short on a variety of eclectic individuals at every turn. Always choosing to sit by the

windows in coffee shops, I’m given a removed insight into the mysterious lives of those passing by. I routinely see the same man who frequents this area. He pushes a shopping cart covered in signs and is always singing whenever I see him. He mainly keeps to himself, but I always wonder what his story is, who his mother was, what he was like as a little boy. I gleefully survey the dogs being walked, many of whom look like their respective owners. I thoughtfully give each of them their own name and look on with fondness as children on the street run up to them to give them a pet. My heart swells as older couples pass, holding hands. They shuffle along, smiling to each other, completely at ease. I think about how each pair would have met, how long they would have been together and what has kept them looking so happy.

On the bus, I catch glimpses of personal fragments that I otherwise wouldn’t notice if I wasn’t directly paying attention to them.

Always choosing to sit by the windows in coffee shops, I’m given a removed insight into the mysterious lives of those passing by.

There’s always that one person I see who lights up at the sight of a message on their phone and laughs out loud — I grin with them. I collect contentment from seeing people bob their heads to their

music and silently move their lips along to the words on the pages of books they’re reading. I oh-so-subtly make exaggerated faces at the baby bouncing in their stroller across from me and they giggle hysterically. It’s as though we share an inside joke and it marks a self-satisfied accomplishment to mark the beginning of my day. I admire a girl with the most vividly coloured hair and beautifully bold style that I could never pull off, no matter how hard I tried. I see a pregnant woman smiling to herself as she gently rubs her round belly, staring peacefully out the window. At the mall, I watch tired families grouped together with children in tow, burdened with shopping bags, yet still looking cheerful as the father loudly jokes with the mother. While I eat my lunch, I observe as an elderly man leaves a twenty-dollar bill in the tip jar at the food court cafe. The weathered

baristas perk up instantly, looking eternally grateful. At the movies, I see a man sitting by himself in the corner of the theatre looking forlorn, while a group of preteens are bouncing up and down in the front with excitement over the movie they can’t wait to see. No matter where I go, I see countless people of every variation imaginable. I conjure up stories about who they are, who they might be and what they may be doing. I create their personas and I question their journeys. I am fascinated by people and by watching them from a distance. I gain insight into the simple, everyday moments that make us each human. It’s amazing, the things you can observe, when you recognize that there are so many other unique experiences and stories outside of your own. All you have to do is watch.

midterm on a Friday instead of on a weekend. If any department uses time as an excuse to do exams on the weekends during the year, I will gladly prove them wrong with this example. So with that, let me just say this one thing to the department heads who schedule midterms.

We are number one in student satisfaction, so why not give the students what they want and get rid of weekend exams? They’re a pain in the ass and interfere with people’s ability to work and unwind. It’s just not worth it when there’s a better alternative that is so much easier for students to swallow.

Weekend exams prevent students from perfection Having midterms on Saturday and Sunday is detrimental


Now that we have been back to school for six weeks and we are about to enter another hellish midterm season, we have to address one of the big problems with midterm and exam season: exams on the weekend. I know some people will argue that exams on the weekend will help the process of getting home quicker for the holidays or the summer break. Well, if you finished on Dec. 21 like I did, all you got was 13 days to go home and see your family. The bigger problem is not with the exams at the end of the year, but the midterm exams during the regular term that are on weekends. This is mostly a problem for business and economics students, but that’s not to say that other degrees don’t have them too: just ask the health science majors taking anatomy this year.

Students learn a bunch of complicated material in class on Tuesday and Thursday and then on Saturday or Sunday they go in and write a 30 per cent midterm. After a long week, there’s no time to even review the material that we were tested on just days before.

Students learn a bunch of complicated material in class on Tuesday and Thursday and then on Saturday or Sunday they go in and write a 30 per cent midterm.

There’s no way you can be successful when you don’t have time to recuperate — or when you don’t have time to study. There isn’t time to fully recover in the form of the weekend — the only time they are given to unwind

and relax. For me, I can’t really complain. I’m a white straight male, but that doesn’t mean I don’t know people who have had to write exams on days reserved for religion, family or sports. My roommate was in economics before he transferred to political science. Last winter semester, he had a midterm every weekend for about a month and a half. If students don’t have financial aid or a savings fund from their parents, they will be working their asses off to be able to go to post-secondary school. Back at home, I know a few guys who went to Conestoga College who worked every weekend when they were in school. Weekends are the prime time for students to work for a few hours to get some extra cash for food or to start to pay off tuition for the next semester. Weekend exams can easily interfere with students’ ability to earn the cash we desperately need. It’s so easy to avoid — just put the exams on a weekday. For example, I was in business law last year and we had our


• 19







The Laurier men’s basketball team suffered a tough loss in their final regular season home game at the hands of the Western Mustangs. The Hawks were up 15-10 after the first quarter. But thanks to Western guard Omar Shiddo, Laurier’s lead did not last long. Shiddo scored a game high of 36 points, with 23 of those coming in the second quarter. After the first quarter, the game flipped on its head and the Mustangs never looked back, winning by a final score of 88-65. Head coach Justin Serresse spoke about the Hawks’ shortcomings after the game. “I’m going to have to watch the tape. I didn’t feel great going into the game, to tell you the truth,I didn’t like the vibe, everything was rushed,” he said. “The senior’s night thing, it was just too many distractions. We got off to a good start defensively, we were in a fight, but we can’t let one guy score 36 points with 23 in just one quarter. I’m just extremely disappointed with the effort. We gave up 21 offensive rebounds, we settled offensively and we turned it over 24 times. We probably need some time off right now just to regroup a little bit.” The Hawks seemed out of sync on both ends of the court as soon as the second quarter started. They couldn’t find an answer for Omar Shiddo, while also struggling to corral rebounds, as they ended

up conceding a staggering 21 offensive boards to Western. On offence, it seemed as if the Hawks couldn’t buy a bucket for certain stretches of the game. Serresse stressed making at least two passes on offence before shooting the ball and while ball movement is never a bad thing, it looked like the Hawks were just too passive at times. “We did have 18 assists, but we weren’t aggressive with the ball movement. We were doing it without any purpose. That’s not a good thing,” Serresse said. Not only was this the last home game of the season for the Hawks, it was also the last home game for seniors Matt Chesson and Owen Coulthard. Chesson and Coulthard are two key players for the Hawks and their presence will be missed next year for this team. “It’s tough, going out on such a bad note. I just feel bad for them. They played hard today. They tried their best, but the rest of the team didn’t follow. There’s a lot of guys that need to check themselves right now. We didn’t come out with the urgency,” Serresse said. This loss is a tough pill to swallow for the Hawks, especially since it was against the rivaled Western Mustangs. However, it is crucial for this team to keep its head up heading into the final regular season game against Lakehead. Winning cures everything and ending the season with a victory will provide a massive boost for the Hawks.


Final tune up before the playoffs ROB FIFIELD SPORTS EDITOR

The Laurier men’s hockey team hit the ice Saturday evening to try and win their fifth in a row and close out the regular season with a win at home. Laurier managed to do just that as they defeated the Windsor Lancers 3-2. “For us, it was a game where we got better as the game went on. I thought our energy was good and we were able to play pretty well defensively,” said head coach Greg Puhalski. A very even back and forth period was broken up by Will Cook who made a nice tip on Alex Adams’ point shot to beat the Lancers goaltender and give the Hawks a 1-0 lead late in the opening frame. The next period began and the Hawks looked strong again as Neil Aird was able to fire one past the Windsor goaltender and give the Hawks a 2-0 lead. Soon after, Laurier’s star goal-


tender, Colin Furlong, was forced to leave the game briefly due to an equipment malfunction. The Lancers took advantage of Furlong’s absence as Blake Blondeel was able to beat goaltender Vinny Merante and cut the Hawks’ lead in half. Shortly afterwards, Furlong returned to the ice and headed back in goal after sorting out his

equipment. Luke Hietkamp restored Laurier’s two goal lead just before the second period was up and the teams broke for the second intermission with the Hawks up by two. Laurier played a strong defensive third, giving up few chances until Hietkamp took a late holding penalty, giving the Lancers their chance to get back in it.

Dylan Denomme was able to beat Furlong on the power play and cut the Hawks’ lead to one with just less than three minutes left. Despite the Lancers best effort to try and tie the game, Furlong and the rest of the Golden Hawks shut the door and skated away with a 3-2 win and their fifth in a row. The Hawks will see the Lancers again tonight as they open the first round of the playoffs tonight against Windsor. “For us, it’s about shoring up a couple areas to be better in and keep getting better as a team; we can’t concern ourselves about who we’re playing,” he said. “We’ll just pay attention to a few particular things that [Windsor does] as a team, but we have to make sure we keep rolling, using all four lines, all six [defence] and make sure everyone is contributing; that’s how we’ve had our success here at the end of the season.” Puck drop is set for 7:30 p.m. tonight at Sun life Financial Arena.





A big part of every good hockey team, is an even better goaltender. The Laurier men’s hockey team are heading to the playoffs, with home ice advantage in the first round. A key factor behind their great season thus far has been starting goalie, Colin Furlong. Furlong was named Laurier’s athlete of the week on Feb. 6 for his magnificent performance against the Toronto Varsity Blues, in which he earned the first shutout of his career, posting 25 saves for the win. Furlong and the rest of the Hawks have come into their own as of late, winning five consecutive games to close out the regular season. The second-year goalie talked about what has worked for the Hawks as of late. “We’ve just been playing our type of game. When we tend to stray away from that, we kind of get in trouble. We just have to get everyone on the same page and buying into our system and just having guys commit. I think we’ve done that in the last month or so. That’s what we need to keep doing,” he said. Goaltenders are always under the microscope and every mistake made by goalies is magnified. This unmistakably adds extra pressure on goalies and makes it

one of the hardest positions to play in hockey. “I just try not to think too much. As the goalie, if you make a mistake, it’s always going to be a goal. I’ve been doing it my whole life, so it’s just routine now. But it’s about

But, in the playoffs, it doesn’t matter if you’re first or eighth it’s a whole different game.

-Colin Furlong, goaltender

not overthinking, just going out and playing, just trying to make the save for the team is the big thing,” Furlong said. The Cambridge native has been playing hockey since he was seven; it’s no surprise to see him playing at such a high level. Furlong was on the team last year as well, but the Hawks record wasn’t quite as impressive. When asked to comment on the team’s turnaround, Furlong gave all the credit to his teammates. “We had a strong recruiting class

this year. We have some good, young talent, but we also have some of the veteran guys who are talented and can score, but can also play a gritty game. Our young guys can also do the same; they can be skilled, but they can also hit and grind in corners,” he said. The Hawks wrapped up the regular season with a 3-2 victory against the Windsor Lancers. They had also beaten Windsor earlier in the season with a 2-1 win. Both of those victories could be very helpful for the Hawks as they will face the Lancers in the first round of the playoffs. Even though those regular season games were important, the playoffs are a different beast and the added pressure will make it that much harder for the Hawks. “The playoffs are definitely a whole different game. But I think it’s good for morale, knowing that we have had a little bit of success against them. But in the playoffs, it doesn’t matter if you’re first or eighth; it’s a whole different game,” said Furlong. The good news for the Hawks is that they have home ice advantage in the first round. If the two regular season games against Windsor were any indication of what’s to come; the playoff games should be nerve-racking. It won’t be easy for the Hawks. And after his impressive season, all eyes will be on Furlong.



Rough weekend for the Golden Hawks ROB FIFIELD SPORTS EDITOR

The Laurier women’s hockey team dropped a close one as they fell 3-2 to the Western Mustangs in a shootout on Saturday afternoon. In the midst of a four game losing streak and coming off backto-back road losses to Laurentian and Nipissing, the Hawks returned home to try and spoil the Mustangs’ playoff chances.

I hope this game is a wake up call for our first and second-year players.

-Rick Osborne, head coach

The Hawks looked sluggish early on, but were rewarded in the first period when Emily Woodhouse was able to score on the power play and give the Hawks a 1-0 lead. Head coach Rick Osborne was unhappy with the teams’ first period effort. “We had a pretty horrible first


On Jan. 21, Laurier’s women’s hockey goaltender Amanda Smith stood strong against the University of Waterloo.

period; I didn’t think our feet were moving. We actually had a poor practice Tuesday and we played like we practiced Tuesday. We had a decent practice Thursday and that’s how we played the second period,” he said. However, the 1-0 score-line was short lived, as less than a minute later, Mustangs forward Lyndsay Kirkham was able to beat Laurier goaltender Amanda Smith and tie

the game at one. The second period looked better for Laurier as Woodhouse was, once again, able to beat Western’s goaltender, Katie Jacobs. Woodhouse recorded her first multi-goal game since joining the Hawks this fall, an OUA first for the first-year forward. “Woody, it doesn’t surprise me. As a rookie, she’s come in and she’s been doing that most of the year,”

Osborne said. The score remained 2-1 after two periods of play. Western came out hard, searching for the tying goal in the third period and were able to find it as Kirkham buried her second goal of the game to tie the game at two apiece. The remainder of the third went scoreless as the teams headed to overtime.

Two overtime periods of four on four and then three on three solved nothing and a shootout was required. The Mustangs looked well prepared for the shootout as both of their first two shooters, Tia Kipfer and Rachel Armstrong were able to find the back of the net. Ultimately, Golden Hawks’ shooters Carly Aucoin and Jaden Head weren’t able to score, resulting in the 3-2 loss. Although the Hawks didn’t win, Smith set a Laurier record for the most saves in a game with an astonishing 60 saves. “When our goalie makes 60 saves, I’d like to win that game,” Osborne said. “Smitty has held us in every game the second half of the season and she deserves more support from us.” Overall, Osborne was disappointed once again with the results and ultimately the way the entire season has played out. “I hope the game is a wake up call for our first and second-year players coming back because [Western] is battling for eighth place and the foot speed that they had winning, the races, the battles, we’ve got some work to do in the offseason,” he said. “It’s going to be a tough summer for our kids — they’re going to have to train pretty hard.”

The Cord February 15, 2017