Official opening for Saundra Patterson Memorial Garden Oct. 3

The Niagara College community is welcome to attend an official opening event for the Saundra Patterson Memorial Garden.

The opening will be an outdoor event to be held at the new memorial garden, located at the Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake (upper courtyard), from 4:30 to 5:15 p.m. In the event of rain, it will be held indoors (Yerich Auditorium, E101).

The memorial garden was created in memory of Saundra Patterson devoted partner of long-time President Dan Patterson, currently President Emeritus, Saundra was a champion for NC who was well known and loved by the College community.

Plans for the new garden were first announced in March 2021. It was funded through the generosity of many donors who contributed to the Saundra Patterson Memorial Garden and Bursary fund.

Speakers at the event will include President Emeritus Dan Patterson, NC President Sean Kennedy, Vice President Academic Fiona Allan, Vice President Research and External Relations Marc Nantel, as well as students who were involved with the memorial garden project, and more.

Don’t miss NC at Niagara’s Grape and Wine Festival

Canada’s largest wine festival is returning for its 70th anniversary in 2022 and the NC Teaching Winery continues to be part of the action.

Raise a glass the College’s Teaching Winery at the park or with a festival Discovery Pass, and be sure to look out for NC staff and students during the Niagara Grape and Wine Festival’s Grande Parade and throughout the festivities.

Montebello Park

NC will be a participating winery during the six-day celebration at Montebello Park  (St. Catharines) from September 16-18 and 23-25. Guests can enjoy wine and culinary experiences – including more than 100 Niagara VQA wines – as well as more than 50 hours of live music.

Entrance to the park is free and a touchless, tokenless payment system will be used for food and beverage.

For more information visit .graapeandwinefestival.com/montebello-park.

Discovery Pass

The NC Teaching Winery is part of the festival’s popular Discovery Pass program, where guests visit participating wineries across Niagara’s best wineries to enjoy premium wine and culinary experiences.

The Teaching Winery’s experience features ‘Picnic Francais’ a classic Burgundy-style Pinot Noir with rich aromas of sweet tobacco, berries, candied beet and black cherry paired with Parisian Jambon-Beurre. a smoked country ham on a sourdough baguette with Ontario gouda and porcini rosemary butter.

The featured wine is 2019 Dean’s List Pinot Noir and the featured chef is Tim Mackiddie, from Smoke and Barrel Niagara.

Discovery Passes may be purchased at  niagarawinefestival.com.

Grande Parade

Be sure to cheer on NC at the festival’s Grande Parade on Sept. 24. This year, the College float is a combined effort between NC’s Centre for Student Engagement, Student Administrative Council, and International division, and 165 students have registered to walk with the float.

Grape King

A NC Business alumnus now reigns as the 2022 Grape King for the festival.

On September 14, the Grape Growers of Ontario and Farm Credit Canada announced that Benjamin (Ben) Froese, of Willow Lake Ventures Inc  in Niagara-on-the-Lake, was chosen for the title. He was officially installed as the 65th Grape King that same day.

Froese was born and raised on a tender fruit farm in Niagara-on-the-Lake which he took over at the age of 20 and converted into vineyards which he has doubled in size to more than 40 hectares.

He has been an Arterra grower for the past 20 years and grows several varieties of wine grapes. He is also a current member of the Grape Growers of Ontario’s Growers’ Committee and Metrics Committee.

 Read more in the GGO’s news release here.

Find out more

For more information about the Niagara Grape and Wine Festival, visit grapeandwinefestival.com.

College and budding Commercial Cannabis Production program alumna nominated for national award

Voting is now open for the Grow Up Awards and NC is among the nominees.

The College is nominated for Cannabis Educator, and alumna Stacie Hollingworth (Commercial Cannabis Production, 2019 and Winery and Viticulture Technician, 2003) for Master Grower of the Year.

The Grow Up Industry Awards Gala is a national annual event honouring cannabis professionals and companies and recognizing excellence and innovation in the industry.

Hollingworth is the Master Grower for Safari Flower Co. in Fort Erie. She is one of just three female nominees in the group for Master Grower of the Year.

In her role, Hollingworth grows product for more than two dozen brands distributed across Canada, Israel and Germany. She leads a grow team of 46 people who cultivate 12 varieties at once in 10 indoor controlled grow rooms. Her expertise include disease, mildew and microbial mitigation.

The College is nominated alongside eight other educational institutions.

Professor and program coordinator Bill MacDonald won the Cultivation Education Award at the 2021 Grow Up Conference.

Show your support for NC – voting is open via until Aug. 31: growupawards.com

Niagara College alumni make their mark on the N22 Canada Games

The Niagara 2022 Canada Summer Games have been the training ground for many Niagara College students and alumni to jumpstart their careers.

That was certainly the case for Event Management alumna Stephanie Felice (2020) and Sport Administration alumnus Red Nguyen (2021).

While the two didn’t work together directly, Felice and Red brought their respective NC training and experience to their roles supporting one of Canada’s largest multi-sport events.

Felice from Thorold and Red from Vietnam studied at NC for the better part of the COVID-19 pandemic, weathering lockdowns, restrictions, a pivot to online classes, and limited experiential learning opportunities.

As their respective industries came to a grinding halt, so too did many practicum and internship opportunities. Both Felice and Red joined the Canada Summer Games organizing team to apply their skills to the real-world and break into their respective fields.

Event Management alumna Steph Felice

Meet event planning pro Stephanie Felice

“I was in the Event Management program during a really altering time,” explains Felice. “When I started the program in September 2019 I had no idea what was to come. Little did I know that two weeks before our final project, we would have to cancel our event that we had been working on for six months. With that, the event industry would take a hard hit from COVID. It was the biggest learning curve I have ever experienced.”

Felice, who returned home to Niagara after completing her undergraduate degree in Toronto, got involved with the Canada Games as part of her NC program.

“I wanted to get into large production events. Jenn Dey, who was the Internship Coordinator at the time, encouraged me to apply for the Event & Community Relations internship position with Canada Games. I wouldn’t be where I am today without her guidance.”

“During my internship with the Games, I was planning milestone events and learned very quickly that I found my passion. What I really enjoyed about my internship is that I was applying the practical skills I learned in my classes into real life scenarios with the Games,” said Felice.

Despite pandemic setbacks, Felice looks back fondly on her time at NC. “I would describe my NC experience as hands-on, creative and student centered.”

Felice had the unique experience of being taught by NC’s Shelley Merlo – professor in the School of Hospitality, Tourism and Sport – but also working alongside her at the Canada Games where Merlo has been seconded as Special Events Liaison.

“One thing I took from her [Shelley] being my teacher (and colleague) is the passion and drive she has for event planning. She puts 110% in everything she does,” said Felice.

After investing more than two years into Games preparation, Felice landed a position in Toronto’s event management scene. She is now an event coordinator with theScore, a mobile sports media, sports betting and esports company.

“My time at the Canada Games was a huge stepping-stone in my event planning career. I was able to get a variety of experience from community events, grand openings, partnership announcements, and planning large scale events like the Opening and Closing Ceremonies.”

While Felice is busy taking her career to new levels, she is back in Niagara as a volunteer with the Games and looks forward to seeing the project through. She was proud to work behind-the-scenes at Opening and Closing Ceremonies at the 13 for 13 festivals around the region, and Pride Day at Niagara Place.

“I can tell you firsthand that everyone involved with the games have been working night and day to make it the best yet. I’m so excited to see everyone’s hard work come to fruition.”

Sport Administration alumnus Red Nguyen is the Event Services Lead for Cycling at the N22 Canada Games. He is pictured with CSG volunteers Cathy Plesz, George Clavecillas and Bob Plesz.

Meet Event Services Lead for Cycling, Red Nguyen

Sport Administration alumnus Red Nguyen was first introduced to the Canada Games by NC professor and CSG’s Special Events Liaison Shelley Merlo. Merlo tasked Red and his class with developing a sponsorship package for the Games, an exercise with real-world application.

“There were a lot of valuable insights that interested as well as prepared me for my volunteer position,” said Red, referring to his role as Event Services Lead for Cycling with the Canada Games. “Despite the pandemic, being part of the Games during and after my program is a great opportunity and really highlights the applied learning motto of the College.”

Originally from Vietnam, Red resides in St. Catharines. In addition to his role with the N22 Games, he works part-time at the Meridian Centre. He began his role with the Games in August 2021, meeting with his team (at first virtually) twice per month to practice scenarios they might encounter. In July, Nguyen spent time training volunteers.

Red Nguyen and fellow Canada Games volunteers Colleen Baty and George Clavecillas.

“This is my first opportunity to work on an event of this magnitude and lead a team of volunteers,” said Red. “As Event Services Volunteers, we will do our best to enable everyone, from athletes to spectators, to have a great experience with the Games and experience the hospitality that is of the Niagara region. I am looking forward to a job well done by my team and embracing any potential challenges.”

Red’s events kicked off in week one of the Games. “Cycling has been awesome. We got some rain on Monday throughout the women’s race but everyone pushed through and the energy is top notch.”

Red brings his ambition and a positive attitude to his work to help make the Canada Games a success. Following the Games, he aspires to work on the events side of the sports industry, the energy of which he describes as “infectious.”

“I am happy knowing that I can turn to our faculty staff, especially the professors like Stephen Carroll, for career advice as well as referrals if you’ve proved your ability.”

“No matter what I do, I am always surrounded by wonderful people, and for that, I am very grateful.”

The 20th Annual NC Golf Classic is sold out

volunteers cheer golfers riding in a golf cart

A message from NC Development and Alumni Relations:

We are thrilled to announce that through the support of our generous community partners and supporters, our 20th Annual Golf Classic, being held on September 20 at Peninsula Lakes Golf Club in Fenwick, is sold out and our online registration is now closed.

In our 19-year history, our golf tournament has raised more than $750,000 to fund scholarships for Niagara College varsity athletes. Scholarships provide much needed assistance to ease some of the financial burden for student-athletes who are working hard to achieve their academic goals, while meeting their athletic team commitments.

If you would like to have your name added to our wait list, please contact Joanne Cousineau at 905-641-2252 ext. 7775 or [email protected].

For event details, visit golfclassic.niagaracollege.ca.

New digital issue of encore presents special feature on Canada Summer Games

It’s time to connect with the latest alumni and College success stories!

A new digital edition of encore magazine has been released, with a variety of new articles and profiles that shine a spotlight on NC alumni and the College community – including a special feature on NC’s key involvement in the Canada Summer Games.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the newly added content:

My College

My Alumni

My Community

Niagara College’s official magazine, encore is a one-stop shop for the College community – from alumni to donors, to stakeholders and friends, in Niagara and beyond.

After 11 years of print magazine issues, the new digital encore made its digital debut in February 2021, expanding on the tradition of its former print editions by making it easier than ever for NC’s growing global community of alumni to stay connected, with 24/7 access to the site from anywhere in the world, and articles that are easy to post and share.

New digital editions of encore magazine will be posted each Spring, Fall and Winter term.

If you have an alumni success story or college feature idea for encore, please contact [email protected]

 

New digital issue of encore presents special feature on Canada Summer Games

It’s time to connect with the latest alumni and College success stories!

A new digital edition of encore magazine has been released, with a variety of new articles and profiles that shine a spotlight on NC alumni and the College community – including a special feature on NC’s key involvement in the Canada Summer Games.

Here’s a sneak peek at some of the newly added content:

My College

My Alumni

My Community

Niagara College’s official magazine, encore is a one-stop shop for the College community – from alumni to donors, to stakeholders and friends, in Niagara and beyond.

After 11 years of print magazine issues, the new digital encore made its digital debut in February 2021, expanding on the tradition of its former print editions by making it easier than ever for NC’s growing global community of alumni to stay connected, with 24/7 access to the site from anywhere in the world, and articles that are easy to post and share.

New digital editions of encore magazine will be posted each Spring, Fall and Winter term.

If you have an alumni success story or college feature idea for encore, please contact [email protected]

 

Niagara College’s Golf Classic is back

volunteers cheer golfers riding in a golf cart

A message from Development and Alumni Relations:

The past couple of years have been like no other we have experienced, but we are thrilled to be getting back to some normalcy, starting with the return of our 20th Annual Niagara College Golf Classic on Tuesday, September 20, 2022 at the beautiful Peninsula Lakes Golf Club in Fenwick.

In our 19-year history, thanks to great community support, our golf tournament has raised more than $750,000 to fund scholarships for Niagara College varsity athletes. Scholarships provide much needed assistance to ease some of the financial burden for student-athletes who are working hard to achieve their academic goals, while meeting their athletic team commitments.

Our NC varsity golf team will be on hand to provide clinic instructions before golfers head out for the day. They will also make their way around the course, giving golf tips to participants as they play.

Students and staff from a variety of NC programs will also be at the event to help make it a unique experience for all. Our learning enterprises will also be represented with a variety of wine and beer tastings from NC’s Teaching Winery and Teaching Brewery.

Registration for our 2022 Golf Classic is open and we are pleased to share that the event is nearly sold out, sitting at 90% capacity!

For event details visit golfclassic.niagaracollege.ca. For more information, contact Joanne Cousineau, Development and Event Coordinator (905-328-5528; [email protected]).

NC alumna Karen Steele wins 2022 Rosalie Award

woman with long, red hair wearing a green shirt

Karen Steele, a Niagara College alumna and current Program Director of 99.9 Virgin Radio (CKFM-FM) Toronto, has been chosen to receive this year’s Rosalie Award, recognizing Canadian women who have blazed new trails in radio.

The award is presented annually by the Radio Trailblazers, a volunteer organization that celebrates and supports women in radio through education, inspiration and mentorship.

It’s not the first time Steele has been nominated, says Radio Trailblazers chair Nancy Brown Dacko. In 2019 — the last time the award was handed out — she received two nominations.

Brown Dacko describes the selection process as “rigorous,” and the winner must meet criteria based on four key pillars: career success, leadership, entrepreneurial spirit and mentorship.

“The reason we chose those [pillars] is because we really want to profile women who are recognized for their contributions, but we also want to look at a wise spectrum of accomplishments just to show that up-and-comers can be very successful and can achieve their success at any level in the business,” Brown Dacko says. “Sometimes award shows might award a CEO or a VP or a director, but what we want to show is that you can be an excellent on-air talent, you can be program director, you can be an excellent salesperson. [It’s] any role that exists within the radio broadcasting platform. We want to take a look at every, single area.”

The winner each year is chosen by previous Rosalie Award winners, of which there were 15 in 2022.

Steele, who graduated from NC’s Broadcasting – Radio, Television, Film program in 1991, started her radio career as the Program Director of CRNC, the college’s radio station, and as a “cruiser girl” at 97.7 HTZ-FM St. Catharines.
Back then, there weren’t many women studying broadcasting, Steele says. What drew her to it, though, was the flexibility of the program.

“I enrolled in Niagara College because I wanted the flexibility to try out film, TV and radio within a hands-on environment,” she says. “All of the programs were an absolute blast. There was always room for creativity with a degree of autonomy even within a team setting.”

She credits her “rock star” instructors for making learning fun and her Niagara College experience memorable, but two instructors, in particular, have had the biggest impact on her career.

“Chris Lukas, who was working on-air at 97.7 HTZ-FM at the time, was our Radio Lab teacher for CRNC,” Steele says. “She encouraged me to reach out to [program director] Eric Samuels for an internship. That invitation landed my foot firmly in the door at HTZ-FM as ‘cruiser girl’ and, ultimately, Program Director 7 years later.”

She said Bruce Gilbert, NC’s Program Director for the Broadcasting – Radio, Television and Film program, was also a big influence.

“He was my rock and had a huge impact on my career with his phenomenal talent, patience, support and friendship. I’m thrilled that he’s working with the future of our business.”

In addition to 99.9 Virgin Radio, Steele programmed KiSS 92.5 and MIX 99.9, where she became the first-ever female program director of a major market Toronto radio station in 2005. It was the second time she’d earned such a distinction: She was also the first female program director of a Standard Broadcasting radio station when she worked at 97.7 HTZ-FM.

“It was a very different time and the ’90s were wild, but I still kept forging forward to get to my ultimate goal of PD of a Toronto radio station,” Steele says. “It still seems surreal to be the first female PD of a radio station in Standard Broadcasting in the ’90s and (then) Standard’s first female PD of a major market Toronto radio station. The only other woman in a programming position at that time in Toronto was Julie Adam at Rogers.”

Steele also helped develop the GEN NOW program at Seneca College, providing college students with the opportunity to get hands-on experience on air as KiSS 92.5.

The Rosalie Award, named in honour of legendary music director Rosalie Trombley, is awarded each year to a woman in radio who’s considered a trailblazer.

Trombley worked AM Top 40 radio station CKLW, also known as “The Big 8” (Detroit/Windsor), and was deemed the most powerful lady in pop music. She was the first to receive the Rosalie Award in 2005.

It’s women like Trombley, “who never give up, who move the needle, who push boundaries” that inspire Steele.

But Steele says if she’s blazed trails, it was incidental.

“I learned everything so I could develop and grow in my roles,” she says. “I was never above any opportunity and worked up to 80-plus-hour work weeks. I always wanted to be the best person for the job. I also wanted to be treated that way. At times, I had to work harder and smarter to be taken seriously or get a seat or a voice at the table.”

Added Steele: “Today, I’m surrounded by strong, fearless and funny rock stars like Sarah Cummings who continues to pave the way for the future of radio across Canada in her role as VP of content for Radio/iHeartRadio and Orbyt Media, and Nat Hunter who is one of the funniest and most talented on-air personalities in the country.”

And although she’s been recognized with numerous awards over the past three decades, including Program Director of the Year from Canadian Music Week (CMW) in 2017, Steele says she’ll know she’s left her mark if her work has inspired others.

“In a perfect radio world, I will have left an impression and impact on the people I’ve worked with in a memorable and fun way. From creating and rolling out irreverent promotional campaigns and pushing creative boundaries, to putting on exclusive can’t-miss-event experiences and working with and developing talent on-air and behind the scenes, I hope I’ve inspired the people I’ve worked with as much as they’ve inspired me.”

Brown Dacko says Steele will be celebrated at an invitation-only reception for newcomers to the radio business on June 6 and then presented with the Rosalie Award on June 7 during CMW’s Radio Active 2022-The Future of Audio conference.

Niagara College goes the distance to help students impacted by war in Ukraine

They have travelled across the world to study at Niagara College, now the College is going an extra mile for them.

NC is assisting international students impacted by the war in Ukraine with a range of supports – both financial and emotional – to help them through this challenging time. Whether they need financial assistance to help cover expenses, or emotional support as they struggle with anxiety over the safety of their loved ones in a war zone, Niagara College is demonstrating that they may be far away from home, but they are not alone.

Global Emergency Relief Fund

International students who face financial challenges due to world issues that arise in their home countries or here in Canada – from war and economic crisis to the pandemic – can turn to NC’s Global Emergency Relief fund.

The fund was established in 2020 to provide financial assistance to students during the COVID-19 pandemic. More recently, the College sought to expand the fund to assist Ukrainian and Russian students impacted by the war in Ukraine. The fund provides students with scholarships and bursaries to help cover tuition or living expenses, which are distributed on a case-by-case basis, as needed.

“Students from around the world study at NC to enrich their lives and fulfill their dreams, and we are dedicated to going the distance for them,” said Vice President, International Sean Coote. “During these challenging times, we won’t let our students fall behind due to global circumstances they cannot control. We are stepping up our supports to help ensure that they succeed.”

Supports for students

Since late February, staff members from the College’s International division have been reaching out to students impacted by the war in Ukraine. Those who are experiencing financial hardships incurred due to loss of bank transfer abilities, have been offered assistance as well as flexible payment options.

In addition to assisting with financial challenges, they continue to work with students, one-on-one as needed, to ensure that the students have access to mental and emotional supports or resources.

Director, International Gary Torraville noted that, as a “home away from home” for international students, it is a priority for NC’s International Division to support them during their stay.

“As a College community, we provide more than just an education to students while they are with us. In their time of need, we become their security blanket and their main source of support and care while away from their family and other loved ones,” said Torraville.

While all international students typically experience a feeling of being disconnected from their family and friends, Torraville noted that during times of crisis – such as the war in Ukraine – this becomes amplified. Students have been experiencing escalated fear and anxiety as they hear news from back home, which can severely hamper their ability to focus on their studies.

That’s why, when the invasion began in Ukraine, NC’s International Division shifted its immediate focus on the mental and emotional well-being of its students, and pointed them to supports and resources available to help them.

The College community also responded with an outpouring of support. Employees and students alike have been filling on-campus displays with messages of hope and encouragement for the affected students. Heart-shaped blue and yellow cards with handwritten notes are on display near International’s offices at the Welland Campus and Daniel J. Patterson Campus in Niagara-on-the-Lake.

“We all recognize that students from Ukraine and many other countries, including Russia, are victims of this circumstance and it is critical that we illustrate to our students that we stand with them and are here to support them through this terribly tragic and stressful time,” said Torraville. “When world events occur like this current situation in Ukraine, I am always so proud of the way all areas of the College come together to show that level of care and support that NC is known for.”

Putting the ‘NC’ in community

NC’s efforts extend beyond the borders of its campuses.

To assist Ukrainian visitors who have recently arrived in Niagara and may benefit from advancing their language skills, NC is offering scholarships to its English for Academic Preparation (EAP) program. Twenty full scholarships have been offered to recently arrived Ukrainian visitors, to attend NC’s EAP program’s May start, and more opportunities will be available during the months ahead.

For information about opportunities for recently arrived Ukrainian visitors to Niagara to attend NC’s English for Academic Preparation program, contact [email protected] or call 905-735-2211 est. 7152.

NC also recently joined 18 colleges across Ontario, along with Colleges Ontario, and the Ontario College Application Service, with a joint donation of $200,000 to UNICEF’s Ukraine emergency fund.

Donations and support

The Global Emergency Relief Fund is supported by contributions from corporate and individual donors. CIBC recently contributed $10,000 to support the fund.

The provincial government also recently announced $1.9 to create an Ontario-Ukraine Solidarity Scholarship in Ontario’s publicly assisted colleges and universities, to be awarded to individual students through their postsecondary institutions based on merit and financial need beginning in September 2022.

“We are truly grateful for this vital support from our government and from corporate and individual donors who are making it possible for more students to overcome barriers and achieve their dreams,” said Vice President, Research and External Relations, Marc Nantel. “These much-needed financial gifts help us ensure that students who have been welcomed into the Niagara community have the support they need to succeed during critical times and we know that it will truly make a difference in their lives.”

Donate to NC’s Global Emergency Relief Fund

Niagara College welcomes donations from the community to help support students through the Global Emergency Relief Fund. Those interested in helping NC’s international students during times of crisis – including those impacted by the war in Ukraine – may donate at donate.niagaracollege.ca.