Wednesday, November 6, 2013 - Issue 7 // www.thesputnik.ca
In the words of a veteran page 7 Partnership with Laurier likely page 3
A different way to celebrate Halloween page 3
Golden Hawk limelight: Nicole Dilliot page 5
Canadian spotlight: Ambition Music Group page 9
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Nathanael Lewis // email@example.com | @Sputnik_News
Tackling student debt through looking at the future Taylor Berzins Staff
The debt crisis is affecting more than student’s pocketbooks, as deficits grow, health and grades are also at risk of collapsing. With scores of students at Laurier Brantford working full-time jobs, and accessing resources like the campus food bank, it’s become apparent that undergrads have money on the mind. Concerned over the “staggering” increase in students accessing the campus food bank, Dean of Students, Adam Lawrence, is asking, has the university experience become more expensive? Today’s student faces a variety of new financial challenges that didn’t exist for students of the past. Cell phone bills, increased rent and climbing grocery prices are all factors exclusive to the millennial student’s university experience, according to Lawrence. “Students are very mindful of their mental well-being, so students are maybe eating healthier, which costs a little bit
more if you’re grocery shopping.” The more time students focus on their debt, the less they are focusing on their studies. With OSAP funding channeled into assisting full-time studies, working students often have to juggle long workweeks with a heavy course load. “We often recommend students work 10 to 14 hours… and honestly the number of students I see working 30 or 35 hours a week is growing,” Lawrence said. This stress attached to such a busy lifestyle has been hugely detrimental to the status of GPA and mental health of students. “I am constantly over-stressed,” says fourth year Human Rights student Jenna Gollinger. Working over twenty hours a week to accommodate for the expense of education has taken many tolls. “Having to work, you don’t get to go out as much and have that relief of a social life,” said Gollinger.
Lawrence urges students to be conscious of their education’s path, and become more aware of the resources available on campus to talk about their debt. Programs available to students at the financial aid office and career services will help balance the stress of debt, work and education. “The main idea is that when a student writes an exam, we want things to be equal,” said Lawrence. For students juggling heavy work and course loads, the future can seem all too distant. “You have to be positive,” said Gollinger, “I want to say it’s worth it, I hope it’s worth it, but I don’t know.” According to the Student Loans and Debt report from Statistics Canada, the average student debt at graduation for a Canadian undergraduate student is well over $20,000. The report also revealed that one in four students struggle to pay off their student debt after graduation. For students like Gollinger, the debt
cycle is vicious. “It’s kind of ironic, the more I work the less OSAP is willing to give me, so that’s less money I have and thus more I have to work.” According to the Ontario Undergraduate Student Alliance (OUSA), a student’s first encounter with Ontario’s difficult post-grad labour market will typically be during their search for a summer job. According to OUSA’s 2011 survey, Ontario has one of the worst rates of student summer unemployment in Canada. In June 2012, the Canadian student unemployment rate was approximately 13 per cent, while Ontario’s student summer unemployment rate for those aged 20-24 was approximately 20 per cent. “It’s tough being a student,” said Lawrence. “The reality of it is, we’re seeing a high percentage of students who leave university and get into the field that they want, but it’s a process.”
Students in debt, volunteering abroad Swathy Sooriyakumar Staff
Fresh out of graduation, high school graduates dread the increasing price of tuition. Reality strikes and students currently in post-secondary live off of cheap microwaveable meals in order to balance spending costs - including pricy volunteer trips abroad. At Wilfrid Laurier Brantford, there are many opportunities for students to volunteer their time and money. Some students travel abroad to help families in need with shelter, education and even health awareness. “We are definitely seeing more students in financial crisis,” explains Brantford Dean of Students, Adam Lawrence.
With tuition prices constantly increasing in Ontario, the question remains: why travel? Dr. Robert Feagan, a professor at Laurier Brantford, took matters into his own hands and conducted a study aboard a trip to El Salvador with Habitat for Humanity last year. Feagan checked in with the participating students three times throughout the process: before the trip, during the trip and six weeks after everyone returned home. “I like to build… on finding out what students gain from these experiences, I went to see, as volunteers what we take from this. Interesting shift, new place, new culture. Many found really, what I gained is I learned about the people there and myself,” Feagan explained to a
group of students at an information session explaining Habitat for Humanity’s trip this upcoming spring reading week. “You left everyday thinking you made a difference – even in the smallest possible way,” Marshal Rodrigues, a student that attended the trip, mentioned as she went through the slides explaining what her experience was like last year. When talking with Sarah Cifani, President of OCOA at Laurier Brantford, she also takes on an emotional route when explaining how she started the club last year in January. Attending a volunteering trip in her senior year of high school, Cifani started her chance at making more of a difference, “I was able to go on a similar trip in grade 12 with an organization called DREAMS. While there I met a man by the name of Michael Sunderani who used to go to McMaster University and had decided to move to the Dominican to help families. We kept in touch and he told me he started his own organization that would be non-profit.” Knowing there was already a club at Laurier Waterloo, Cifani joined the team and brought back leadership qualities to start her own club in Brantford. Cifani agreed that volunteer trips abroad do cost a lot, she continued saying “but the joy you see on those faces of the people you help is priceless to me. It is so enriching to be able to go to a city where the families have barely any material possessions, have barely any clothes, yet they have the brightest smiles and warmest hearts I have ever seen.” Both Alex Carson and Mansi Parasher from Laurier Brantford have been to Peru more than once with Solidar-
ity in Action (SIA). The girls explain during an info-session about the basics when it comes to volunteering abroad, further expressing why SIA is different from other clubs offered at Laurier Brantford. “(SIA is a) new smaller organization, it gives to needs of each participant,” Explains Parasher, expressing how SIA has more work choices other than infrastructural development. When asked about paying the $2,900 for two weeks, the girls spoke their minds. “If you’re motivated enough you can do it!” said one, and “Money doesn’t compare to the experience,” agreed the other. Group and individual fundraising is exercised to help cover the cost; last year the group fundraised at the Burlington Rib-fest for the community in Peru. A trip to Ocoa costs roughly anywhere from $800-$1,100, depending on how much the club raises from donations. Cifani explains, “My personal opinion is you’re always going to be in debt. As a student, I also know where a lot of our money usually goes besides tuition and books. By simply creating a strict budget for myself, by not eating out, and shopping regularly you can actually save a lot of money.” Rodrigues cannot contain her excitement to travel back to El Salvador for the second time this year. “It’s a must!” she advises towards experiencing the trip. The $2000 one week trip is mostly covered by fundraising and saving up as much as you possibly can. Feagan, who has worked on various projects other than El Salvador, including the Elizabeth Métis Settlement in Alberta, the Yukon and Peru concludes that, “work to make changes in the physical world has a sub-cultural positive shift.” He further explains how physically engaged activity, as apposed to reading a book, really grounds your experience. “No you’re not going to change the world, but there is something you gain in a short stance of time. You leave ripple effects in the real world and a physical impression in reality. You also provide a family with a sense of home.” “Given what the experience provides, an experience like this goes way beyond the dollar value, and it’ll live on with you for the rest of your life,” said Feagan.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Nathanael Lewis // firstname.lastname@example.org | @Sputnik_News
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Front row, left to right: Rachel, Natalie, Owen, Avah. Back row left to right: Ellysia Devries and her sister Linda Hastings. (Photo by Brittany Bennett)
Student gives children a different way to celebrate Halloween Brittany Bennett Staff A Laurier Brantford student created an alternative event over trick-or-treating this Halloween for children of the Brantford community. Fourth year Laurier student Ellysia Devries held a children’s Halloween event called the Harvest Party at the New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church on this past Thursday’s Halloween evening. The event was a Disney theme, which included many Disney themed games, snacks, drinks and a jumbo bouncy castle. This is Devries first year planning the Harvest Party event. Devries said that planning for this event had taken every spare day she has had since July. Devries said the experience was very stressful, and hard to manage between her full-time job and school work. The previous event coordinator, Karla Wingfield, announced her retirement last year. Devries volunteered to take her position as soon as she found out. The church’s Youth Pastor, Jeff Champeau, said, “She had so much enthusiasm about it, we had to say yes!” Champeau said the Harvest Party has been an ongoing event with the New Covenant Christian Fellowship Church for at least 12 years. He said that parents enjoy this alterna-
tive over trick-or-treating because they know that it is safely controlled, and avoids the issue of bad weather because it is indoors. When comparing the event to trick-or-treating he spoke of it as, “a one drive place, with lots of fun things to do.” All the children still dressed up just as they would trick-or-treating, and did not have to restrict their costumes to Disney themed. Although, Devries niece, Rachel Hastings, attended the event and wished she did not have to dress up, saying, “I don’t like being somebody else, I like being myself.” This was Rachel and her sister, Avah’s, first time attending the Harvest Party. Both girls were happier to be inside celebrating Halloween rather than in the cold rain trick-or-treating. They were most excited for the bouncy castle over all the other activities. Avah said that one of her favourite parts of the event was, “Getting treats!” The children were offered bags of candy on their way out to substitute for the candy they would have gotten trick-ortreating. The event was open to the public, not just the church’s community. No religious ties were involved in the activities of the night. Champeau said his hope was that, “by being here
tonight [non-church goers] might think, ‘Hey they’re normal people too.’” This is the first year that food was served (other than candy). It was noted with signs at the entrance that the event was not a peanutfree zone. Cupcakes were made with Twinkie minions from the movie “Despicable Me”, characters from “The Lion King” were carved into pumpkins that held fruit shish kabobs and many different Halloween cookies and juices were provided. Local businesses FreshCo, No Frills and Food Basics donated peanut-free candy and gift cards used to buy the food for the event. The 57 foot long by 13 foot wide jumbo bouncy castle was provided by the company 2C Beyond Ministries. Each game provided at the event had a separate Disney reference. A few of the 13 games included: a Lilo and Stitch bean bag toss, referencing the “Lilo and Stitch” movies; pizza planet pingo, referencing the “Toy Story” movies and Mrs. Potts’ ping pong, referencing “Beauty and the Beast”. All of the games handed out different prizes, such as pencils and candies, even if the children did not win.
From incarceration to inspiration Jaclyn Brown Staff
Feminist issues are gaining attention on campus, as formerly incarcerated social activist and Laurier student, Kelly Rose Pflug-Back, hosted a public talk. In 2012, Kelly was put in ADVERTISING jail for involvement in Toronto’s G20 summit Angela Taylor protests. (519)884-0710 ext. 3560 firstname.lastname@example.org Last week, in the SC Johnson building, the Brantford and Laurier communities were invited to hear Kelly’s testimony about her 8-month The Sputnik is a member of the Ontario experience in prison. Bringing light to issues of Press Council, which is an independent ethical organization established to deal gender, trauma and female incarceration, Kelly with editorial concerns. For additional sought to promote critical thinking of feminist information or to file a complaint, contact email@example.com or call 416-340-1981. issues to over 50 people that attended. “If I can get people in university to start thinking about these things, and questioning if they can actually truly can be called justice, The Sputnik is an editorially even if one person will [start] thinking about independent newspaper published by Wilfrid Laurier University those things, then that’s something,” said Student Publications, Waterloo. Contact Pflug-Back. Allison Leonard - WLUSP, She shared her disturbing and intimate 205 Regina Street The Sputnik is a proud member of the personal experiences with attendees regarding Canadian University Press (CUP) feminist issues such as criminalization of poverty, birth and reproductive rights, as well as Opinions expressed in The Sputnik are those of the author and do not the marginalization of indigenous women. necessarily reflect the Editorial staff, As a third-year student in Human Rights The Sputnik, WLUSP, WLU or CanWeb and Human Resources, Pflug-Back is planning Printing Inc. to continue her talks on feminist issues, specifically regarding female incarceration. She is also working closely with the F-Word, a student, FRONT PAGE PHOTO CREDITS: staff and faculty committee on gender diverMain: Christina Manocchio sity and social equity issues, along with staff Left: Taylor Berzins Centre: Cody Hoffman and faculty to further promote feminist issues Right: Cody Groat in an open forum and to encourage students to
get involved. Students can look forward to upcoming events with the F-Word next semester. Dr. Kate Rossiter, associate professor of Health Studies, commented on the how all faculties can benefit from this growing understanding of feminist issues. She explained how students on campus possess a general misunderstanding of feminist issues, and that the definition of feminism is connected to a stigma of hating men, anger and alienation. “Taking a feminist standpoint means valuing the role of gender and inequality, as it impacts both women and men. Most of the disciplines on campus can benefit from taking a gender based and feminist analysis of the world,” said Dr. Rossiter. “It’s an imperative piece for understanding the world at large.” Dr. Rossiter is part of the F-Word, and the talk was hosted in conjunction with her Social Determinants of Health class. “I think feminism is still, for a lot of people … a dirty word,” said Dr. Rossiter. “My hope would be that someone would end up in care giving or law enforcement who would understand sex workers and incarceration differently and have a face to put to that name,” she said. First-year Law and Society student, Taylor Meeuse, explained why she felt it was important to attend. “In Law and Society, [the term] precedence means women are incarcerated based on time previous women served, the talk made the issues feel more real,” said Meeuse. “Feminist issues can apply to so many
disciplines on campus, and an understanding of feminism is useful and valuable for everyone.” The presentation encouraged students to have their own platform and voice regarding feminist issues. A multitude of students posed questions and comments after the presentation, which according to Pflug-Back, was exactly her goal. “I don’t want to just sit there and talk at people,” said Pflug-Back. “There were some amazing comments afterwards. Some people proposed things that made me think, ‘I haven’t heard it said quite like that before.’” Marcus Cousineau, a second year Criminology and Psychology student, attended the talk to expand his understanding of feminist issues within his own areas of study. “Women in jail is a prime example of labelling theory so it really gave me a hands on look and it brought out my emotion,” said Cousineau. Kelly hopes that by sharing her story, students will get involved with prisoner support organization to make issues surrounding female incarceration visible. She hopes her future talks will encourage students to speak out about feminist issues. “Everyone needs to have a voice and a platform to talk about their relationship with issues about gender and sex,” said Pflug-Back.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Oren Weiner // firstname.lastname@example.org | @sputnikoncampus
Hawkward photos return to Laurier
University, Contract Academic Staff in midst of trying to resolve lingering disputes
Oren Weiner On Campus Editor
Oren Weiner On Campus Editor
A funny pose here, a ridiculous pose there were all that the Hawk Team needed to have a little fun with the campus’ students. This past Wednesday, students had an opportunity to take part in what Hawk Team has come to call ‘Hawkward’ photo shoots, where students could let off some steam. “It’s about getting students involved, and getting goofy in a stressful time in the semester,” said Hawk team volunteer and fourth-year Criminology student Thomas Jeffery. Wednesday’s event, held at the Research and Academic Centre West lobby, offered students, in groups or individually, to take photos in any pose they wished, whether it was mocking popular cultural icons or striking something original.Thanks to varying costume pieces, the options were endless, with Hulk fists, powderblue wigs, striped fore-arm sleeves and more disposable to anyone who decided to stop by. “I’ve been looking forward to Hawkward photos all of October,” said third-year Concurrent Education student Jasmin Stadnyk in a humourous manner. “I had a great time.” Participants’ photographs were posted on the Hawk Team’s Facebook page, where viewers can see them. Viewers can vote for their favourite photos by clicking on the ‘Like’ or ‘Share’ option on the photos. The five most ‘liked’ or ‘shared’ photos will be put in a draw to determine a winner of a digital camera, donated by Brant Stereo, the sponsor of the event. Only in its second year of existence, Tyler Van Herzele, the coordinator of the event, hopes to continue it. Van Herzele stated that the committee would like to host another around Valentine’s Day. “All of our events are a unique way to get involved on campus, aside from parties and clubs; we have dry events, so there’s no alcohol,” Van Herzele said of the nature of Hawk Team events. Fourth-year Concurrent Education student, Chantel DaSilva commented, “We’re our natural Hawkward selves.”
In accordance with the continuing contract dispute, the Contract Academic Staff (CAS) union and the university’s administration entered into the second day of conciliation on Nov. 4 to resolve the ongoing labour contract dispute. Both sides hope to reach an agreement in a dispute that originated back in the beginning of summertime. “We’re hopeful that an agreement can be reached through conciliation,” said David Olivier, a current CAS professor at the Brantford campus in his twelfth year with Laurier. According to statistics, CAS are supposed to teach a maximum 35 per cent of the total number of courses offered at Laurier. However, Laurier CAS claim to teach 52 per cent of all students enrolled at the university. While currently in the conciliation process, if the two sides cannot reach a mutual agreement to formulate a labour contract, there could be a continual stand-off, in which conciliation might become redundant because both sides can’t get any closer together. At such a point, a 16-day period would ensure that neither side could take antagonistic action, whether it be a professor strike or an administration lock-out. Both sides would prefer it not reach that point. This is not the first time that conciliation has occurred, according to Olivier. Back in 2008, CAS faculty went on strike following weeks of conciliation over contract renegotiation. The strike lasted three weeks before both sides could finally come to agreeable terms. This year, the CAS union is determined to push for what they believe is a “fair” contract between the two sides. Kimberly Ellis-Hale, also a CAS professor, named three key elements that the CAS are looking for: benefits, compensation and job security. Like many other positions in the job world under sizeable institutions or corporations in Ontario, many Laurier staff members, whether academic or not, have access to health and dental benefits as extensions of their OHIP coverage. Ellis-Hale explained that management, non-academic staff and full-time faculty have extended health and dental benefits, while CAS do not. Students also receive health benefits. In addition to receiving extended health benefits, CAS faculty would
like to also receive higher monetary compensation. The average CAS professor earns under $29,000 as an annual salary, a number that many feel is an embarrassment. In comparison with the students they teach, the average university graduate earns $46,000 annually in his/her first fulltime job, $17,000 more than the CAS professors who taught them. Put into perspective by Ellis-Hale, full-time faculty have a lower limit of courses they can teach per year than part-time or CAS faculty. CAS must maximize their salary by teaching as many courses as possible, since they are paid by course, but have a limit of six courses that they can teach each year. Also, CAS have a relatively similar workload that is comprised of teaching, publication research and administration duties (committees, community work, etc.). The only significant difference in workload is that full-time members are publishing papers more for the university, while CAS are not bound by institution-mandated research. With what CAS would argue is a very similar workload, full-time faculty are still paid $80,000 annually, a raise of over $50,000 per year compared to their part-time counterparts. “Compensation, yeah, I’d like to get more of it, but who doesn’t?”
“This is a very serious issue with some of the members of the CAS; it’s very difficult for them.” Olivier commented on the nature of hoping to receive higher monetary compensation. Olivier was also once part of the full-time faculty grouping as a Limited Term Appointment, meaning that his full-time status was indefinite. Not by his choice, he had to become a CAS member, due to the downsizing of the number of full-time faculty. He believes this was a cost-cutting move by the university, because CAS professors are paid less and not offered any benefits. “We’re subsidizing the university’s mission by getting paid less,” EllisHale stated when speaking of the compensation in the grand scheme of expansion. The issue of compensation goes beyond monetary values as well. Many CAS professors have to share their office space with each other. Here in Brantford, RCW 318, a CAS office space, is being shared by 12 professors over the course of the 2013 fall semester. “ A ff o rd i n g students the flexibility in meeting with their professors is a serious issue, because we don’t have the space,” Ellis-Hale said. She added, “I’ve had to meet with students in stairwells or coffee shops. I’ve even had to meet in computer labs, because I don’t have my own computer to
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look at MyLearningSpace when I’m helping them.” Professors may be only obligated to designate one hour a week for office time, but many CAS have expressed a willingness to meet as much as students need the help. The last of the three complaints, yet arguably one of the most prominent, is job security. CAS terms go by four-month contracts, in which the professors under this title have little to no guarantee of having any job security for the long-term haul. Between 2007 and 2012, management’s workforce size grew by 44 per cent, with a student enrollment increase of 23 per cent. “The feeling is among some people that rather than hiring more fulltime faculty, we’re hiring more vicepresidents of this and that,” Olivier commented. Olivier went on to say that not having any CAS growth has only added to the job security issues that extend into personal lives. He explained that because of the lack of any job security, some professors have struggled to get any financial credit, such as getting mortgages for a house, where job security has to be demonstrated to get approval. “This is a very serious issue with some of the members of the CAS; it’s very difficult for them,” Olivier said. Kevin Crowley, the university’s assistant vice-president of communications, public affairs and marketing, responded to the frustrations of the CAS, also refuting the statistic that claims CAS teach 52 per cent of all student enrollment. Laurier believes that number to be slightly lower, at 45. Crowley acknowledged the importance of the CAS, but stated that the university negotiates the contracts in relativity to what other academic institutions negotiate, adding that in the midst of the province’s financial struggle, the “Laurier CAS wages are competitive with wages paid at other universities, and, in a climate of significant economic restraint, Laurier remains committed to reaching an agreement that is in the best interests of students and the institution,” Crowley stated in an e-mail response. Although in the midst of a contractual dispute, Ellis-Hale and Olivier both stated that they are proud members of the academic staff, and the institution. “I am proud to be part of the university, and the work I do here” Olivier acknowledged. “I enjoy the work I do, and it’s a good ego stroke when students tell you they enjoyed your course.” Ellis-Hale concluded on a hopeful note, “This is Laurier’s chance to do the right thing, and treat people fairly. We’re not asking for the moon; we just want to be treated with respect.” She added, “Laurier has the opportunity here to inspire other universities.” Nov. 11 will see the bargaining unit meeting for the CAS, where there will be either a vote on the conciliation offer, or a strike vote. It remains to be seen what will happen by that time. For now, the two sides will continue to work toward what each side feels is a “fair” deal. university must take cost-effective measures.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Oren Weiner // email@example.com | @sputnikoncampus
Laurier Brantford Relay for Life ends another successful season
Golden Hawk Limelight: Nicole Dilliot
Oren Weiner On Campus Editor It was a night of mixed emotions, both highs and lows, as Laurier Brantford students and some administration came together to celebrate, remember, and fight back. Participants gathered outside, at the Research and Academic Centre West courtyard to walk a course, from 7 p.m. to 7 a.m. on October 25. “I think the event motto: ‘celebrate, remember, and fight back’ summarizes it really well,” commented Aidan Oatridge, a first-year Law and Society student, and volunteer for the event. Students, registered in teams, walked together on a designated track that weaved through the RCW courtyard, running along the side of the building, and back through the student centre parking lot. However short the track, it was no easy feat for the participants, of which many walked for hours in chilly temperatures to support those touched in some or another way by cancer. “Even with the cold weather, there were people continually walking on the track. It just shows that Laurier Brantford has troopers, and a great group of dedicated students,” said Michelle Knight, the campus’ Event Chair for Relay for Life, of the participants’ devotion. In addition to the walk itself, there were a series of scheduled activities which included a concert, courtesy of James Gould; Dance-off; Sugar Rush; and an opening speech from cancer survivor, Kara Box, a recent McMaster graduate. Knight expressed appreciation for Kara’s speech, describing it as “really inspirational.” The event concluded a series of smaller fundraising events hosted by Laurier Brantford’s Relay for Life committee, of which included the candy kabob sale and bake sale. Individual participants were given the liberty to raise funds for the cause as they desired, without any restrictions, according to Knight. The fundraising numbers totaled $13,269.13 for the cause, which will be submitted to the Canadian Cancer Society. As much as the fundraising can benefit those afflicted with the disease, the Relay for Life event series did only serve such a purpose. It also served to create more awareness on a serious health detriment that exists in society. “Education is a big thing,” Knight commented. “Our events are more about promotion than raising money.” There is a common perception of cancer as a disease that usually afflicts those who are in their middle years and later. However, that is not the case, considering there are those who can be struck by it at a younger age, as Emily Runstedler, a third-year Concurrent Education student and volunteer, believes. On the nature of the disease’s ability to affect subjects of any age, Runstedler asserted, “This is a serious issue, especially when there are people in high school and elementary school getting cancer.” Stephanie Ryglewicz, a fifth-year Concurrent Education student, explained that cancer doesn’t just affect the afflicted, but also those who are related to the afflicted, ”I think it’s important to raise awareness and money for research, because a lot more people are affected.” Knight added that while she may not have had any immediate family or friends affected by or lost to cancer, the concept behind Relay is about cancer in society as a whole and not necessarily the individual’s relationship to the disease. “It kind of touches everyone on some scale,” she said, adding, “You can tell tonight a lot of people have been affected, in some way by cancer, so this is a great opportunity for students to help make a difference.” With another batch of dedicated students raising awareness and funds this year, in accordance with past years, Laurier Brantford’s Relay for Life committees will hope to continue these trends into the future, hoping to once again ‘celebrate, remember, and continue to fight back.’
Diligence is the name of the game for Nicole Dilliot, presently a Concurrent Education student in Brantford. (Photo by Cody Hoffman)
Brian Holland Staff “Yay! I love nice things!” she says first when she enters the room. Her roommate, Katie Monacois, is talking about her. “Everyone knows Nicole. Everybody loves Nicole. And she’s always so positive,” Monacois says. To those who know her, Nicole Dilliott is a fun-loving, responsible student. She has been a very active member of the Laurier Brantford community ever since arriving on the campus. She involved herself in several groups and clubs as a general volunteer, and is now a coordinator of the LB Food Bank. Admittedly, her involvement with the Food Bank takes up most of her time. In the past, she was involved with Residence Athletic Council, Eco Hawks and Laurier Students for Laurier. The time commitment involved with being a coordinator has caused her to drop out of these clubs, though she still keeps busy. In addition to her dedication to acting as the coordinator of Food Bank, she was also an Orientation Week icebreaker, and a member of Nippissing Student Ambassadors.
Growing up in a small town, Dilliott learned very quickly how to keep busy. In high school, she became involved in student affairs as much as she could, and has continued that trend into university. She says it helps keep her in a routine. “It’s not everyone’s cup of tea. But for me, it’s how I operate. The busier I am, the better person I am,” Dilliot says of her diligence. She adds that keeping up this hectic lifestyle has helped her grades. It certainly isn’t the typical life of a university student, but it shows the hard work and dedication that Nicole puts in. Though she clearly enjoys all of her clubs, she says that the Food Bank gives her a certain satisfaction. She especially likes the anonymous food giveaways, where the Food Bank drops off a food donation to a locker for those who need it. Her recent giveaways have been received with much gratitude. “People write letters in the lockers saying how much they appreciate it. That’s the most rewarding of them all. You’re actually helping people,” Dilliot comments.
You can hear the excitement in her voice when she speaks about her Food Bank activities. Her face lights up as she talks about their next event, a grilled cheese giveaway this Thursday. As thrilled as she feels to be part of the clubs she’s in, Nicole’s even happier when her placement is announced. Dilliott is a Concurrent Education student and is at her peak of enjoyment when she’s in the classroom. Volunteering has helped her in teaching situations, but the majority of her experience comes from actually being the student. She admits to enjoying university education, but admits that she’s just waiting in anticipation to start teaching. “Helping kids out, that’s what I like to do,” she says. When asked what the future holds, Dilliot pointed to teaching, once again emphasizing that it is her passion. As much as she likes to plan her days out, she embraces the unknown, being able to take a walk on the spontaneous side. “Every day is a different day. Something new is going to happen.”
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
FEATURES Dillon Giancola // firstname.lastname@example.org | @sputnikfeatures
On the road to recovery. (Photo by Christina Manocchio)
Rising from rock bottom Stevan Bodrozic Staff
There are countless stories of people from Brantford suffering because of the city’s economy. Thousands of people lost their jobs almost overnight and the city had one of the highest unemployment rates in the country. While the city is thriving today, there are people that are still reeling from the effects the depression had in the 1990s. Darren Reynolds is one of them. Like many others, he worked in the manufacturing industry and bounced around jobs when the work dried up. Some of the people that lost their jobs found work in other industries or other cities, others were old enough to retire and some, like Reynolds, turned to substances that would help them cope with the crippling loss. “I lost everything. I couldn’t afford to pay for the house, I could barely afford to feed my wife and I,” says Reynolds. He became distant, drinking to pass the time and passing out long before his wife came home. Between her working and him spending most of the day in a drunken stupor, they barely saw each other. With him out of work and his wife’s menial earnings, Reynolds says he was forced to turn to local food banks and soup kitchens to feed him. His wife left him shortly after he lost his job; he says she couldn’t bear the stress of an ever-increasing pile of bills and a distant husband. It was around that time that Reynolds delved into prescription medication and he soon began abusing various prescription medications, from Xanax to Valium to Oxycontin. It wasn’t
long before Reynolds developed a strong addiction to the cocktail of medication and alcohol he would take each day. It got to the point where he couldn’t function if he didn’t drink and take his pills. “The pills were a way to escape, at least that’s how I saw it. I felt horrible about myself. I lost my wife, my job and was on the verge of losing my house and there was nothing I could do about it,” Reynolds says. “There was no opportunity to work and it just became a downward spiral.” “I would wake up and start drinking until I couldn’t walk, then I’d usually pass out for three or four hours and when I’d wake up again I’d start getting into the pills. I don’t know why. I was so focused on forgetting everything that went wrong that a lot of the time I ended up forgetting to eat.” Reynolds eventually did lose his house and after bouncing around local motels and couch surfing with friends he landed back with his parents. He went back to the same routine of getting drunk and taking enough Oxy to knock over a horse. His parents tried giving him an ultimatum: clean up or get out. His parents, however, never followed through with the threat and he just kept wasting his days getting high. But his parents did stop funding his abuse and that’s when Reynolds turned to petty crime. “That was a real bad time in my life. The whole time I was an addict was horrible, but looking back on it, the people I’ve hurt and the people I’ve stolen from,
I just wish I could say sorry,” says Reynolds, regretfully. Reynolds says the turning point came one night when he and his friend forced their way in to an empty house looking for things they could pawn for some quick cash. “We were both desperate for money, so we figured, ‘hey, we need drugs and have no money, so why not see what we can find for a quick score?’” The pair took their time going through the house looking for things they could shove in their pockets: jewelry, cash, small electronics and the like. He found himself rummaging through the nightstand in the homes master bedroom. In the drawer Reynolds found a wedding ring. “It was sobering. I had this lady’s wedding ring in my hand and I was ready to take off and sell it to some sketchy pawnshop. At that moment all I could think of was my wife and how everything I had done in the past few years, from getting drunk and high all day to stealing from strangers, was pushing away the people I cared about: my friends, my family and my wife. I’d pushed away my parents, siblings and the love of my life because I couldn’t find a way to cope,” Reynolds says. Reynolds says he went home, woke up his parents and told them he wanted to clean up. That would be the last time he would ever steal, and aside from a minor relapse, it was the last time he’d ever abuse drugs again. They sent him off to rehab and when he came home months
later, he was a completely different person. He was motivated to turn his life around and mend the broken relationships from years past. Reynolds’s father set him up with a construction job, where he was able to make a legitimate income for the first time in years. Like the city he calls home, Reynolds has struggled to recover after being crippled by the loss of industry. His struggles and subsequent rise almost mirror the city: Brantford is now thriving and full of opportunity and Reynolds is clean and working to make a new life for himself. For the first time in years, both are healthy. “Yeah, my story is pretty similar to Brantford’s. Its kind of neat that we kind of parallel one another, both rising from the ashes,” he says with a laugh. “Those were really dark times in my life. I’m glad they’re behind me and that I’m on to better things, but sometimes it’s good to hold on to those memories, as bad as they may be. I’m ashamed of my past, but I kind of embrace it. It’s motivation for the future and it’s shown me how much the people around me care about me. I’ve failed before, but you know what? I’ve triumphed over it. I wake up every morning knowing how rock bottom felt, knowing that I’m a better person and contributing something positive and knowing that I’m not hurting the people that love me.”
Duffy and tried to cover it up. These are serious issues that should be covered, and people need to be held accountable. But it makes one wonder what this says about our country. Is this just a product of the government in place, or is it more than that? As much as we hate to admit it, it almost seems like we are becoming like our neighbours to the south. Or maybe it is just a product of the media doing their jobs to a high level; digging out the dark, hidden issues and bringing them to light. It is well known by now that earlier this week, Toronto Police Chief Bill Blair said that they now have the “video images which appear to be those images which were previously reported in the press.” Speculation has run amok, with the press, citizens and city council all calling for Ford’s resignation. Even though Ford has said, in a media scrum, that he has no reason to resign, one cannot help but notice the lack of conviction
and gusto that he normally portrays. Gone were the firm denials and requests for evidence, replaced by the safe answer that he cannot comment because it is before the courts. So maybe this is a good result. Perhaps Ford has been caught in his wrongdoing, and maybe he will be charged, even forced to relinquish his duties as mayor. Is it worth it, or does it merely create a culture of confusion? It could just be the opposition finally accomplishing its goals, or it could be a case of helping voters see the light, showing them that maybe this man does not deserve to be re-elected. The other issue is a bit more complex, but just as intriguing. Things first started to heat up when it seemed that Harper slipped up in Parliament and appeared to be changing his story. The press and the opposition both pounced and kept applying pressure. Then, Nigel Wright, formerly Harper’s Chief of Staff, said that the party agreed to pay Duffy’s debt. To this, Irving Gerstein, Chair of the
Conservative Fund, said, “First, I made it absolutely clear to Nigel Wright that the Conservative Fund of Canada would not pay for Sen. Duffy’s disputed expenses, and it never did.” Add it all up and it just makes our country look like a gong show. Maybe it is nothing more than the government making bad judgements and unethical decisions, or maybe it is something more than that. It’s as if we are becoming just like every other nation out there, with these scandals seeming like cheap ripoffs of bad Hollywood dramas. The attitude appears to be to succeed at bringing down the other, no matter what the cost. There is no moving forward, no working together towards common goals. Scandals like this are not new in any country. But due to the extent that they seem to be occurring in our nation this last year, we are increasingly seeming less like Canada, and more like just another America. And that is the biggest scandal of all.
Nation of scandal: What is going on with Canada? Dillon Giancola Features Editor
It is hard to turn on the news or read the paper without being blasted with coverage of scandals in our country. Scandals and controversy are a part of life and government, and part of the media’s job is to make us aware. But this just seems like too much. It’s all so overwhelming… and negative. Not that negativity in the news is anything new, by any means. These recent issues in the news, primarily Rob Ford’s crack video and the Senate expense scandal, are not new; they have been around since early summer. But both of them at the time did not seem to have a lot of impact or momentum. The public mostly let it go, with lack of evidence or belief in any real wrongdoing. But now these stories are back and more glaring than ever. The police now have the video; it is real after all. And it has to come to light that perhaps Prime Minister Harper did know of the loan to
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
FEATURES Dillon Giancola // email@example.com | @sputnikfeatures
In the words of a veteran
Royal Canadian Air Force Pilot Lloyd Bentley. (Photo by Christina Manocchio)
Brittany Bennett Staff As we all wear our red poppies over our hearts, we are remembering the many lives that have been lost in the Armed Forces’ line of duty. The survivors are also recognized for their courage and efforts in fighting. One such survivor is Royal Canadian Air Force Pilot, Lloyd Bentley of Brantford, who took part in the fight against the German Nazi army in World War II. Bentley jumps in to tell his experience of serving in the air force like it just happened yesterday. He admits, “People tell me I talk a lot,” with a wide grin. Becoming a pilot was not a dream of Bentley’s, but the idea of being in the army and having to shoot people was a definite nightmare. The Air Force was the sensible way for Bentley to contribute without going against his morals. Bentley took just about every Air Force course there was out there, including Initial Training School in Toronto, Ontario; Elementary Flying School in Windsor, Ontario; Service Training School here in Brantford, Ontario; Navigation School in Summerside, Prince Edward Island; Advanced Flying School in England and operational training with torpedo bombs in Northern Ireland. The joking words from one of his instructors at Brantford stuck out to him, “Well Bentley, there’s one consolation: not always the best pilots live the longest.” Bentley chuckles as he recalls the remark. Bentley speaks from experience when he says, “Hitler would have been the biggest bully in history.” Bentley was bullied
throughout his childhood as he was much skinnier than most of the other boys his age, but that never stopped him. His chest rises as he proudly says, “I was sissy Bentley and I didn’t give a damn!” On June 5, 1944, Bentley and his compatriots and allies received a letter from Dwight Eisenhower, the President of the United States at the time, and General Douglas MacArthur, the Supreme Commander of the Allied Forces. The letter outlined the command of, “The destruction of the German war machine, the elimination of Nazi tyranny over the oppressed peoples of Europe, and security for ourselves in a free world.” It was referred to as “D-Day”, or “Operation Overlord”, and was rescheduled to the following day due to weather conditions. The mission was to invade Germany’s hold on Normandy through five designated beaches: Sword Beach, Juno Beach, Gold Beach, Omaha Beach and Utah Beach. Bentley’s air force division was commanded to Sword Beach alongside the British Infantry division, where Bentley flew a DC-3 Dakota. He remembers looking down on the thousands of ships and explains his impression that, “They looked like they were so thick, that if you had long legs, you could probably walk back to England on the ships.” Within a week of “D-Day”, Bentley was flying back from the beaches, wounded. Once they wounded were taken to the Air Evacuation Center in England, the medics
had to sort through the soldiers with different injuries to decide which hospital they were to be sent to. “It was quite a grim thing to see,” Bentley says as he shakes his head side to side. Bentley was also a part of the unexpected failure of “Operation Market Garden” on September 17, 1944. The plan was to force airborne entry into the Northern end of the “Siegfried line”, the line of German defences, within the Netherlands by means of paratroopers and gliders. Only a small margin succeeded to capture bridges between the Eindhoven and Nijmegen rivers. Bentley did not fly until the following day, and landed within Ginkel Heath. Bentley’s job was to drop supplies and paratroopers to the beaches all that week. However, that Thursday’s flight was a difficult one. When they started back to England to gather supplies, Bentley began to see unfamiliar lights. He explains that he had a fortunate position behind a small cloud, and says that “within a minute I could see flashes all out of my little cloud.” The wing of a German Fw-190 flashed before his eyes as he realized they were under attack. Half of their transport was shot down, and Bentley was a part of the six out of 13 aircrafts from his squad that made it back to England. That Saturday was another struggling flight, as Bentley’s troops were again in air to drop supplies back to Ginkel Heath when the Germans managed to shoot out their oil lines. They only made the trip back as far as Eindhoven, where luckily their British
allies had taken control of an airport where they could make an emergency landing. “That night I slept on the floor under about a 20 foot painting of Hitler, it sure gave me a weird feeling,” Bentley recalls with shivers. Bentley feels sorry for the German soldiers as he explains that, “They were brain washed. They were apparently the hardest people our soldiers had to fight, because today we would have probably called them terrorists. They were willing to die for Hitler.” Since the war, Bentley has visited the Netherlands many times to pay tribute to those who have fallen. While visiting the cemeteries that held the members of his allies, he is saddened to realize that about 75 per cent of the deaths had ranged from the ages of 19 to 21. “But the saddest I felt – because I ended up having some really good German friends – was in the German cemetery,” Bentley says with a mourning look on his face. About 90 per cent of the German’s deaths had ranged from ages 17 to 19. These are but a few pieces of Bentley’s experiences during his two years of training and two years overseas in the Armed Forces’ line of duty. He has attended many schools to talk of these experiences since the war. The piece of advice he stresses the most for the students is to, “do the best for yourself and never mind what other people think of you.”
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
A&E Amber Richardson // firstname.lastname@example.org | @sputnikarts
Fall reading list Priscilla Popp Staff
It is no secret that University requires a lot of reading. While so many of us are busy turning pages of textbooks, journal articles and newspapers, our personal reading list – that is, what we want to actually read for our own pleasure – often gets forgotten about until summer. This year, consider changing that routine. The fall is the perfect time to curl up by the fireplace and read an enchanting story that will keep you up until the early morning hours. Here are my top picks I recommend you read while the leaves are still turning.
2. The Longest Ride – Nicholas Sparks
3. How to Win at the Sport of Business – Mark Cuban
5. I’ve Got Your Number – Sophie Kinsella
Nicholas Sparks, author of The Notebook, tells a story of love, suspense and secrecy. When 91-yearold Ira Levinson finds himself in a situation of life or death, he begins to recall memories with his wife who died years earlier. Miles away, college girl Sophia Danko meets an interesting boy with a big secret. Both couples, though very different, will affect each other in more ways than either could have imagined.
Hard work never goes out of style. That is the message Mark Cuban, star of ABC’s Shark Tank, portrays in his novel about attaining success and achieving your dreams. Cuban tells his story of going from being a doorto-door salesman to a multi-billionaire. He recalls personal details from his upbringing as a child and offers tips to readers and aspiring business people along the way.
Poppy Wyatt has never been happier. After her sought-after boyfriend proposes to her, everything seems to be falling into place – until she loses the engagement ring that happens to be a family heirloom. The events that follow and the situations she finds herself in leave Poppy questioning everything she thought she once knew, leading her to a surprising decision and someone who she never saw coming.
1. The Devil Wears Revenge by Laura Weisberger
4. You Knew Me When – Emily Liebert
Miranda Priestly returns in this sequel to the novel that inspired 2004’s movie The Devils Wears Prada. Ten years after her internship at Runway magazine, Andrea Sachs is running her own bridal publication with long time friend (and former Runway co-worker), Emily. Just when Sachs believes she has moved on from the past and seems to have everything falling into place, Priestly returns with one final and surprising request.
You Knew Me When tells the story of Katherine Hill and Laney Marten, two former best friends who drifted a part as their dreams and goals lead to two very different paths in life. Years later, the two reunite in the place they met and figure out once and for all what really caused falling out, discovering whether their spark of friendship can ever truly be relit.
No sexy nurses Jaclyn Brown Staff
MTV debuted their latest show “Scrubbing In” following the party lifestyle of attractive twenty-something nurses in Los Angeles. October 24 marked the debut of the show and the nursing community hasn’t particularly welcomed it with open arms. The show depicts nurses
in a work hard, party harder sort of way. MTV has a notorious history of releasing provocative and offensive shows, as demonstrated by the highly controversial and wildly popular show, “Jersey Shore”, that managed to offend the entire state of New Jersey. However, nurses and nursing students
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across the country are speaking out about the damage these mediated images cause. Barbara Mildon, president of the Canadian Nurses Association wrote a letter to MTV president Stephen Friedmen explaining her personal disgust with the show and her concern for its impact on new generations of nurses. “Scrubbing In’s dramatized account of nurses’ lives trivializes the critical work they perform. All of their hard work, from studying and gaining experience to answering nursing’s call, will be overshadowed by typical ‘reality’ show fodder,” wrote Mildon. M i l d o n ’ s prediction regarding its impact on a new nurse is seemingly becoming a reality. Part of the newest generation of nurses is Stephanie Brown, a second year nursing student at University of Saskatchewan. She explained how popularized show like “Scrubbing In” are destructive depictions of nurses and are harmful to students in the profession. “It has a very negative influence and it can cause sexual harassment.
People have these expectations and they don’t take you as a professional,” said Brown. She further emphasized the strenuous studying and gruesome scenes she’s witnessed so far in nursing school. MTV’s show has made her see her nursing education in a different light. “We’re meant to save lives and we do have a professional body of knowledge and were not taken seriously.” Although there has been no official boycotting of the show by nurses unions, Brown encourages students to look at theses media objects with a critical eye. “We’re still, as a profession, battling it. We have skill set, knowledge base, we have education, but it still doesn’t counter the negative images of the social media.” Halloween at University of Saskatchewan campus was an opportunity for social enlightenment as nurses spoke out about their portrayal in the media. Brown explained how Halloween marked the battle for nurses on campus to discourage students dressing up as the overly popular “sexy nurse”. “No sexy nurses!” said Brown, laughing. Although there has been no official boycott by the Canadian Nurses Association, Barbara Mildon left the MTV president with a final phrase to contemplate. “If you respect the nursing profession and the care we provide to millions of people every day, you will cancel Scrubbing In.” MTV has not formerly replied to Barbara Mildon’s letter, sent on October 21. In the meantime, “Scrubbing In” airs on MTV Thursday nights at 10 p.m. EST.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Amber Richardson // email@example.com | @sputnikarts
with Amber Richardson
with Amber Richardson
Ambition Music Group, from left to right: Brandon Pakeman, Taj Johnson, and Martin Pitt. (Photo by Cody Groat)
: Ambition Music Group Ambition Music Group (AMG) is a group consisting of three Laurier Brantford students: Martin Pitt, Brandon Pakeman and Taj Johnson. The three are in school for various programs, including Leadership, Criminology and Law, but their real passion is the rap game. The trio has been producing music together and solo for about a year and they have no plans on stopping in the near future. Read on to learn all about your fellow students in AMG. When did you start AMG? Who were the founding members? Brandon: AMG came together in second year. I’ll never forget Martin coming up to me in the Laurier gym and saying, “I heard you’re pretty dope at rapping maybe you could show me the ropes” [laughs]. All in all we met up and recorded our first song together and from then on we’ve been grinding it out. From there, Martin and I came up with the idea to create a group and start making our dream into reality. Martin: For the record, I never said that! We started around the beginning of second year. I always had a passion for music and was making beats on the side, but never really thought about pursuing it. After I linked up with Taj and Pakeman for a couple sessions I realized the potential, and we really started taking it seriously.
Who are your largest musical and non-musical influences? Martin: I grew up listening to everything you can imagine; my dad had a big record collection so you hear everything from classical to soul music in my house. People are always surprised when they listen to my iPod cause it’ll go from “In Da Club” to Led Zepplin on the same playlist. It’s good to have an appreciation for all of it, man. I’d have to say my biggest rap influences are underground rapper Blu, Lupe Fiasco, Drake and Kanye West. Brandon: That’s a good question. I’d have to say reggae had a huge impact on me not only musically, but also spiritually. I still remember when I was younger waking up in the morning to Marley, incense burning in the living room and the sweet smell of home cooked food rolling down the hallway. Within that small co-op house in Scarborough is where I really laid the foundation for music and I’m really blessed to have parents who, at an early age, taught me the value that it’s more important to feel rich than to be rich. In terms of artists themselves, Tupac has always been at the top of the list for influential artists. Taj: Michael Jackson, Sam Cooke, Usher, Chris Brown, John Legend, [and] The Weeknd. Non-musical: Warren Buffet because of his willpower, Robert Kiyosaki because of his unorthodox
formula for becoming successful, [and] my parents because of the life lessons they teach me each and every day.
two weeks ago and gave him some beats. Producing for Drake would be crazy.
Is school a fallback plan, or is music just something you plan on doing until you graduate?
Brandon: Right now I’m just going with the flow of things and we’ll see where that takes me.
Martin: I’m planning to finish my degree; from there we’ll see. I’m really making a push to get into music whether it’s as an artist or producer. I respect people who work 9 to 5 and making a living just doing what they have to do, but I can never see myself there. Everybody’s a ‘rapper’ or ‘artist’ these days so when you say that’s your dream a lot of people don’t take you too seriously. Regardless, I’m working real hard and know that our time is coming.
Taj: My goal is to become a professional singer/ songwriter.
Brandon: My parents wouldn’t like to hear this but yes, school has become somewhat of a backup plan. Taj: I believe that everyone should receive an education because it’s important to be intellectual and articulate. However, I’m never going to stop singing and writing and I believe that with our talent we have the ability to have our voices heard. What are your immediate career goals? Martin: Getting a beat to a major artist is high on my list. I was in Toronto talking to Drake’s producer Boi 1da
How do you balance musician life with student life? Martin: I don’t. It gets tough around exams, but I always keep it balanced. Brandon: Wipe the sleep out your eyes and keep going. As P Diddy said, “If your eyes aren’t red, you aren’t working hard enough”. Sometimes it means working on a paper till 11 p.m., then kicking back to a beat and writing until 3 or 4 in the morning. Taj: We put a lot of time into our studies in order to keep good GPAs, but we get together a couple of times a week to work on our music, as well as work on songs on our own time. Boxers or briefs? Martin: Boxers. For sure. Brandon: Tighty whities. Taj: [laughs] Definitely boxers.
Classic Albums Live perform the Beatles’ Abbey Road Amber Richardson A&E Editor On October 30, Classic Albums Live performed their rendition of the Beatles’ popular album, Abbey Road. The show was held at Sanderson Centre and drew a larger than expected crowd of Beatles enthusiasts both young and old. The show included what the group calls a “note for note, cut for cut” recital of the album, among other classic Beatles tunes. All of the album’s quirky sounds were captured and many of the musicians played a range of instruments, from clapping hands to hammers. The main quartet consisted of
Rob Phillips and David Love on guitar, Mark Stewartson on bass and Marty Morin on the drums. The stage was also graced with the presence of Will Hare on keys, Amanda Penner on violin, Alex McMaster on cello and Braxton Hicks and Steve Dyte on horn. Each musician carried his or her weight tremendously throughout the performance and every note hit was uniquely profound. The show was executed brilliantly, with a particular highlight being the song “Because”. The harmonics and on-stage chemistry stunned
the crowd in to silent gawkers, who looked as though they were being brainwashed by the romance of 1969. As someone who has seen Paul McCartney live and tons of Beatles footage, I can honestly say that the Classic Albums Live performance sounds more true to the album than when the Beatles perform it live themselves. The stage presence was surreal and the music didn’t come across as a mere cover or interpretation. The musicians played each note as if they had a hand in creating it and owned the album as if they
were the ones who recorded it. This year marks the 10th anniversary of Classic Albums Live and there is no doubt that the musicians involved will continue to produce great concerts while reproducing the work of other great musicians. The show was a delightful surprise and to call the group merely a “cover band” is grossly underrating their immense talent and precision.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Kyle Morrison // firstname.lastname@example.org | @sputniksports
Strong returning group plans for success in extramural soccer Chris Pimentel Staff
The Laurier Brantford co-ed soccer team is looking to emerge from the shadows of the rest of the teams on campus. There are 12 people on the team with five of them being girls. Currently there are two tournaments scheduled for the upcoming year, being played on Nov. 15 and Feb. 7, both at Redeemer University in Ancaster, Ontario.
team should settle down earlier than expected. Buy in from each of the players is not only important, but key to a good team as well. The team has to be willing to work at each practice ensuring that they don’t mail it in and waste time. It is hard for this team to get enough time consistently each week in order to
“With such a young team on campus, there are obviously expected to be some growing pains from the group.”
“Communication is key in soccer because each player has to be on the same page in order ... for teamwork to be effective” The biggest difference from this team to last year’s team appears to be the team’s dedication to winning, according to second year player and fourth year student, Matthew Trottier. “The technical skill has improved as well from last year,” says Trottier. An area of concern for the team has to be that their very first tournament is coming up within two weeks, especially because their team was only finalized last week. But thanks to the strong veteran presence from returning players, the team should be prepared from the start. Also, having a lot of returning players means that the team should come together rather quickly, which in turn will affect everything from ball
Laurier Brantford’s co-ed extramural soccer team. (Photo courtesy of Laurier Brantford Athletics & Recreation)
movement to communication. All of which should mean that the team will perform well within the short prep time. Communication is key in soccer because each player has to be on the same page in order for the pace to be played at a comfortable level and for teamwork to be effective.
The team was able to hold their ground in tournament play last year, but the consensus from team members is that the expectations this year are to come in first in tournaments. With such a young team on campus, there are obviously expected to be some growing pains from the group, but thanks to veteran leadership, the
practice, so they can’t waste any crucial time. But a veteran-led team can ensure that everyone is on track so they can build towards something successful in the upcoming year. Unfortunately, soccer does not get the same flare as some of the other sports on campus like basketball or hockey, but that doesn’t mean that their passion and talent shouldn’t be ignored. The team seems like a hard-working group of people whose expectations are not only to compete in every tournament, but to win. A strong returning group of players combined with good technical skill should mean success for the Golden Hawks extramural soccer team this year.
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Laurier’s men’s football head coach, Michael Faulds (Photo courtesy of Laurier Athletics)
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
Kyle Morrison // email@example.com | @sputniksports
The women’s hockey team looks to improve on last year’s results and win the OCAA Challenge Cup. (Photo courtesy of Laurier Brantford Athletics & Recreation)
Women’s hockey team ready for upcoming season Chris Pimentel Staff After a solid season last year the extramural women’s hockey team at Laurier Brantford looks to become one of the campus’ strongest performing teams. There are 20 girls on the team, with three of them being call ups for tournaments. The team is going to play in four tournaments this year, with the first one taking place November 21 at Humber Lakeshore. Laurier Brantford will also be hosting a tournament on February 7. Last year the team did well in a couple of tournaments, but they are looking to improve on last year’s results, especially after the men’s hockey team won the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association Challenge Cup tournament. The team has a good mix of younger
and returning players and that seems to be a great thing for their system. The captain is Kristin Cavarzan who was elected by her teammates. Cavarzan says that this year’s team is stronger and faster compared to last year’s team. Another benefit for this year’s team is that more ice time is going to be provided. That could help with conditioning, an area where Cavarzan is concerned. “Conditioning is an area of concern if we want to be able to keep up with some of the better teams,” says Cavarzan. Another part of the team’s strength according to Cavarzan is communication and moving the puck out of their own zone. This could be attributed to a strong presence of returning players from last year. The main goal of the team right now
seems to be to qualify for the Challenge Cup, which is a tournament that the top six teams in the OCAA qualify for each year. Last year the team qualified, but unfortunately did not win. The way you qualify for the Challenge Cup is based on a power ranking system that ranks you based on wins within the tournament, how a team places in the tournament and strength of schedule. A team has to play six to eight games to qualify. The extramural hockey team last year was ranked sixth in the power rankings. Assistant captain Michelle Anger agrees with her captain. “Our team this year is looking good, a stronger team than last year and we can’t wait to start the season,” she says. A team that has a good mix of veteran leadership and young players usually
means that they are on the right track for success. With more ice time being provided to the team this year and more experience from playing, the general feeling internally from the team is that they want to win the Challenge Cup this year. The goal each of them has for themselves on the team is a good starting point and should allow for them to grow throughout the year. But they don’t have a lot of time. By playing in only four tournaments this year, there leaves very little room for error and a quick start is a necessity. Expectations for this team are high this year, but the feeling from talking to their leaders is that they are ready to not only meet them, but exceed them this season.
Are competitive sports under-represented at Laurier Brantford? Kyle Morrison Sports Editor Sports are a large part of the university experience that students should get throughout their four or five years at school. They are a major way for the students and faculty to show off school pride. But here at Laurier Brantford, sports are too overlooked. The average student here doesn’t know
about Laurier Brantford’s sports teams, but the blame can’t be placed on them. Take one step into the Wilkes House gym and you’ll usually see a packed house, exercising and hitting the weights, but I don’t think most of them could tell me much about our extramural teams. Joseph Horrigan, a third year student at Laurier Brantford, uses the gym regularly and agrees with this. “I don’t really even know what non-intramurals we have besides basketball and hockey.”
If a student knows any sports that are played here it’s those two. But it’s left up to the teams to get the word out. The university has little involvement in promotion, and what’s sad is that these are highly skilled teams. The women’s hockey team was one of the top six teams in the Ontario Colleges Athletic Association, the men’s basketball team won a silver medal at a tournament last year and the men’s hockey team won the Challenge Cup, making them the best college hockey team in Ontario. Where is the endorsement from faculty and pride from students? Beyond these three, co-ed soccer, volleyball, dodgeball and women’s powderpuff football round out the university’s offering of competitive extramural sports. These may be less glamorous, but hold their own with most of them reaching the podium or having top five finishes last season. None of these teams get university funding, usually having to pay their own way to enter some tournaments and buy uniforms. It’s understandable that
Brantford’s campus is still relatively small, but university sports can be a huge point of interest in drawing in students and growing the nucleus of a university. Laurier Brantford needs to know that yes, we have teams that compete and succeed against other schools. They are not playing on a varsity level in the OUA like the Waterloo campus’ Golden Hawks, but the OCAA is just as competitive and carries a similar amount of respect in varsity athletics. Therefore, there should be no need for the Brantford campus to cheer on Waterloo’s teams for Homecoming. Brantford needs its own independent identity, and an inclusion of sports and athletics should be a large part of that identity. Laurier Brantford’s extramural teams, in some ways, are set up for failure. With only one small gymnasium to work with, even with the low number of extramural teams offered, there still isn’t enough practice time to go around. The university needs to provide the necessary resources so teams can show how good they are, because they have great potential to proudly represent Laurier Brantford. It no longer seems like this will be happening during my time at Laurier Brantford, which I find sad. University sports can have a huge impact on the environment and culture of a campus and at 14 years old, it is about time that Laurier Brantford better facilitates this.
The Sputnik // Wednesday, November 6, 2013
OPINION Cody Groat // firstname.lastname@example.org | @sputnikopinion
Best left cold? Discussing JonBenét Ramsey, Tupac Shakur and Ariel Castro Cody Groat Opinion Editor
Reading the headline, you may not know much about those three names. Maybe you have heard of Tupac from his short lived (but highly rewarded) career as a rapper, and maybe the names of Castro and Ramsey from current news stories resurfacing in the United States. But the specific details of these individuals may not be known or how they may be connected. These stories all revolve around, unfortunately, brutal and unforgiveable crime. Until recently, all three of these cases also shared the label of “unsolved”, that changing with the discovery of three women and one girl locked in the house of Ariel Castro on May 6, 2013. These women, named Georgina “Gina” DeJesus, Michelle Knight, Amanda Berry and a daughter of Berry’s, whose name has not been released were held captive nearly a decade. After that long - a decade - the cases of Berry and DeJesus were still open. Police agencies were still trying to find these two, who had gone missing at ages 17 and 14, respectively. The case of Knight, who was 21 at the time of her kidnapping, was closed 15 months after her disappearance. Her information was removed from the National Crime Information Centre, police were to stop looking into where she may be. Six years before Ariel Casto kidnapped Michelle Knight, beginning his spiral of destruction on several families in Cleveland, rapper 2Pac, one of “the greatest artists of all time” according to Rolling Stone, was leaving a Mike Tyson boxing match. After getting in a physical confrontation with alleged Crips gang member Orlando “Baby Face” Anderson from Compton, California, Tupac was on
the road to Club 662 in Las Vegas. Tupac would never make it. At about 11:15 p.m., while stopped at a red light, with Tupac standing through the car’s sunroof, a white Cadillac pulled up beside them and fired several shots. These struck Tupac Shakur in the chest, pelvis, thigh and right hand. He would die in the hospital six days later. To this day, the police have no idea who pulled the trigger; no one knows who murdered him. Headlines in the New York Times read, “Tupac Shakur, 25, rap performer who personified violence, dies” Two months after that headline ran, on Christmas Day of 1996, another case made headlines across America. Child Beauty Pageant Queen JonBenét Ramsey, 6, was reported missing. Eight hours later, during a police investigation of her home, they found the missing child. Unfortunately, JonBenét was no longer alive; she had been struck on the head and strangled. This would lead to a criminal investigation as long as 17 years, for the case of JonBenét Ramsey still hasn’t been solved. The child who was found murdered in the basement of her own home is still being investigated and the legal system still hasn’t been able to prove who the murderer was, even though one answer seems to be the obvious one and it’s repeated constantly.
It leads to a question. What if all three cases, all of which were over a decade old, decided to close for good after that ten-year mark? If after ten years of investigation, consideration and deliberation, a case would be closed and considered unsolvable. Would it be for the best? In my opinion, the answer isn’t yes, or no. It’s somewhere in the middle. Starting with the “yes” aspect, which may be the most contested. I feel the reason cases should be closed shouldn’t be from an economic aspect (although cases open that long do end up costing a fair bit of money to police services), but I question the emotional drain it must have on those involved. I even contest myself in saying that. Think, after being questioned weekly, monthly or yearly about the kidnapping or murder of your loved one, going over the same material again and again, it must get to you. Having to relive what could easily be the worst experience of your life. Think of the family of JonBenét, it’s been 17 long years. With her case, there has hardly ever been a pause in the curiosity, in the investigations and deliberations. For 17 years, the family has been questioned, picked apart and examined. That worst day has now been stretched to nearly two decades. Then again, this can be easily fought. When the case is finally solved, I’m sure
that provides some of the best recovery you could possibly be given. Closure, at last. Look to the case of the Ariel Castro kidnappings. The case was closed, but Michelle Knight was alive the whole time. How many other cases are like that? The “closing case” point I just addressed with always be contested, I feel. The experience of Michelle Knight is the reason why - the perpetual “what if”. On that fateful May 6 of this year, when Amanda Berry broke out of her handmade prison, 911 was called. She said her name and the officer recognized it immediately, even after all these years, because the search was still on. What if it wasn’t? If the police didn’t respond as fast as they did? Ariel Castro may have escaped and the monster may still have been alive today. Finally, Tupac. Some have said that what happened, happened. Probably gang violence that may of been deserved. But the story of Tupac shouldn’t be over and here’s why I feel this way. Afeni Shakur, the mother of Tupac Amaru Shakur, had to tell doctors to pull the plug on her son back in 1996. No matter if he lived a life that some say was riddled with crime, or if he was a rapper that some didn’t even deserve the time of day, he was a son who died in his mother’s arms. Answers should be given to Afeni. In Tupac’s song, “Dear Mama”, I think he feels the same way, so that’s how I’m going to end this story: “I wish I could take the pain away, if you can make it through the night there’s a brighter day. Everything will be all right if you hold on. It’s a struggle everyday, gotta roll on! And there’s no way I can pay you back, but my plan is to show you that I understand. You are appreciated.”
is a waitress and your secrets to being a server. Now imagine having this conversation sixty-four more times in a day with just as many different people. As a gay person on campus, I know how inclusive our community is, which I appreciate every single day. But I have been asked the same questions so many times. I know, for a fact, other gay individuals on our campus, or in their lives outside of school, are exposed to the same experiences. Like others, I have a general taste in fashion, music and the activities I do on a regular basis. But why aren’t other people being questioned constantly for it? I get it, it’s a conversation piece if it’s an awkward situation, but is this what society has turned to? Why am I being asked “Let’s go shopping, you
can be my personal shopper cause you’re gay and you have such nice style”, “Did you want to go on a date with my friend? He’s gay!” Here’s something I want to say but I can’t, “I don’t care”. It might seem out of the ordinary that this is pointed out. People do not always catch what they say and presume that it’s fine. But think about this, random comments that people make can mistakenly contribute to the growing number of stereotypes of gay men. I’m not going to make any stereotypical questions of straight people, because they hardly exist, but I know it would just be annoying if you were being asked constantly.
I am not the “gay best friend” Dran Ngo Staff
Think about this. Imagine walking into a room filled with people you don’t know, excluding the person who invited you to this school function. Most of us have been there. Let’s add to this a bit, though. You hang out with your friend and they introduce you to a bunch of people who know about your sexuality. The first thing that comes out of their mouth after they introduce themselves is, “Oh my goodness! My friend is gay, did you want to see a picture?” As the person proceeds to whip out their phone and show a picture of their gay friend, hoping they’ll be the next millionaire match maker. If you are questioning the existence of this story, it happens. It happens much more frequently than you may think.
Today, what we find old news is the acceptance of homosexuals into our society. Generally, society, Ontario in particular, has been welcoming and praised that homosexuals have rights as well. Yes, great, it’s a wonderful thought that I can grow up and marry someone I love. But, there’s something else that terribly agonizes me about being gay. It’s the nonstop questions and random statements that people make towards me, or to any other gay individuals that they know. It’s not offensive, but it gets annoying after a while. Think about this for a second: how annoying would it be to be repeatedly asked about your job as a waiter. In the entire conversation you are having with this person, they ask about how you make tips, how they know someone