Lakehead U Orientation 2004

"We are Family" theme welcomes new students to Lakehead family

(Thunder Bay - Wednesday, September 1, 2004) It's that time of year again -- the time when students and faculty alike are gearing up for the new academic year. Starting on Friday, September 3, Lakehead University will come alive again with youthful energy as students check out the campus and move into residence.

Orientation 2004 will take place from Sept. 3 to 8, and aims to help students get off to a good start. This year's theme "We are Family" is designed to welcome new students to the Lakehead family as well as the family of the Thunder Bay community.

Orientation 2004 will provide an overview of the University, give a taste of what students can expect, and highlight various services available for new students to have a positive and successful experience. Information sessions have been planned to provide answers to frequently asked questions, and show the campus to students and families.

Members of the Media are invited to take part in any session of Orientation 2004. A complete schedule can be found at

Schedule Highlights:

Friday, Sept. 3
8:30 a.m. to 7 p.m. Residence Move-in Day
9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Community Market Place
An opportunity for students to visit with local vendors to learn more about the services/products offered in Thunder Bay. This is also a time to learn more about the various departments on campus.
Saturday, Sept. 4

10 a.m. to 12 p.m.Family & Friends Welcome Session
An information session for parents, family, and friends of students new to Lakehead.
1:15 p.m. to 4:45 p.m. Campus Tours

Sunday, Sept. 5
12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. Residence Mini Olympics - Great photo op.
This event puts Residence students in the middle of intense house-on-house competition, working through a series of fun challenges.

Tuesday, Sept. 7
9:45 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Various sessions times all day long. Sessions include:
Smart Start
University students offer advice that will get new students off to a smart start in their first year.
Job Trek
Job Trek will orient new Lakehead University students to the employment-related services that are available on campus.
Flight to Success
"Navigating Your Way Through Sustenance, Suds, Stress, and Sex" An interactive first- year survival guide presented by the Health and Counselling Centre.
What's the Score!?
The Athletics department will be on hand to answer any questions about Varsity Sports and the athletics facilities available to all students.
Lakehead 101
A must-attend overview of the University's history; what students can expect; faculty expectations; student support; and culture and traditions in the region.
Drugs, Partying, and You
The Tri-Force Drug Unit will discuss methamphetamines, ecstasy, and other drugs students should know about.
Students Helping Students
Current Lakehead students will be on hand to assist first year students who have not yet completed their registration.

11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. President's Bar-B-Q - Great photo op.

Wednesday, Sept. 8
9:45 a.m. to 10:30 a.m. Sessions continue
10:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Faculty Meet & Greet
12 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. Closing Ceremonies
The official closing ceremonies is full of colour and excitement. During the ceremonies, motivational speaker David Major will talk to the students about how to get the most out of their years in university and how to 'Motivate Yourself.' This fantastic event has been described by some students as 'the wake-up call that I needed.'

For session times, check online, or call Robert Perrier, Senior Recruitment Officer at Lakehead, at 343-8674 or 476-4811 during Orientation only. Members of the media who wish to learn more about Lakehead University are encouraged to attend Lakehead 101.


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Office of Communications, 807-343-8177

Construction Starts on Northern Ontario School of Medicine Lakehead U Site

More than a building -a positive step in Northern Ontario healthcare

(Thunder Bay - Aug. 26, 2004) The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is taking another step forward today. During a ground-breaking ceremony at Lakehead University, construction officially started on the School's west campus building. Premier Dalton McGuinty, stakeholders, and partners in the School came together to celebrate this milestone.

(L to R) Dr. Fred Gilbert, MPP Michael Gravelle, Premier Dalton McGuinty, MPP Bill Mauro, and Dr. Roger Strasser turn the sod on the site of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine building.

The Northern Ontario School of Medicine is constructing a three-storey stand alone building on the Lakehead University campus to further accommodate the needs of the School's students and research on the west campus. This technologically enhanced building will be constructed beside the School of Nursing, close to the Advanced Technology & Academic Centre (ATAC), where the School of Medicine occupies the sixth floor. This new additional facility will be 30,000 square feet and cost $8 million.

"This building is more than just bricks and mortar - it's part of the solid foundation on which we are building a stronger healthcare system in Northern Ontario," says Dr. Gilbert, President, Lakehead University, and Chair of the Board, Northern Ontario School of Medicine. "This building is further proof that together, we can achieve great things. The Northern Ontario School of Medicine was conceived through community, educational, and healthcare teamwork. It started as a vision, and has become a reality. This in itself is reason to celebrate!"

"This groundbreaking ceremony marks more than the construction of a building," remarked Dr. Roger Strasser, Founding Dean of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. "It signifies another step in the progress of a medical school that will have a very important and positive impact on the people of Northern Ontario. Students will begin their instruction here in 2005, and in a few short years, will graduate as trained doctors, prepared to live and work in this region."

Construction is expected to be completed in time for the first students in Fall 2005.

A new medical school for the whole of Northern Ontario, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine is a joint venture of Lakehead and Laurentian Universities. With main campuses in Thunder Bay and Sudbury, it will have multiple teaching and research sites distributed across Northern Ontario, in large and small communities. The School will contribute to improving the health of people in Northern Ontario.


Contact: Tracie Smith, Northern Ontario School of Medicine, 807-766-7314
Marla Tomlinson, Lakehead University, 807-343-8177

Lakehead U Poised to Extend Research Potential

Within the next five to ten years, Lakehead University should place in the top 25 research universities in Canada. This is the vision of the new Vice-President (Research) of Lakehead U.

"By strengthening our research strongholds and motivating/involving the whole academic community, Lakehead University should be placed in the top 25 research universities in the country within the next five to ten years," says Dr. Rui Wang, who will start in his new position officially on September 1, 2004. "As well, in selected key areas, we should strive over the next few years to become internationally competitive.

Dr. Wang (pronounced "Waung") will be on campus Friday, August 20, and has time set aside to speak with the media from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m.
Please call Marla Tomlinson at 343-8177 to confirm a time with him.

"Dr. Wang is well prepared to assume the position of Vice-President (Research)," says Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University. "Dr. Wang's experience, energy, and enthusiasm will serve Lakehead well. We look forward to welcoming him to the Lakehead team."

Dr. Wang comes to Lakehead from the University of Saskatchewan, Department of Physiology, where he is a Professor and the Leader of the Cardiovascular Research Group and of the Cardiovascular and Respiratory Network. Prior to this, Dr. Wang was an Associate Professor at the University of Saskatchewan (1997 to 2001) and an Assistant Professor at the Université de Montréal (1993 to 1997). Dr. Wang is recognized as an outstanding scientist, and his research on cardiovascular physiology and pathophysiology has been well funded by CIHR, NSERC, other funding agencies, and industry. Dr. Wang is the author of two books, holds two patents, and lists 95 published papers.


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer, Lakehead University, 807-343-8177, or
Eleanor Abaya, Director, Office of Communications, Lakehead University, 807-343-8372

Lakehead’s Paleo-DNA Laboratory First University Lab Accredited for Forensic Testing

(Thunder Bay - August 13, 2004) Lakehead University's Paleo-DNA Laboratory is the first university laboratory in Canada to become accredited by the Standards Council of Canada (SCC) for Forensic DNA testing.

(L to R) Joe Comuzzi, MP Thunder Bay-Superior North and Minister of State (FedNor), Dr. Carney Matheson, Director of the Laboratory, and Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University.

"Accreditation of the Paleo-DNA Laboratory is an incredible event," says Dr. Carney Matheson, Director of the Laboratory. "Only a handful of private laboratories are accredited by the SCC for Forensic Biology/DNA testing. This is testament that our lab conducts world-class DNA and forensic research. Our state-of-the-art services and research facility, together with our highly trained staff, position the Paleo-DNA Laboratory as a world leader in forensic identification of highly degraded and difficult DNA samples."

Currently, all six RCMP laboratories and a handful of private labs are accredited for forensic biology/DNA by the SCC and conform to ISO standards ISO/IEC 17025.

"Accreditation of the Paleo-DNA Laboratory represents an important milestone for this world-class facility which has developed from the research activity of Lakehead University's faculty," says Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University. "It also signifies that intellectual property emanating from research can result in commercial and other research applications. All the individuals and supporting agencies that have helped Lakehead University achieve this success are to be thanked and congratulated."

It is important to have independent verification of quality and quality controls through accreditation in the forensic DNA and paternity testing field. Law enforcement agencies require laboratories to be accredited to maintain a level of quality of work and to sub-contract services from other laboratories. The demand for forensic services has increased over the past year as all law enforcement agencies continue to have extremely large backlogs of cases. Currently, the Laboratory continues to get numerous inquiries each month for forensic cases. The majority of these cases are from the Canadian police forces and agencies in the United States.

The Paleo-DNA Laboratory specializes in Forensic DNA testing for any type of genetic tests required for criminal and civil cases, body identification, and other forensic cases. These tests can include animal and species identification testing for conservation and wildlife forensic cases, and individual identification using STR's (Short Tandem Repeats), Y-STR's (Y chromosome Short Tandem Repeats), and mtDNA (mitochondrial DNA).

The Paleo-DNA Laboratory team has developed unique expertise in identification from extremely degraded and hard-to-obtain DNA biological materials.

For more information about the forensic, paternity, and molecular services or our many research projects being conducted at the Paleo-DNA Laboratory, visit or call (807) 343-8877 or toll free 1-866-DNA-LABS.

Members of the Media: Dr. Matheson is available for telephone interviews by calling 343-8864.


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Office of Communications, 807-343-8177

Children Learn about the Great Outdoors at Lakehead U Summer Day Camp

(Thunder Bay - Aug. 12, 2004) Thunder Bay children are getting the chance to learn first hand about the great outdoors through the Outdoor Recreation Summer Day Camp being hosted by Lakehead University students.

Fourth year Outdoor Recreation, Parks, and Tourism/Geography students Keri Molyneaux and Danielle Stothers are leading the camp during the month of August, which gives children experiences in canoeing, hiking, navigation, swimming, leadership/group dynamics, soccer, nature lessons, crafts, and many games.

"The camp is designed to give children an introduction to outdoor recreation and learn leadership skills," says Molyneaux. "The first session, which ran last week, was very successful -- the kids had lots of fun while learning important skills."

The next session is Aug. 16 to 20 for children ages 9-11. Spots are still available. For more information, call Keri or Danielle at 343-4848 for more information, or email or


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Office of Communications, 807-343-8177

Lakehead U Welcomes New Dean of Graduate and International Studies

(Thunder Bay, July 19, 2004) As the new Dean of Graduate and International Studies, Dr. Gary Boire says the first thing he wants to do is learn the cultures at Lakehead University.

"It's a mistake to think that universities are homogeneous. There are many local cultures here at the University, and I would like to learn about all of them," he says.

Dr. Boire says among several reasons for accepting the position at Lakehead are: the chance to strengthen an already strong graduate profile; meet and assist many international students; and work with highly qualified people. His personal desire to live in the north helped finalize his decision.

"My wife and I enjoy the outdoors and are avid campers, so Northwestern Ontario is ideal," he said. "That, combined with the opportunities that the University and this position offer, made Lakehead the perfect fit for me."

Dr. Boire started as Dean of Graduate and International Studies on July 1, 2004. He came to Lakehead University from Wilfrid Laurier University, where he held the position of Chair, Department of English and Film Studies for the past five years. Dr. Boire obtained his PhD in English from McMaster University in 1979. After this, Dr. Boire taught at the University of Auckland, New Zealand, until 1989, and has taught and lectured in Australia, England, Jamaica and Germany. He has participated on the Appraisal Committee-Section III, with the Ontario Council on Graduate Studies for three years, and was Chair of that Committee for the past year.

"Through my work and life experiences, I've been exposed to many people, cultures, and situations that require a multi-disciplinary approach. I feel this will serve me well in this job," he says.

He adds that the University can build on the strong undergraduate programs already offered and move in a straight line from there to Masters and PhD programs.

"We can build these graduate programs in an interdisciplinary direction. We have a superb foundation upon which to build, and this office will work hard to help various units achieve their ambitions for growth and development."

MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA are invited to speak with Dr. Boire. To set up an interview, call the Office of Graduate and International Studies at 343-8785.


Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer, Lakehead University, 807-343-8177

Grand Opening of the Tallships Adventure Learning Centre

Fred Gilbert and Sergio Buonocore
Lakehead University President Fred Gilbert, left, and Fort William Historical Park General Manager Sergio Buonocore.
Lakehead University's Department of Lifelong Learning and Fort William Historical Park hosted an event to mark the Grand Opening of the Tallships Adventure Learning Centre (TALC) on Wednesday, July 7. The event took place at the Fort's wharf area.

The TALC facility, situated within the Fort's Naval Shed and operated by the Department of Lifelong Learning, features a unique indoor challenge course program comprised of a variety of stations that challenge people to work together in order to solve physical tasks in an adventurous, fun-filled environment.

Dr. Tom Puk, Professor and Chair of the Lifelong Learning Department, designed the learning adventure facility. His inspiration for the concept is derived from the maritime activity that occurred during the fur trade era and the "tallships" (schooners) that facilitated the shipping of materials that could not be transported by birch bark canoes to the Fort.

Demo of TALC
A student demonstrates the TALC course.
The emphasis for the adventure-learning centre is the development of organizational capacity building, collaborative learning, trust building, interpersonal communications, creative problem solving, character-building, and general wellness. TALC is strategically designed to assist a variety of age groups from community organizations, businesses, institutions, and government to university/college and school students and elite sports teams.

To further highlight the maritime theme for the Grand Opening, Lakehead University President Fred Gilbert and Fort William Historical Park General Manager Sergio Buonocore arrived at the Fort's wharf via a newly constructed bateau (historic row boat) to assist in the unveiling festivities.


Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer, Lakehead University, 807-343-8177

Marty Mascarin,Communications Officer, Fort William Historical Park 807-473-2326

50 Brightest High School Students at Lakehead U for Shad Valley 2004

(Thunder Bay, June 30, 2004) Lakehead University will once again see some of the brightest young minds during Shad Valley 2004.

Some of the brightest high school students in Canada are participating in Shad Valley at Lakehead, a program geared to develop innovative leaders of tomorrow. The program runs from July 4 to 30, and Shads (participants) live in residence throughout the session.

Shad Valley puts Shads through a rigorous academic program with a focus on Engineering, Entrepreneurship, Information Technology, Medicine, and Science. During the month-long program, students attend presentations on various topics, participate in workshops, and complete projects in different areas. Aside from visiting local industrial sites such as Bombardier and Bowater, participants will also be engaged in recreational activities aimed at team-building and developing leadership skills.

Supported by over 150 supporters, partners, sponsors, and donors, the Shad Valley program is delivered through the involvement of many people from the University and the local community. The program is immensely successful and popular. Nine other Canadian universities host Shad Valley.

MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA are invited to the Opening Ceremonies on Monday, July 5 at 9:30 a.m. in ATAC 1003.

On Fridays, a schedule of the next week's Shad events will be faxed to the media.
For further information and a schedule of events, please contact Shad Valley 2004 organizers Dr. Sultan Siddiqui, Program Director, Faculty of Engineering, at 343-8794, and Mr. Lynne Sevean, Program Manager, Faculty of Forestry and Forest Environment at 343-8301.

Contact Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer, Lakehead University, 343-8177

Lakehead U Receives Major Research Boost from the CFI

(Thunder Bay - June 30, 2004) Two Lakehead University researchers have been honoured by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). Dr. Andrew Conly and Dr. Baoqiang Liao each received a CFI New Opportunities Grant to support their research efforts.

Dr. Conly, with the Geology Department, is receiving $ 125,914 for an infra-red (IR) spectroscopy and hydrothermal experimental facility and Dr. Liao, with the Chemical Engineering Department, is receiving $73,588 for a laboratory for particle science and technology.

Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University, says, "Lakehead prides itself on its excellence in research, and our new CFI grant holders are two more examples of the high quality of faculty researchers at the University."

"These CFI investments will provide world-class facilities and cutting edge tools for Canadian researchers examining complex issues that are of critical importance to the province of Ontario and the rest of Canada," said Carmen Charette, Interim President and CEO of the CFI. "It will also enable outstanding researchers to provide the training and mentoring required by the next generation."

Total investments, approved by the CFI Board of Directors on June 15, 2004, to support 124 projects involving 140 researchers at 40 research institutions have been awarded through two funds: $18.3 million under the New Opportunities Fund (NOF); and $5.5 million under the Infrastructure Operating Fund (IOF). A complete list of New Opportunities Fund projects, by university, can be found at:

The CFI's New Opportunities Fund (NOF) enables eligible universities to provide research infrastructure for newly recruited faculty members, in their first full-time academic appointment in Canadian degree-granting institutions, so that these researchers can undertake leading-edge research. The fund also enables institutions to recruit new faculty members in the areas of research identified as priorities in their strategic research plans. The CFI's Infrastructure Operating Fund (IOF) helps with operating and maintenance costs associated with new infrastructure projects.

Infra-Red (IR) Spectroscopy and Hydrothermal Experimental Facility
Dr. Conly's funding will go towards infrastructure for the IR Spectroscopy and Hydrothermal Experimental facility. This facility is a modern, state-of-the-art experimental and microanalytical laboratory for applied and pure research into the nature of fluid-rock reactions responsible for the formation of mineral deposits, and for the generation of contaminated mine waters. Such research will serve to enhance the stainable development of Northwestern Ontario's mineral resources. However, the facility will also benefit research in the general areas of chemical and material sciences.

For more information on this project, please call Dr. Conly at 343-8463.

Laboratory for Particle Science and Technology
Dr. Liao's funding will go towards infrastructure for the Laboratory for Particle Science and Technology. This laboratory will conduct cutting-edge research in the field of particle science and technology in the micro- and nano-scale. This laboratory is a timely response to the rapid growth of micro- and nano-particle technology, and to the urgent demands of environmental pollution control, pulp and paper processing, and mineral processing in Northwestern Ontario -- and Canada -- for innovative particle technologies. Specific emphasis of this lab will be placed on the emerging, yet poorly reserached, area of micro- and nano-scale particle technology in aquatic environments.

For more information on this project, please call Dr. Liao at 343-8437.

The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) is an independent corporation created in 1997 by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI's mandate is to strengthen the ability of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and other non-profit institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that will benefit Canadians.


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Office of Communications, Lakehead University, 807-343-8177.

Valérie Poulin, Coordinator, Media Relations, Canada Foundation for Innovation, (613) 996-3160

Lakehead U Education Expert Appointed by CIDA to the Kosovo Educator Development Project

(Thunder Bay - June 23, 2004) A Lakehead University Associate Professor of History Education has been selected to support Kosovar Educators in advancing the educational reform process.

Dr. Walter Epp has been seconded for the 2004/2005 academic year by the University of Calgary and the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) for the Kosovo Educator Development Project (KEDP). KEDP, which started in June 2001, is funded by CIDA and implemented by the University of Calgary and Universalia (a management consultation firm based in Montreal and Ottawa)

KEDP contributes to the development of an inclusive, learner-centered education system in Kosovo that models respect and peaceful co-existence. The Project is designed to help rebuild the Kosovo education system at all levels - from elementary to university. It also focuses on cooperation with the Kosovo Department of Education.

Major components of KEDP include developing an enabling environment for Kosovar educators to teach; training for teachers and other educators currently working in schools; and developing a Faculty of Education to support teacher training. As well, KEDP looks at regional programming to link Kosovars with educators in the Balkans and throughout Europe.

In his work for KEDP, Dr. Epp will be the senior advisor to the Deans of the Faculties of Education at the Universities of Pristina and Mitrovica as they move toward European standards in teacher education.

"Educational reform is an essential component of the accommodation necessary to move Kosovo, presently under UN Administration, towards political resolution," says Dr. Epp. "Canadians enjoy enormous respect in the region, and it is an honour to be selected to be part of Team Canada in doing what Canadians do best - Peace Keeping - and this project represents advanced Peace Keeping."

Dr. Epp is spending the spending the month of June in Kosovo and will return to Canada for July and August. He will be in Kosovo for portions of the 2004/2005 academic year. During the time he is in Canada, Dr. Epp will be available for lectures on Canadian International Development issues and the evolving developments in Kosovo.

MEMBERS OF THE MEDIA: Dr. Epp is available while in Kosovo for phone or email interviews. He can be reached by phone by dialling 00-377-445-013-82 or by email at


Contact: Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer, Lakehead University, 343-8177