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Waterloo | Brantford | Kitchener | Toronto

Photo: Rainer Leipscher


University Stadium was packed with football fans for Homecoming on the Waterloo campus. The Golden Hawks were defeated by the Guelph Gryphons 22-19. For more Homecoming highlights, see page 5.

Laurier honours employee achievement Ceremony recognizes Employee Achievement Award recipients and long-serving employees By Sandra Muir

Photo: Sandra Muir

Friends, family and colleagues filled the Maureen Forrester Recital Hall Sept. 24 as Laurier recognized the recipients of the inaugural Employee Achievement Awards, a new award program that celebrates employees for their contributions toward the achievement of Laurier’s mission and vision. In addition to the employee awards, Laurier also recognized long-term service employees for 15, 25, 35 and 40 years.

“As a community we have deeply benefitted from the contributions of all of these individuals and it is a pleasure to take this moment to say thank you for all the work you have done,” said Pam Cant, acting assistant vicepresident of Human Resources. The Employee Achievement Awards are based on Laurier’s five Employee Success Factors, which were introduced in September 2010. The factors aim to identify the positive attitudes, behaviours and work styles that align most closely to Laurier’s

mission, vision and values. “The Employee Success Factors serve as the blueprint, or guide, for all of our employees,” said Max Blouw, Laurier’s president and vice-chancellor. “Today, it is our pleasure to celebrate those who exemplify the highest levels of talent and success, and advance the important work of our university.” Students, staff and faculty can nominate colleagues who exemplify one or all of the Employee Success factors. Cant was chair of the awards committee. She said the decision process was not an easy one. “We were truly humbled by the achievements and contributions of all of those who were nominated and it really brought to the light the number of talented and devoted individuals and teams here at Laurier,” said Cant. “Selecting just a few individuals to highlight that reinforces the many strong contributors we look forward to recognizing in the years to come.”

The Employee Achievement Award winners include: President’s Awards: • Individual Achievement:

Steve Farlow, Executive Director, Schlegel Centre for Entrepreneurship. Employee awards see page 4

Conference on academic freedom fosters discussion By Sandra Muir Engaging in difficult conversations on academic freedom and academic integrity is essential for the future of post-secondary education, and is exactly the type of debate the Perspectives on Academic Freedom conference, co-hosted by Laurier and the University of Waterloo, was intended to foster. Held in September in partnership with the Association of Universities and Colleges Canada (AUCC), its aim was to have informed discussion around issues of academic freedom



A look at this year’s Homecoming highlights in photographs.

Meet Jennifer Brickman, avid volunteer, sports enthusiast and soon-to-be new mom.

and integrity in the context of partnership agreements. “It is truly a profoundly nuanced discussion that we have embarked upon,” Max Blouw, Laurier president and vicechancellor, told the conference. “Identifying what is critical in partnerships, what we are trying to achieve, what we are trying to protect, what it is we are trying to encourage — I think those are the key issues.” The conference brought together a number of international experts, including Conference see page 3

7 Laurier students dig up the past at War of 1812 site in Fort Eerie.



president’s message

Sense of community serves us well in times of change dressed alumni, staff and faculty. The sense of community and shared experience transcends the generations. Whether you attended Waterloo College in the 1950s or the Laurier Brantford campus in the 2000s, there is a palpable bond that stretches across the decades to unite everyone who has a connection to this

Photo: Sandra Muir

If you ever doubt that Laurier is a special community, just spend some time at Homecoming. A stroll around our Waterloo and Brantford campuses during these annual fall celebrations is a journey into the heart of Laurier’s unique spirit. Hundreds of purple-and-goldclad students mix with similarly

Laurier President Max Blouw answers questions at the annual Town Hall forum on the Waterloo campus.

advances in technology, and the changing expectations of students and society are all challenging universities to rethink how we operate and deliver core educational services. In Ontario, the provincial government has initiated a strategic mandate process that requires each university to identify its strengths, its top priorities and its plans for using innovation to improve productivity. As I have said previously, Laurier has already done a great deal of strategic planning that positions us well for this new operating environment. However, additional planning is required. That is why Laurier has launched an Integrated Planning and Resource Management initiative (IPRM). This consultative process will define and support the principles and institutional priorities that will enable Laurier to flourish and prosper in the years ahead. I know that many of you have questions about this process. That’s why we have been holding open workshops over the past few months and encouraging all of you to attend. We also have detailed information on the IPRM website

remarkable, 101-year-old institution. Hardly a week goes by that I don’t hear some mention of how fortunate we are to have such a distinct sense of community. Many other universities would love to have even a fraction of the dynamic, cohesive spirit that animates and binds the Laurier community. It is important that we appreciate and nurture this precious commodity. As historian Andrew Thomson explained so eloquently in his centennial history book, Laurier is a resilient institution whose entire history has been one of constant change and evolution. From seminary to liberal arts college, from religious-affiliated institution to publicly funded university, from a small campus in a single city to a growing multicampus institution with roots in several communities, Laurier has always found a way to deal with change and adapt successfully to it. In 2012, we continue to experience forces that impel us toward change. Post-secondary education is undergoing a period of significant transformation. Financial constraints, rapid

at If you can’t find the answer to your questions there, I urge you to email your query to I wish to emphasize that the IPRM initiative is a bottom-up, collegial process. The key bodies — a planning task force and three working groups — will be comprised of both elected and appointed members from the Laurier community to ensure that all faculties and administrative units have a voice in this process. Above all, I urge you to bear in mind that at the heart of the IPRM process is the question, “How will we continue to make Laurier a better institution?” Change is never easy. But if the history of this university teaches us anything, it is that we can unite in a spirit of trust and collegial goodwill to work together in shaping our shared future.

Max Blouw President and Vice-Chancellor

By Sandra Muir In an effort to provide greater support to students dealing with mental health challenges, Laurier has named Adrienne Luft to the new role of mental health/ student support team leader, making Laurier one of only three Canadian universities to create such a position. Luft will lead Laurier’s institutional mental health strategy. She will also act as a conduit for students seeking help for mental health or academic challenges by connecting them to services inside and outside of the university. Dean of Students Leanne Holland Brown said this new role is critical. “Given what we know about

the prevalence of mental health struggles and the distinct needs of our university students, this role further evidences Laurier’s commitment to students’ personal and academic success,” said Holland Brown. Luft will also lead the implementation of a new $40,000 grant from the Bell Let’s Talk Community Fund. The funds will support a mental health and awareness-training program for faculty, staff and students to help them identify the signs and symptoms of mental illness. “We need to have the tools to respond to students in a supportive way,” said Luft. “This program will help us do that, and make people more aware of services on campus and in the community.”

The grant will also go toward developing a peer-based program, expanding the resource library, and creating an anti-stigma video featuring Laurier students that can be shown during orientation events and training. As well, Laurier will join a U.S.-based research study aimed at gaining a better understanding of mental health on campuses. “Students have a right to an education and a right to be well,” said Luft. “We need to ensure students don’t fall between the cracks and we need to help support student success.” Luft joined Laurier in 2009 as a disability consultant in the Accessible Learning Centre. She has a BA from the University of Waterloo and a Master of Social Work from Laurier.

InsideLaurier is published by Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing (CPAM) Wilfrid Laurier University 75 University Avenue West, Waterloo, Ontario N2L 3C5

InsideLaurier Volume 7, Number 2, October 2012 Editor: Stacey Morrison Contributors: Tomasz Adamski, Kevin Crowley, Nicholas Dinka, Sandra Muir, Mallory O’Brien, Dean Palmer, Simon Wilson Available online at

Photo: Sandra Muir

Laurier’s new mental health role supports student success

Send us your news, events & stories Email: Deadline for submissions: October 17 All submissions are appreciated, however not all submissions will be published. We reserve the right to edit all copy for accuracy, content and length.

InsideLaurier welcomes your comments and suggestions for stories. Tel: (519) 884-0710 ext. 3341 | Fax: (519) 884-8848 Email: InsideLaurier (circ. 2,100) is published eight times a year by CPAM. Opinions expressed in InsideLaurier do not necessarily reflect those of the editor or the university’s administration.

Printed on recycled paper


Next issue of Inside November 2012


OCTOBER 2012 Inside What’s new and notable at Laurier

Joshua Knelman wins 2012 Edna Staebler Award Joshua Knelman has won the 2012 Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction for Hot Art: Chasing Thieves and Detectives through the Secret World of Stolen Art (Douglas & McIntyre, 2011). In Hot Art, Knelman takes what seems like a rarefied topic — art theft — and produces an engrossing narrative that is as riveting as any best-selling mystery novel. Knelman spent four years immersed in the world of international art theft, travelling around the globe to Cairo, New York, London, Montreal and Los Angeles. He befriended a master thief, a lawyer and expert on crimes against art, and a hard-working detective. Even readers who aren’t mourning the loss of the family Monet will be drawn into Knelman’s portrait of calculating art thieves and the handful of dedicated investigators who track them around the globe, often for years at a time. Knelman is a writer and editor based in Toronto. He was a founding editorial member of The Walrus magazine, and his writing has appeared in Toronto Life, Saturday Night, The National Post and The Globe and Mail. Knelman’s feature article “Artful Crimes” in The Walrus won a gold National Magazine Award. Hot Art has also won the 2012 Arthur Ellis Award for Best Crime Nonfiction. Knelman is the co-editor of Four

Letter Word: New Love Letters. For the 2011-12 academic year, he was the Barbara Moon Editorial Fellow at Massey College, University of Toronto. He produces the Literary Review of Canada’s speaker series, in partnership with TVO’s Big Ideas, at the Gardiner Museum. In addition to Hot Art, the shortlist for the 2012 Edna Staebler Award also included: The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary: A Canadian Story of Resilience and Recovery (Harper Collins, 2011) by Andrew Westoll, and Most of Me: Surviving My Medical Meltdown (Greystone Books, 2012) by Robyn Michele Levy. An award presentation for Knelman will take place Nov. 13 at Laurier’s Waterloo campus, starting at 7 p.m. in the Senate and Board Chamber. A second presentation will occur Nov. 14 at Laurier’s Brantford campus.

who excel in teaching. Recipients will receive a certificate and plaque, a permanent notation in the university calendar and a spot in Laurier’s Teaching Hall of Fame. For eligibility requirements, and further information, visit www. and choose Institutional Awards from the left-hand menu. Nomination are due to the Faculty/School dean by Jan. 15, 2013, and to the Office of Educational Development by Feb. 1, 2013.

Teaching Support Services is accepting nominations from the Laurier community for the Awards for Teaching Excellence. The award recognizes one full-time faculty member and one contract academic staff member

of the conference was to allow debate specifically on governance arrangements relating to the Gary Rhoades, a professor and Basillie School of International director of the Center for the Affairs (BSIA). The BSIA is a Study of Higher Education at partnership between Laurier, the University of Arizona. In his Waterloo and the Centre for Interkeynote address, Rhoades lauded national Governance Innovation the hosts for choosing to have this (CIGI), which is a private think discussion in a public forum. tank founded by former RIM “What you are doing is really co-CEO Jim Balsillie. important,” Rhoades said. “My Last April, the CAUT hope is that, given your ability to announced its intention to work through difficult conversations better than we do in the U.S., censure Laurier and Waterloo if you will help map some distinctive they did not amend the governance structure. CAUT President ways to co-operate, to innovate, Jim Turk clarified his stance to energize the best possible during the conference. relationships between universities “This talk is not about academic and civil society and the corporate freedom,” Turk told the audience. world.” “It is about academic integrity In addition to general discus— namely what strings may sions on the nature of such univesities appropriately allow relationships, a key objective

over the operation of a donorfunded university entity, whether it be a school, an institute, a centre, program or chair.” Turk mentioned the CAUT’s concerns with the wording outlined in two documents: the BSIA donor agreement and the BSIA governance document. Blouw thanked the CAUT for making sure the universities considered whether they had the right wording, the right elements and the right degrees of separation in the BSIA governance documents in order to confidently move forward. “Have our Senates got it right? I think we do. I hope we do,” said Blouw. “We need clearly to elaborate further on some of the detail of the interaction and partnerships.”

Conference continued

learning opportunities. This includes videos MacNeil has developed and created to promote self-directed learning. “Instead of using class time primarily for information transfer, my current approach is to provide students with ample on-line resources to teach themselves many of the course concepts,” said MacNeil. “Then when students come to class I can lead them through individual and group exercises to help them fully grasp the concepts they are struggling with.”

Professors win prestigious teaching awards Laurier Psychology Professor Eileen Wood and Associate Professor of Chemistry Stephen MacNeil have both earned a 2011-2012 Ontario Confederation of University Faculty Associations (OCUFA) Teaching Award for their innovative efforts to engage and mentor students. Wood, who has been teaching introductory psychology and developmental psychology at Laurier for more than two decades, believes that although learning can be challenging, it should not be hard. “I believe in using hands-on activities and real-life experiences to make learning meaningful for students,” said Wood. “I want my students to understand the material and that means taking the time and varying the instructional approach to ensure

Nominate a faculty member for a Teaching Award

learning has an opportunity to occur. By providing different ways for students to learn and by adding humour, I hope to pique students’ interest, engagement and enjoyment.” MacNeil has also earned kudos for the innovative ways he shares his in-depth knowledge of organic chemistry with his students. During a sabbatical in 2009/2010, MacNeil created a blended approach to teaching organic chemistry that mixes classroom activities with online delivery of course material and

Laurier on YouTube Learn how Laurier alumna and ParticipACTION CEO Kelly Murumets is working to make Canada the most fit nation on the planet.

Photo: Dean Palmer


Mobile blood donor clinics coming to Laurier As a Canadian Blood Services Partner for Life (PFL), Wilfrid Laurier University pledged to collect 800 units of blood in 2012. To help reach this goal, Laurier hosts mobile blood clinics on campus to make donating easy. The Waterloo campus is holding a mobile clinic Oct. 11 in the Senate & Board Chamber, and the Brantford campus is holding a clinic on Nov. 22 in the multipurpose room in the Student Centre. To date, Laurier is almost halfway to its goal; so more than 400 units of blood still need to be collected this semester. People interested in donating can now sign-up online. Slots are

available from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Waterloo campus and from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on the Brantford campus. To book an appointment online, visit www. The Laurier University Charity Kouncil (LUCK), a student club on the Waterloo campus, has been instrumental in helping the university achieve its donation target. If you can’t give blood at either of the mobile clinics, you can call 1-888-2-DONATE (1-888-2366283) to book an appointment at a Canadian Blood Services’ permanent clinic. Don’t forget to give Laurier’s Partners for Life ID number: WILF001529.

IPRM positions Laurier for future

Photo: Tomasz Adamski

Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty speaks to a first-year business calss at Laurier’s School of Business & Economics.

James Turk, executive director of the CAUT, addresses the audience at the Perspectives on Academic Freedom Conference.

At Laurier, achieving excellence has always been a priority. As we prepare to position the university for future success in an environment of increased competition and changing government mandates, it has become even more important to identify our areas of excellence, and to support these priorities with the appropriate resources. Through the Integrated Planning and Resource Management (IPRM) process, the

Laurier community will build on the foundations developed by the Envisioning Laurier exercise and the Academic Plan, and work together to answer the question at the heart of the IPRM process: how will we continue to make Laurier a better institution? To find out how you can become part of the process, nominate and elect someone to an IPRM working group, or to view frequently asked questions, visit or email 3



Funding supports Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program cerated students,” said Peter Stuart, education counsellor, Correctional Service of Canada Grand Wilfrid Laurier University and its Valley Institution for Women. “By partners will continue to expand working toward university credits the successful Inside-Out Prison alongside students from the Exchange Program, thanks to a community, they see that they generous donation from the Lyle S. are capable of being successful Hallman Foundation. at the post-secondary level. I “The Foundation is excited to be am confident that they will be part of breaking down stereotypes much more likely to continue between people inside and outside post-secondary studies upon their of prison,” said Laura Manning, release as a result of this program.” executive director of the Lyle S. Stuart also noted there is a Hallman Foundation. “We believe marked decrease in recidivism this program will help to make rates for offenders who participate our community stronger, and we in post-secondary study while applaud Wilfrid Laurier University incarcerated, a further societal for its innovative work.” benefit of the program. Since 2011, Laurier’s Inside-Out The donation from the Lyle program has brought “outside” S. Hallman Foundation will help Laurier students to the Grand support a new Inside-Out course Valley Institution for Women, a this fall, Human Rights in a Globalfederal correctional facility located izing World, for 20 students (10 in Kitchener, to complete one of “inside” and 10 “outside”). It will their required courses together with incarcerated “inside” students. also help Laurier and the Grand Valley Institution for Women to Last semester, 17 social work launch the first Canadian Insidestudents from Laurier took part in Out Instructor Training Institute the program alongside 17 “inside” next summer. The training students. institute will host a customized, “The Inside-Out Program is rigorous week-long course for transformational for the incarBy Sandra Muir

faculty interested in launching Inside-Out programs at their own institutions. In fall of 2011, Laurier was one of two universities nationwide to launch Inside-Out in Canada, and it is currently the only institution in the country to host multiple courses. Founded at Temple University in 1997, the program is well established in the United States. One hundred and twentyfive colleges and universities across 25 states have sponsored InsideOut classes and 100 correctional institutions have housed the programs. “The Inside-Out Center at Temple University, international headquarters of The Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program, wants to express our enthusiastic support of Laurier’s commitment to expanding the Inside-Out Program in the Kitchener-Waterloo area, as well as across Canada,” said Lori Pompa, founder and director of the Inside-Out Prison Exchange Program. “We look forward to collaborating with our Canadian partners in realizing this growth over the coming years.”

Andrew Westoll is new writer-in-residence Author Andrew Westoll has been named Wilfrid Laurier University’s Edna Staebler Writer-in-Residence. Westoll’s residency takes place from January to April, 2013. Westoll is a primatologist and an award-winning narrative journalist. He is the author of The Riverbones, a travel memoir set in the jungles of Suriname, and The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary: A Canadian Story of Resilience and Recovery. The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary won the 2012 Charles Taylor Prize, one of Canada’s most prestigious non-fiction book prizes. The book was also shortlisted for the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction and the B.C. National Award for Canadian Non-Fiction, and named a book of the year by The Globe and Mail,, Quill & Quire and CTV’s Canada AM. During his role as writer-inresidence at Laurier, Westoll will devote much of his time to writing projects. He will also be very involved with community programs and projects at the university’s Waterloo campus, including: reading manuscripts and consulting with students

and the public, visiting classrooms, giving readings and lectures, and leading workshops. He will conduct similar community programming for one week at Laurier’s Brantford campus. “I am honoured to have been selected,” said Westoll. “Every writer yearns for a creative opportunity like this. But I am especially excited to begin engaging with the Laurier student community through lectures and workshops. If I can help aspiring writers on campus find their own literary voices, I’ll consider these three months a success.” Westoll holds an MFA in Creative Writing from the University of British Columbia. He is a Gold National Magazine Award winner and his feature writing appears in The Walrus, Utne Reader, explore, Canadian Geographic, The Globe and Mail and The Guardian, among others. Westoll currently resides in Toronto.

Laurier welcomes international students By Mallory O’Brien More than 100 different nations make up Wilfrid Laurier University’s student population. In September, about 80 of Laurier’s newest international students from the Waterloo and Brantford campuses gathered for a welcoming reception at the Balsillie School of International Affairs. “It’s a very diverse community

at Laurier, and you’re a very important part of that,” Peter Donahue, director of Laurier International, told the students. “Many students will learn about different cultures, and the world, from you. You’re a very important part of our community and our efforts to engage our students globally.” Laurier President and ViceChancellor Max Blouw welcomed students while highlighting the

relationship of the university and its partners, including the Balsillie School of International Affairs. “I want you to realize that you are in a country and a community that is supportive of you, that welcomes you, and that thinks what you are here for is as important to us as it’s important to you,” he said. This year, more than 200 international students joined the Laurier community.

Name: Jamie Howieson Job Title: Coordinator, Communications, Athletics & Recreation Book Title: The Judas Strain Author: James Rollins

Photo: Mallory O’Brien

The Judas Strain, which is a part of Rollins’ Sigma series, is similar to Dan Brown’s books (The Da Vinci Code), but with a twist. Fans of Brown will enjoy the historical references and ties to past historical events and figures. But Rollins’ books differ with the addition of technological advances and theories that he uses throughout his stories. This is why I find this series so entertaining!

Employee awards continued

Diversity and Equity Office

• Team Achievement: Office of Research Services Multi-Campus Champion Award: • Holly Cox, director, Recruitment & Admissions

Seeks opportunities for continuous improvement • Melodee Martinuk, manager, Access and Transition Services • Michael Welk, project coordinator, Renovation and Construction

This year’s Success Factor award winners are: Collaborates to promote team and organizational success: • Deanne Piticco, alumni relations officer, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving • Adam Lawrence, manager,


Values Relationships and Community • Cec Joyal, development officer, Development • Janice Vilaca, executive assistant, Office of the Principal/VicePresident, Brantford

Supports a Culture of Service • Deb Bergen, admissions officer, Recruitment and Admissions • Sheldon Pereira, manager, Residence Life Models Leadership and Accountability • Bridget McMahon, director, Alumni Relations and Annual Giving • Christie Schellenberger, manager, International Recruitment and Admissions To learn more about the Employee Achievement Awards, visit: achievementawards.

What are you eating? Name: Anne Lukin Job Title: Associate Secretary, Board Governance, Office of the University Secretariat Food item: Spice cake and hot lunches Place: Debrodnik’s Real Bake Company, 220 King St. N., Waterloo Check out Debrodnik’s for sinful sweets and quick lunches. Newly opened this summer in Laurier’s Waterloo neighbourhood, it is affordable, close and convenient for a lunch of grab-and-go sandwiches, hot entrees, huge cookies, comforting squares and my personal favourite: spice cake, a satisfying serving of iced carrot cake. Sure it’s shaped like a cupcake, but it’s got veggies in it, so it’s got to be healthy, right?

OCTOBER 2012 Inside

Thousands attend annual Waterloo Homecoming





Photos: Rainer Leipscher



1, 4: A record-breaking crowd cheers on the Golden Hawks at University Stadium. 2: A delicious pancake breakfast in the quad. 3: Generations come together. 5: Former dean of students Fred Nichols speaks at his 50th anniversary tribute. 6: Author David Chilton and Professor Laura Allen celebrate Fred Nichols.

people at Laurier

For a complete list of appointments visit

New appointments: Roxanne Bartlett, medical secretary I, Health Services (Waterloo campus).

officer, Alumni Relations (Waterloo campus).

assistant, associate dean of science office (Waterloo campus).

Nicholas Paulino, production cook, Food Services (Waterloo campus).

Marcia Campos, ESL facilitator (Brantford campus).

Una Adamcic-Bistrivoda, lab coordinator, Health Studies, (Brantford campus).

Heather Rielly, communications coordinator (Toronto Office).

Lisa Carson, HR generalist, (Brantford campus).

Mary Kathryn Rose, global engagement coordinator, Laurier International (Waterloo campus).

Lynda Clarke, administrative assistant II (Math), Faculty of Science (Waterloo campus). Adam Clarkson, coordinator: electrical operations, Physical Resources (Waterloo campus). Spy Denomme-Welch, Aboriginal education consultant, Faculty of Education (Waterloo campus). Jennifer Devenny, custodian, Physical Resources (Waterloo campus). Susan Dimitry, research facilitator (Brantford campus). Ulrike Gross, executive director: real estate and Property Development, Finance and Administration (Waterloo campus).

Amit Samuchiwal, institutional research analyst, Institutional Research (Waterloo campus). Melissa Strachan, associate coordinator, MSW practicum, Faculty of Social Work (Kitchener campus).

Joey Clayfield, leadhand- culinary, Food Services (Waterloo campus). Andre Furlong, archives assistant, Library (Waterloo campus). Dana Gillett, acting manager, Diversity and Equity (Waterloo campus).

Tan Tran, assistant labratory coordinator, Faculty of Science (Waterloo campus).

Jaime Hignell, ESL facilitator (Brantford campus).

Caitlin McGarry, lab coordinator (Mathematics), Faculty of Science (Waterloo campus).

Changes in staff appointments:

Carissa MacKendrick, mail/ file Clerk, Registrar’s Office (Waterloo campus).

Bethany Ankucza, academic advisor, Faculty of Science (Waterloo campus).

Sheena Noel, alumni relations

Patricia Belland, administrative

Tamara Quigley, administrative assistant (Brantford campus).

Sherrie Steinberg, intake/crisis counsellor, Counselling Services (Waterloo campus).

Constance Smelsky, disability consultant, Accessible Learning (Waterloo campus). Gloria (Linda) Song, international recruiter, Recruitment and Admissions (Waterloo campus).

Lindsay Woodside, lab coordinator (Geography), Faculty of Arts (Waterloo campus). Maria Zaczek, custodian, Physcial Resources (Waterloo campus).

Solange Gratton, ESL facilitator (Brantford campus). Sean Henderson, ESL facilitator (Brantford campus).

Erin Windibank, director, strategic academic initiatives, Office of the Vice-President (Waterloo campus).

Rosemary Springett, financial analyst/SLO, Graduate Studies (Waterloo campus).

Keith Goulet, systems analyst (web development), ITS (Waterloo campus).

Amber Szober, ITS program assistant, ITS (Waterloo campus).

Bethany Vaandering, registered nurse, Health Services (Waterloo campus).

Paula Peplinski, administrative assistant II, Physical Resources (Waterloo campus).

Caroline Hissa, practicum assistant, Faculty of Social Work (Kitchener campus). Jennifer Knechtel, administrative manager, School of Business & Economics (Waterloo campus). Joanne Baria-Lai, coordinator: co-op education, Co-op Office (Waterloo campus). Adam Lawrence, acting dean of students (Waterloo campus). Dara Pappas, counsellor, (Brantford campus).




coffee with a co-worker

A look at staff and faculty across cam-


Name: Jennifer Brickman Title: Manager, Service Laurier Brantford Where you can find her: Grand River Hall, Room 202

Photo: Sandra Muir

Drink of choice: I drink Diet Coke. I try to wait until after lunch to have my first one, and I normally have a few a day.

Each year, Jennifer Brickman takes a break from her job on the Brantford campus to volunteer with her family in Haiti.

How long have you been at Laurier? I did my BA in economics and finance at Laurier in the late 1990s, and also worked at the Laurier Bookstore during my undergrad and after I graduated in 2002. In 2004, I took a role as supervisor of the Brantford Bookstore. Seven years later, I saw a posting for manager of Service Laurier. At that time, I talked with a few managers on campus who thought it might be a good fit for me because it involved handling finances and front-line customer service, and I have lots of experience with both of these areas. What is your typical work day like? I come in and sift through emails, see if there is anything pressing. There is a lot of customer-driven work, so I’m here in case advisors come across anything they have questions about. It’s definitely not the same

thing every day. I also have a lot of meetings and the financial piece comes into play often as we close off accounts regularly. What do you like to do in your spare time? I’m a big sports fan. My favourite baseball team is the New York Yankees. My husband and I go to Detroit every year to see them play. We went to old Yankee stadium in 2008 before it was torn down, and two years ago we went to the new Yankee stadium. My husband and I have also been Toronto Argonauts season-ticket holders for the past 10 years. Are you involved with any clubs/teams at the Brantford campus? There is an intramural baseball league at the Brantford campus. It started in 2007, and I help coach and play backcatcher. I’m also

coming Events

Heard on Twitter Check out what the Laurier community has been tweeting about at Laurier also has official sites on Facebook at and YouTube at www.

@LaurierTO RT @LaurierNews: Laurier creates critical new mental health role to support student success #Laurier Sept. 17 @farwell_wr HUGE hand to @LaurierNews students for their @Shinerama efforts this year. Despite rain, they raised more than $106,000 for #CysticFibrosis Sept. 17 @communitech RT @LaurierNews: Art installation at #Laurier explores Canada’s wireless history Sept. 13 @Grand_Magazine @LaurierNews Always our pleasure to profile incredible local residents like Fred Nichols! Sept. 12 @HerrlesMarket RT @LaurierNews: Community Campaign, Stronger Together! #Laurier Sept. 12


part of a staff book club called Workers Interested in Literature and Food. Once a month we get together at lunch and talk about a book. I also co-chair the Laurier Brantford Rotary Run corporate team each spring. What is something people would be surprised to learn about you? Some people may not know that I’ve volunteered in Haiti every winter since 2008 with my husband and parents. We volunteer at a hospital and orphanage, helping to feed children, take them for walks and just generally spend time with them. On our last visit we taught the children baseball. We brought Blue Jays T-shirts, baseball mitts and balls. Luckily we were also able to find an aluminum bat there because I couldn’t take one in my suitcase.

What do you like most about working at Laurier? What I like most about Laurier is the community feeling. A whole group of us started at Brantford around the same time, and most of us were all in our mid-20s and we socialized a lot outside of work. I found that’s made the working relationships much easier because you don’t feel you have to be so formal. What are your future plans? I am pregnant right now with my first child. I’m due in early January and I’ll be off for eleven months. It will be weird because I’ve worked since I was 14, but I guess it will be a different kind of job!

By Sandra Muir

For a complete list of events visit

Soup & Frybread Tuesdays When: Oct. 16 & 30 Noon – 2 p.m. Where: Aboriginal Student Centre, 187 Albert St., Waterloo campus Cost: Free

Where: Paul Martin Centre, Waterloo campus Cost: Free Chat with fellow colleagues and enjoy a cup of coffee!

Laurier faculty and educators can come together to share experiences, best practices, and lessons learned about how to develop and integrate writing assignments into the learning environment.

Stop in for delicious soup and tasty frybread, including vegan/ vegetarian options.

Music at Noon When: Oct. 18 Noon – 1 p.m. Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall, Waterloo campus Cost: Free

Fall Convocation When: Oct. 26 9:30 a.m. & 2 p.m. Where: Waterloo Memorial Recreation Complex, Waterloo Cost: Free

Bring your lunch and enjoy the music of Jennifer Enns-Modolo, mezzo-soprano and Lorin Shalanko, piano.

Honorary degree recipients include actor Colm Feore, and pollster and Laurier alumnus Darrell Bricker.

Brantford Homecoming When: Oct. 20 Where: Brantford campus Cost: Varies

Feeding the Dead: Offering Food to Ancestors in China When: Oct. 31 Noon – 1 p.m.

Teaching Larger Classes and FirstYear Students: A Community of Practice When: Oct. 16 1 p.m. – 2 p.m. Where: Arts 2C2, Waterloo campus Cost: Free This community in practice is a forum where faculty and educators from multiple disciplines can come together to share experiences and lessons learned about how to engage and interact with students in a large class. Important Issues in Climate Change When: Oct. 17 Noon – 1 p.m. Where: Kitchener Public Library, Forest Heights Branch Cost: Free Professor Jerry Salloum from the Department of Geography and Environmental Studies will present for this popular noon-hour lecture series at the Kitchener Public Library. Coffee Social (Managerial Group) When: Oct. 18 8:30 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

This year’s schedule includes a celebrity children’s book reading, tailgate party, barbecue and a varsity hockey game. Visit www. for details. WLU Symphony Orchestra When: Oct. 20 8 p.m. Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall, Waterloo campus Cost: $10/$5 Writing Circle When: Oct. 23 10 a.m. – 11 a.m. Where: Veritas Café, Waterloo campus Cost: Free Join this open forum where

Where: Kitchener Public Library, Forest Heights Branch Cost: Free Professor Michel Desjardins from the Department of Global Studies will present for this popular noon-hour lecture series at the Kitchener Public Library. Brantford Film Festival When: Nov. 1 – 3 Where: Research and Academic Building, Brantford campus Cost: $5/show In its third year, this communitypartnership event features a variety of films from around the world. More than 600 moviegoers attend the event each year. Visit for tickets and schedule.

In the media “If you trust them, they’ll trust you. Listen, if you want to create leaders, you have to let them lead.” – Fred Nichols, former Dean of Students, on how he approached students. From “Retirement with a twist,” published in Grand magazine September/October 2012. The article, by Katherine Sage, recounts Fred Nichols’ amazing 50-year relationship with Wilfrid Laurier University. Laurier community members are frequently featured in the local and national media. To see more coverage, visit thenews, and find out about our Experts at Laurier program, visit

OCTOBER 2012 Inside research file

Archaeology students dig up insights about historic battle By Nicholas Dinka

Photo: Mallory O’Brien

On a sunny day in June, it was hard to imagine a more peaceful spot than Old Fort Erie, on the Canadian shoreline across the Niagara River from Buffalo, New York. Sailboats bobbed in the river and tourists strolled among the stone battlements as students from Wilfrid Laurier University carefully excavated a neat series of metresquare pits just south of the main fort. But despite the tranquility of the scene, it wasn’t difficult to imagine the sound of muskets, the smell of gunfire, and the sight of battle-ragged British and American soldiers struggling for control of the strategic fort in August 1814. “It was the bloodiest battle ever fought on Canadian soil,” said Laurier Archaeology Professor John Triggs, as he surveyed the former battlefield. “The Americans were dug in, with nowhere to go. Their backs were to the wall.” This past summer, a team of 20 Laurier student-archaeologists working under Triggs’ direction helped to bring that violent scene into sharper focus, carrying out the first-ever archaeological dig at Fort Erie in commemoration of the 200th anniversary of the War of 1812. Focusing on the American defensive positions during a six-week siege in August and September 1814, the team uncovered a rich selection of artefacts, including lead musket balls, pieces of ceramic tableware (helpful for dating various parts of the site), buttons from American soldiers’ uniforms bearing regimental insignias, and food bones (providing a sense of the soldiers’ diet). “It’s a battlefield, and not well documented, so you never know what the next scrape of the soil will bring up,” said Duncan Williams, a second-year student on the team. “It’s an amazing hands-on experience.” The Laurier dig, which was carried out with the support of

the Niagara Parks Commission, was located in a grassy area just south of the fort, where American soldiers, too numerous to fit in the fort itself, had dug themselves in after being pushed back from deeper in the Niagara peninsula earlier in 1814. On the day of our visit, Triggs conducted a brief tour of the dig, beginning at the north end of the site. There, his team had excavated sections of the ten-foot high earthwork the Americans had huddled behind, uncovering the remains of posts that had been used in a crude defensive palisade as well as an earthen step, called a banquette, on which American rifleman had stood to fire. “You can touch the ground here and say, ‘this is 1814,’” said Triggs, climbing into one of the pits. “We also found ceramic shards from dishes, indicating that officers were stationed in this area – it was a safe spot with good cover from British fire.” Under Triggs’ direction, the students were scraping away the earth in carefully delineated layers, recording its every feature and contour before taking the excavated earth to a sifting tray where it was carefully broken down and checked for artefacts. “It’s a great way to learn stratigraphy — the way that the ground can be divided into older and newer layers — which helps us to date the objects we find,” said student Shannon Millar, who was finishing up her first year in Archaeology. Any finds were taken to the project’s field lab in Bertie Hall, a historic building just up the road, which also housed the student archaeologists during the dig. There, the team washed and sorted the artefacts, completed a daily inventory of newly discovered items, and began compiling the official catalogue of the dig’s findings. Back out in the field, another group of students were working in an area where a rectangular log outbuilding had stood during the fighting. They had already unearthed 160 musket balls

Excavated earth is taken to a sifting tray where it is carefully broken down and checked for artefacts.

Photo: Mallory O’Brien

First-ever dig at Fort Erie sheds light on War of 1812 battlefield

Archeology students work in grids to carefully scrape away soil in carefully delinieated layers.

(suggesting the location had come under heavy fire), as well as the rusted-out remains of an exploded mortar shell, complete with the arcing crater it formed when it ploughed into the ground (see the sidebar below for more information on this dramatic find). Not far from the building, the students had also discovered a set of native beads, possibly left over from an attack by natives allied with the British in the conflict. The analysis, interpretation and writing up of such findings is a primary task for the post-dig phase of the project. Triggs has been carrying out such work since the conclusion of the dig in late June. This fall, he will present his interpretations at a conference in Ohio on the War of 1812, organized by the Eastern States Archeological Federation. A full report, as well as academic articles on the findings, are slated for early 2013, after which Triggs is planning to return to the site for a summer 2013 dig with another group of Laurier students. “Archaeologically, Fort Erie was a pristine site before we came along,” said Triggs. “There’s still so much to learn.” Fort Erie was originally constructed by the British army in 1764, and was used as a supply depot during the American Revolution. On Aug. 15, 1814, after the Americans occupied the fort, the British launched an attack to recapture it. The initial attack was repulsed with over 1,000 British casualties, and battles raged through the month of September, with the British ultimately failing to retake the fort. The Americans destroyed Fort Erie in November of that year, before withdrawing to Buffalo in advance of the end of the conflict, arguably in a stalemate, in

December 1814. “The War of 1812 was such a turning point in our history,” said Triggs. “The capture of Fort Erie was part of the last invasion of the war, and the last in Canadian history. It helped unite us as a country.” Two hundred years later, Laurier students were also showing a united front on the same battlefied By mid-day, the students had already been working for hours in the scorching sun. Often physically arduous, archaeology is also a curious form of labour — when the

dig was finished at the end of June, all of the students’ painstakingly excavated pits would be backfilled and reseeded with grass, restoring the landscape to its previous state, minus a few choice items. But the mood at the site was upbeat as they broke for lunch in a shady area adjacent to the dig. “I really enjoy the digging,” said Shannon Millar, the first-year archaeology student. “It’s a great atmosphere, and it’s a chance to be critiqued and to improve. Every time you find something, there’s a rush of excitement.”

The story of a bomb crater To the untrained eye, it looks simple – an angled hole in the ground, maybe a foot across and a couple of feet deep, filled with fragments of a rusty orange material. To Professor John Triggs and his team, however, this unassuming crater has a complex, if still hypothetical, story to tell. Using the angle of the bomb crater and his knowledge of the weapon that created it, Triggs has plotted the trajectory of the mortar shell that landed there and discovered that it originated from the area of “Battery Three,” a British emplacement mentioned in the historical documents of the battle. This was a key finding in terms of dating the crater, because it turns out that Battery Three existed for a total of two days: Sept. 16 and 17, 1814. But in that short span of time, it may have had a powerful, and literal, impact on the course of the battle. The battery was much closer to the American lines than previous British gun emplacements, and positioned in a way that allowed it to fire down the length of the American lines (known as enfilading fire), giving each mortar round a hugely improved chance of scoring a direct hit. It apparently didn’t take long for the British gunners to do just that: as mentioned in the main story above, the crater is located in the precise position of a log outbuilding that stood just behind the American fortifications. It also didn’t take long for the Americans to react to the new British battery. Worried that their enemy had located a deadly weak spot in their defenses, they sent out a sortie to attack Battery Three on Sept. 17, leading to a bloody engagement that cost each side approximately 500 men (dead, wounded and missing). “You look at that one little crater, and it can tell you a lot,” says Triggs. “It helps explain why the Americans were so intent on destroying Battery Three. In fact, it’s possible that this single mortar shot could have prompted the entire fight over Battery Three, one of the major engagements in the battle.”




in the classroom

Interpersonal communication Instructor: Kris Gerhardt Class: 0L109: Interpersonal Communications in Contemporary Society Description: Exploring how traditional operations of business have been affected by the abundance of information.

Photo: Simon Wilson

This course provides an introduction to research and theories in the field of interpersonal communication and how it has a drastic effect on our relationships in contemporary society. Kris Gerhardt, assistant professor of Leadership on Laurier’s Brantford campus, says his goal is to get students to think about communication ability as a skill and not something they are born with. “As with any skill, we need to practice and receive instruction to get better,” he says. “My primary focus is to get students to start recognizing how much their own perceptions feed how they think and communicate with others. Our hope, in making this a firstyear course, is that most students will be exposed to this information before we require them to work in groups, make oral presentations and represent the university in our community.” By Mallory O’Brien Kris Gerhardt teaches students that communication is a skill that must be practised, rather than an innate ability.

Community Campaign kicks off over coffee

Each year faculty and staff generously support the university’s internal campaign to help enrich the lives of Laurier students. In celebration of this year’s launch, nearly 200 faculty and staff at Laurier’s Waterloo and Brantford campuses, Kitchener location, and Toronto office came together for a complimentary beverage. Last year, 500 donors contributed to the Community Campaign, raising more than $300,000.


This year’s goal is to raise $350,000 with the support of 550 donors. Every donation enriches the Laurier experience for students by providing vital enhancements that otherwise would not be possible. Clockwise from top left: the Waterloo campus, Brantford campus, Kitchener location and Toronto office.

October 2012 - InsideLaurier  

The October 2012 edition of the InsideLaurier newsletter.

October 2012 - InsideLaurier  

The October 2012 edition of the InsideLaurier newsletter.