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• March 2011


Campus Decoder: What’s the deal with that big machine behind the Woods building?

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It’s maple syrup season – but could climate change mess up the future of pancakes, too?


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Singing our praises: a sonic celebration of Laurier’s centennial.

Laurier toots its own horn – quite literally! University debuts its new fanfare music at centennial concert in Kitchener CAMPUS CONNECTIONS COMMUNITY VOL. 1 NO. 1 APRIL 7,2008 |

By Sandra Muir

played at convocation and other university ceremonies throughout the centennial year and into the future. “I think Laurier’s centennial is all about pride. It’s about celebration,” said Laurier President and Vice-Chancellor

Photo: Sandra Muir

Laurier is ready to toot its own horn. The winning composition of the centennial Fanfare Competition by alumnus Kerry Roebuck (BMus ’95) was unveiled in February at

St. Mary’s Catholic Church in Kitchener as part of the university’s 100th anniversary celebrations. Trumpets, tubas, trombones, French horns, cymbals and a snare drum brought to life a piece that will be


Trumpets, tubas, trombones, French horns, cymbals and a snare drum bring Laurier’s new musical fanfare to life. To watch a video of the Fanfare being performed for the first time, visit

Laurier archaeology class strives to protect vanishing dig sites By Mallory O’Brien Students from a fourth-year archaeology seminar taught by Assistant Professor Bonnie Glencross are conducting a study on the public’s perception of their profession to discover the best way to protect archaeological sites from vanishing. “The preservation of our cultural heritage, here in Waterloo and also around the world, depends on public recognition of the importance and value of archaeology and the materials recovered from excavations,” said Glencross, a member of Laurier’s Department of Archaeology. “Archaeological sites are non-renewable resources; once

they are ruined, information can no longer be recovered.” Archaeological sites can be lost or ruined in a variety of ways. As a result of war, antiquities have been looted in Iraq. Similarly, the Buddhas of Bamiyan in Afghanistan were intentionally destroyed by the Taliban in 2001. The recent protests in Egypt have resulted in museums being vandalized and artifacts being damaged. Destruction of sites can also occur from simple things like growing urban sprawl and land development – a common problem in North America. “We are quite lucky here in Ontario with legislation that ARCHAEOLOGY see page 2




looking down physically at the group, hence, part of the reason for it having a certain layout,” Max Blouw. “This music is very Roebuck said. “But hearing it much about celebration. It’s a in here with the acoustics of beautiful piece.” the church, it was wonderful, In a nod to Laurier’s birthday, absolutely wonderful.” the one-minute composition is Glen Carruthers, dean of the in the key of G-Major, because a Faculty of Music, said the idea low G measures approximately for the fanfare competition came 100 Hz, and is set to a tempo of out of a fairly casual conver100 beats per minute. sation with music professor It also incorporates Laurier’s Dan Lichti and Blouw about Lutheran roots by replicating, a competition for alumni | CONNECTIONS | COMMUNITY CAMPUS musically and in the physical composers. arrangement of the performers, “We received 14 very fine the cross in the heart and the entrants in the competition to petals of the Lutheran Rose. find the fanfare, which we will “A lot of the inspiration for me use not only throughout our came from the history of Laurier, centennial year but in the years which had a lot to do with to come to represent Laurier,” he the Lutheran university,” said said. Roebuck. “So I built it around Roebuck studied clarinet the rose because I thought the while at Laurier. He has lived rose had so many facets.” in Montreal since 2002 and now The piece was performed at enjoys a successful career as a St. Mary’s on Feb. 13 as part of music teacher and conductor. He a larger centennial celebration is the musical director of many organized by Laurier’s Faculty ensembles there, including the of Music (see page eight). Montreal West Operatic Society. “I wrote it thinking more Previously, he served as director of convocation in a big hall of the national youth orchestra where people would be seated in Trinidad and Tobago.

Roll up the rim so that others can win Laurier development officer has brewed up a tasty way to give back It might just be the biggest thrill since Charlie Bucket tore open Wonka bars in search of a golden ticket: the breathless anticipation of rolling up the rim of a Tim Horton’s coffee cup hoping for a “win/gagnez.” But when Laurier development officer Cec Joyal rolled up the rim of her coffee cup six years ago, she saw much more than a win. She saw people in the region experiencing homelessness given the ability to enjoy a coffee and a muffin, a warm place to sit, and the dignity of ordering a meal for themselves. Joyal has volunteered at St. Louis Church’s Out of the Cold program since its inception in Kitchener-Waterloo 12 years ago. She began collecting winning rims and distributing them to the homeless and working poor as

they left the church after a meal and an overnight stay. “In the past, I’ve collected enough to give each person a coffee tab and a muffin tab a few times over the course of the

contest,” says Joyal. “It gives people somewhere warm to go when they leave the church in the morning.” In the six years since Joyal has been collecting the tabs, she’s received an enthusiastic response and helped hundreds of needy people in the region.

This year, she’s spreading the word and hoping to collect as many as 500 tabs. “It’s an easy thing for people to do. I tell everyone I know,” says Joyal. “Now I’ve got little grade one children bringing my sister tabs at the Toronto school where she teaches – they’re so proud.” The Out of the Cold program runs nightly between November and April and rotates among participating local churches. St. Louis Church in Waterloo accommodates about 75 people overnight and 125 for dinner each Sunday evening. The numbers are even higher for downtown Kitchener churches. “It’s rewarding work,” says Joyal. “But it’s sad when you see the same people return every year. You just hope they find a place to live and you won’t see them again.”


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March 2011


Centennial events reflect a thriving university Laurier’s centennial celebrations are off to a great start. I am delighted by the breadth and depth of the activities, as well as the strong attendance. Clearly, the Laurier spirit and sense of community that we talk about so often are alive and well. For universities centennial celebrations are not exceptional. This is because they, along with churches, are among the most enduring of institutions in western societies. What I am very pleased about is that Laurier is a university that has not only survived, but it has thrived, for 100 years. We are doing many things right as we stand on the threshold of our second century For example, Laurier continues to excel at teaching and we continue to provide our students with an excellent learning environment. Laurier’s continued strength in teaching is borne out by impartial surveys, such as the National Survey of Student Engagement and research conducted by the Canadian University Survey Consortium. It is also evident in university rankings such as those run by Maclean’s Magazine and the Globe and Mail, and ARCHAEOLOGY continued

requires assessment before any development occurs,” said Glencross. “However, this has not always been the case, nor is it in place everywhere around the globe.” Glencross came up with the idea while covering the topic of “archaeology and public image” in another course, and thought it would be an ideal group project

Dr. Max Blouw speaking at the centennial Monteverdi Vespers concert on Feb. 13. See stories on pages one and eight for more on the event.

in anecdotal comments from students, recent graduates and those who employ our graduates. Nonetheless, we cannot take the quality of our teaching and our learning environment for granted. We will continue to adapt and innovate within a sector that is undergoing significant pressure and transformation. Our challenge is to work within the resource realities in which we are operating and to creatively modify our approaches to teaching and to curriculum. Our objective is

to improve yet further upon our record. To do so we must innovate with imagination and resolve to foster new teaching methods and curriculum that will enable us to continue to deliver the exceptional education for which Laurier is renowned. Research is another area in which Laurier continues to do things right. Our university values the link between high quality teaching and a strong research environment. In recent years Laurier has grown in its research intensity and increased

for the students in her fourthyear seminar. Sarah Bolstridge and Haylee Alderson are two students working on the study. They said while legislation has helped protect archaeological sites to some extent, public support remains essential. “The image of the archaeologist has been skewed by the media, and people aren’t necessarily aware of the important work we

really do,” said Alderson. “They think we’re like Indiana Jones digging for gold, when we’re really preserving Canadian heritage and the history of Aboriginal Peoples.” “People aren’t aware of how much history is under their feet. They think that an artifact isn’t worthwhile if it’s not 4,000 years old,” Bolstridge adds. Bolstridge was a student at the Wilfrid Laurier University archaeological field school, directed by Archaeology Chair John Triggs. The site is beside the Grand River just outside of Brantford, where the former “boom and bust” town of Indiana existed in the 1850s. They found something no one knew was there: a settlement of both European settlers and Aboriginals. Alderson was a student at the field school directed by Laurier Professor Emeritus Dean Knight, located on an Iroquoian site outside of Orillia that dates back

Archaeology student Sarah Bolstridge comes up for air on a dig site.

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

InsideLaurier Volume 3, Number 8, March 2011 Editor: Nicholas Dinka Assistant Editor: Lori Chalmers Morrison Design: Erin Steed Contributors: Sandra Muir, Mallory O’Brien, Lori Chalmers Morrison, Kevin Crowley, Dean Palmer


the number of post-graduate programs. This strategy will continue in a focused way, guided by the Academic Plan approved by Senate last year. The university commitment to research is evident in the fact that we are elevating the position of associate vice-president research to the status of full vice-president. This change reflects the priority of research in the university, and it signals to internal and external audiences that research is fundamental to Laurier’s secondcentury aspirations. Another Laurier strength is our explicit and deliberate integration of academic and experiential learning. Laurier has long been known for providing students with an exceptional university experience. Work is underway to enhance this experience by further integrating our academic curriculum with extra-curricular and co-curricular learning. The intent, as our Academic Plan states, is to foster meaningful student development by balancing the acquisition of academic knowledge and criticalthinking skills with opportunities for engaged and relevant application and practice.

to the 16th century. “I saw how they lived, the construction of their settlements and how their religion and ways of living developed over the years,” she said. “When you come across something no one has seen for hundreds of years, it completely blows you away.” As part of Glencross’ class, Bolstridge, Alderson and their peers will take the information

Laurier’s centennial celebrations reflect and reinforce all of these things. From artistic performances such as the Monteverdi Vespers concert to the 100 Hours volunteer challenge and academic gatherings such as the International Conference on Applied Mathematics, Modeling and Computational Science, our centennial celebrations showcase the full range of Laurier’s many strengths and attributes. I applaud those of you who have organized these events and activities, and I encourage everyone in the Laurier community to attend and participate in as many as possible. The centennial website at www. is an excellent resource for finding out what’s coming up on the event calendar. Enjoy the year ahead, and equally the century ahead — our university has much to celebrate and much to look forward to!

Dr. Max Blouw, President and Vice-Chancellor

from their survey and apply it to public education strategies. Their research will be presented at the Faculty of Arts 4x3 Poster Symposium. “Surveying the university community will give us insight into the knowledge and perceptions of the next generation, who will ultimately be responsible for preserving our cultural heritage into the future,” said Glencross.

Send us your news, events & stories

Email: Deadline for submissions: March 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. Available online at Printed on recycled paper


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March 2011


A collection of music composed and performed by Laurier alumni is being released this month to mark the university’s 100th anniversary celebrations. Titled Canadian Flute Quartets, the CD will feature the music of six Canadian composers, including Laurier alumna Sally Norris. Music Professor Amy Hamilton, and alumni Heather Kilborn Snowden, Jennifer Brimson and Don Ellis-Mobbs will perform the music. “Laurier’s Faculty of Music is known throughout Canada for our interest in contemporary music – particularly Canadian contemporary music,” said Hamilton. “This is a prime example of what we are dedicated to in the Faculty of Music.” The CD will be available through the Canadian Music Centre, which has its national office in Toronto. Sales are also available online at this address: www. “The CD augments our celebration in the Faculty of Music,” said Hamilton. “It will keep promoting our centennial for a long time to come.”


Faculty of Social Work expands Aboriginal programming to N.B. Starting in fall 2011, Laurier’s Faculty of Social Work plans to offer a part-time Master of Social Work Aboriginal Field of Study (MSW-AFS) program to students in Fredericton, New Brunswick. Laurier has agreed to create a partnership program with the Mi’kmaq/Maliseet Association of Social Service Professionals (MMASSP). The MMASSP contacted the university about setting up a program in N.B. after hearing Malcolm Saulis, coordinator of Laurier’s AFS program and associate professor in the Faculty of Social Work, speak at a conference about the program. “The people at MMASSP feel comfortable partnering with Laurier because of our holistic healing approach and solid foundation in an indigenous world view as they are native organizations and people,” said Saulis. “They feel like the legitimacy of the program and credibility of the program – and the fact it is accredited in Ontario – are all very positive things.” The N.B. program will mirror the one offered in Ontario, including two part-time programs offered in partnership with First Nations Technical

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Canada would benefit if we took international affairs as seriously as hockey, says Heinbecker By Sandra Muir Paul Heinbecker is optimistic about the future of Canadian foreign policy. Speaking at an author’s event at Laurier in February, held in celebration of the university’s centennial, the director of the Laurier Centre for Global Relations talked about Canada’s strengths on the international stage. “When you look at the world, what makes us who we are? Diversity – we are better able to manage diversity than anybody else on the planet,” said Heinbecker, who is also a distinguished fellow, international relations, at the Centre for International Governance Innovation. “We are more welcoming of others. We are more capable of responding and integrating others than anyone else. I think we can do great things.” That optimism is the basis of his latest book, Getting Back in the Game, in which he presents a compelling vision for the future of Canadian foreign policy, arguing that the country has an important role to play on the international stage. In Heinbecker’s remarks to the Laurier community, he stressed how crucial it is for Canada to help its closest allies – especially the U.S. – with global issues, rather than always focusing on

Upcoming Events

Photo: Sandra Muir

CD adds sweet sound to centennial celebrations


Paul Heinbecker says Canada needs to get back in the international game.

domestic issues such as softwood lumber trade disputes. He said the current government under Prime Minister Stephen Harper has made some positive in-roads on the policy front, for example by putting an emphasis on Arctic sovereignty and negotiating trade agreements. But Ottawa needs to do better on the international front. “The better relationship you have with Washington, the more influence [you have] and the more effective you can be in the world,” he said. “Conversely, the more effective you are in the world, the more influence you can have in Washington. “[The government] didn’t

recognize for four or five years how important China was becoming. India they were slow to pick up on – a little bit faster, but still slow. With Mexico it’s been catastrophic. Relationship management has been a very serious problem for this government.” The good news is that Canadians have passion, and can make a difference. “We really have something in this country. Look at sports – at least if you look at hockey. That’s one of the things that shows to me what we can be,” said Heinbecker. “If we can be as demanding on our political leaders as we are on our hockey players, we can have a terrific time of it internationally.”

don’ts of doing business in India, while Vijh discussed Deloitte’s experience in India’s growing economy. “In the business world, there is a lot of interest in India because it is experiencing high levels of GDP growth,” said Mitali De, a business professor in Laurier’s School of Business & Economics and the event organizer. “People who have an interest but don’t know the entire landscape of India will get a better understanding of this South Asian economy.” Laurier President and ViceChancellor Max Blouw recently attended a conference in New Delhi as part of the Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada. The event focused on enhancing the academic and research relationship between Canada and India, and creating opportunities for institutional partnership building.

gation of two polls conducted Feb. 4 – 10, 2011, from Ipsos Reid and EKOS Research Associates with a blended sample of 2,650 individuals. The regional swing model projects 152 seats for the Conservatives, 73 for the Liberals, 30 for the NDP and 53 for the Bloc Québécois. “The dramatic Conservative increase is almost entirely attributable to Ontario,” said Laurier Political Science Professor Barry Kay, an associate of LISPOP. “The Conservative margin over the Liberals has jumped 11 points since the previous LISPOP projection of Feb. 8, 2011, and 5.5

Lives of Leadership and Purpose Speaker Series: Cathy Crowe Crowe will speak about the Toronto Disaster Relief Committee and her involvement in the anti-poverty movement. March 16 from 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. at St. Andrew’s United Church, 95 Darling St., Brantford. Admission free. Dept. of English and Film Studies Centennial Speaker Series Alumnus Chuck Tatham, writer and co-executive producer on the hit TV show How I Met Your Mother, speaks at 8 p.m. on March 16 in Bricker Academic 201. Admission free. Simultaneous Chess Exhibition In a feat of multitasking that would put the average supercomputer to shame, International Grandmaster Mark Bluvhstein will play 30-35 people at once in the Science Building courtyard on March 30 at 2:30 p.m. Admission free. Those wishing to challenge the master can send an email to Eastern Canadian Sport and Exercise Psychology Symposium This student-focused academic conference runs March 24-26 at locations around the Waterloo Campus. Visit for details.

What’s new and notable at Laurier

Institute and Seven Generations Technical Institute, and will be delivered by Laurier instructors. The key foundation of the program is the use of indigenous knowledge and process and the use of elders-inresidence, said Saulis. Laurier’s Waterloo campus recently unveiled a new Aboriginal Student Centre, offering students cultural programming and links to the local Aboriginal community as well as academic support. Laurier’s Brantford campus also has an Aboriginal Resource Centre available to Aboriginal students for socialization, study groups, and Native Student Association meetings.

Consul General attends panel discussion on Business in India Laurier hosted a public panel discussion on “Doing Business With India” featuring Preeti Saran, consul general for India, and two business leaders Feb. 15 in the Senate and Board Chamber. In her discussion Saran provided an overall picture of this South Asian country. Other speakers included Rana Sarkar, president and CEO of the Canada India Business Council, and Arvind Vijh, director of Deloitte’s India Services Group. Sarkar spoke about the do’s and

points from their margin over the Liberals in the 2008 election. Many of the seats that would now swing Conservative are in the ‘905’ region, adjacent to Toronto.”

Laurier shines in 40 Under 40 list of community leaders Many members of the Laurier family were named to the most recent list of Waterloo Region’s 40 Under 40 community leaders. To view the 40 Under 40 community leaders in the Waterloo Region Record, visit videozone/491446

Seat projection shows possible Conservative majority An analysis of current polls projects a seat distribution that places the federal Conservatives within three seats of a majority, according to the Laurier Institute for the Study of Public Opinion and Policy (LISPOP). The latest projection by LISPOP is based on an aggre-

Carla Egesi, residence life don (left), and Sumira Mathews, Branford campus councilor, take part in Laurier Brantford’s Diversity Week 2011, which ran from Feb. 14–18.



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March 2011

Just as easy to start a business today, says M&M Meat Shops co-founder By Sandra Muir Mac Voisin started M&M Meat Shops with his brotherin-law Mark Nowak in the 1980s, during an era when families were increasingly becoming dual-income, when microwave ovens were popping up in kitchens, and when the technology of flash freezing made it easier to keep food fresh for longer. Today’s baby boomers – and North Americans in general – are still passionate about convenience. And as Voisin told Laurier business students on Feb. 14, it’s that passion that makes 2011 a great time to start a business. “I think today you could open a business every bit as easily as we did in 1980, and I think the opportunities are greater,” Voisin said. “All people ever do, consciously or subconsciously, is ask themselves ‘How can I make life easier for myself?’” Voisin was at Laurier to accept the Outstanding Business Leader Award of 2010 from the university’s School of Business & Economics. He was selected as the award’s recipient in recognition of his entrepreneurial leadership and innovation in

founding one of Canada’s most successful retail food businesses, and for his extensive community involvement. “I’m a huge fan of Laurier. In terms of small business and entrepreneurship, it gives students the option to do other things with their lives,” said Voisin. Voisin’s own life took a surprising turn in 1980, when he and Nowak became frustrated at their inability to buy restaurantstyle steaks at the supermarket. On Oct. 10, 1980 – just a few months after they had the

business idea – they opened their first M&M Meat Shops location in a small strip mall in Kitchener. Today, there are 465 stores across Canada. Their strategy for success includes listening to their customers and placing a huge emphasis on training and retraining staff and franchisees. “I’ve said it from day one – my number one fear is complacency behind the counter,” he said. “I don’t want people to be order takers. We want to be able to say, ‘What are you planning, what can we help you with?’”



Construction on Laurier Brantford’s new Research and Academic Centre’s east wing is well under way. Above are views from the third floor meeting room (top) and third floor wet lab. Mac Voisin speaks to Laurier students on Feb. 14.

Contest has great prizes, including a Kobo e-Reader, Chapters gift certificates and the opportunity to become a published writer. Each submission must explore one of the following topics: “inspiration,” “purpose”

or “leadership.” Remember, however: drabbles are fiction, so have fun. For full contest details, visit If you’re wondering how long 100 words is, count the words in this article!

Turkish delight for Team Canada With the help of Laurier Lady Hawks Andrea Ironside, Andrea Martin, Liz Knox and Candice Styles, Canada successfully defended its Winter Universiade title in women’s hockey Feb. 5. The team defeated Finland 4-1 in the gold-medal final at Cemal Gursel Arena in Turkey. Canada also won gold in 2009 when the sport made its Universiade debut in Harbin, China, thanks to a 3-1 win over the host team. “Finland came out really strong (on Saturday),” said team captain Ironside. “It was a tough game all the way through. We came here with a goal and we knew what we wanted to do. We’re really excited to come out of this game on top. It’s an unbelievable feeling right now.” “We came in as defending champs so we had some pressure on ourselves but we played through it all. I think we did a great job of stepping up to the challenge,” added Ironside, one of six returnees from the 2009 championship

What are you reading

What are you listening to?

100 Words: Laurier’s drabble contest You’re probably wondering: “What the heck is a drabble?” Well, a drabble is a fiction story that is exactly – exactly! – 100 words long. And to celebrate Laurier’s 100th anniversary, we want you to write one. The 100 Words Drabble

Great views, but a little drafty

team. “We are overjoyed with everything, from the organizing committee to the facilities and the people. Turkey has been truly phenomenal.” The red-and-white squad, comprised exclusively of Canadian Interuniversity Sport all-stars, finished the 2011 tournament with an unblemished 7-0 record including a 2-1 shootout victory over Finland (5-1-1) in their preliminary round opener on Jan. 27. “It’s a great moment for us. We didn’t play our best game (in the gold-medal final). We did a lot of good things but we

struggled a little bit in our zone. But in the end, we’re a team that came together over the two weeks and we accomplished what we came here to do,” said Team Canada head coach Les Lawton. Four different players scored for Canada, including University of Montreal’s Kim Deschênes and Guelph’s Jessica Zerafa as well as McGill teammates Ann-Sophie Bettez and Carly Hill. Laurier netminder Liz Knox of Stoufville, Ont., made 20 saves to earn her fourth win in as many starts.

What are you eating? Name: Sandra Muir Job Title: Writer, Communications, Public Affairs & Marketing Order: Fish burrito (haddock or halibut) Where To Get It: Burrito Boyz (King at University)

What are you reading


When I started at Laurier a few months ago, a co-worker suggested I try the fish burrito from Burrito Boyz on King Street. Fish burrito . . . I was skeptical. But I gave it a go and it was amazing. The mix of lightly breaded fish with the traditional burrito toppings, including guacamole and refried beans, is perfect. I also like to add in a bit of spice to give it an extra little kick.

What are you listening to? Name: Bonnie Glencross Job Title: Assistant Professor, Department of Archaeology & Classical Studies CD Title: World’s Edge Artist: Rant Maggie Rant

What are you eating?

This CD is a wonderful mix of traditional and contemporary elements of Celtic music. Rant Maggie Rant is composed of local musicians that often play venues in southern Ontario. Listening to their latest album, World’s Edge, is a great way to get you in the mood for St. Patrick’s Day!

Left to right: Andrea Ironside, Andrea Martin, Liz Knox and Candice Styles


New Appointments Julie Topic has joined Laurier as Director, ICT Support, effective Feb.14, 2011. She will be based at the Brantford campus and will lead a multi-campus team providing user support for the university. Grace Aitcheson, Administrative Assistant, Office of the VicePresident: Finance and Administration

For a complete list of appointments visit

Melody Barfoot, CrossRegistration/Communications Assistant, Registrar’s Office William Banks, Acting Dean, SBE Pam Cant, Acting Assistant VicePresident, Human Resources Susan Diep, Benefits & Compensation Administrator Chris Dodd, Director, Residence

Jessica Bell, Receptionist / Admissions Assistant, Registrar’s Office Derrick Burt, 3rd Class Operating Engineer, Physical Resources Sarah Dougall, Special Constable Christine McKinlay, Development Officer Brennan Reniers, Coordinator: Accounting and Financial Training, Financial Resources

Changes in staff appointments Gary Wagner, Manager, Brantford ICT Support, has accepted a new assignment as Manager, Employee ICT Support for the faculty and staff in Waterloo and Kitchener. He will be responsible for the team charged with technical support for the Waterloo campus, the Kitchener-based Faculty of Social Work, and the Toronto office. CAMPUS DECODER

March 2011

Ginny Dybenko, Executive – Strategic Initiatives, Office of the President Melissa Jutzi, Interim Manager, Compensation & Benefits Lauren Osborne, Admissions Assistant Bridget Parris, Information Specialist, Registrar’s Office Jennifer Porritt, Manager, Organizational Development Dennis Robus, Lead Hand Culinary, Food Services Brent Thornhill, Registration & Recruitment Services Receptionist (Brantford) John Will, Manager, Residence Facility Operations

Retirements Gail Brenner, Food Services Associate, Retired Got a question? Send it to


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Artist Karen Tam challenges cultural stereotypes with gallery installation The Robert Langen Art Gallery presents the works of artist Karen Tam in an exhibition titled Pagoda Pads: Opium Den, running from March 2 to April 9, 2011. Pagoda Pads: Opium Den is a site-specific installation that uses a combination of artificial and authentic borrowed objects to examine how Chinese stereotypes such as Dragon Ladies, geisha girls and drug-addicted Asian men continue to be perpetuated in Western society. Inspired by images of the exotic, opulent and strange, and set against a musical backdrop of 19th- and 20th-century racist tunes reinterpreted as punk instrumentals, the exhibition challenges viewers to understand and re-evaluate their personal preconceptions. Tam has been working with subjects of cultural identity and authenticity through the genres of installation and video since 2001. “I am particularly interested in the history of the Chinese diaspora,” said Tam, whose current projects explore how the notion of “Chineseness” can be conveyed through music, interior décor, television, fashion and art. “Even at the height of chinoiserie, as the Western market was being flooded with Chinese products, Chinese people overseas were targeted by racist laws and deemed unassimilable aliens,” said Tam. “Spurred on by a fear of the ‘Yellow Peril,’ of the unknown and unfamiliar, riots broke out and legislation was passed in Canada and

Pagoda Pads: Opium Dens challenges stereotypes about Chinese culture.

the U.S. to stem the flow of migrants.” Tam said the “fear of Chinese” today, while not as virulent, is reflected in talk shows, news reports and blogs on China’s rising status as a superpower

“Spurred on by a fear of the ‘Yellow Peril,’ of the unknown and unfamiliar, riots broke out and legislation was passed in Canada and the U.S. to stem the flow of migrants.” and economic strength. Recent health scares have heightened anxieties about imported Chinese products. “As negative attitudes towards the Chinese are on the rise, we

also see a return of the exotic ‘Far East’ in Western popular culture, along with the use of relational terms such as ‘Far East’ and ‘Oriental,’” said Tam. Tam’s recent exhibitions include: Rideau Hall, Ottawa; CUE Art Foundation, New York; Chelsea Art Museum, New York; Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal and New Art Gallery Walsall, United Kingdom. Upcoming activities include exhibitions at Victoria and Albert Museum, London, and Songzhuang Art Museum, Beijing, as well as residencies in New Brunswick, California and Austria. Tam lives and works in Montréal, Québec and London, United Kingdom, where she is a doctoral candidate at Goldsmiths’ Centre for Cultural Studies (University of London) and has contributed an essay to John Jung’s book, Sweet and Sour: Life in Chinese Family Restaurants (2010). Her work can be seen at

Photo: Sandra Muir

Claire Bennett appointed as Sustainability Coordinator

What’s the deal with the silver smoke stacks behind the Dr. Alvin Woods Building? They’re cooling towers, the largest – and shiniest, we might add – on the Laurier campus. In the summer months they help to air condition the Library, the Woods Building, the Arts building, the Peters building and the Fred Nichols Campus Centre. Here’s how the system works: the air conditioners in the above buildings use water to absorb heat and carry it away through a system of pipes. The water then goes into a large mechanized system of evaporators and condensers housed in a maintenance area behind the DAWB building. These evaporators and condensers work with the cooling towers to re-cool the water, at which point it can

gets funneled back into the buildings to continue keeping things cool. When it’s really hot out, you might see plumes of moisture coming out of the tops of the towers as they work hard to cool the water from temperatures of around 30 degrees C. For obvious reasons, the unit is turned off in the winter, when it undergoes maintenance. It is normally turned back on around the May long weekend. “We don’t like to turn it on much before that because it is a high energy user,” says John Campbell, manager of facility operations. There are other similar units for the John Aird Centre, Athletics, the Willison Hall residence, and Waterloo College Hall – but none are quite as shiny or impressive as the one behind the Woods building.

Laurier has appointed Claire Bennett to the position of sustainability coordinator. Established in January 2010, the Sustainability Office works to foster a culture of sustainability at the university by engaging, promoting and coordinating sustainability efforts, as well as to develop an environmentally proactive Laurier community. “My goal is to make sustainability a continuing and active part of the student life, and to create a true culture of sustainability rather than a host of isolated initiatives,” said Bennett. “I am thrilled this role exists at Laurier and look forward to continuing the great work that’s already been done over the past year.” Bennett is a candidate for a master’s degree in planning from the University of Waterloo (UW), with a focus on environmental planning and design. She has worked as a teaching and research assistant in urban and environmental design, environmental law and planning administration, and

Claire Bennett

was on the building committee for UW’s LEED-certified Faculty of Environment building. Bennett hopes to make sustainability accessible and easy for the Laurier community by improving bottle-free and waste-diversion programs in residences and on campus and strengthening sustainability within the university’s curriculum. She is also working on sustainable design guidelines for any new construction on campus, greenhouse gas monitoring and

reduction through the energy management plan, and creating a sustainability action plan that will direct the ongoing efforts of the Sustainability Office. Laurier has been making strides in sustainability with recent sustainable building designs, such as the Laurier Brantford Research & Academic Centre designed to achieve LEED certification, and improved food waste and sustainable transportation programs. Last year’s “Going Greener” report by the Council of Ontario Universities recognized Laurier for developing its sustainability policy, as well as for adapting a green cleaning program and energy management plan. The university received its first ratings in sustainability last year from two different North American organizations dedicated to improving sustainability on university campuses. These results will inform Laurier’s sustainability action plan in 2011 and will be used to chart the university’s progress. 5


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March 2011

COFFEE WITH A CO-WORKER Name: Kory Jeffrey Job: Coordinator: President’s Innovation Seed Fund & the Digital Media Hub Where you can find him: At the Communitech Hub, located in Kitchener’s historic Tannery Building.

What’s your typical day like at the Communitech Hub? I typically start the day at the Hub unless there is something I need to do on campus. If I’m not working on a specific project, I’ll walk around and introduce myself to people or companies I haven’t met yet and keep in touch with the Executives-in-Residence (ex-CEOs who help over 300 start-ups in the Region). It’s all part of collaborating with our partners in the Hub. What do you do for the President’s Innovative Seed Fund? The fund is 18 months old and is meant to help people with innovative revenue-generating or cost-saving ideas within the

Heard on Twitter Check out what the Laurier community has been tweeting about at Laurier also has official sites on Facebook at www.facebook. com/LaurierNow and YouTube at @clarehitchens Fantastic talk by Alex Mustakas of Drayton Entertainment at #Laurier today on the business of the arts 16 Feb @LaurierTO Commuting to work/school tomorrow regardless of the weather? Some great safety tips on driving in a snowstorm: 1 Feb @WLUPress just confirmed our first co-op placement through @LaurierCareer Centre for a summer student. Hurray! 13 Jan @WLUAthletics RT @LaurierNews: What does it look like when a Hawk meets a #Blue Jay? (hint: #Vernon Wells was there too) #Laurier 13 Jan @LaurierNews From bed-pushes & pageants to powder puff & charity: Winter Carnival, a half-century in video from #Laurier Archives 7 Jan


Photo: Sandra Muir

How he takes his coffee: I drink herbal tea. I take it black because I roomed with a British guy for four years when I went through university, and he scoffed at anyone who put anything in herbal tea.

Kory Jeffrey at the Communitech Hub.

Laurier community get started. I work with potential investees to bring their ideas forward, help support existing investees and help to market the fund across all campuses. What do you like to do outside of work? I played AA hockey in Cambridge growing up, and still play in a men’s competitive league four times a week. I also coach pre-tykes, which are five- and six-year-olds. As someone with a degree in English and Philosophy, I’m an avid reader, mainly the classics, and I’m also a closet Harry Potter fan. My favourite book is David Copperfield by Charles Dickens. Dickens writes long


books but they are very clever and full of satirical humour. I hear you also like to travel. Yes. I travelled to South Africa in the Lumbobo Mountains in the summer of 2009, where I taught Life Orientation courses to kids in grades five to 12. Life orientation is a mixture of career studies and physical education. I also had to teach about the dangers of HIV and AIDS. There is a lot of social stigma and societal backlash if you admit you have AIDS, so a lot of people are afraid to go to the hospital. Even though I was the teacher, those were probably the most eye-opening conversations I’ve ever had in my life.

Where else have you gone? I’ve also travelled across Europe, and in the summer of 2010 went to Australia and Fiji, where I went skydiving for the first time. We went up to the maximum height you’re allowed to go commercially – 18,000 feet. There is a 60-second free fall before you pull the chute. You are attached to somebody and they open the door and say, ‘Okay, roll out.’ And you think, ‘Okay, why am I getting out of this perfectly safe plane?’ But it was a lot of fun. What is something people may not know about you? I was shortlisted within the institution for the Rhodes

Scholarship to Oxford University. I didn’t win but it was still pretty good to get that far. It’s always been my dream to go to Oxford. What are your future plans? I plan to go to grad school in September. I’m interested in philosophy, metaphysics and ethics. My first choice is the University of Toronto. The masters program is one year and then I’ll apply to go to Oxford again. Ultimately I’d like to be a professor, and then I would like to get into university administration.

By Sandra Muir

For a complete list of events visit

Lenten Lunches – Mondays in Lent When: March 14 – April 4 12:40 p.m. – 1:40 p.m. Where: Room 201, Waterloo Lutheran Seminary Cost: Free and open to the public Join the Reverend Dr. Mark Harris, Debbie Lou Ludolph, and seminary students and faculty in a round of conversations on missional leadership. Bring your lunch and they’ll provide coffee and juice.

8:30 a.m. – 11 a.m. Location: Laurier Brantford, Student Centre Lounge Cost: Free In celebration of International Women’s Day, the F-Word Committee presents a threepart series that explores Hollywood’s presentation of women’s bodies in film. Join us for a mixture of popcorn, pop culture and gender politics! The movies are followed by a discussion with faculty members.

Music at Noon When: March 17 Noon – 3:10 Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall Cost: Free Elaine Lau, piano; Ramona Carmelly, mezzo-soprano; Shauna Basiuk, flute; and Elizabeth McLellan, cello.

Music at Noon When: March 24 Noon – 1 p.m. Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall Cost: Free Pianist Michael Esch performs in this installment of the regular Thursday concert series.

Brantford Aboriginal Café When: March 17 Noon – 2 p.m. Where: SCJ 210 Cost: Free, lunch provided A chance for all Aboriginal students, faculty and staff to be consulted for programming and services provided at the Aboriginal Student Centre at the Aboriginal Café.

Interdisciplinary Arts Conference 2011 When: March 26 Cost: Free This year the conference, presented by Laurier’s Religion and Culture Society, celebrates its 10th anniversary with Fred Penner as guest speaker and a finale performance by Irshad Khan and percussionists Gino Mirizeo and Mark West.

Deconstructing the Chick Flick Part 3 – Boys Don’t Cry: An alternative “Chick” flick? When: March 22

WLU Symphony Orchestra with the KW Youth Orchestra When: March 26 2 p.m. – 4:30 p.m. Where: The Centre in the

Square Cost: $13/$11 students/seniors Tickets are available at the Centre in the Square box office. Music at Noon When: March 31 Noon – 1 p.m. Where: Maureen Forrester Recital Hall Cost: Free Cellist Jacob Braun and pianist Anya Alexeyev, piano
perform in this installment of the regular Thursday concert series. Work/Life Balance... When Life Gets Complicated! When: April 6

Noon – 1 p.m. Where: GRH 101, Brantford Campus When life gets complicated, and it does when we play many different roles – workers, parents, spouses, friends and caregivers – we need to make room in our lives for taking care of our own physical and mental well-being. Not surprisingly, achieving balance among all those competing priorities is difficult. This workshop will help you develop strategies to find greater balance. Visit to register.

March 2011


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Research that seeks to protect the future of breakfast Brenda Murphy is spearheading an interdisciplinary study on maple syrup and climate change By Mallory O’Brien Maple syrup is delicious. That’s a fact. It’s thick, it’s sweet and pancakes would be nothing without it. But it’s also more than a condiment. Maple syrup is a part of the Canadian identity. After all, the maple leaf even flies proudly on the nation’s flag. What would happen if all the maple trees disappeared? Climate change projections show that in the future, many parts of Ontario may become too hot and too dry to support sugar maple trees, and Laurier Brantford Contemporary Studies Professor Brenda Murphy is worried that we may lose a part of our Canadian identity. Murphy and two research colleagues – Laurier Brantford Humanities/Indigenous scholar Annette Chretien and University of Guelph physical geographer Laura Brown – are working together on a SSHRC-funded interdisciplinary study on maple syrup and climate change. They hope their research will provide local communities with resources to not only help mitigate climate change but also adapt to it. “The mitigation side basically asks: How do we reduce our carbon footprint to save the sugar maple trees?” said Murphy. “The adaptation side says: no matter how much mitigation we do, we’re going to have to adapt eventually because climate change is coming whether we like it or not.” Sugar maple trees have a relatively small growing range: from Tennessee in the south to Thunder Bay in the north, and from a small corner of Manitoba in the west to the east coast. In a project co-led by Brown, Laurier master’s student Daniel Lamhonwah studied the impact of climate change on the possible growing range of sugar maples. He gathered projections about future climate change scenarios from the Canadian Centre for Climate Modelling and Analysis of Environment Canada and overlaid them on a set of Geographic Information System (GIS) characteristics that summed up what sugar maple ecosystems need to survive. These include factors such as the

Photo: tiktktktktk

Top: (From left) Laura Brown, Annette Chretien, Amy Hulchyj (one of three Laurier Brantford students currently assisting with the project), Brenda Murphy and Daniel Lamhonwah. Bottom left: a visit to the sugar shack, Dokis First Nations. Bottom right: Lamhonwah with processing equipment.

right kind of soil, slope, precipitation and temperatures. He studied three different climate change scenarios – a worst case, middle case and best case – under two time frames: 2041–2070 and 2070–2100. The two timeframes were chosen specifically because they are within the decision-making timeline of sap producers. “We only went one or two generations out because those are the timelines farmers are concerned about, when they are passing their farms on to their children or grandchildren,” said Murphy. “If you go too far out, it wouldn’t resonate.” In all three projections, even in the best-case projection for 2041–2070, there were noticeable reductions in sugar maples in Ontario. United States researcher

Tim Perkins suggests that in 50 years there may not be any syrup production at all in the northern United States. Murphy says these statistics mean sap producers need to start thinking about adapting now. “Farmers and producers can begin to be more selective about the sites they choose to plant trees on, to pick the best areas with better soil conditions and access to water,” she said. “It’s a small way around letting Mother Nature do her thing.” There is also a possibility, Murphy added, that by transplanting sugar maple trees from the southern United States, where the trees have adapted to dryer, hotter temperatures, farmers may be able to create a sugar maple ecosystem more resilient to climate change in

Ontario. This possibility will be explored in a future study. To understand the role maple syrup plays in Canadian society more fully, Murphy and Chretien are studying the value it brings to local communities. The Elmira Maple Syrup Festival is a prime example: more than 60,000 people attend annually, making it the largest one-day maple syrup festival in the world. “The value of that for a community is huge,” said Murphy. “The economic value is that producers can sell most of their product in one day, and local businesses benefit as well. There is also social value: it’s an opportunity to bring the community together, to fundraise for local charities and to build relationships for devel-

opment.” There is also a third value: environmental. Southern Ontario was wall-to-wall trees until European settlers arrived and chopped them all down. Slowly, since then, woodlots have been rebuilt between farmlands. “A lot of those woodlots have maple trees in them,” Murphy explained. “Because those trees can be tapped for syrup, farmers can look at the woodlot and say, ‘I’m going to keep those trees because they are more valuable standing than cut down for firewood.’” Keeping the woodlots provides habitat for animals, flood control and carbon sequestration (pulling carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere) – “a whole suite of environmental services,” said Murphy. Chretien and Murphy are also looking at the value of maple syrup for Ontario’s aboriginal communities. Maple syrup is an opportunity to develop relationships within the community and pass on indigenous knowledge from one generation to the next. It’s also useful for spiritual and physical health. “There are a lot of issues around moving too far away from aboriginal roots, traditions and foods,” said Murphy. “Maple syrup is alive and well in aboriginal communities and it’s being revalued as a traditional aboriginal product.” Murphy wants to safeguard these positive benefits by providing communities with opportunities, resources and relationships that will help build resilience to the effects of climate change. This includes thinking about climate change as a “teachable moment.” “We can even think about how to use maple syrup to leverage the climate change issue to influence public policy and personal choices. Climate change is this weird, ephemeral thing that’s out there and people want to know, ‘how does it affect me?’ “Well, if it affects an industry in my community, and a cultural symbol, now you have something to hold on to. I see this as an opportunity to think about climate change in a very practical way.”

Sap on Tap Canada produces more than 80 per cent of the maple syrup in the world, the majority of it in Quebec. It’s a $200-million industry that depends on a very fickle Mother Nature: •

• • • •

Sap begins running when you have nights that drop below zero degrees C and days that rise above zero degrees. The sap sits in the roots overnight, moves up the tree during the day and moves back down at night. The farmers tap into this up and down process. Lots of rain and sun the summer before tapping makes the sap sweeter; if the tree is stressed the sap will be poor. When the temperatures stay warm, the sap stays up in the branches and the buds break. When that happens, the sap begins to taste like the leaves and the tapping is finished. Sugar maples are susceptible to drought and extreme changes in temperature because they are very shallow-rooted trees. In 2010, about three quarters of the tapping season was lost in Ontario because of the big heat wave in March (do you remember the trees budding early?) 7


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March 2011


A look inside the lecture hall

Classroom engagement Professor: Roger Sarty Class: HI232, History of Sea Power to 1914 Description: A study of the influence of sea power on history with special reference to the North Atlantic nation states.

History Professor Roger Sarty endeavours to relate seemingly remote events, from the ancient world to today, to show how important sea power has been to all maritime nations. “‘Globalization’ and ‘the revolution in communications’ are aspects of human civilization that really began with the most ancient communities, and ships were always the instrument – just as massive bulk cargo ships are central elements in our global economy today,” says Sarty. To break up lectures and provide a chance for in-depth discussion, Sarty schedules small break-out groups at three different points in the course. Each group focuses on a different topic, explored through contrasted points of view. “I explain to the students that I am learning with them, that their discussions and written work are part of my own education,” Sarty says. By Mallory O’Brien

Roger Sarty uses small break-out groups at different points thoughout the course to encourage student discussion and analysis.

Photo: Dean Palmer

A musical celebration of Laurier’s centennial

Photos: Sandra Muir

Monteverdi Vespers performed at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church by ensemble of hundreds

A Laurier centennial concert was held Feb. 13 at St. Mary’s Roman Catholic Church in Kitchener. Faculty of Music students, Laurier alumni and community singers performed Claudio Monteverdi’s “Vespro Della Beata Vergine.” The concert featured 150 singers from three Laurier choirs, seven soloists, the 30-member


WLU Symphony Orchestra, and pipe organ, harpsichord and lute musicians. The performance also included the world premiere of alumnus Kerry Roebuck’s winning composition in the Laurier Centennial Fanfare Competition (see page one for details).

March 2011 insideLaurier  

March 2011 issue of Wilfrid Laurier University's internal newsletter, insideLaurier

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