Lakehead University’s Report to the Community celebrates alumni, researchers

Photo of people being interviewed

From left, host Madison Sameshima interviews Dr. Kathryn Sinden, Regan Bolduc, and Sara Sayed.

November 27, 2019 – Thunder Bay, Ont.

Lakehead University’s Report to the Community luncheon, held on November 27 at the Valhalla Inn ballroom, introduced more than 300 guests to researchers and alumni who are doing exciting work that is making an impact within the university and beyond.

The first guest was Alex Bilyk, a PhD student who helped design the drone challenge in the Thunder Bay episode of The Amazing Race Canada that aired on CTV in August.

Bilyk described working with the crew from The Amazing Race Canada and the drone challenge that producers used on the Thunder Bay episode. He spent Mother’s Day weekend filming and kept it secret from his family and friends until the episode aired.

Next up was Dr. Kathryn Sinden, a Lakehead assistant professor of Kinesiology, firefighter Regan Bolduc, a Lakehead Honours Bachelor of Kinesiology graduate and co-chair of Thunder Bay Fire Rescue’s Critical Incident Response Team, and Sara Sayed, a Lakehead Master of Science graduate, who discussed their research into post-traumatic stress in Thunder Bay firefighters.

Using wearable technology, they demonstrated the insight that they can gain while firefighters do a lift using a manikin.

The final guest was Peter Cameron, an Education alumnus who is a Grade 5/6 teacher at St. Elizabeth’s School in Thunder Bay. Cameron co-founded Make a Difference – Professional Development, bringing together educators from around the world to share one idea that makes a difference in their classroom.

In 2019, he was chosen as a National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher Fellow – along with 44 other highly respected educators – in recognition of his commitment to geographic education.

When Cameron graduated from Lakehead’s Faculty of Education in 1994, he never dreamed he’d have the opportunity to travel aboard the National Geographic Quest ship in Alaska. During his talk, he also described how technology allowed him to connect with students in ways he never imagined.

Madison Sameshima, a student in Lakehead’s Master of Science in Management program, was the master of ceremonies for the annual luncheon.

Some milestones that were celebrated at the luncheon included being named ‘Research University of the Year’ in the undergraduate category for the fifth year in a row by Research Infosource and being included among Canada’s Top 10 primarily undergraduate universities by Maclean’s 2020 University Rankings.

“Today was an opportunity to meet some of the people who learn, teach, and advance research, scholarly and creative work at Lakehead—each empowering themselves and our learners to become the next generation of leaders,” said Dr. Moira McPherson, Lakehead’s President & Vice-Chancellor.

“This year’s Annual Report shows the exceptional impact our students, faculty, and alumni are having on the economy and society,” Dr. McPherson added.

Lakehead also celebrated the incredible financial impact it has on the province. Lakehead University adds approximately $1.4 billion per year to Ontario’s gross domestic product. The annual economic impact of Lakehead Thunder Bay on the province was $1.3 billion, while Lakehead Orillia contributed $122.7 million. Lakehead University is responsible for 6,277 full-time equivalent jobs.

“The Report to the Community is a chance to celebrate the year’s successes and connect with the communities within Northwestern Ontario and Simcoe County,” said Ross Murray, Q.C., Chair of Lakehead University’s Board of Governors.

Visit to view Lakehead University’s 2018-2019 Report to the Community.






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Lakehead University has approximately 9,700 full-time equivalent students and 2,000 faculty and staff in 10 faculties at two campuses in Orillia and Thunder Bay, Ontario. Lakehead is a fully comprehensive university: home to Ontario’s newest Faculty of Law in 44 years, the Northern Ontario School of Medicine, and faculties of Engineering, Business Administration, Health & Behavioural Sciences, Social Sciences & Humanities, Science & Environmental Studies, Natural Resources Management, Education, and Graduate Studies. Maclean’s 2019 University Rankings place Lakehead University among Canada's Top 10 primarily undergraduate universities and in 2018 Research Infosource named Lakehead Research University of the Year in its category for the fourth consecutive year. Visit