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Bravo for the great outdoors
Many years ago I participated in an optional off-campus trip
that St. Lawrence University offered to incoming freshmen.
The university, based in Canton, New York, presented them
as “orientation trips.” Unfortunately, I do not remember every
course I enrolled in during my four years there, but nearly
30 years later, I still have fond memories of my orientation trip
experience; it provided a great start to a new chapter of my life.
Bravo to Tim O’Connell and Brock University for initiating
this program and providing this opportunity to their students
(“Orientation program takes students to the great outdoors,”
Mathématiques de la planète Terre
Ursula’s excellent adventure
Program promotes safety through self-awareness
New book marks Shaw Festival’s 50th anniversary
Campus Ici et là Here and there
Orientation program takes students
to the great outdoors
the student leaders will deliver a more formal
university orientation, including healthy choices
around nutrition and fitness,drug and alcohol
awareness, time management, and other tips and
tricks of campus life.
Brock’s BaseCamp offers outdoor skills, campus tips and a chance to meet new friends
PHOTO: BROCK UNIVERSITY
The program is the brainchild of Tim O’Con-
nell, associate professor of recreation and leisure
studies at Brock. Its purpose, he says, is two-fold:
it gives third- and fourth-year students in his
department, who lead the expeditions, a chance
to gain some practical summer experience; and
it offers the incoming students the chance to meet
new people and have some fun. “Really what we’re
after is creating a sense of community and creating
an opportunity for friendships to develop,” says
incoming students to Brock University are
being offered the chance to experience a bit of
the great outdoors before starting their studies
this fall. Called Brock BaseCamp, the program
runs from mid-July until late August and offers
first-year students the choice of participating in
either a five-day canoe trip,five-day backpacking
trip, or three-day rock-climbing trip.
There are numerous examples of outdoor
orientation programs at U.S. universities, says
Dr. O’Connell, but to his knowledge this is the
first such program at a Canadian one.
Aside from teaching a few outdoor skills,
Brock BaseCamp was offered for the first time
last summer as a pilot project for a handful of
students; this year’s program will be able to accommodate 78 registrants. Dr. O’Connell says he’d
love to see the program expanded further to accommodate specific groups,such as graduate
students or integrated groups of international
and domestic students. – léo charbonneau
www.affaresunverstares.ca / août-septembre 2011 / 7
Ms. Strasenburgh, a research librarian, is an alumna of St. Lawrence University.
Learning to let go
Parents’ obsession with their kids’ university
education (and life) has its pros and cons (“The
kids go to university, not the parents,” August-September). The big advantage for cash-stripped,
higher educational bastions is to use undergraduates and their parents as cash cows. Today’s
marketing strategies and “you really love me”
syndrome can be exploited to buy parents’ loyalty.
On the other hand, I have problems with parents treating universities as extended high
schools. Perhaps this generation of parents needs
to learn to let their kids go from their clutches.
After all, isn’t that what university education is
all about? Christine Overall’s article is a timely
reminder of parents’ over-involvement in their
kids’ university lives and some of its implications.
Ms. Raksit is a PhD candidate in educational administration
at the University of Toronto.
An important scholarship
The CAPE Scholarship (for Canadians for Access
to Professional Education) rewards community
involvement and education, and is unlike any
other scholarship program in Canada (“
Life-changing scholarships,” May 2011). Its goal is to
make costly professional education available to
students from disenfranchised communities. These
students can then return to those communities,
ensuring that low-income citizens have access to
professional services. CAPE ( www.capescholar-ship.ca) is a registered, grass-roots charity with
no employees: all funds go to the selected scholars.
Mr. Battin, a lawyer in Ottawa, is director of CAPE.
I applaud your article “Is the time right for a field
of hate studies?” (August-September) and answer
the question with a resounding “yes.”
I have taught a fourth-year seminar on hate
crime and hate speech since 2004 at St. Thomas
University and I, along with my students, have
always felt that we barely scratch the surface on
this controversial subject. A field of hate studies
could easily be combined with human rights
programs at other universities to further the goal
of confronting racism and hatred in all of their
Dr. Boudreau is associate professor and chair of the department
of criminology and criminal justice at St. Thomas University.
Nouveautés en ligne!
L'art du réseautage
Vous apprendrez vite à tirer profit des
dîners, cocktails, 5 à 7 et autres activités
À mon avis
Qu’entend-on par liberté universitaire?
Le point de vue de Peter MacKinnon,
recteur de l’Université de la Saskatchewan