Over the past few years, Mathew Sloan has been to Korea, England, Tennessee, and a remote island in Lake Superior. That’s because the Lakehead alumnus has wide-ranging passions. As well as being a virtuoso guitarist, a former lighthouse keeper, and a novice bonsai gardener, Mathew is proficient in several languages – French, Spanish, Korean, Hawaiian Creole, and Arabic (his mother is from Lebanon).
Michael Bush (HBCom’08, MSMgt’09) is currently managing the Public Health COVID-19 hotline for the City of Hamilton. Prior to COVID-19 arriving in Canada, Michael was in charge of inventory management, storage and handling practices, and data management for the City of Hamilton vaccine program.
Gino Russo (BSc’00/BEd’01) faced a huge challenge when the COVID-19 pandemic shut down Northwestern Ontario. The information technology consultant teacher had to shift the entire Lakehead Public Schools system to remote learning at the drop of a hat.
Doing downward dogs and warrior poses in sweltering 38-degree heat might sound alarming – but alumna Debbie Zweep (BAdmin'94) wants to assure anyone who is curious not to worry. She is the co-owner of Modo Yoga Thunder Bay, located in Lakehead University’s C.J. Sanders Fieldhouse.
Every morning following a sunrise run, Jill Wheatley (BEd.'99) cycled to work along picturesque farm roads – expertly dodging cattle, sheep, tractors, and impatient commuters – on her way to work at an international high school in Bavaria. She was a health and sport science teacher with an adventurous streak. Since leaving Canada in 2001, she had been to more than 60 countries and had extended work stints in Singapore, Russia, Switzerland, and Germany.
Christopher Britt doesn’t consider himself a daredevil, but he jumps at the chance to go heli-skiing on in the mountains bordering Canada and Alaska and surfing in Bali. “My brain is always on, so skiing and surfing – or putting on my goalie gear – are meditative and peaceful for me,” he says. “Risk leads to increased focus.”
Being a kid isn't easy, and when everyday struggles are combined with challenging situations, a child's self-esteem can plummet. Matthew Chater, (BA’08, Psychology/BEd’08) the President & CEO of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Canada, believes that having a mentor can help turn things around for young people.
One winter, former Thunder Bay deejay Brent Hawley (BA’01) packed up his belongings, sold off most of his real estate holdings, and moved to Hawaii. After two decades in Northwestern Ontario, Brent had landed a job as a media management consultant for the largest group of radio stations in the Hawaiian Islands – the Pacific Media Group (PMG) in Kailua-Kona.