Mozart Opera Excerpts Performed at Lakehead University March 14 & 15

(March 10, 2009 --Thunder Bay, ON) On March 14 and 15 Lakehead's Department of Music will perform scenes from Mozart's operas, The Marriage of Figaro and Così Fan Tutte. This is the second of the Opera Studio performances, following last year's sold-out performance of Henry Purcell's Dido and Aeneas.

The Marriage of Figaro is a tale of love, infidelity, and mistaken identity. Premiering first in Vienna in 1786, with Mozart himself as the director, the opera is now regarded as a cornerstone of the standard operatic repertoire, the sixth most-performed opera in North America. The action of The Marriage of Figaro recounts a single day in the palace of the Count Almaviva in Spain.

The play was banned in Vienna because of its satire of the aristocracy, a theme that made many feel uncomfortable in the decade leading up to the French revolution. In spite of the controversial nature of the original stage play, Figaro has become one of Mozart's most loved, and one of the most performed operas in the repertoire.

Così Fan Tutte, which translates as "Women are like that," or "The School for Lovers," is based on a wager that all women are fickle, and it revolves around the relationships between two couples and the ease at which women become unfaithful to their lovers.

Dr. Dean Jobin-Bevans, director of the Lakehead University Opera Studio says, "Mozart composed these operas while he was at the height of his musical genius. He enjoyed creating these young lovelorn characters, and putting them in impossible situations just to see what might happen, and the music captures this comic aspect." He explains, "As a musical form, opera includes elements of singing, drama, movement and dance, and has been called the ultimate art form, and it is an important part of a singer's training."

The performance of Mozart scenes is a co-production between the Department of Music, and the Department of Visual Arts. Katelynn Clarey, an undergraduate from the Department of Visual Arts, has designed several static prop elements and canvases that are a part of the production. The operas feature Maria Tassone who plays Susanna, singing, "Siunse alfin il momento...Deh vieni, non taddar," Mary Armstrong, who plays Cherubino, singing, "Voi, che sapete," and Mike Mason, who plays Figaro, singing, "Non piu andrai."

The Lakehead University Opera Studio's production of Mozart scenes are the only live, fully staged performances of opera in Thunder Bay. Sung in both English and Italian, these performances are a perfect introduction to opera for the newbie and a refresher for experienced opera lovers.

Performances take place Saturday, March 14 at 8:00 p.m., and Sunday, March 15 at 3:00 p.m. at the Bora Laskin Theatre. Tickets are $15 at the door or in advance by calling 343-8787.

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Media: Dr. Dean Jobin-Bevans is available for media interviews. For more information contact Lisa Pelot, Communications Officer, at 343-8177, or commun@lakeheadu.ca

About Lakehead

Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,900 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Christmas Comes Early for Local Family: Hammarskjold student wins first year tuition prize from Lakehead U

(December 17, 2009 - Thunder Bay, ON) Daniel Carlson is one lucky guy! Among more than 600 students from Thunder Bay and surrounding areas, Daniel, a Grade 12 student from Hammarskjold High School, won the "First Year Tuition Prize" compliments of Lakehead University's Office of Student Affairs at the institution's recent Fall Preview Day event. The annual event is coordinated by the Office of Admissions and Recruitment, with participation from various University faculties, departments, student groups, and student volunteers.


Daniel Carlson with Dr. Laurie Hayes, Vice-President (Academic) & Provost

"Lakehead is a very generous institution when it comes to providing financial support to its students," says Vice-Provost (Student Affairs) Marian Ryks-Szelekovszky. "We understand the financial concerns that go hand-in-hand with paying for post-secondary education and we value the opportunity to alleviate some of these concerns." She adds that offering the First Year Tuition Prize at the annual Fall Preview Day is an excellent way to reward one lucky prospective student for getting more involved in the process of choosing a program and applying to university.

Daniel has been intent on attending Lakehead for some time. He chose Lakehead because he can stay in Thunder Bay with his family and friends, and because it offers the programs he's interested in taking. "I'm pumped," Carlson says. "Lakehead is a great school and I'm already looking forward to next fall."

"We have twin sons," explains Lyal Carlson, Daniel's father. "Affording tuition for kids can always be difficult to plan for, but with Daniel and his brother Steve, we are faced with twice the tuition at one time." Needless to say, Daniel's parents feel like Christmas has come early to their household and they can't thank University officials enough for this very generous gift. "Just the other day, Lyal and I were talking about how we're going to manage tuition for both of our boys," adds Daniel's mother, Lorraine Campbell. "Then, lo and behold, we came home from work to find a gigantic cheque from Lakehead on our kitchen table, and it had Daniel's name on it! This will definitely make life a little easier next year."

With his first year of tuition taken care of, Daniel doesn't have to worry so much about working a part-time job to help his parents offset education costs. "I really want to thank all the Lakehead employees who had a hand in contributing to this prize," Daniel says. "It's awesome, but I'm still trying to process the fact that I won it."
Prospective university students can learn more about Lakehead and its program offerings at mylakehead.ca.
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Media: Daniel Carlson is available for media interview from 11:00 a.m. - 12 noon at Hammarskjold High School, and after 4:00 p.m. at his home. He can be reached directly at
807-621-6482 (cell) or 807-768-1512 (home). Marian Ryks-Szelekovszky is also available from 3:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. For more information or to arrange interview times with Marian, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177, commun@lakeheadu.ca; or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807-343-8372 or eabaya@lakeheadu.ca.

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Lakehead Researcher Awarded CFI Funding: Laboratory upgrades foster research to protect Canada’s waterways

(December 16, 2009 - Thunder Bay, ON) Lakehead University researcher, Dr. David Law, has been awarded a Leaders Opportunity Fund valued at $171,621 by the Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI). Funding will offset costs associated with upgrading equipment and aquatic facilities in the Lakehead University Aquatic Research Laboratory, where Dr. Law and his colleagues conduct research to help protect the health of Canadian waterways.

Collectively, Dr. Law and his fellow researchers are interested in identifying compounds in wastewater from pulp and paper and mining operations - compounds that can reduce the reproductive abilities of fish. "By monitoring fish behaviour and gene expression, we can determine the critical concentrations of these compounds in the aquatic environment," Dr. Law explains. "The impacts of these compounds on fish and other species living near industries that discharge wastewater into Canadian waterways can then be identified, reported, and dealt with accordingly.

In welcoming this investment, University researchers and Administration recognize the very prominent role the CFI plays in supporting the continued growth and improvement of Lakehead's various research facilities, and the impacts that arise as a result of the funding the CFI provides. "The work that Dr. Law and his colleagues are conducting in the Aquatic Research Lab will be extremely helpful to many widespread industry-based organizations as they embrace more environmentally accountable approaches in their respective operations," says Dr. Rui Wang, Vice-President (Research), Lakehead University. This research will be especially valuable to the region given the high number of mills and plants operating in Northwestern Ontario.

The CFI continues to support cutting-edge research infrastructure that helps stimulate various sectors of our economy associated with such capital projects. It is estimated that every dollar invested directly in research yields over $7 in economic benefits including spin-off jobs.

"The investments being announced today at Lakehead University will further enhance our country's reputation as a destination of choice for outstanding researchers," says Dr. Eliot Phillipson, President and CEO of the CFI. "They will make our universities even more competitive when it comes to attracting the best and brightest researchers from around the world."

Bruce Hyer, MP for Thunder Bay - Superior North, recognizes the leading role Lakehead University plays in developing and commercializing innovative technologies that contribute to the local economic diversification. "We are especially fortunate to have an aquatic research centre of such excellence in our region, one that has developed tools for both improving productivity and protecting the environment," Hyer notes. "Having pioneered the acute test, now used across Canada for monitoring environmental discharges, this new funding will help Lakehead facilities maintain the lead in aquatic research."

The CFI announced a total of $59,394,902 in new funds to support 262 projects at 40 institutions across Canada. The investment was approved by the CFI's Board of Directors in November 17, 2009, following a rigorous merit-review process. A total of $45,688,386 was awarded under the Leaders Opportunity Fund, which provides infrastructure support to Canadian institutions so they can attract and retain the very best of today and tomorrow's leading researchers at a time of intense international competition for knowledge workers. The remaining $13,706,516 was awarded under the Infrastructure Operating Fund, a complementary program that assists research institutions with the incremental operating and maintenance costs associated with new infrastructure projects.

For a complete list of the projects awarded, please visit www.innovation.ca.

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Media: Drs. Wang and Law are available for media interview. To arrange interview times, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177 or commun@lakeheadu.ca; or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807-343-8372 or eabaya@lakeheadu.ca.

Bruce Hyer is also available for interview and can be reached via 613-996-4792.

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

About the CFI:
The Canada Foundation for Innovation (CFI) is an independent corporation created by the Government of Canada to fund research infrastructure. The CFI's mandate is to strengthen the capacity of Canadian universities, colleges, research hospitals, and non-profit research institutions to carry out world-class research and technology development that benefits Canadians. Since its creation in 1997, the CFI has committed almost $5.2 billion in support of more than 6,300 projects at 130 institutions in 65 municipalities across Canada.

First Century Burial Shroud and Disease Found in Jerusalem Tomb

(December 16, 2009 - Thunder Bay, ON) Dr. Carney Matheson, Scientific Officer of the Lakehead University Paleo-DNA Laboratory as well as Anthropology Professor at Lakehead, is involved in another investigation of ancient DNA that could have significant implications. Dr. Matheson co-authored a new research paper that has just been published in PLoS ONE, a scientific journal published by the Public Library of Science. The paper presents scientific research conducted on "The Tomb of the Shroud," - a tomb found in Jerusalem dating back to the time of Jesus.

This rock-hewn burial cave, originally discovered by an archaeological team led by Shimon Gibson, Boaz Zissu, and James Tabor, belongs to a cemetery known as Akeldama or "Field of Blood," as described in the Bible (cf. Matthew 27:3-8; Acts 1:19), and located in the lower Hinnom Valley in Jerusalem. In comparison to more than 70 other tombs in the Akeldama area, this particular tomb is unique as it contains remnants of a burial shroud and evidence of leprosy (Hansen's disease) and tuberculosis in the shrouded male remains within it. This is the oldest known case of leprosy with confirmed dates and molecular evidence. Some of the other individuals in this multi-chambered tomb showed signs of tuberculosis, and ancient human DNA was detected to piece together the family relationships.

The molecular investigation of the first century shrouded man was led by Professor Charles Greenblatt of the Hebrew University, first conducted at the Hebrew University's Kuvin Centre for Tropical and Infectious Disease and later replicated at Lakehead University's Paleo-DNA Laboratory. Additional work was conducted by Helen Donoghue at the London -based University College's Centre for Infectious Diseases and International Health.

Remarkably, no other first century tomb from Jerusalem had hitherto been examined by molecular methods. "The discovery of the presence of M. tuberculosis and M. leprae in the individuals buried within the "Tomb of the Shroud" is significant in understanding the geographical and temporal distribution of tuberculosis and leprosy in antiquity," explains Dr. Matheson. "This research is evidence that molecular pathology clearly adds a new dimension to the archaeological exploration of disease in ancient times, and it showcases the world-class forensic work on ancient human DNA undertaken at Lakehead's Paleo-DNA laboratory."

The successful genetic analysis of unique archaeological sites such as "Tomb of the Shroud" poses great promise for future investigations into host-pathogen relationships and evolution, geographic distribution, and epidemiology of disease and social health in antiquity.

Click here to read the research paper in full.

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Media: Please note that this information has been released following embargo requests from international media. However, Dr. Matheson is not available for face-to-face media interview until December 19 when he returns to Thunder Bay from a research expedition. Until that time, he will be returning calls and emails from Havana when possible. His Havana-based telephone number is 011-537-838-0294 (room 302) and he can be reached from 7:00 a.m. - 8:00 a.m., as well as 9:30 p.m. - 10:30 p.m. daily. He'll also be checking emails sent to his cmatheso@lakeheadu.ca account at 8:30 a.m. and 9:00 p.m. daily. As of December 19, Dr. Matheson can be reached in Thunder Bay at 807-577-8393. For more information, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177, commun@lakeheadu.ca; or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807-343-8372 or eabaya@lakeheadu.ca.

About Lakehead University and its Paleo-DNA Laboratory
Lakehead is a comprehensive University with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. The Paleo-DNA Laboratory is a leader in human mitochondrial DNA analysis. The only Canadian university laboratory accredited by ISO17025 for forensic DNA testing, it is known for its commitment to education, research, services, training, quality assurance and control standards, and reliable results. Established in 1996, it was the first to offer a DNA training course emphasizing mitochondrial DNA analysis, and one of the first Canadian laboratories to develop mitochondrial DNA analysis techniques. Every spring, students from across the globe travel to Thunder Bay, Ontario, to receive specialized training in mitochondrial DNA methods. Lakehead University's Paleo-DNA Laboratory is the only facility in the world that offers this training program. For more information on Lakehead's Paleo-DNA Laboratory, please visit www.ancientdna.com.

About PLos ONE
PLoS ONE is the first journal of primary research from all areas of science to employ a combination of peer review and post-publication rating and commenting, to maximize the impact of every report it publishes. PLoS ONE is published by the Public Library of Science (PLoS), the open-access publisher whose goal is to make the world's scientific and medical literature a public resource.


Lakehead University Unveils BRI Laboratories: Research processes lead to a greener tomorrow

(December 4, 2009 --Thunder Bay, ON) Today, Lakehead University officials and representatives from funding and government agencies celebrated the grand opening of the University's Biorefining Research Initiative (BRI) laboratories, a project that recently put the finishing touches on a number of state-of-the-art laboratories housed at 1294 Balmoral Street.

"Lakehead University is extremely grateful to the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corporation (NOHFC) and FedNor for the funding each agency provided in the reconstruction and furnishing of these facilities, and in helping bring this project to fruition," explains Dr. Robert Dekker, Director of Lakehead's BRI.

Biorefinery facilities are especially valuable in accordance with environmentally focused processes and energy production. Renewable plant cellulosic materials, more commonly referred to as biomass, play a leading role in replacing chemicals - such as crude oil - which are presently produced from fossil oil at petrochemical refineries.

"The research to be conducted as part of Lakehead University's Biorefining Research Initiative at this new facility will be invaluable in a time of transformation in our province's forest industry," says Michael Gravelle, Minister of Northern Development, Mines and Forestry, and Chair of the NOHFC. "I'm very pleased that our government, through the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund, has invested $1 million toward buying equipment and renovating the lab to suit the BRI's needs.

Lakehead University's BRI considers the economic benefits of moving away from fossil fuels and harvesting bioenergy from products found within our forest ecosystems. The research conducted within Lakehead's BRI Labs, facilities which are unique to the region, focus on three major streams of forest biomass biorefining. Streams include bioconversion*, chemical conversion**, and forest microbiota conversion***.

"Lakehead's name is quickly becoming a fixture on the international research stage. Because of the support we have received on this project, three BRI scientists and more than 10 highly qualified researchers will have the opportunity to conduct competitive, valuable, cutting-edge research in these new, top-notch facilities," states Dr. Rui Wang, Vice-President (Research), Lakehead University. Dr. Wang adds that another Post-Doc Fellow and three additional PhD students will arrive early next year.

By taking advantage of all aspects of biorefining, Lakehead University's BRI aims to develop new, transformative technologies that will generate new business and employment ventures through biorefinery processes; create value-added products from renewable forest biomass resources in a sustainable manner; and ultimately reduce dependence on fossil fuels, thereby mitigating future greenhouse gas emissions.

Specialty equipment including a dedicated chromatograph for sugars analysis, a fermenter to grow microorganisms for production of enzymes and chemicals, and molecular biology equipment for cloning and expression of genes for cellulases is ready for use in the new labs.

Regarding the completion of building work, Drs. Wang, Dekker, and other members of Lakehead's Administration acknowledge the hard work and efficiency of Pradal and its subcontractors for the electrical and plumbing work undertaken throughout the new laboratory spaces, of Profor Engineering Services Ltd. for architectural input, and last but not least, of the University's Physical Plant staff in working to plan, re-design, and refurbish the labs.

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*Bioconversion: conversion of cellulose in forest biomass into biofuels (ethanol, methane), and other bio-based chemicals, bioenergy (biomass as an energy source in power generation)

**Chemical Conversion: production of low-valued, high-volume commodity chemicals from forest biomass by thermochemical processes

***Forest Microbiota: high-valued chemicals including pharmaceuticals, enzymes, and microbial agents for bioremediation

Media: Drs. Wang and Dekker are available for media interview. For more information or to arrange interview times, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177, commun@lakeheadu.ca; or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807-343-8372, eabaya@lakeheadu.ca.

About Lakehead

Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Lakehead's 2009 Fall Preview Day Opens Doors to Prospective Students

(December 3, 2009 --Thunder Bay, ON) Lakehead University is pleased to welcome hundreds of prospective students from around the city and region, alongside their families and friends, to Fall Preview Day which takes place across various campus areas on Friday, December 4. One lucky student who attends this informative event will have a chance to win his or her first year of Lakehead tuition - compliments of the University's Office of Student Affairs.

"This day is open to all students who are interested in learning more about Lakehead University and the many wonderful educational opportunities it offers," explains Brianne Kirkpatrick, Regional Recruitment Officer.

Fall Preview Day is an annual opportunity for prospective students to interact with Lakehead University faculty and staff, explore the campus, and gain an intimate understanding of Lakehead's programs and student service offerings.

"The schedule for this year's event offers improved flexibility," Kirkpatrick adds. Students, family, and friends will have the opportunity to customize their day and choose from a wide variety of activities, hands-on interactive sessions hosted by various departments, and information sessions categorized by academic major. Attendees can also learn about international exchange opportunities, staying active on campus, how to prepare for medical school or graduate studies, as well as opportunities for online and distance learning.

A group of specially designed "Family and Friends" sessions provide valuable information to family members, guardians, and supporters of prospective students, and offer guidance and tips for use when completing and submitting university applications in future. Attendees can also opt to take a campus tour, visit the Faculty Information Fair and Student Life Expo, or enjoy lunch in the University's main cafeteria.

The Fall Preview Day schedule and registration are available online at www.mylakehead.ca.

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Media: Brianne Kirkpatrick is available for media interview. To arrange interview times, please contact Brianne directly at 807-346-7877 or 807-251-7333.

Excellent photo opportunities are available at various Fall Preview Day activities including:

11:30 a.m. and 12:30 p.m.
Bioinformatics Interactive Session - How Flu Drugs Work
Virtual Reality Lab, ATAC 5040

11:45 a.m. and 12:45 p.m.
Bioinformatics Interactive Session - Extracting DNA from a Banana
CB 2050

12:30 p.m.
Engineering Interactive Session - Lakehead's 2009 Award Winning Student Steel Bridge
CB 1044

2:00 p.m. - 2:15 p.m.
First Year Free tuition Giveaway
Outpost

Heather Scott, Communications Officer (807-343-8177 or commun@lakeheadu.ca), and Eleanor Abaya, Director of Communications (807-343-8372 or eabaya@lakeheadu.ca) are available if more information is required.

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Lakehead Joins Ontario-wide University Stance on Sustainability

(November 26, 2009 --Thunder Bay, ON) Lakehead is one of 22 Ontario higher education institutions that have signed on to a widely spanned effort to increase campus sustainability measures, continuing to uphold its commitment to use greener, more environmentally friendly options in its daily University operations.

Today at Queen's Park, the Council of Ontario Universities (COU), on behalf of these 22 institutions, provided copies of the Green Pledge and Summary of Green Initiatives to John Milloy, Minister of Training, Colleges and Universities, and John Gerretsen, Minister of the Environment for Ontario.

The Ontario university community is deeply aware of the challenges that face the world arising from climate change and the degradation of natural environments. These institutions have accepted this special responsibility on three scores which include assisting in ?nding solutions to the challenges of environmental sustainability; sharing knowledge about sustainability and climate change; and incorporating, wherever possible, principles of sustainability into their own operations.

Ontario universities, ranging in size from small and rural institutions to large and urban ones, began work on the creation of sustainable campuses many years ago, and continue to demonstrate leadership in advancing a greener world.

"Lakehead takes pride in the steps it has taken to improve upon current operations to protect the environment," says Michael Pawlowski, Lakehead University's Vice-President (Administration and Finance). "We, like many other universities around Ontario, are holding ourselves accountable to improve upon the methodologies and resources involved in operating from day to day, and we're incorporating green measures and/or alternatives whenever possible."

Pawlowski credits Lakehead's Sustainability Committee, with representation from students, faculty, and staff, with the initiative and drive shown in providing and promoting environmentally friendly channels across Lakehead's Thunder Bay campus. Lakehead's Administration has recognized noticeable improvements in energy consumption to date, and looks forward to reporting additional positive impacts in future.

Foremost among Lakehead's sustainability efforts are the building of its Orillia permanent campus to LEED Platinum standards, and the retrofitting of its HVAC systems in the Thunder Bay campus. These have resulted in annual natural gas consumption savings of 40% and electricity savings of 18%, figures which convert to approximately $1.2 million in savings annually. In 2008, Lakehead University received a certificate of recognition from Peter Love, Ontario's Chief Energy Conservation Officer with the Ontario Power Authority (OPA).

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Media: Michael Pawlowski is available for media interview from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. today. To arrange interview times, please contact Communications Officer Heather Scott at 807-343-8177 or commun@lakeheadu.ca; or Director of Communications Eleanor Abaya at 807-343-8372 or eabaya@lakeheadu.ca.

About Lakehead
Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Awards Recognize Geology Student's Dedication to Academics and Community

(November 24, 2009 - Thunder Bay, ON) Third-year geology student Katarina Bjorkman has recently received two awards totalling $5,500 in recognition of both her academic and community-based achievements.

A one-time award of $4,500 as a Laureate of the esteemed 2009/2010 Millennium Excellence In-Course Award Program is a marvellous gift. The award recognizes, supports, and encourages talented Canadians who make positive and significant contributions to the betterment of their communities. It showcases those who demonstrate a capacity for leadership, and commit themselves to the pursuit of academic excellence and innovation. In addition to undertaking various leadership and community service roles during her high school years, this high-achiever also adopted a nurturing role in her hometown, located in the Sapawe area - approximately 30 minutes northeast of Atikokan. Here, Katarina took care of her neighbours and those in need. She gardened, shovelled snow, raked leaves, split wood, and completed general household chores for widows and elderly couples who needed a helping hand. "These folks have come into my life because they've trusted me enough to make me an important part of their lives. It's great to feel like I'm really making a difference. I enjoy helping people. They are part of my life - I love them and they know it." This award also recognizes Katarina's role in organizing, coordinating, and leading staking and prospecting contracts.

Bjorkman was also awarded $1,000 from the Women's Association of the Mining Industry of Canada. This award is presented annually to a third or fourth-year undergraduate student enrolled in programs including mining, metallurgy, geology, geophysics, geological engineering, or related studies in earth sciences at an accredited Canadian university. The successful awardee must also have attained an average mark of 85% or higher.

In her final year of high school, Katarina was in line for some highly sought after scholarships, including the Governor General's Medal for Academic Excellence and a substantial entrance award from Lakehead University. But, life took her down a different path and she decided not to enrol in higher education immediately after graduating high school. "I've always loved learning and being involved in the academic environment," explains the 27-year-old award recipient. "But, when it was time for me to decide what to do with my life after high school, I just wasn't ready to enrol - in anything or at any school. I knew Geology was the right fit for me, and I couldn't wait to get out into nature to start working."

Years ago, Katarina's father left his career in the Hydro field to pursue contracting work, subsequently became interested in prospecting, and soon started a family tradition as Katarina also flourished in her role as a prospector and claim staker for seven years following her high school graduation. She was contracted by various exploration companies around Northwestern Ontario, and even the Northwest Territories, Nunavut, Sweden, and Norway. Bjorkman loved her line of work from the onset. "I love our land - the rocks, blue lakes, forests, the physical exertion, and I love the search for minerals."

Katarina couldn't be happier now that she's back in the academic realm - studying a subject she is so passionate about. She may explore future academic goals, but plans to work in exploration once again immediately following completion of her undergraduate degree. She eagerly awaits the arrival of spring 2010 when she'll have a chance to get back to nature - full-time. For now though, Katarina is happy to have received this recognition and the financial support that accompanies it, and will use the money from both awards to cover this year's tuition costs

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Media: Katarina Bjorkman is available for interview after 12:00 noon on November 24. To arrange interview times, please contact Katarina directly at 807-983-2358 (home) or 807-251-6595 (cell). If needed, Heather Scott, Lakehead University Communications Officer, can be reached for more information at 807-343-8177, 807-472-9113, or commun@lakeheadu.ca.

About Lakehead

Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

Lakehead Students Extend Entrepreneurial Guidance to Community

(November 18, 2009 --Thunder Bay, ON) From November 16 - 22, members of Students in Free Enterprise (SIFE) Lakehead are celebrating Global Entrepreneurship Week, a worldwide movement that celebrates and promotes entrepreneurship in more than 85 countries. This event will be celebrated through a series of SIFE-coordinated activities.

SIFE Lakehead, formerly known as ACE Lakehead, seeks to represent a global expression of entrepreneurship, and in so doing has rebranded itself in an effort to connect with other SIFE groups outside of Canada. This year SIFE Lakehead has 20 active members.
Included in this week's exciting line-up of local entrepreneurial-related events are the launches of two initiatives on November 20, including the Aboriginal Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative, and the Financial Literacy Project.

The Aboriginal Youth Entrepreneurship Initiative is a mentoring program supported by the Martin Aboriginal Education Initiative (as established by former Prime Minister Paul Martin). Local efforts have been coordinated through contacts at the Northern Nishnawbe Education Council, and delivered specifically through Dennis Franklin Cromarty High School. "Six of our SIFE members will work with Aboriginal youth at Cromarty throughout the year and we're hoping the experience empowers students. We want to give them the knowledge and tools necessary to find success in their academic and career endeavours," explains Kaniz Mouli, SIFE Lakehead Co-President. "The overall goal of this program is to encourage the youth we interact with to stay in school and to develop the attitudes, knowledge, and skills they'll need to achieve success after they graduate from high school," adds second Co-President Madora Day. "Whether facing tasks at work, with future education and/or training, or just with daily life in general, these basic entrepreneurial skills will encourage students to embrace concepts that are integral to achieving success." SIFE members will guide Aboriginal students in the development of business plans and websites, and will assist with projects involving costing, marketing, and budgeting.

At no charge to all members of the community, the Financial Literacy Project offers workshops presented by SIFE's Money Matters Team, during which financial literacy and financial responsibility are discussed. This initiative is offered as a seminar with discussion focused on budgeting and credit, and asks participants to track their expenses for the duration of the month. Monthly visits by members of the Money Matters Team will ensure progress continues as tracked expenses are reviewed and analyzed, and changes made in order to help participants develop and maintain an effective budget. A workshop takes place at 1:00 p.m. on Friday, November 20, in Lakehead's Ryan Building, room 1024. It will be open to all students and members of the public.

"SIFE Lakehead is uniquely positioned this year to make a meaningful and lasting impact through its projects," notes Ken Hartviksen, named "John Dobson ACE Fellow" in accordance to his role as Faculty Advisor for SIFE Lakehead. "Our SIFE leadership is building on successes from last year's regional and national levels."

SIFE will also have a booth set up outside of the Outpost on November 18, at which interested parties can obtain more information about SIFE's community-based activities. SIFE is interested to learn perspectives on entrepreneurship and welcome viewpoints from members of the University and Thunder Bay communities. Those who visit the booth will be entered in a draw for prizes.

SIFE members receive guidance from Ken Hartviksen. They are also counselled and directed by a formal Business Advisory Board (BAB) comprising Chair and local business person Dan Stezenko (Lakehead alumnus and former Lakehead Entrepreneurship Club President) of Quality Market, Deputy Chair Barb Eccles of Lakehead University's Innovation Management Office, and Deputy Chair Royden Potvin of Thunder Bay Ventures, among others.

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Media:To arrange interview times with Madora Day, Kaniz Mouli, or Ken Hartviksen, please contact each person directly at 807-476-5554, 807-472-4413, or 807-343-8497 respectively. Madora and Kaniz are available from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m. on November 18, and Ken has wide availability all day (except from 1:00 p.m. - 2:30 p.m.).

About Lakehead

Lakehead is a comprehensive university with a reputation for innovative programs and cutting-edge research. With a main campus located in Thunder Bay, Ontario and a campus in Orillia, Ontario, Lakehead has over 7,700 students and 2,250 faculty and staff, and is home to the west campus of the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. In 2006, Research Infosource Inc. named Lakehead University Canada's Research University of the Year in the undergraduate category. For more information on Lakehead University, visit www.lakeheadu.ca

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