Produced by the Ryerson School of Journalism Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Volume 68, Number 3
@theryersonian / www.ryersonian.ca
Sam sign languishes in crates
Working Like a Dog
By Emma Jarratt Ryersonian Staff
Anam Latif / Ryersonian Staff
Dare, the black lab, models the robot rescue gear developed by computer science professor Alex Ferworn (far right). Ferworn and grad student Jimmy Tran (far left) presented the project at a science competition in Washington D.C., Tuesday. They are pictured with OPP Const. Dan Bailey and Ryerson fashion professor Lucia Dell’Agnese.
After lighting up Yonge Street for nearly 50 years, the Sam The Record Man sign is now collecting dust, dismantled and stored in crates in a quiet Vaughan warehouse. The location and condition of the sign were kept secret, until Gregory Signs and Engraving recently confirmed its whereabouts to The Ryersonian. Requests to see the sign were denied by Ryerson due to security concerns. David Grose, Gregory’s sales manager, says his company was contracted by Ryerson to care for and safeguard the sign after it was taken down in 2008. He says that over six years, the school may spend up to $42,000 storing the sign in a dozen custom crates. “There are four or five frames in each crate,” said Grose. “Each frame is three or four feet long with chicken wire over it. The tubes are attached to the chicken wire and they hang there individually tagged and secured so they don’t bang each other and smash.” Please see SAM, page 5
Learning centre mock-up staying for near future By Anam Latif Ryersonian Staff
The Student Life Centre mock-up on Church Street is going to stay put for at least another year instead of being torn down in November as originally planned. The mock-up, which looks like an art installation, is a smaller version of the curtain wall that will envelop the exterior of Ryerson’s new SLC building at the corner of Yonge and Gould Streets. It cost the school $225,000 to build the mock-up for the curtain wall that will be made of a triple-glazed, high-performance glass that conserves energy. Curtain walls are crucial in Canada because they control temperature and protect the interior of the building from outside elements. Project manager Peter Vankessel said in an email that the mock-up was built as a “decision-making tool that would demonstrate as many geometric and visual cladding relationships as possible.”
While mock-ups are common practice for many architectural firms, Yew-Thong Leong, a Ryerson architect and assistant professor, says that this particular mockup was not necessary to build. “It has less to do with testing in my opinion and more to do with visually seeing what (Ryerson) is buying,” he said. But this is one of the reasons mock-ups are built in the first place. Colours, textures and the way joints work together are all examples of why a physical representation is often required when building a curtain wall. This particular curtain wall is an unusual design for North America, Leong said, but added there was a lot of excitement when the European-inspired design was unveiled. The award-winning design was created by European architect Snohetta in collaboration with Toronto’s Ziedler Partners. The curtain wall will cost $8 million of the total $112 million allotted for the SLC building.
Leong said he appreciates the need for the SLC’s architects to build a curtain wall mock-up for such a unique design. He just says he probably wouldn’t have done it himself.
Emma Jarratt / Ryersonian Staff
The SLC mock-up on Church St.
Advanced software, like the program Revit, which uses parametric modelling, has the ability to determine faults in a curtain wall design.
And Leong says modern architecture can get away with not building elaborate mockups like this one. “Maybe it’s a level of confidence the university wants, maybe its $250,000 well spent,” he added. Placing a mock-up off-site is highly unusual, but this location, just north of Gould Street near the Rogers Communication Centre, was chosen because there wasn’t enough space on the construction site itself. Vankessel says that the mockup was a useful reference tool for the construction and design teams. Leong said that in his own work he prefers to dismantle the mock-up and reuse the materials on the curtain wall itself. But he does agree that the cost of the completed curtain wall – at $8 million – is quite standard. Although the SLC project team has not decided what will be done with the mock-up after the SLC is complete, it seems like reusing the materials could be an option.
While Leong says he thinks that some of the cost of the mock-up could have been spared, other architects think it is money well spent. After all, the cost of the mock-up is a drop in the bucket compared to the $112 million the whole building will cost. Ryerson’s architectural program offers many courses in building envelope systems. Leong said he hasn’t used the curtain wall mock-up as a learning tool for any of his students, but it is possible that architecture students may have studied the mock-up in their own personal time or in other classes. As for the miniature building staying in place for longer than originally slated, Vankessel said that it will “continue to serve as a quality control reference for the installation process.” The SLC building is expected to be completed in the winter of 2014 with an opening date expected for January 2015.
2 • The Ryersonian
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Produced by the Ryerson School of Journalism
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A brain drain? Not at the DMZ When the American futurist writer Juan Enriquez came to Toronto last spring to speak at a health symposium, he presented the audience — a group of high-powered scientists, bio-tech researchers, and entrepreneurs — with a question. “What do the smartest people in Canada do? Where do they go?” The implied answer was along the lines of: “They go to the United States.” And it’s an answer that makes sense when you consider where the biggest stories in tech have happened in the past half-decade. After all, where is Canada’s Google? Canada’s Twitter? Who’s making Canada’s Instagram, and getting bought out for $1 billion by Canada’s Facebook? But it’s also an answer that doesn’t tell the whole story. The truth is that innovation in this country is alive and well. In fact, if Enriquez wanted to find out where all the Canadian innovators are, all he had to do was come to Ryerson. By now it’s no secret that the
world.” He also visited the DMZ in March. Since its creation only a few years ago, the DMZ has launched dozens of companies and created hundreds of jobs. Companies that had their start at the DMZ have gone on to become profitable and internationally acclaimed. There’s 500px, the social networking site for photographers that had 1.5 million users by 2012 and is one of the most popular free apps in the App Store. And promising new ventures are coming out all the time, like Figure 1, a medical imagesharing app that’s been billed as “Instagram for doctors.” It’s only a matter of time before we see something on the level of Facebook — time, and the continued investment and support of businesses and politicians. That’s why it’s no surprise that Trudeau is paying attention to what’s going on in the DMZ. And he’s not the only one: NDP leader Thomas Mulcair also visited the DMZ in May. Our politicians are wising up to the fact
The DMZ isn’t just Ryerson’s most important asset — it’s also an investment in the future of critical Canadian industries. DMZ (Digital Media Zone) is the hottest place on campus. A startup incubator and workspace, the DMZ takes in young Canadian entrepreneurs and provides them with the resources and mentorship they need to turn their ideas into sustainable businesses. It’s also one of the biggest success stories in our school’s recent history — just ask Justin Trudeau. During his campaign stop on campus last week, the Liberal leader praised Ryerson students for their world-changing energy and singled out the DMZ as a program “anchored in the real
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that the DMZ isn’t just Ryerson’s most important asset — it’s also an investment in the future of critical Canadian industries: tech, science, health. The list goes on. The fortunes of a country of more than 30 million people depend on more than just a handful of student-run startups. But if recent history has taught us anything, it’s that a dozen kids with computers can and do have what it takes to change the world. And the more incentives they have to stay and work in Canada, the better off we’ll be.
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Driving to school is driving me broke of public transit access points. But do those students and faculty members who wish to commute with their own cars not have the right to find decently priced parking? The university actually does offer a paid parking service. Students seeking a spot are required to apply for permits that run from September to April each year. The service costs $1,205.94 for the underground parking and $813.60 for the surface parking. This is a considerable amount of money to be paid on top of tuition fees and other expenses. So why don’t students just leave the cars at home? Consider being enrolled in the school of journalism or RTA. Often, you find yourself going out to cover an event, do an interview or shoot a video. You have a tripod,
ing the result and, in turn, your grades. A better solution would be a car. If only you had a place to park that didn’t cost 25 per cent of tuition. Obviously, parking will never be free. Currently, vehicle commuters to Ryerson have to pay about $12-$15 (daily maximum) to park from the morning to the afternoon at one of the parking locations on campus without a permit. By Amir-Pashah Tabrizian-Pour But here’s the not-so-pretRyersonian Staff ty part: there’s no difference between a full-time student and any other individual that wishes Recently, we learned that to park in one of the parking some Ryerson graduates have spaces on our campus. developed a “downtown parking If Mr. X wants to go to the finder” application for Android Eaton Centre and parks in the phones. campus bookstore parking lot, It’s a great source of pride he can do so for the same price that some of our very own graduas a full-time student enrolled ates made this happen. Perhaps it in the institution that owns was somewhere the lot. on our campus Students need to be a higher priority The parking issue is or during a lecnot a life-changing one. It than commuters who are desperate to ture that the inican be simply overlooked tial idea came find parking in downtown Toronto. and ignored and no major up. In that case, harm will be done. But kudos to our a light kit, camera bag. even a slim student discount university for its role in nurturIt’d be a display of endurcan be a positive gesture that ing talent. ance and skill to carry all of this strengthens Ryerson’s communiBut a parking app alone won’t solve the biggest problem equipment from one side of town ty and that sense of “belonging.” Students need to be a higher for those who drive to school to the other via the stairwells and revolving metal doors of public priority than commuters who every day: parking at Ryerson, transit. are desperate to find parking in a university with four parking So what are your options? downtown Toronto so they can facilities and considerable space Maybe you take a taxi and pay spend an afternoon at the mall. in the heart of downtown Toronto, out of your own pocket. Or you If Mr. X is paying $15, then it is too expensive — especially for give up the heavy tripod and makes sense for a second-year students. I admit that Ryerson is a sensitive light kit and settle for engineering student to pay less. commuting university with loads a mediocre shoot, compromis- Much less.
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Ryerson celebrates We Day Wednesday, September 25, 2013
By Tara Deschamps Ryersonian Staff
Growing up in a Kenyan village with no running water or electricity, Teriano Lesancha never imagined she would receive an education, let alone take the stage at the Air Canada Centre to share her story with a crowd of 20,000 children. But that’s exactly where the Ryerson social work graduate was last Friday, joining president Sheldon Levy at Free the Children’s We Day celebration. The concert event, held each year by activist brothers Marc and Craig Kielburger, brings celebrities and social change advocates to Toronto to inspire youth to make a difference. For Lesancha, it was a chance to encourage youth to follow in her footsteps by working hard to achieve their goals. “I believe in education and through it, we can change the world,” she said, after describing how her father sold his last calf to send her to Ryerson to become the first in her village to receive a university education. Since then, Lesancha has returned to Kenya to rebuild her father’s herd, send 50 kids to school and begin building a women’s centre, cyber café and beekeeping business. During her speech, she taught the audience about “pamoja,” a Swahili word meaning “together.” She says she was touched to see how many children were repeating the message to her as
she left the stage and the stadium later that day. “There were people that I never met and people behind the stage that were all calling out to me, ‘pamoja,’” she said. Lesancha wasn’t the only one with a Ryerson connection who was part of the We Day festivities. Ryerson dancers kicked off the show with an intricate routine set to music from Martin Luther King’s I Have A Dream speech. At the end of the performance, the dancers were joined onstage by Martin Luther King III — a moment which fourth-year dance student Tara Pillon says had her holding back tears. “I was really moved by the entire thing, especially the experience of performing in front of a crowd of young people who have been making a difference in our world,” she said. “They are so positive and brought such a great energy throughout the entire We Day event.” Fellow fourth-year dancer Alexandra Bleim agreed. She said the event was “exhilarating,” “emotional” and well worth the long hours of gruelling practice at the dance studio. “We only had a week to learn the performance,” she said. “We were all pretty exhausted but we knew we had to work efficiently to make sure we felt prepared and did the performance justice. We somehow managed to pull it together.”
Josh Kolm / Ryersonian Staff
Ryerson’s dancers took the stage at We Day last Friday in front of a crowd of 20,000 children.
One-third of students waiting for OSAP
By Amal Ahmed Albaz Ryersonian Staff
It’s hard to believe September is almost over. But it’s especially hard for the approximately 30 per cent of students still waiting for their OSAP payments. “I have to pay for rent and, since I’m unable to, I’m borrowing money from my aunt until I get the money,” said third-year political science student, Alana Alonzo. As October looms, so too does the Sept. 30 deadline for tuition payments, and for some students, another rent payment. For many
students, OSAP cash pays for things like rent and groceries in addition to tuition. “It’s really frustrating,” said Alonzo. “It’s such an unnecessary burden.” Over 70 per cent, or just over 9,000 students, had received their OSAP funding by Sept. 15, according to Carol Scarse, manager of student financial assistance at Ryerson. “Eight thousand students had OSAP funding in their bank accounts and fees payments deposited to their RAMSS accounts prior to the start of fall classes,” said Scarse.
The Ryersonian • 3
“Last year on the payment deadline (first Friday in September) we had only received 1,696 (tuition) payments as a result of (delayed) OSAP funding,” said Scarse. This year it was 11,757 payments by the same deadline. Scarse said that students who applied in June and have not received their funding, have likely not checked their OSAP status summary online and may not realize there are items listed under the “check list” that need to be completed before funding can be released.
Josh Kolm / Ryersonian Staff
Long lines outside the Student Financial Assistance office have been common this month.
Tuition still rising By Kim Brown Ryersonian Staff
In less than the time it takes to finish a four-year degree, tuition will increase by 13 per cent, according to a recent study released by the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives. Rising tuition is nothing new, but the steep increase means annual average fees will move from $6,610 to an estimated $7,437 by fall 2016. “As funding for post-secondary shifts from public to individualized tuition fees, the entire system becomes more regressive,” said Erika Shaker, co-author of the CCPA study, “and it’s the wrong direction we should be moving in.” The predicted increase will hit Ontario undergrads the hardest. Students here pay the highest tuition fees in Canada and for them university and compulsory fees will surge from approximately $8,403 to $9,517. “It’s ridiculous,” exclaimed Roshelle Lawrence, vice president education of the RSU. “The Ontario government and the Canadian government in general haven’t been listening to what students have been asking for; and that’s for a system that tries to make post-secondary education, which is a right, affordable and accessible to all students.” Alastair Woods, chairperson of Canadian Federation of Students – Ontario, is similarly outraged with the continual increase in tuition fees. “In many cases (the government) treats college and university education as an episode of Extreme
Couponing,” said Woods. “Students can apply for any number of grants or special bursaries or loan forgiveness … but of course what that does is just create a massive amount of red tape and oftentimes the money that’s committed to these grants and programs doesn’t go to the people who need it the most.” The Ontario government did lower the cap on tuition hikes from five to three per cent annually this past spring. The cap, which will remain in place for the next four years, will only save students about $300 each year. And it will also reduce the number of grants schools can offer students. The RSU rallied for lower tuition fees in April, yet only a handful of people showed up. Genta Kaca, a third-year sociology student, was one of the few people who did show up. “I think most (students) just gave up hope on tuition decreasing,” said Kaca. Kaca said if she were just starting school and had to deal with the 13 per cent increase over her undergraduate career, she would still enrol, “but I just wouldn’t like the fact it’s so costly.” Shaker has acknowledged that there are significant amounts of money being put towards postsecondary education, but the way in which that money is being applied isn’t enhancing the affordability of post-secondary school for youth. “The absolute wrong starting point is to assume that we can’t expect better. The good news is the recognition that the system is increasingly unsustainable ... has hit home.”
4 • The Ryersonian
Rye business club to compete in Cancun By Brian Boudreau Ryersonian Staff
A Ryerson team believes bees and better financial literacy can help change the world, and they’ll test their theories at the Enactus World Cup in Cancun next week. Enactus is an international nonprofit organization that brings together students and businesses to improve quality of life through entrepreneurship. Its board of directors boasts bosses from big name companies including Walmart, Unilever, and KPMG. “There are 1,600 (chapters) around the world. Ryerson right now is in the top 37,” said Curtis Yim, president of Enactus Ryerson. “We’re proud to say we’re representing Canada and we have a strong chance to bring the trophy home.” Judges evaluate the projects with an eye for how the teams have applied business concepts to empower others, while keeping environmental, economic and social factors in mind. Based on that criteria, Yim thinks their initiatives can hold their own. One of these initiatives is StartSmart, a life skills program with an emphasis on financial literacy and independence. The project includes outreach in shelters, youth counselling centres and high schools. “We want to focus on building their confidence as individuals, so that they’re confident enough
to find a job and later apply their financial literacy,” said Yim. Yim believes this kind of outreach is more effective than food and money handouts which, while providing short-term solutions, do not equip individuals with the skills they need to survive. Enactus Ryerson does similar work in Dago, a remote Kenyan village. Tyler Baird, a recent Ryerson graduate, introduced beekeeping as a new job opportunity in the village last year. The initiative is part of Enactus Ryerson’s Project Dago, also to be showcased at the World Cup next week. “I grew up in the country near Orangeville and my family actually does beekeeping. So I started doing some research and we found that it was actually a really good idea for the village,” said Baird. “This is a small village with only a certain amount of jobs and most of them are in farming. We found this as a chance to introduce a new job opportunity to the village.” When Baird returned as project manager this summer, Dago residents had added six more beehives to the four he helped build in 2012. “The work they had done on their own was phenomenal ... that told me they were very interested,” he said. Enactus Ryerson has been involved in Dago for three years, also providing micro-loans, solar panels and financial education to men and women in the community.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Courtesy Enactus Ryerson
Members of Enactus Ryerson took a trip to Dago, Kenya in March of last year to teach financial literacy.
“Tying all these things together made a sustainable project for this village to build a better future for their children,” said Yim. “They used to burn beehives and get the honey for the short term, but now
they can sell the honey and innovate. Now we’re looking at how we can make Dago the honeyproducing capital of Kenya.” Project Dago and StartSmart will be showcased along with
Enactus Ryerson’s StartMeUp program, which helps start and expand businesses on campus. All three projects will square off from Sept. 29-Oct. 1.
of master’s and PhD students in the electrical engineering and computer science departments have been working on since 2005. “We started with the idea of building walking robots but we
“And the beauty of this is you have to communicate with the dog. Most people give commands to dogs,” Ferworn said. “But now dogs are giving commands to an object.”
Texas, which is complete with a mock rail disaster and collapsed mall. They are in regular contact with officials in the United States from FEMA (the Federal Emergency Management Agency). His next step is to turn the prototype into a marketable reality. “I’m going to re-engineer it so that it works robustly in the field,” Ferworn said. “The urban search and rescue environment is harsh so it has to work all the time under various conditions… eventually we’ll be able to sell it to any search and rescue team that wants to buy it.” Dare, who is 98 in human years, won’t be going to Washington. After working with the program for eight successful years, he’s now retired. “We had him up at Elliot Lake, at the collapsed mall. He was involved in locating persons in that,” said his handler, Dan Bailey. Dare also found two people buried in the rubble at an explosion in a Woodstock apartment building in 2011. The OPP was going to take a previous version of the project with them to Haiti to assist in canine search and rescue after the 2010 earthquake. Unfortunately the whole operation was eventually called off. But for everyone involved with the project, helping in a real disaster is the real goal. “If I can save a life, that’s amazing,” said Ferworn. If he can do it with a robot attached to a dog, that’s even more amazing.
Rye professor, dog, and robot team up for rescue missions By May Warren Ryersonian Staff
Dare, a 14-year-old black lab, dashes around a Ryerson classroom. Despite his age, he deftly dodges desks and chairs. He’s focused on his goal: finding a person hidden somewhere behind an overturned table. There hasn’t been an earthquake or a building-collapse, but if there were, Dare could save lives with the help of a little robot he carries in a pouch that hangs below his belly. It’s called Canine Assisted Robot deployment. When a rescue dog finds someone it barks and this triggers the pouch containing a robot to drop. It could be a lifeline for someone who has been trapped alone underneath a collapsed building or a pile of rubble after an earthquake or another kind of disaster. “Imagine if you could drop a water bottle and let them know, we’ll be back for you, we’re coming,” says Alex Ferworn, the Ryerson computer science professor who developed the technology. “That might be the difference between life and death. You may be in there for 48 hours. You feel horrible. You think you’re going to die. No one knows where you are. You’re really happy when the dog arrives.” But, Ferworn explained, a rescue dog sometimes leaves a survivor once they find them and often human rescue teams can’t reach them immediately. The robot is designed to combat that. The project was selected as one of five finalists for Science Slam, a European Union-sponsored
competition in Washington, D.C. If Ferworn wins, he’ll travel to Belgium to present at a research conference with scientists from around the world. The device could also be used
Dare the rescue dog completes a canine assisted robot deployment test on a rubble pile earlier this month.
to carry things such as medical supplies or a walkie-talkie, or it could be used to survey the area where the survivor is trapped, providing video to the rescue team. It’s the culmination of a series of projects Ferworn and a group
realized there are a lot of people building walking robots and they don’t work very well,” Ferworn said. One of his students then suggested using dogs since they already know how to walk.
Jimmy Tran is a grad student who has been involved with canine rescue technology since the beginning. Tran travels with Ferworn around North America testing their robotic systems on different sites such as Disaster City in
Wi-Fi will find a way outside Wednesday, September 25, 2013
The Ryersonian • 5
By Daniel Melfi Ryersonian Staff
Wi-Fi fills the halls of campus buildings, but students hoping to Google on Gould Street have to shell out for data plans. That could change as early as spring, as Ryerson looks to expand campus Wi-Fi to outdoor spaces. “Everyone thinks it’s a good idea,” said Brian Lesser, director of Ryerson’s computing and communications services (CCS). Lesser said the CCS is in the process of “fact-finding and analyzing all the options.” They are mainly focusing on how to cover important outdoor spaces, such as the Quad, Ryerson theatre and the pedestrian area around Gould and Victoria Streets. Lesser added that they haven’t developed a proposal just yet, so “the earliest Wi-Fi could begin to be seen on campus would be in the spring, though even that is hopeful.” This news comes as the city of Toronto explores a similar proposal. Coun. Josh Matlow has brought forward a motion for free Wi-Fi in all of Toronto’s public spaces. The proposal will go to the government management committee on Oct. 15.
Matlow is confident the proposal will pass through the process. “I’ve heard a lot of really good feedback from my colleagues in city hall and I don’t think I will encounter many detractors.” Toronto is lagging behind the tech culture when it comes to Wi-Fi, said Matlow. Many cities across the globe have already invested, tested and are now realizing the benefits of having free Wi-Fi in public spaces.
“These cities range from New York City to San Francisco, all the way to Brisbane in Australia,” he said. Matlow believes the addition of Wi-Fi would be an increased incentive for tourists because it would negate the enormous roaming fees that everyone is accustomed to while travelling. Matlow is adamant that it would also respond to the large equity gap that Toronto suffers from.
SAM cont’d... Grose said everything but the neon tubes, wires and light bulbs were discarded when the building was demolished. As each piece of tubing was taken down, it was traced onto a Sam sign blueprint so that the reconstruction will look identical. The dismantling process took three weeks. Before the sign was taken down, however, Grose had to make it work again for Sam’s swan song. “Ryerson contracted us to restore the sign to a level that could work for Nuit Blanche,” said Grose. On Oct. 4, 2008, the neon discs lit up the Toronto sky for the last time before the building was demolished. “We were able to get 95 per cent of the sign working (for Nuit Blanche),” he said. “We replaced a lot of the tubes so not all of them are so old.” Immediately after Nuit Blanche, the sign was dismantled, labelled and boxed. A truck towed away 2,000 pounds of neon wattage, which is about 260 tubes and numerous wires and cables. Since then, the sign has been in the care of Gregory’s. Despite being boxed for five years, the sign’s remaining parts “look good,” said Grose. However, the sign is enormous, and at 20,000 pounds and 600 square feet, it dwarfs most building exteriors. Remounting it would be a huge financial commitment. “The $250,000, that everyone reported, was our worst-case scenario figure with a 10 per cent error margin either way,” said Grose. “It’s not just the cost of the sign. It’s everything – engineers, structural work and actually
remounting it. That quarter million was just to get it back up. Nothing to do with maintaining it or hydro costs.” When the $250,000 bomb was dropped, Grose said, “I think they fell off their chairs.” The sign is power hungry and, “will probably cost Ryerson around $30,000 – $40,000 per year in hydro,” said Grose. “If hung on the library, repairs to the sign, maintenance, or checkups could cost the school $5,000 per trip up to access it.” Ryerson paid $150,000 to remove the sign in 2008. In addition to storage fees and with the $250,000 worst-case scenario figure, they could spend somewhere close to half a million dollars on the sign. After 10 years of paying hydro and maintenance that figure could double to $1 million. “I can see how it scared them a lot,” said Grose. “It’s a huge cost.” But cost reflects demand, and these may be the most wanted neon tubes in the city. Not to mention, they’ve been around longer than most of our parents. Sam Sniderman founded the eponymous chain in 1937 on College Street, but it wasn’t until 1961 that he established the 347 Yonge St. store — the birthplace of the sign. It was at this location where the iconic discs were mounted; spinning for 36 years until 2007 when the Sniderman family closed the flagship store. It was hard for record buffs to accept their beloved music mecca was bought by sprawling Ryerson. “We started to look at that land as a potential for the university,” said Ryerson president Sheldon Levy. “Then, almost within months, the business went under.”
The school originally wanted to construct a library annex, but the public protested. Heritage documents were waved while the university clamoured for enhanced student learning facilities. Caught between a rock sign and a hard place, the city tried to mediate.
Daniel Melfi / Ryersonian Staff
Fill spare time on sunny days with endless YouTube videos thanks to Yonge-Dundas Square’s free Wi-Fi.
“Twenty per cent of Torontonians who make under $30,000 a year cannot afford the internet,” he said. When asked about the cost of the idea, Matlow responded by acknowledging that “there are options. We could use sponsors on a welcome page, or we could use a carrier to extend the service.” He uses examples of San Francisco and New York City where Google and AT&T, respectively, provide the services.
Matlow hopes the motion is successful and would like to see a pilot set up soon. He says that Nathan Phillips Square would be a good early testing ground. “It is the front door to our government and it’s Toronto’s main square,” he said. Savvy surfers can already find free Wi-Fi around town, with St. Lawrence Market, the Direct Energy Centre and YongeDundas Square offering patrons free public Wi-Fi.
Grose: Sign would cost Ryerson at least $30,000 a year “For people that think that the university had an obligation to hire an architect that could handle the sign ... we never had that obligation. It was never the agreement we struck.” — Sheldon Levy Finally a contract was drafted and signed between Ryerson and the city and the school took possession of the property on Jan. 18, 2008. “We issued a request for proposals to seek an architect for the Student Learning Centre (SLC),” said Ryerson’s vice-president of administration and finance, Julia Hanigsberg, in an email. “We had responses from some of the best local and international firms. It was always the university’s commitment that we would bring exceptional design to Yonge Street.” The winning design was a sleek, eight-storey, all-glass structure with mezzanine retail space and open-concept study areas — exactly what Ryerson envisioned. The contract Ryerson has with the city states they must use “reasonable best effort” to find a place for the sign on the new SLC. Failing that, the sign would be mounted on the library.
One of the SLC architects, Mike Smith, said it was always known the building would have trouble accommodating the sign. When asked at what point in the design process the sign was dropped, Smith said, “after design development. After the concept stage – after everything firmed up.” Ryerson hasn’t technically broken its agreement. The SLC was never designed to house the sign – and, contractually, it doesn’t have to. Levy has taken a strong stance on the matter. “For people that think that the university had an obligation to hire an architect that could handle the sign, they may wish we had that obligation, but we never had that obligation. It was never the agreement we struck.” Sam sign lovers see Levy as an artful contract dodger and want the school to honour the original agreement. Levy, however, maintains that Ryerson is fulfilling the contract. “(Architect) Snøhetta never had the obligation in their design to hang (the sign),” said Levy. “That was never a requirement. We then tried with the city to see if the sign could be accommodated with the architect on that building. Everyone concluded it could not. So, we went to the other possibility, which was on Gould Street.” Despite the president’s strong words, the school’s image has taken a bruising, if not beating, over the controversy. Even Mayor Rob Ford has become involved in the debate and is convening a team of Ryerson administrators, city representatives and Sam sign activists to find a solution. Ford has previously expressed his hope that the signs
are rehung on or near their original spot. It isn’t as easy as waving your magic welding wand though, says Grose. The design of the building itself, mainly the decision to use glass, is not conducive to supporting a sign with such specific technology requirements. But the year-long extension Ryerson is seeking means a chance to find a potentially more cost-friendly spot for the sign. It would also allow them to consider locations off campus. “Yonge-Dundas Square is Toronto’s version of Times Square,” said Grose. “What better place to put it where millions of people will go to see it?” Moving the sign to YongeDundas Square would put it in good company with other retro Toronto landmarks like the Hard Rock Cafe and Eaton Centre. There are also modifications Ryerson could make to the sign to bring down the cost. “Computer-run LED lights mean you could create something that is better than it ever was,” said Grose. Sam sign fans have expressed dismay in remaking the sign with modern technology, but LED lights run more efficiently and could cut the cost of electricity by up to 30 per cent. There are ways to “age” the sign too, said Grose. Even if it were made of LED and had an aluminum backing, it wouldn’t necessarily have to look brand new. At the age it is now, though, the sign needs serious upgrades before remounting. “We have everything we need to put it back up and make it right,” said Grose. “There is no doubt that there is a way to make it work. I just don’t think we are there yet.”
6 • The Ryersonian
A crisis of confidence? By Lauren Murphy Ryersonian Staff
Women occupy a majority of the places in Canadian universities, graduating with the same qualifications as their male counterparts. Yet only a minuscule proportion of management and leadership roles are filled by females – a problem many attribute to a disturbing lack of confidence in young, working women.
Emma Jarratt / Ryer
Eight out of 226 publicly traded Canadian companies with a market value of more than $1 billion have a woman CEO or equivalent role.
Jocelyn Edmison knows the business world is a bit of a boys’ club. “They’re all friends of friends of friends, who all worked their way up together,” the president of the Ryerson Women in Leadership Association (WiLA) and Ryerson MBA student said of many male-dominated corporate boards. “We’re still not at that point where enough females are up there to have equality.” Edmison said that while this social exclusivity is more apparent in some industries like mining, she and her colleagues at WiLA think there’s still a need to discuss the inequalities in women’s representation in corporate leadership. “There’s still that sense that when you walk into a boardroom and it’s all men and you’re the only female, sometimes it can be intimidating, and you can feel like a minority,” she said. Edmison and WiLA’s concern is merited. More women are graduating from professional programs in Canada than ever before, yet business leadership trends in this country aren’t changing. Women now represent over half of professional school grads, but according to Bloomberg News, they make up only eight of the 226 CEOs of publicly traded Canadian companies. The global figures are even worse, with women making up only 1.8 per cent, or approximately 55 corporate leaders out of nearly 3,000 public companies worldwide. Trends for corporate board membership are similar, with women “stuck at around nine per cent of corporate board member-
Vice-president, research and innovation
Ryerson’s best women in biz
A Ryerson professor, researcher and administrator, Cukier stepped into the role of vice-president of research and innovation in September 2011. Previously the associate dean of academics at the Ted Rogers school of management, Cukier brought a wealth of experience and wide-ranging education to the role, having earned a PhD in management science, an MBA in marketing and information systems, an MA in social and cultural history and a BA in English and history. She’s also been named one of U of T’s 100 alumni who shaped the century and one of 25 transformational Canadians by T the Globe and Mail, La Presse and CTV. “You have to be tenacious,” she says. “The barriers may real, but you can get over them, get around them or go through them.”
ship” around the world, according to Ch a researcher at McMaster University’s D school of business. Women are entering a corporate w where, statistics suggest, there is still ceiling limiting how high they can rise. women making up the majority of u graduates — just over half of Ryerson’s undergraduate student body is women still aren’t being represented in the leade Canadian companies. The discussion about the unequal rep tion of women in boardrooms was reignit the Royal Bank of Canada chose Kathleen the former chief executive officer of Four Hotels and Resorts and a 12-year veteran dent director at the company, as its firs chief executive officer. When she begins Jan. 1, Taylor will be one of the key six p an industry where women make up twoits employee base yet only a third of its lea according to a study by the Canadian Association. Students like Hamideh Zakeri worr their ability to replicate Taylor’s success. “I think the men still feel they sh more in power and they are very critic women in the workplace,” said Zakeri, of engineering student at Ryerson. “I t something that takes a lot longer to
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As a female student in a male-dominated program, Zakeri often finds it difficult to be aggressive and assert herself amongst her male peers. “I feel like I’m being pushed aside and they prefer to decide on what to do and manage the teamwork by themselves,” she said, adding that she struggles with the idea of leading men. This is a common hurdle for women trying to enter the business world. A study done by Wells Fargo and released last week revealed that roughly four in 10 affluent women in the U.S. were “not at all” confident about their ability to invest. Investment confidence is important as it reveals women’s faith in their business intuition. Another study published in 2011 by the European Institute of Leadership and Management showed how half of women admitted to “feelings
“I feel like I’m being pushed aside and they prefer to decide on what to do and manage the teamwork by themselves.” — Hamideh Zakeri of self-doubt about their performance and career” whereas only a third of men reported similar feelings. This crisis of confidence extended to female workers’ willingness to pursue promotions, the study showed. Of those polled, more men answered that they would apply for a job even if they didn’t meet all the requirements. A number of projects have emerged around Ryerson’s campus attempting to combat the social and professional hurdles many women face entering the business world. The SheEO women’s business incubator, run by the university and the Digital Media Zone, brought together 10 different projects led by women between 18 and 35 for a month-long workshop that in addition to providing mentorship, funding and logistical advice about
ident, administration and finance
erg was appointed vice-president of administration and n October 2010, and has since seen Ryerson grow with the s of the Mattamy Athletic Centre and the Ryerson Centre. Previously the general counsel and secretary of Ryerson Board of Governors, she also has years of rnment experience. t be afraid to take on big jobs and big challenges because are worried that you will have trouble integrating work and onsiderations,” she advises. “You will have trouble doing egration but it is worth it.” Hanigsberg also advocates for o help other women, especially in overly competitive, e-dominated environments.
their businesses, also sought to boost their confidence as young female entrepreneurs. Sherene Ng, a graduate of Ryerson’s early childhood education program, was one of the 10 women selected. Ng designed a shoe for the visually impaired that scans the wearer’s oncoming walkway and sends vibration alerts when it senses an obstacle. But with minimal business background, and therefore nearly no business confidence, Ng didn’t have all the tools she needed to make her prototype a reality. The SheEO project helped by providing her with mentorship and a $5000 grant. While at first Ng was thrown by the project’s approach — she described the incubator’s DMZ space as having “colourful pillows all over the floor,” and reminding her of “a kindergarten class” — she was given the opportunity to practise pitching to the project’s affluent donors, like she hopes to eventually do to potential investors. As for why some women benefit from projects like SheEO, Ng thinks it comes down to confidence. “A lot of the women I’ve spoken with have feelings of not being able to take risk because they’re fearful of something, some might be because of the intimidation of men,” she said. Ng, however, thinks the focus on women’s lack of confidence in business might be slightly misplaced. “A lack of confidence was what I was struggling with, but it wasn’t because I was a woman,” Ng said, instead suggesting that women should be looked at on a case-by-case basis regarding their business savvy, not as a gendered whole. Despite being at the head of WiLA, an organization geared towards women in business, Edmison still has moments where she feels professional anxiety, moments she doesn’t think her brother, who works in sales, would experience in the same way. “I’ll look at job descriptions and think I’m not qualified,” she said. “Whereas I don’t think my brother would look at it with as much detail; he’d probably just do it.”
The Ryersonian • 7
Women make up two-thirds of the workforce in Canadian banks, but only make up a third of bank management.
All infographics Josh Kolm/ Ryersonian Staff
Out of 3,010 global companies there are only 55 females who are CEOs or in an equivalent role, which equates to 1.8 per cent. The U.S. has 1.7 per cent.
— With files from Sarah Murphy
Chief administrative officer and chief financial officer, RBC Janice Fukakusa joined the Royal Bank of Canada in 1985, and currently resides as its chief administrative officer and chief financial officer — responsible for developing the bank’s “strategic direction.” In addition to sitting as the vice-chair of Ryerson’s Board of Governors, Fukakasa serves on organizations like Wellspring Cancer Support, Princess Margaret Hospital and her alma mater, Schulich school of business. In 2007, the Women’s Executive Network awarded her a spot in Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Hall of Fame.
8 • The Ryersonian
The List: fall music preview By Josh Kolm Ryersonian Staff
Between Arcade Fire, Drake and Justin Timberlake, it might seem that all the music hype for 2013 is used up. But if you’re looking to pick out this year’s under-the-radar darling, The Ryersonian has compiled a list of albums that are a great place to start: Deltron 3030 –Event II Release date: Oct. 1 Ten years ago, Del the Funky Homosapien was the king of underground hip hop, but a string of lacklustre efforts has killed any hype that might exist for a new release. So it makes sense that he returns to collaborating with Vancouver DJ Kid Koala and producer Dan the Automator under the Deltron 3030 moniker to recreate their magic. The followup to 2000’s self-titled, sci-fi inspired dystopian concept album has allegedly been in the works since 2006, so hopes are high that the kinks that have plagued all three artists in the past have been ironed out.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Banded Stilts – Little Village Release date: Oct. 8 After a well-received EP and some strong festival performances over the last couple years, Banded Stilts have set high expectations for their first fulllength album. Now that overwrought, gimmicky folk like The Lumineers and Mumford and Sons (RIP) have seized the airwaves, Banded Stilts will serve as a reminder that Canada is full of artists capable of restraint and thoughtfulness in the songs they write. Junior Battles – LP2 Release date: TBA 2013 Toronto’s pop-punk scholars have yet to set a release date for their followup to 2011’s underappreciated Idle Ages, an emotional and personal exploration of the all-consuming stresses of early adulthood. With the exception of a few live performances of new songs, previews of the album have also been scarce, but the standard they’ve set for themselves is high enough for fans to drum up the excitement that this band deserves.
Brendan Canning – You Gots 2 Chill Release date: Oct. 1 The music market is flooded with indie rock right now, so sometimes it takes someone with a reputation like Broken Social Scene’s Brendan Canning to stand out. Recorded entirely in Canning’s Toronto living room and released on his own label, the album looks to be full of beautiful, highly relaxed songs that add ambient and electronic elements with a subtle touch. Top: Brendan Canning album art Bottom: Banded Stilts album art
Word on the Street 2013
Sam is ready to Cash in Courtesy Sam Cash
By Jonathan Forani Ryersonian Staff
Sam Cash swears he’ll be back to school in January. The 21-year-old arts and contemporary studies student put his studies on pause this semester to dedicate time to his band Sam Cash & The Romantic Dogs. And for good reason. Cash’s recent performance at the Canada’s Walk of Fame Festival and finishing as a finalist at the inaugural RBC Emerging Artist Mentorship Prize (he won $1000) is perhaps an indication of his future place in Canadian culture. “It’s great that Canada’s Walk of Fame is trying to give up-and-coming artists a shot at some cool things,” says Cash, a Toronto native. Hitting the stage at the ceremony on Saturday followed a string of high-profile performances for the band, including opening sets for Canadian musicians Sam Roberts and Lights.
It’s the beginning of great things — and packed schedules — for Sam Cash & The Romantic Dogs, who just released their debut album Stand Together, Fall Together last week. With so much going on, Cash is thankful that Ryerson is on the backburner for now. “Putting this record out is a really exciting time, but if I was in school right now I would be so freaked out,” he says, recalling his last three years balancing gigs and English essays. “I found when I was in school I had to shut off the music business part, the goals and the ambitions of all that. It was unfair to both of those things, because I couldn’t do either 100 per cent.” Still, he tried to. Cash remembers a weekly gig during Ryerson exam season that required some overlap between his studies and his passion. He would opt for a bar stool over a library cubicle out of necessity. “I remember showing up to the bar, starting to write this
essay, sound checking and playing the gig, and then staying at the bar until 2:30 a.m. All of my friends were around partying and I was just writing this essay, drinking some beer,” he laughs. But it worked for Cash. “Beer helps. Wine is good sometimes for writing essays too.” When he’s back to campus in January, he’ll have to find a way to balance it all again. But for now, Cash and band-mates Aaron Comeau, Matt Bailey and Kyle Sullivan are going full force with their craft. Now with their album release and Canada’s Walk of Fame under their belts, they’re preparing to open for Hannah Georgas, including a Toronto show at The Great Hall on Nov. 2. In terms of finding a work and school balance come winter, Cash says he can count on the music to ease his stress. “When you’re playing a gig, it all goes away.”
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FRIDAY, OCTOBER 4, 2013 Natalie Chu / Ryersonian Staff
Ryerson school of journalism undergraduate director Kamal Al-Solaylee answers questions about his award-winning book, Intolerable: A Memoir of Extremes, at Sunday’s festival.
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Wednesday, September 25, 2013
Q-and-A: Writer Graeme Smith By Kelsey Rolfe Ryersonian Staff
Afghanistan has a hold on Graeme Smith. The former Globe and Mail reporter lived and worked in the country from 2006 to 2009. The Ryerson journalism alumnus returned to the country and now works as a senior analyst for the International Crisis Group. Smith says he was driven by a curiosity to see how the country would fare after NATO troops withdrew. His new book, The Dogs Are Eating Them Now, nominated for the Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction, relives his years reporting on the war-torn country. The Dogs opens on a haunting note — a simple admission of a broken heart, which reverberates throughout the story and colours a graphic, and at times brutal, narrative, with compassion and sensitivity. Smith spoke with The Ryersonian’s Kelsey Rolfe about Afghanistan’s current political climate, his hopes for the country’s future, and memories of fighting fires. For an unedited version, visit ryersonian.ca KELSEY ROLFE: You’re nominated for the Weston Prize — and congratulations, by the way. What was your reaction when you heard this news? GRAEME SMITH: Well, I’m always grateful when people actually read the book, and if they like it as well, that’s good too. It’s great, it’s going to be sold in Loblaws, and I think that’s fantastic, because I really would like the book to reach people who aren’t huge Afghanistan nerds. I know that my friends who are huge Afghanistan nerds will read the book, but it would be nice if people shopping at Loblaws read the book as well. KR: You’ve worked in Moscow and Delhi and Istanbul, and now you’ve gone back to Afghanistan. That’s an impressive career. Did you envision that when you were graduating from Ryerson? GS: Oh yeah, I had that all planned out (laughs). No, I still don’t know what I want to do when I grow up, and I’m still stumbling my way through it. I’ll probably try to stay in Afghanistan for the next two or three years if I can, but it depends a lot on the security situation and factors like that, things that are beyond my control. We’ll see, I don’t know. Certainly when you’re going to Ryerson you’re looking for any kind of job, at all, and I was very lucky to get a job, period. KR: You mentioned the security situation. What’s it like now? GS: Well, the government is holding the capital and the provincial capitals. Some of the district centres are increas-
The Ryersonian • 9
ingly isolated. It’s hard for the government to bring the fuel and bullets they need to bring into the district centres. A surprising number of them have not been captured by the Taliban, or at least not that we’ve seen, so the security picture is actually not as bleak as some people expected, having already lost tens of thousands of foreign troops to withdrawals. But we’re all sort of waiting to see. It’s an anxious moment. And the sad reality is that more than a decade of war in Afghanistan, as I say in the book, has settled nothing. It’s tragic that we could spend so much money and so many lives without reaching a conclusion, and the war will continue without us. It’s up 50 per cent, the violence. And some of my Afghan friends expect that number to keep rising. KR: The anecdotes you were talking about in the book were really quite graphic, and at times it was even hard to read. You’ve experienced many of those first-hand, so how do you deal with those memories? GS: It was tough at first, especially in probably 2008, 2009. When I’d attend a fireworks show, I’d feel nauseous. It really caught me off guard because a bottle rocket sounds surprisingly like an RPG — well, before it goes bang, anyway. I was pretty shaken, but these things quiet with time. The brain heals itself, and I’m now, fortunately, in a job where my role is to have really long conversations with people, and I’m actually discouraged from going to see any active battlefields … which is a nice luxury for me and it’s very healing. Smith will speak at Ryerson on Oct. 1, in the George Vari Engineering and Computing Centre.
Courtesy Elisabeth Feryn
Courtesy Ryerson Image Centre
Clockwise from the top: A still from Skawennati’s computer game. Cheryl L’Hirondelle’s installation Here I Am. Sonny Assu’s The Happiest Future.
Indigenous art celebrated at Ryerson Image Centre By May Warren Ryersonian Staff
Sonny Assu vividly remembers his grandmother telling the story about how excited she was to start her first day of high school. But that day turned ugly almost immediately. “A boy left a bar of soap on her desk, pretty much just saying, you’re a dirty Indian,” said Assu at a media preview of Ghost Dance: Activism. Resistance. Art. The multimedia exhibit featuring the work of young indigenous artists opened last week at the Ryerson Image Centre. That desk is recreated in the exhibit. It’s complete with an authentic red bar of 1930s Lifebuoy soap, the brand that was left on Assu’s grandmother’s desk. It’s representative of the themes of struggle and resistance that run throughout the show, which is curated by Steve Loft, a Six Nations Mohawk and visiting Trudeau scholar at Ryerson. “Some would say we have been the victims of a long history of colonialism but I dispute that because we’re not victims,” said Loft in his opening remarks at the preview. “We’re proud. We’re strong. We’re here. But we have to remember that being an aboriginal person in this country is in itself an act of daily, continuing resistance, and that’s what this show is about,” he continued. Indigenous history in Canada is woven throughout the exhibit in innovative ways.
A multimedia piece by the artist Skawennati uses avatars from the popular alternate reality computer game Second Life to recreate scenes from indigenous history. It showcases episodes such as the Oka Crisis, a 1990 land dispute between a group of Mohawks and a Quebec town where one person was killed, for a new audience. The short videos play on a loo p in a screening room. Skawennati said she took special care to give all the avatars distinct names and personalities to combat the stereotype of the silent, anonymous indigenous person often seen in popular culture. Another work by Assu brings famous Canadian bureaucrat Duncan Campbell Scott’s message about the assimilation of indigenous peoples to life through a series of pop art style posters. Scott was a fierce advocate of assimilation through his position as deputy superintendent of the department of Indian Affairs from 1913 to 1932. Walking through the exhibit, it’s easy to feel the sense of exclusion that can come with being an indigenous person in Canada. One work, a collaboration between Anishinabe artist Scott Benesiinaabandan and Theo Sims, is at first frustrating because the viewer can’t see behind a wooden wall. “We wanted to address who has power and who has access to power and knowledge,” explained
Benesiinaabandan. “It’s a full installation behind the barricade. But as spectators you only get a specific access point and that’s all you’re allowed to see.” The installation is viewed through security mirrors. Another work displays a series of phones in a small, empty room. High above near the ceiling there’s a painted banner showing a beautiful view of rolling green hills and blue sky. The artist Cheryl L’Hirondelle wanted to recreate the feeling of being imprisoned. It’s a reality for many indigenous people who are disproportionately represented in the Canadian criminal justice system. But another key theme is inclusion. A video of a round dance, a key aspect of the recent Idle No More movement, greets visitors to the exhibit. Loft said it’s an intentional message. “It’s about allying yourself self … to proclaim the space in a way that says ‘join us.’ It’s not us against you, it’s about collaboration,” he explained. For Loft, art is an ideal point of intersection to start this process. “It’s a place where we can come together and we can deal with some challenging things, but we can do it in a way that engages us,” he said. Ghost Dance: Activism. Resistance. Art., opened Sept. 18 and runs to Dec. 15.
10 • The Ryersonian
Skating into a dilemma at the MAC By Jessica Vitullo Ryersonian Staff
Goals galore: Rams on the ball By Nicole Servinis Ryersonian Staff
The Ryerson Rams men’s soccer team is still undefeated after beating Queen’s University 2-0 on Saturday. The team was riding high after cracking the Canadian Interuniversity Sport (CIS) top 10 rankings for the first time in the program's history last week, but evidently, it didn't go to their heads. “At the end of the day, it doesn’t mean anything,” said defender Nick de Grave. “If we can go to nationals this year, that’s a win for us.” The team has been working hard to put Ryerson on the university soccer map, winning 17 consecutive games in the regular season, but this season is unlike any other because of the players. Associate coach Filip Prostran said the team is as close as ever. This year in particular, he says, they have tremendous dedication and toughness. “There are a lot of teams out there who are piano payers and are nice to watch and have fancy
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
tricks,” said Prostran. “But the team this year is a piano carrier. They are hard workers and battlers.” The Rams have chemistry on and off the field, which is why de Grave decided to play for Ryerson. He received offers from other universities, such as Guelph, but said it didn’t compare to the players and coaches at Ryerson. “I figure I’m with these guys for four or five years, so I should like them,” he said. De Grave is a natural born leader even though it is only his second year on the team. Prostran said he is always at the field before practice and stays later after, which explains why he got so much playing time as a rookie. Now, he sets the standard for rookies. De Grave is confident the Rams could win the championship in November if they continue going into each game with the mentality it’s their last. Carleton is currently the No. 1 ranked team and Ryerson tied them earlier this month; their goal is not far out of reach.
Andrew Castaneda often finds himself running to the rink at the Mattamy Athletic Centre (MAC) to play shinny on Tuesdays for an hour. Because once the one-hour window is up, the rink is closed to students to allow the Ryerson Rams’ hockey teams to practise, giving little time for non-Rams students like Castaneda to use the facilities. “If the general public wants to come in and play some hockey, they’re out of luck,” he said. “I’m really happy they had an idea to incorporate recreation into the overall design of this (building), but the execution is terrible.” Castaneda, a third-year student in the urban and regional planning program, said he calls ahead to confirm rec hours are scheduled, but when he arrives at the MAC, there tends to be confusion. “Every week I come in, they say it’s not going on,” he said. It’s not just the rink. First-year arts and contemporary studies student Evan Burgess said while the basketball court is scheduled for recreational use three times a week, it too is often closed off from students. “It’s annoying,” he said. “The varsity teams have too much time allocated towards them.” Burgess said he goes to the MAC every day to ask the front
SPORTS THIS WEEK Baseball (M) Thurs. Sept. 26. Rams vs. Toronto, Talbot Park (TP), 7 p.m. Sat. Sept. 28. Rams vs. Western, TP, 1 p.m. & 4 p.m. Sun. Sept. 29. Rams vs. Guelph, TP, 1 p.m. & 4 p.m. Basketball (M) Sun. Sept. 29. Alumni Game, MAC, 7 p.m.
Volleyball: Rye alumni beat out students
desk if there’s an open gym to shoot hoops. But the MAC caters to Ryerson varsity teams, said Abiram Pakyanathan, a MAC staff member. The recreation schedule, created by Ryerson Athletics, was made to make use of the times when varsity teams are not using the facilities. “We try to accommodate the best times,” Pakyanathan said. “Which is between noon and 5 p.m.” But the schedule is always subject to change for team games and practices. “If there’s a university event taking place, we do cater to that,” said Pakyanathan. Global Spectrum, a sports venue company that manages rentals for the MAC, manages the rink schedule. Global Spectrum manager Keith Baulk said there are two free ice times per week scheduled for students. “The dilemma is we don’t want people walking in and it’s booked (outside rec hours) and they’re carrying all their hockey equipment,” he said of letting students use the ice outside rec hours. “It’s a waste and a shame.” Additional ice time has to be scheduled through Global Spectrum, but Baulk said he hasn’t received complaints about the current schedule. “There have been no requests for more open rec ice time at MAC,” he said. If students are concerned, however, Baulk said he wants to speak with them.
“We’d be very interested in getting feedback and we’d be happy to add additional ice time slots if interested students would like to connect with us,” he said. The way the athletic centre governs its facilities to ensure it’s available to both students and sports teams is not uncommon. University of Toronto’s Varsity Centre hosts many men and women’s sports teams, including hockey, football, soccer, lacrosse and figure skating. Kristen Shier, the centre’s booking manager, says the facility hosts daily drop-in hours so students not affiliated with a sports team can use the facilities for recreational purposes. But not all facilities are available every day. “Jogging (track) is open mostly Monday to Friday. Skating is three days a week and five days in the winter. It just changes based on what it is and how popular it is,” she said. Baulk said an official schedule will be posted on the Ryerson Athletics recreation page under open rec schedule this week to notify students when the facilities will be open to them. In the meantime, Castaneda has one suggestion for Global Spectrum and the MAC: communication. “As far as the administration in hockey goes, if they would just talk to one another, I think they would be able to make it a much more positive experience for people,” he said.
Hockey (M) Fri. Sept. 27. York Tournament, Canlan Ice Sports, TBA Sat. Sept. 28. York Tournament, Canlan Ice Sports, TBA
Soccer (W) Sun. Sept. 29. Rams vs. Toronto, Monarch Park Stadium, Noon
Hockey (W) Sept. 27, 28, 29. Lethbridge Tournament, Alberta. Soccer (M) Sun. Sept. 29. Rams vs.Toronto, Monarch Park Stadium, 2:15 p.m.
Volleyball (W) Ryerson Invitational Tournament Fri. Sept. 27. vs. Nipissing, MAC, 7 p.m. Sat. Sept. 28. vs. Waterloo, MAC, 11 a.m. Sat. Sept. 28. vs. Western, MAC, 3 p.m. Sun. Sept. 29. vs. Humber, MAC, Noon Volleyball (M) Fri. Sept. 27. vs. Humber, MAC, 4 p.m.
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ELECTROLYSIS and Laser Hair Removal
Top: Alumni and Ryerson’s current volleyball team posing for a photo after playing a lively game at the Mattamy Athletic Centre on Saturday.
Right: Rams huddling between periods. The Alumni team beat the students 3-1. Photos by Hays Morrison / Ryersonian Staff
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FREE REIKI HEALING CLASS Saturday, October 19. Space is limited. For reservations, call Stephanie Norwich, M.Ed., Reiki Master at (416) 531-8061 or email firstname.lastname@example.org, www.thehealingteam.org
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ACNE and ACNE SCARRING Weight loss and Cellulite, Brown spots, dry, cracked skin & COOLSCULPTING (see video on website) Student rates available.
OPINIONS WANTED If you have an opinion and want it heard, send signed submissions, including your phone number, to The Ryersonian. We reserve the right to edit for space.
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
The Ryersonian • 11
NHL player takes to ice with the Rams By Hays Morrison & Nicholas Carafa Ryersonian Staff
No longer a secret, Cody Franson is skating over at the MAC with the Ryerson Rams men’s hockey team. The NHL player is currently in limbo. Playing for the Toronto Maple Leafs since 2011, Franson's contract for the upcoming season has yet to be decided.
He made a name for himself last season during the Stanley Cup playoffs. Franson scored two goals for the Leafs in game seven of the first round of the playoffs against the Boston Bruins. Having the six-foot-five Leafs defenceman skate at the Gardens has definitely benefited the Rams. “The skill level he presents, you know, pushes our guys that little bit when you're playing
against him one to one, or you’re going on two on one against him or battling in the corner with him or various drills we do,” says Rams head coach Graham Wise. Likewise, Franson is happy to have a place to practise until his contract with the Leafs is figured out. “I’m very fortunate for them allowing me to come out and take part in the practices,” says Franson.
Hays Morrison / Ryersonian Staff
Broadcast team taking charge By Shannon Cuciz Ryersonian Staff
At Ryerson University, it couldn’t be easier to root for the home team. The ultra-accessible Ryerson Rams’ live broadcasts are quickly expanding to become one of the leading student-produced broadcasts in Canada. Not only have the number of viewers increased, but the first broadcast of the new school year had the most online viewers for a Rams game to date. An average of 1,820 people tuned into ryersonrams. ca Aug. 25 to stream the men’s basketball game against the Wisconsin Badgers. There were also over 2,300 people watching in the stands. “The quality of this professional level work that the students are providing is so good that it is making parents, athletes and students pay attention,” said Ryerson University’s director of athletics Ivan Joseph. The number of online viewers per game has increased for each sport from 2012 to 2013. Men’s hockey and basketball games have risen to 220 average viewers from 170. Men’s and women’s volleyball games have risen to 110 average viewers from 80. Similarly, women’s hockey and basketball games have risen to 80 average viewers from 65. According to sports information co-ordinator Jim McLarty, the man who spearheaded the broadcasts, the plan is to have an even larger online audience this year. McLarty believes one of the reasons for the increased number of viewers is the Rams’ new facility, the Mattamy Athletic Centre, in the former Maple Leaf Gardens. The popularity of live streaming has also had an impact. “Three years ago, most of the
Hays Morrison / Ryersonian Staff
Rye enters ‘magical’ tourney By Kim Brown Ryersonian Staff
Shannon Cuciz / Ryersonian Staff
other universities were ahead of us because they were doing live broadcasts and we weren’t,” said McLarty. “Now I believe we have one of the better student- produced broadcasts.” This year, live games will be playing around the MAC on about 20 flatscreen TVs. The eventual goal is to have TVs playing the games around the entire university campus. Four new student positions have also been added to the broadcast team. This number will increase once Ryerson’s school of sport media gets involved. The new program, a BA in sport media, will take its first students in September 2014. It will give students a chance to broadcast the games on the same network being used now. “The broadcasts gives students a hands-on, applied learning experience that makes their educational experience that much better,” Joseph said. “This is helping them get jobs in the field when entering the competitive workforce.” Rino Mattucci is a fourth-year radio and television arts student who did play-by-play for the first Rams broadcast with commentary in January 2012. He sees the program expanding to become similar to a live sports
event on TV with replays and more camera angles. “I’m pretty sad to be leaving this year because it’s so exciting to see where the program is going from here,” said Mattucci. “Doing the broadcasts have helped me build a portfolio for my dream job.” Mattucci says that when he first came to Ryerson he mumbled a lot and had his sights set on behind-the-scenes work in sports television. “You couldn’t pay me even $100 to do anything on the air,” he said. After almost three years of doing the broadcasts, Mattucci has developed his on-air skills to the point that he looks forward to doing play-by-play commentary. The hands-on learning experience has helped him gain confidence in something he never imagined he could do before. The broadcasts have additionally drawn in more traffic to ryersonrams.ca. The university athletics site has about 350,000 hits so far in 2013 compared to 270,000 in 2012. This helps with student recruitment and further promotes Ryerson’s athletes. “We are seeing the results,” said McLarty. “The goal is to have the No. 1 broadcast produced by students in Canada.”
University sports just got a little more magical. Ryerson announced it will participate in York University’s first triwizard tournament, an event inspired by the magical contest that took place in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. Broomsticks and wands aside, competitors will use their brawn and knowledge of wizardry and magic in order to rise above their adversaries. Ryerson, University of Toronto and York will each select one person to represent them in this epic battle. The winner will be rewarded with “the Triwizard Cup, bragging rights, eternal glory, and a surprise prize.” The captain of York’s quidditch team, Adam Palmer, said there is a method to picking just one representative, but ultimately “the goblet will choose the most worthy champion from each school.” There are still ways you can participate even if you aren’t selected to represent Ryerson. “We’re going to be needing volunteers for our tasks,” explained Palmer. “Being a volunteer is going to be just as fun.” Palmer expects the total cost of the event to remain below $500, but he still isn’t sure where the money will come from. “We’re trying to get some funding from our school, but it might just end up being (an) outof-pocket expense.” The quidditch captain said he’s also asked for financial support from the other two universities, but will not exclude them if they don’t contribute. “I do not know about costs yet,” wrote Alex Downey-Ging, co-captain of Ryerson quidditch, “but if there are they would be minimal and would come out of our collected team fees.”
She said any Ryerson student is welcome to apply, however those not familiar with quidditch are encouraged to attend a practice Sunday at 3 p.m. in the Quad. The application, which can be found on the team’s Facebook page, asks potential contenders for a description of their physical appearance, the house they represent (Gryffindor, Ravenclaw, Hufflepuff or Slytherin) and the position they would like to play or currently play in quidditch. It also asks applicants to rate their skill level in running, flying and swimming amongst other things, and requires them to answer magic questions like “Which two creatures can a patronus charm defend against?” or “What does the spell Locomotor Mortis do? Although this is the first triwizard tournament for the universities, Palmer doesn’t believe his idea is entirely original. “I’ve never read or heard of any other triwizard tournaments,” said Palmer, “but it’s hard to believe that nobody else has tried doing this before. For me the idea of playing quidditch is far more outrageous than doing a triwizard tournament.” The online application form is open to all students until Friday. The chosen one will be announced Oct. 4, and the first challenge is slated to take place Oct. 18.
Courtesy Ryerson Quidditch
12 • The Ryersonian
Two worlds, one wedding By Anam Latif Ryersonian Staff
As a Pakistani girl, daydreams about my wedding were different from other girls. I knew my wedding wouldn’t be just one day, but several days of celebration. I wouldn’t be wearing a white dress, but a heavily sequined one in traditional colours like yellow, red and green. I knew what my wedding would look like but my daydreams certainly did not include a brown haired, blue eyed, IrishItalian bridegroom. Everything changed the day I brought home a white boy and I decided to marry into his Canadian family. And things changed for everyone else involved as well.
We got married two years ago in Lahore. The wedding plans went underway in a dishevelled fashion — the way most things happen in that part of the world. Unlike in North America where weddings are planned years in advance, mine was put together in less than two months. My whole family got involved in the decision-making process: from renting a tent for one night’s celebrations to booking a banquet hall for another. There was no wedding planner, just a diligent aunt with all the right connections. There is a saying that roughly translates to, “It’s always chaos at a house with a wedding.” And that was certainly true. Remember My Big Fat Greek Wedding? Well, imagine the Pakistani version.
VOICES I was prepared to deal with all of this however. I was prepared for the stares we would get as my mother and I led my new in-laws around in the markets. I was prepared for the chauvinistic pestering at the Pakistani Embassy, telling me they had to investigate my fiancé because it was “unusual for a Pakistani girl to be marrying a Canadian boy.” I was just happy to be marrying the love of my life. What I was not prepared for was how to help the seven members of my husband’s family adapt to the — let’s admit it — often strange, bewildering and totally unorganized lifestyle that we live in Lahore. My husband’s parents are divorcees, both remarried. Most of them were born and raised in Kitchener, Ont., except for three born in Ireland. They’re a loud and closeknit family and despite being open-minded, their experience with culture is similar to that of many Canadians — diverse, but lacking in practical understanding. Eating ethnic food meant ordering Chinese takeout. My future in-laws were eager to be in “that part of the world,”
Wednesday, September 25, 2013
however — ready to experience a stereotyped culture that they often, innocently of course, confuse with that of Arabs. To this day, my motherin-law calls the billowy pants we traditionally wear, the shalwar, “Aladdin pants.” (Though Disney was never clear about which country Aladdin was from, he was definitely an Arab. And Pakistan is not in the Middle East.) I found myself trying to think of what they needed to know; cultural nuances that I take for granted. If I were to write a guidebook to Pakistani culture, what would it say? Pakistani weddings can last several days. It’s one celebration after the next: lots of food, strings of roses and jasmine, and plenty of relatives even I didn’t know existed. My in-laws were blind to our traditions and relied on our insight to guide them. This was a chance for my father to swoop in and play innocent tricks on my naive in-laws, like telling them our hard-boiled eggs were colourful on the inside — which they earnestly believed at breakfast one morning. After that they became wary of everything he said. Street meat is said to be great in Thailand, but not in Pakistan. My husband can attest to this fact after spending a day in the hospital from eating a delicious-but-deadly street samosa. Punctuality is not a winning trait in Lahore, either. My in-laws were often frustrated with my family’s lack of it — not to mention the almost innate inability to stick to an appointment. Plans to get picked up from a hotel at 9 a.m. often turned into 10 a.m. instead. Traffic in Lahore can be bad, but my family’s sense of punctuality is even worse. Another point of gloom was telling my in-laws they couldn’t wander the streets unescorted. Like any travellers, they wanted to explore the city and get lost in the markets. But unlike in India,
or even in the cosmopolitan city of Karachi, you don’t see many foreigners in Lahore. It’s become relatively unsafe, even for locals. And let’s face it, Osama bin Laden was found mere hours away. My husband’s stepfather was thoroughly amused to see a security guard armed with a rifle outside a Subway restaurant. He whipped out his camera to take a picture and was warned by police officers to stop or lose the camera. It wasn’t quite as funny anymore. He was upset he didn’t get the hilarious photo, but my in-laws were quick to adapt to the sensitive environment. Unfortunately we don’t drink or give speeches at our weddings, but there is lots of merriment to be found in wedding food, music and gossip. And when my side came out to sing traditional wedding songs, my in-laws took centrestage as they belted out Pearl Jam’s Last Kiss to the awe and, I’ll admit it, confusion, of my Pakistani relatives. The wedding ended and we all said our goodbyes, but my two families are now forever intertwined. My in-laws will often wear Pakistani clothes and proudly explain their significance to friends. My mother-inlaw loves shopping at the South Asian grocery store I introduced her to. (South Asian in style, not location.) And as for me, I realized that it was a lot harder to explain my culture to people who had never experienced it before — even little things like the fact we always put milk in our tea and drinking it any other way was odd. Or that it’s completely normal to have armed security and metal detectors outside fast food restaurants. Now, I’ll often go over to my in-laws houses and find butter chicken for dinner or a cup of tea spiced with cardamom, and those are the moments I realize the sheer power of two cultures coming together as one.
Anam Latif / Ryersonian Staff
The unbearable lightness of Grand Theft Auto By Mitchell Cohen Ryersonian Staff
Franklin Clinton is a gangster. A real two-bit thug. And as he stood there in his baggy pants and hoodie, in the dusk, in a rain-slicked, graffiti-strewn driveway in a simulated parody of L.A. County’s Compton, all Franklin wanted to do was play with his dog. “Go get it, Chop,” he called out through the speakers of my TV. A chunky Rottweiler scrambled to chase after a thrown ball, skidding on the wet pavement as he caught it. Yes, the programmers actually thought of that. I was on the couch. My housemate Marc and his girlfriend Kerri were sitting at the kitchen table. Neither are gamers, but both of them had their eyes on the screen. That’s the thing about Grand Theft Auto: love it or hate it, you can’t help but find it fascinating. “Aren’t you gonna hijack a car?” Well damn. Here I was, the model of a reformed gangsta, and all Kerri wanted me to do was steal a ride. (Weren’t we supposed to be the violent ones
— the people who go out and buy games like this?) I ignored her. Chop, ball held snugly in his teeth, ran back up the driveway. Franklin reached down to pet his
chair. And then stepped on. And then run over with a truck. But it’s also a game that excels at world-building. Hours earlier, I was driving my Audi
Franklin and his dog, Chop, in Grand Theft Auto V.
panting companion on the head. “Good boy Chop.” Grand Theft Auto V is a violent game. Its penchant for stoytelling makes the violence more in line with Quentin Tarantino than Michael Bay, but there’s no question that the series revels in the shock of seeing a guy’s head get bashed in with a
through the streets of downtown Los Santos — an amazingly complete recreation of Los Angeles in pixels and polygons. I wasn’t controlling Franklin — he doesn’t own an Audi; not legally, anyway — but another character named Michael, a rich retiree who lives in the game’s equivalent of Hollywood Hills.
Marc, who had spent many winters visiting family in Los Angeles, was excited. “I can show you where my aunt lives.” He couldn’t believe a video game could be so detailed. But now I was playing as Franklin, whose home is a good distance southwest in the slums. Marc didn’t recognize the neighbourhood. He’d never been to that part of L.A. It’s that sense of place that makes the minutiae of a game like GTA so enjoyable. Standing on a street in the virtual ghetto and playing virtual fetch with a virtual dog isn’t just bearable, but kind of sublime. It’s a way of sticking it to the game’s creators: Franklin’s not so bad; look at how much he loves his puppy. It’s also an illusion. Like any good video game, GTA V takes every kind of achievement — no matter how abstract — and quantifies it, turning it into a manageable but reductive set of goals. A game of fetch raises Chop’s “Happiness” by a few points — you actually see the bar go up. I don’t even know what “Happiness” is for, but I abhor empty progress bars. (Psychologists know that it’s this
property that makes the medium so addictive.) And Franklin? He’s not a nice guy. Not at all. Sure, he grew up in the ghetto with no family and no role models. He’s the product of crushing poverty and systemic racism. He’s even got a soft spot for animals. But he’s also a killer. But all this instropection was boring my friends. Where was all the flash, the violence and the glitz they’d heard so much about it? I walked Chop to his doggy house and then walked Franklin down the street to pay a visit to Lamar, his friend and partner-incrime — literally. Soon the two were packed into a white van and racing down the streets of virtual L.A. on their way to a drug deal that was surely going to end up in a bloody gunfight. You can’t really be the good guy in Grand Theft Auto V. But if you want to, you’ll find plenty of reprieves from the guns and the drugs. You’ll turn up the radio and cruise down the freeway. You’ll wake up your character before dawn and climb a mountain at sunrise. Or maybe, you’ll just grab your dog and throw a ball in the rain.