Lakehead University Wordmark Agora

President's Message

Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University
Dr. Fred Gilbert
Dr. Fred Gilbert
I hope that everyone had a pleasant holiday period that allowed connection and relaxation with family and friends.   As we move into the second semester of the academic year we must continue to ensure fiscal sustainability for the University even as the double cohort class moves toward graduation.   Enhanced recruitment at the undergraduate and graduate student levels is critically important if we are to meet our goals and provincial funding potential.   The University has invested in a number of faculty positions intended to facilitate graduate growth while building overall disciplinary and interdisciplinary strengths.  Other positions will be added strategically to support existing and future needs both in Thunder Bay and at the Orillia Campus.  A special emphasis will be put on positions that not only support growth, but also cross disciplinary boundaries.   Although program size in a number of areas does not support graduate programming, there is adequate critical mass when disciplines are prepared to explore new complementary associations to foster graduate opportunities for faculty and students alike. 

The institution continues to be faced with infrastructure issues ranging from deferred maintenance to inadequate space.   We will continue to seek funding for a research building and pursue all opportunities for additional space.  We will assess carefully what deferred issues must be addressed in the next budget for health and safety reasons and hope that the federal government transfers funding to help universities cope with this issue.

Lakehead University carefully husbanded its fiscal resources during the double cohort years so that we would not be faced with the cutbacks currently occurring at a number of other Ontario universities where big investments were made in faculty positions that can no longer be sustained.  We are preparing to position the University for long-term responsible and directed growth and will carefully monitor our personnel investment to assure that the desired effects are being realized.   Much of this is possible now because of the academic plan and the guidance it will increasingly provide.  I commend the Vice-President Academic, Deans' Council, and the Senate Academic Committee for the progress we have made in this regard.

The University will have two fundraising campaigns under way in 2007.  One, already initiated, is to secure support for undergraduate and graduate scholarships, while the second will be to develop the permanent campus in Orillia.  More detail on the latter will be provided when the site has been confirmed and the architectural model for the campus has been finalized.   Lakehead has made a commitment that the Orillia Campus will be developed as the first "green" university campus in Canada.  We also expect that the committees struck to implement the recommendations of the Talloires Declaration ( ) will begin to impact activities on the Thunder Bay Campus.

Let us all move forward in 2007 with great optimism that the University will be able to chart its own destiny within the evolving policy framework of the Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.   Part of this will involve embracing the notion that Lakehead should have a leadership role in facilitating Aboriginal aspirations for university educational opportunities, that we can be the model for effective and efficient transfer and collaborative initiatives with the college system, and that we are prepared to respond to meeting student satisfaction in those areas which the National Survey of Student Engagement (NSSE) and other surveys demonstrate we need to improve.

The challenges have not diminished but the solutions are potentially in hand if we deem it important enough to embrace them.   I have enough faith in the people of this special university that I believe we can rise to those challenges and continue to compete effectively with our Ontario colleagues in the university sector.

A meaningful, productive, and personally satisfying 2007 to each and every member of the Lakehead University family!

Lakehead deploys Google Email for Education Campus Wide

Eleanor Abaya, Director of Communications
Gmail and Lakehead myEmail Logo
In early December, Lakehead University aligned with Google to be the first large-scale deployment of Google Apps for Education in Canada. Google Apps for Education is a platform entirely hosted by Google that will provide Lakehead University students, faculty, and staff with email, chat, and web calendaring – all without the hassle of installing and maintaining software and hardware on campus.
The partnership with Google is a feat that involved the moving of 38,000 student, faculty, staff and alumni email accounts from existing systems to Google Apps for Education in a week’s time. According to Shahzad Jafri, Chief Information Officer and Director of the Technology Services Centre at Lakehead University, “The traditional way of looking at technology use and its management is coming to an end. Organizations have to continue to reinvent themselves and the services they provide to enhance the value of technology in education.”
Adds Michael Pawlowski, Vice President (Administration & Finance), “This is the core reason we have aligned with Google – to prepare ourselves for a brave new world of technology in education. And there is no company today better than Google at ensuring Lakehead is strategically prepared for the future in this regard.”
The move to Gmail also effectively and permanently resolves recurring email issues Lakehead University had continually faced under its previous email system, including server overcapacity, non-delivery, and slow response time. Although steps had been taken repeatedly in the past to address overcapacity and slow response time by asking users to delete old files, these steps were short-term fixes that did not address strategic issues, prompting administration to seek a more permanent solution. The migration to Google Apps for Education took place in phases starting Monday, November 27, and was completed in one week.
The three-year arrangement with Google gives Lakehead University enhanced services for email, calendaring, and instant messaging; one of the quickest delivery times on record; and a very stable system based on Google’s record of performance. Most important to account holders, each Google user is getting 2 GB of storage space, compared with 60 MB with the previous email system. This means that each user has virtually no limit on storage capacity. The partnership is also planned for growth, which means that Lakehead University is reassured of continued service from Google no matter how large Lakehead grows.
A real coup to the University, the three-year agreement means that Lakehead will be saving an estimated $3 million annually on maintenance and another $250, 000 per year in maintenance costs, based on the current volume of users, which numbers approximately 38, 000 students, faculty, staff, and alumni. And the annual savings are expected to increase as the number of account holders increases.
Furthermore, the management of all email users is handled by Lakehead University, such as the provisioning of accounts and password changes. Shahzad Jafri stresses: “We are very confident in this partnership and know the confidentiality of our users and their information will be completely protected and will remain sacrosanct.”
Matt Glotzbach, Head of Enterprise Products, adds, “We are delighted with this partnership with Lakehead University. Lakehead has set an example of progressive thinking, and we are looking forward to working with students, faculty and alumni of this Canadian institution.”

Research and Innovation Week 2007

Come out and help us raise awareness about Lakehead's outstanding researchers and scholars!  During the week of February 26 to March 2, 2007, Lakehead University will be holding Research and Innovation Week 2007. The purpose of this event is to:
1.  Celebrate and showcase research excellence here at Lakehead
2.  Raise awareness in the community about research and its benefits to society
3.  Provide information about research funding opportunities
4.  Provide an opportunity for networking between faculty, students, and funders
Research and Innovation Week 2007 will include a panel discussion related to the role of research and innovation in our local economy, a graduate student conference, research poster presentations in the Agora, funding opportunity displays and information sessions, a celebration of our 2006 Distinguished Researchers, and many other events.

Orillia Campus News

Memory Box celebrates Orillia Campus’ First Term
by Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer
Dr. Sally-Ann Burnett
Dr. Sally-Ann Burnett
It was the end of the first semester, but in many respects, it was still the beginning. And Lakehead University – Orillia Campus wanted to record the memories of the exciting beginnings of a new campus. The staff, faculty, and students collected mementos of the events over the past three months, and on Monday, December 11, 2006, they sealed them away in a Memory Box to be opened in the year 2046 — 40 years after the first students embarked on their journey.
“This has been a wonderful, exciting, busy, and extraordinary time for our young campus,” said Dr. Sally-Ann Burnett, Director of Operations at the Orillia Campus. “I am so pleased with how everything has worked out. Our Charter Class is up and running, students are writing exams, our staff and faculty are developing new ideas – it’s just amazing how fantastic this semester has been, and we want to share this with the future Orillia Campus so they know how we started and how we grew.”
The Memory Box contains many keepsakes from the past few months, including: a photograph of the Charter Class and founding staff; items from Grand Opening celebrations on September 8 of this year (a DVD, invitations, photographs, etc.); the Packet and Times newspapers reporting the Orientation Day and Grand Opening; congratulatory letters and cards; the orientation package for Charter Class students; tickets, a program and a T-shirt from the Thunderwolves hockey match, and many other souvenirs from the first semester.
“Getting to this stage with our Orillia Campus involved a lot of hard work and commitment from many people – from within Lakehead University as well as the community of Orillia – and this Memory Box is an outstanding way to remember it all,” said Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University. 
Tuition Prize Winner says Thanks
by Susan Wright, Development and Alumni Prospect Researcher
photo courtesy of Amy Lazar, Reporter, Packet & Times
Laura Siddall, Orillia campus tuition prize winner
Laura Siddall, Orillia campus tuition prize winner
Laura Siddall, Orillia campus tuition prize winner, thanked the 18 Orillia businesses and individuals who gave to the Charter Class tuition prize.
Spearheaded by Mike Davenport, Owner of Davenport Subaru, the $4,500 prize was designed to bring awareness to the business community of the need for student financial assistance and support for an Orillia Charter Class student.
Siddall is enrolled in the combined Bachelor of Arts/Science & Bachelor of Education program and hopes one day to become a teacher.  “This support has helped me concentrate on my studies and not worry about finances,” said Siddall to the donors to the prize. “I thank you for investing in me and my family.”

Dr. Ulf Runesson - 2006 Distinguished Instructor Award Recipient

Frances Harding, Editor, Publications
Dr. Ulf Runesson
Dr. Ulf Runesson
Ulf Runesson is a technophile who cares passionately about the application of knowledge, especially knowledge about the physical world and our place in it.
His expertise is in Geomatics − the science and technology of gathering, analyzing, interpreting, distributing, and using geographic information.  And he has spent a good deal of his career mentoring the men and women who are now leaders in the field of forest information gathering, in Canada and around the world.
Geomatics includes surveying, mapping, remote sensing, geographic information systems (GIS), and global positioning system (GPS). “GIS is not particularly difficult, but the supporting science of remote sensing can be a challenge” says Runesson, “and it’s changing all the time, generally for the better.”
What is important, he says, is listening to the people and empowering them to make wise choices about their physical environment.
Runesson completed his Honours Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry at Lakehead in 1982 and, in 1987, was hired to run the Lakehead University Centre for the Application of Resource Information Systems (LU-CARIS) on a cost-recovery basis. He also taught courses as a Sessional Lecturer.
In 1991, he completed a PhD in Forest Management (Remote Sensing) from UBC and a year later joined Lakehead’s Faculty of Forestry and the Forest Environment as a full-fledged faculty member. He did his PhD on the inventory of the mountain pine bark beetle – the infestation that has wiped out millions of hectares of B.C. forest and which Runesson describes as being “one of the worst natural disasters that Canada has ever seen in modern times.”
Dr. John Naysmith, who was then Director of Lakehead’s School of Forestry (and later the founding Dean of the Faculty of Forestry and the Forest Environment) hired Runesson, and he describes him as having an “innate desire to be helpful to students.” This is certainly confirmed by the many glowing testimonials of Ulf Runesson’s students.  They appreciate him for being available 24/7 and − thanks to his work with LU-CARIS − for equipping the Lakehead labs with the newest technology. 
Runesson, in turn, credits Naysmith for involving him with three CIDA-funded forestry projects in Ghana and Nepal, and the Ghana-Canada Scholarship program that enabled Ghanaians to study in Canada.
As for Dr. Ken Brown, the Professor in the Faculty of Forestry and the Forest Environment who nominated Runesson for the Distinguished Instructor Award, he believes Runesson is worthy of the award for this international work alone.
“Beginning in 1993, Runesson designed and installed a completely functional ‘turn-key’ GIS/GPS/remote sensing laboratory on the campus of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology in Kumasi (KNUST), Ghana, West Africa,” says Brown. “I saw the lab in 1995 and it was then as modern and useful as anything to be found in North America. Beginning in 1994, and continuing for a decade, Runesson led a series of training courses in Ghana that were designed to provide Ghanaian forestry faculty, forestry practitioners, and others including civil engineers and geographers with the technical skills and knowledge needed to apply these new technologies to Ghanaian problems.”
Dr. Henry N.N. Bulley was one graduate student from Ghana who worked with Runesson. He is now a Research Associate with Global Land Ice Measurements from Space at the University of Nebraska Omaha. In his letter of support to the Distinguished Instructor Award Selection Committee he writes:
“While I was developing my MSc theses, I proposed to work on hydrologic systems in the “usual” and “comfortable” part of Ghana’s capital, Accra. Through my discussions with Ulf, I became more sensitized to the need for work on the hydrologic systems in northern Ghana, where there was urgent need for land use monitoring despite relatively overlooked and poor infrastructure. While doing field work with Ulf in Bawku (Upper East Region, Ghana) I gained a lot of insights about resource management in the interest of the environment and rural people whose daily survival is intimately dependent on the natural environment. …”
Another graduate student described Runesson’s impact on her in an eloquent letter that now graces the front of his teaching portfolio:
“Thank you for being an effective, supportive and accessible thesis advisor. I’m proud of what I accomplished under your tutelage, and I attribute it largely to your ability to raise the personal and professional standards of those around you merely by being you – capable, tirelessly positive, an intelligence with energy.”
Runesson ensures his courses are relevant and up-to-date by incorporating the newest methods, processes, and Web-based tools.
He is active in promoting Forestry in the elementary and secondary schools, and at other public events such as Program Day, and sometimes you can spot him trundling a metal suitcase on wheels – the tools of his high-tech trade.
One Atikokan high school teacher wrote to Lakehead’s VP Academic & Provost recently to commend Runesson for his outreach efforts, saying, “His efforts not only enhance the learning opportunity for students but also take some of the mystery out of postsecondary education.”
Runesson’s experience with the design, implementation, monitoring, and quality control of large region GIS database enterprises and metadata warehousing is staggering.
Indeed, one need only look at some of the websites he has helped to build and manage ( and ) to appreciate the importance of his work to forestry in general.
This expertise along with his commitment to student-centred learning and his deep concern for the ethics of his profession make Dr. Ulf Runesson a truly worthy recipient of the Lakehead University 2006 Distinguished Instructor Award.

International Days Bring Students Together

Sport and recreation from around the world was the theme of International Days 2006
Miriam Lappala, International Student Advisor
While International Education Week was being celebrated province-wide, Lakehead University held International Days 2006 −A Celebration of Sport and Recreation from Around the World.
In keeping with the theme of athletics, the University organized a two-day Table Tennis Tournament in the Agora, a Lakehead University World Cup of Soccer, and a demonstration Cricket Match in The Hangar.
Human Resources sponsored a “Yoga @ your Desk” session where participants learned how to stretch and breathe at their desk to reduce stress and strain.  The week ended with the South Asian Student Society hosting a dinner in The Study, and a screening of a Bollywood movie. The event was a huge success where people enjoyed fabulous food, beautiful music, and dance.
After the Bollywood event the African and Caribbean students hosted Urbanfest in the Outpost where African and Caribbean music were featured and everyone was able to dance and celebrate the end of a great week. 
Lakehead University’s goal was to bring students together through the vehicle of recreation and sport to celebrate their diversity.  A Celebration of Sport and Recreation from Around the World expanded the experience of the Lakehead University community in a way that supports the development of global citizenship.
Tom Warden joins in the Table Tennis Tournament
Tom Warden joins in the Table Tennis Tournament and shows the students a good backhand smash

Majid Mohammed (India) demonstrates a great Cricket batting stance as Mohammad Kabir Hossain (Bangladesh) watches the wicket

South Asian students host a Bollywood evening with food and films
Mmmmmmm good food! Service with a smile −  South Asian students host a Bollywood evening with food and films.

Lakehead Scholarship Campaign

Over the next three years, Lakehead University is planning to raise $6-million to fund scholarships for graduate and undergraduate students
Marla Tomlinson, Communications Officer
Scholarships encourage students to continue to excel, and Lakehead University is reaching out to the community to ask them to help students reach their academic goals.
Over the next three years, the Lakehead University Scholarship Campaign is aiming to raise $6 million for scholarships. A scholarship is a way of recognizing academic achievement while providing financial assistance to students.
“Scholarships help our students to realize their undergraduate and graduate potentials, and encourage high-ranking students to come to Lakehead University,” says Dr. Fred Gilbert, President. “This campaign is a chance for people to give to the University in a way that has a direct and important impact on students.”
Jessica Hanson, a third-year Nursing student, has received several scholarships from Lakehead, including an entrance scholarship in first year. Scholarships make a difference, she says, “They can help you get through the year without having to work part-time, and that means you have the potential to get higher marks.”
“Contributing to scholarships really shows you care about education,” she adds.
Anyone who would like more information on the Scholarship Campaign can call the Office of Development at 807-343-8300, or visit

Turning Tourists into Learners: Research by Dr. Connie Russell

Unique research at Lakehead University’s Faculty of Education aims to make eco-tourism a more responsible industry
Colin Anderson, SPARK Writer
Dr. Connie Russell
Dr. Connie Russell
Dr. Connie Russell is no stranger to international study.  In fact, she's spent much of her life doing research work in places as far flung as Southeast Asia, Eastern Europe, and the Middle East.  Her expertise is in Education, but her focus has taken her far beyond the traditional schoolhouse.
While working on her Master’s degree, she traveled to Indonesian Borneo and spent time with the tourists she encountered there.  “I was interested in what people were learning,” she says of her reasons for going.  What she saw amazed her.  “It was fascinating to discover that the people weren't really learning much.  They were coming in with preconceived ideas, and they sought out experiences that reinforced those ideas.”
The educational value of a vacation abroad is not something that is always considered by travelers, but for the relatively new and expanding eco-tourism industry, knowledge and environmental responsibility are often advertised front-and-centre. 
The problem for Russell, who works as an Associate Professor in the Faculty of Education at Lakehead University, is that the educational rationale for eco-tourism is not often put into practice.  While the conservationists' philosophies are often sound, she suggests that actual eco-tourism facilities may be lagging behind. “They may not have skilled interpreters on staff or enough resources so that they can provide the proper information.”
Luckily, Russell's newest research project is designed to help.
Focusing on primate eco-tourism, she and former MES student Jen Smith and current MEd student Jan Oakley have begun an assessment of the advertising shown to incoming tourists.  “There are all kinds of images out there of people going to the jungle, touching and holding the primates, and that's not a good idea,” she explains.  “It domesticates them.  Then when tourists arrive and are told they can't touch the animals, they end up being disappointed.” 
Russell wants to develop a sense of how seriously eco-tourist destinations are taking education.  Once all her advertisement data has been collected, she and Oakley will then conduct an international survey and produce a status report that highlights the areas of success and areas of concern within the industry.
Unwilling to stop there, Russell and PhD student Sue Hamel also plan to undertake several case studies in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, and South Africa.  With a few exceptions, eco-tourism is a largely unregulated industry.  “People start out quite hopeful that eco-tourism will help them, but in the end it often offers more problems than benefits,” she says of the current situation.  Poorly educated travelers can put the local environment and people at risk, but the conclusions Russell draws from her work around the globe will help the eco-tourism community develop healthier standards.
Russell's research approach is quite unique within the industry.  While there have been numerous studies conducted on disease transmission, animal behavior, habitat loss, and economics, she points out that “there simply hasn't been anybody doing work on the educational end of things.”  Her work fills a void in the dialogue already under way amongst biologists, economists, and conservationists.  Russell's work is an important part of any constructive debate, and it may very well lead to a more responsible eco-tourism industry worldwide.
Colin Anderson is one of several students taking part in SPARK-Lakehead, a student writing program sponsored by The Chronicle-Journal.

New Benefits Package: Flexible and Up-to-Date

A new benefits package from Medavie Blue Cross is now available for staff at Lakehead University
Frances Harding, Editor, Publications
Effective January 1, 2007, Lakehead University staff have a new benefits package being offered through Medavie Blue Cross, a company with 1,900 employees based in Atlantic Canada (
Medavie Blue Cross Logo
Medavie Blue Cross Logo
Medavie is the new name adopted by Blue Cross in March 2005 in the Atlantic Provinces, and for Group Benefits in Quebec and Ontario. It is a combination of the English and French words for 'medical to life.'
Benefits being offered through the new Lakehead University package include group life insurance, health and vision, and dental.
“The new package replaces one from Great-West Life that had been in place for decades and was in need of review and updating,” says Vice-President (Administration & Finance) Michael Pawlowski. “The new plan offers more value and increased flexibility. For example, the old plan had a $20,000 lifetime maximum on health care costs and prescription drugs. The new plan increases that amount to $1 million per person.”
The new benefits package is available to staff including Senior Administration, Schedule I and II, and CAW, IUOE, COPE, and USWA union employees.
To date, the Lakehead University Faculty Association, which represents faculty, sessional lecturers, and librarians, have not signed on with the new plan; LUFA members will continue to have benefits covered by the old plan under Blue Cross.
In the following article, Lakehead Human Resources Administrator Amber McCart highlights some of the significant details of the plan.
For an overview of the new Plan and how it compares with the old, employees will be able to visit a website that will be up and running in January.
Group Life Insurance
Coverage for employees has been changed so that all employees will be covered for 2 times their annual earnings up to a maximum of $450,000. (Under the old plan, some employee groups were getting 3 times annual earnings, and others were getting 1.5 time annual earnings.)
The premiums are still being paid by Lakehead University. There is an option to purchase voluntary Accidental Death and Dismemberment insurance (AD & D) and/or optional Dependent Life Insurance. To do, so, simply contact Human Resources.
Health Care (Medical, Drugs, and Vision)
The overall lifetime maximum of the current plan has been increased from $20,000 per individual to $1 million per individual.
Services provided by other health care providers such as a chiropractor, naturopath, physiotherapist, psychologist, etc., are covered up to a maximum of $350 per year in each category. Referrals are required for Massage.
90% of the cost of prescription drugs is covered by the plan. As well, a $7 dispensing fee is covered. The following pharmacies in Thunder Bay have agreed to offer dispensing services capped at $7: Janzen’s Pharmacy, Medi-Plus Pharmacy, Regional Pharmacy, Academy Pharmacy, Fort William Clinic, and Ridgeway Clinic Medical Centre Pharmacy.
Eye exams are covered up to a maximum of $75 once every two years. Eye glasses for adults are covered up to a maximum of $150 every two years.
Under the new plan, Out of Province Emergency Treatment (travel insurance) is provided up to $1 million, for travel up to 90 days. Under the old plan, employees would have had to purchase additional travel insurance. 
80% of dental expenses is covered and 70% of work on crowns and bridges. Regular dental check-ups are to be scheduled once every 9 months (instead of every 6 months.) However, teeth cleaning (scaling) is covered up to 14 units per year.
Health Services Spending Account (HSSA)
Each employee has $325 to spend to cover out-of-pocket expenses for health and dental services throughout the year. Any unspent portion can be carried over to the next year.
Drug Card
During the first week of January, staff received a Drug Card to be used in the purchase of medication and general health services. This Card offers the convenience of not having to pay for medical expenses “up front” and then wait to be reimbursed.
All staff are encouraged to notify their health care providers to inform them of the change in insurance coverage and billing procedures.
Amber McCart
Amber McCart
Coverage for Retired Employees
Those employees who have retired prior to January 1, 2007, and have opted to stay with the Lakehead University plan for medical, dental, and vision, will continue to be covered under the old plan. Employees retiring after January 1, 2007, will also have the option to be covered for medical, dental, and vision under the old plan.
For more information contact: Amber McCart 346-7931. Email:

MMRC Welcomes a new Founding Scientific Director

In December 2006, the Molecular Medicine Research Centre (MMRC) welcomed a new Founding Scientific Director and announced two grants totaling $350,000 for research which will benefit patient care and treatment
Press Release
Founding Scientific Director
MMRC, which links researchers from the Thunder Bay Regional Health Sciences Centre (TBRHSC), Lakehead University, and Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre (SHSC) in Toronto, along with industry partner Philips Medical Systems, a division of Royal Philips, welcomed  Dr. John Rowlands, Head, Medical Physics Research, Toronto Sunnybrook Regional Cancer Centre, as the Founding Scientific Director, MMRC. 
“The MMRC is the physical presence of a partnership intended to provide access to an incredible pool of research talent, resources, and technology,” says Dr. Michael Julius, Vice President Research, SHSC, who was at the announcement to introduce Dr. Rowlands to the community.  “Dr. Rowlands is a first-rate addition to MMRC’s growing critical mass of research.” 
“I’m looking forward to joining the team at the MMRC,” says Dr. Rowlands.  “This region certainly has a lot to be proud of, as well as exceptional growth potential.  I’m thrilled to be a part of it all.” 
Dr. Rowlands’ addition to MMRC has been much-anticipated in Thunder Bay. As a result of the appointment of Dr. Rowlands, MMRC will engage in several research projects, including one to develop High-Intensity Focused Ultrasound (HIFU) equipment, guided by Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI) that will use heat to destroy cancers deep in the body without surgery. 
“We are pleased to have Dr. Rowlands leading the team,” said Michael Power, Vice-President, Regional Cancer and Diagnostics. “The credibility he lends to MMRC via his research experience assists in the establishment of Thunder Bay as a global player in research.”
Dr. Rowlands adds, “Two other projects I work with involve the development of novel injectable agents that light up when paired with conventional scanners and development of a new generation of Positron Emission Tomography (PET) Scanner to produce higher resolution images at a lower cost.”
“These approaches will enhance our ability to understand disease and its progression, lessening the need for invasive surgeries,” said Dr. David Webster, Acting Medical Director, Nuclear Medicine, TBRHSC, President of the Ontario Nuclear Medicine Association, and qualified interpreter of PET.
Dr. Fred Gilbert, President, Lakehead University, says he is pleased with the announcement of Dr. Rowlands as the Founding Scientific Director of MMRC.
“As a member of the consortium, Lakehead is delighted to have Dr. Rowlands on board,” Dr. Gilbert says. “Our goal is for Lakehead to be one of the top 25 research-intensive universities in Canada within the next 10 years. Dr. Rowlands and his team will certainly play a part in building the research community in Thunder Bay and in helping us to reach this goal.”  
Lakehead University was recently named Research University of the year (2006) in the undergraduate category by Research Infosource; it was ranked 1st overall in research income growth and 1st in research intensity in its category. Overall, Lakehead moved from the 38th to the 29th place among the Top 50 Research Universities this year. These exciting developments are complemented by research currently under way at Regional Cancer Care (RCC) and the Northern Ontario School of Medicine. 
Research Grants – Two Projects Totaling $350,000 Announced
This volume of cancer research continues to grow as a direct result of the Northern Cancer Research Foundation (NCRF). The NCRF is pleased to announce a grant for $80,000 supporting groundbreaking scientific research by Dr. Ingeborg Zehbe, Career Scientist, RCC, and Dr. Marina Ulanova, Associate Professor, Medical Sciences Division, Northern Ontario Medical School (NOSM).
Their research in cervical cancer postulates that integrins, molecules that coordinate the response of cells in the cervical lining, could be inhibited in times of inflammation when their expression can send the wrong signal to normal cervical cells and cause those normal, healthy cells to become malignant. 
“The anticipated results of this study will significantly improve our understanding of molecular mechanisms involved in development and progression of cervical carcinoma,” said Dr. Ulanova.  “It will provide an experimental basis for the design of novel drugs for the treatment of cervical cancer, based on integrin inhibitors.” 
The NCRF is also pleased to announce funding of $270,000 for another project that will impact patients and their families throughout Northwestern Ontario.  Dr. Patricia Smith, Associate Professor and Chair of Social & Population Health Division of Human Sciences, NOSM, and Dr. Scott Sellick, Director, Supportive & Palliative Care, TBRHSC, will research and implement an inpatient tobacco cessation program in Northwestern Ontario hospitals.
“Programs offered at the bedside during hospitalization maximize people’s success at quitting smoking,” says Dr. Smith. “Quitting during hospitalization has benefits beyond general health improvement – healing occurs more rapidly, surgical complications decrease, and shorter hospital stays are required.” 
This research is pertinent to Northwestern Ontario, which has higher than average smoking rates when compared with the rest of Ontario. In Canada, tobacco use is directly related to over 85 percent of lung cancers and 30 percent of all other cancers. The long-term outcomes of this research will include the institutionalization of tobacco cessation initiatives in hospitals and a reduction of cigarette consumption across Northwestern Ontario.
“The ultimate outcome will be a decrease in tobacco-related diseases, complications, healthcare utilization, and healthcare costs,” Dr. Smith adds. 
The NCRF is proud to fund these two important research and patient care projects, according to Brian McKinnon, Chair, Board of Directors, NCRF. Research projects such as these generate excitement in the medical and academic fields as well as the community.
“Northwestern Ontario should be incredibly proud of this research as this region is entirely responsible for its funding,” McKinnon says. “It’s very exciting to see the tangible results of projects funded by this community’s generosity.” 
The NCRF is dedicated to providing funds that stay here in Northwestern Ontario, with the specific goal of furthering research, improving patient care, and stimulating education and awareness for the residents of our region and community.”

14 Things to Do Before You Retire

The following is an excerpt of an article by Thomas H. Benton in the November 10, 2006, issue of  The Chronicle of Higher Education.
  1. Get Tenure
  2. Learn from an Emeritus Professor
  3. Perfect an Introductory Course
  4. Be a Mentor for Students
  5. Teach in a Foreign Country
  6. Write About Something that Matters to You
  7. Become a Public Intellectual
  8. Build a Library
  9. Be a Mentor to a Junior Colleague
  10. Finance a Prize or Scholarship
  11. Reinvent Yourself
  12. Serve as an Administrator
  13. Lead a Major Campus Initiative
  14. Preserve Tenure for Someone Else

Faculty Profile: Dr. Alexander Serenko

Dr. Alexander Serenko, Faculty of Business Administration
Ade Sekudo, Writer and Researcher, Office of Communications
Dr. Alexander Serenko
Dr. Alexander Serenko
Since being hired by Lakehead University as an Assistant Professor of Business Administration in January 2005, Dr. Alexander Serenko has been quick to distinguish himself as an asset to the Faculty of Business Administration. His areas of specialization include e-business, information systems, knowledge management, and innovation.
Academic endeavors and work have taken Serenko from his native home of Belarus, where he received his Master’s degree in Computer Science in 1996, to Canada. He earned his MBA and PhD at the DeGroote School of Business, McMaster University, in Hamilton. McMaster University has been recognized as the most innovative Canadian university and the DeGroote School of Business has been ranked the most productive business faculty in Canada in terms of research output. Serenko now lives in Thunder Bay with his wife Natalia and son Vlad.
Serenko teaches e-business/commerce, website design, and business computing, and says he loves being a faculty member at Lakehead University. He especially likes the academic freedom and unrivalled flexibility the University affords him for his research and teaching. The collaborative climate fostered by his colleagues in the Faculty of Business Administration, coupled with minimal restraints offered by University administration, he says, play a huge role in making his time here at Lakehead very enjoyable.
Serenko has spent his summers evaluating his performance in the preceding academic years, and will often make adjustments in order to improve his teaching. He looks forward to engaging in more active research, pursuing tenure, and sharing knowledge with his students.
He has co-authored a number of papers with colleagues all over Canada, including “Satisfaction with Mobile Services in Canada: An empirical investigation” in Telecommunications Policy Journal, one of the primary journals in the mobile commerce field.  Within the first month of publication, the article was ranked Number 1 in terms of being the most frequently downloaded article for the April-June 2006 period. After the article was published, Dr. Serenko (and co-author O. Turel from McMaster University) received several offers to continue this study in other countries such as Finland, Singapore, Israel, and the Ivory Coast.
During his two-year career at Lakehead, Serenko published or had accepted four refereed book chapters, 12 journal articles and 12 conference papers, and received three Best Paper Awards at prestigious academic conferences. Dr. Alexander Serenko is currently working on three papers with Lakehead colleagues on current issues in information systems, management education, and marketing.

Staff Profile: Owen Dawkins

Owen Dawkins, Wrestling Coach
Ade Sekudo, Writer and Researcher, Office of Communications
Owen Dawkins
Owen Dawkins
Inheriting a successful men’s and women’s varsity wrestling team from former Coach Francis Clayton hardly fazes Owen Dawkins. The truth is this young Oakville, Ontario, native has an appetite for challenges.
Dawkins has both a short- and long-term plan for the wrestling program. In the former, he hopes to take Lakehead to the top of both the CIS and OUA standings from its current positions of #7 and #2 respectively. He also wants to put Lakehead athletes on the National wrestling team to compete at world events, including the Olympics.
As for his long-term plan, he hopes to win the CIS championship with the men’s team. Ambitious goals one may say, but hardly the case in Dawkin’s mind especially because he loves his job.
“There are actually times when I say, “Oh my God! I love my job!” I’m actually getting paid to do something I love!” he says.
Born in Jamaica and moving to Canada at the age of 9, Dawkins has lived in Southern Ontario, Manitoba, British Columbia, Alberta, and now, Thunder Bay. Along the way, he was able to acquire a BEd with a major in physical education from the University of Alberta, while wrestling and working as an Assistant Coach.
His first experience with Lakehead’s top-notch varsity program, came when he wrestled with some of Lakehead’s athletes. Shortly after, the Head Coach position opened up and, now, Dawkins is in Thunder Bay.
Dawkins’ love for traveling and small towns undoubtedly played a role in choosing to settle at Lakehead University. The task of improving upon, or at least continuing the work of his predecessor, Francis Clayton, also played a part.
Being a Coach is not without its share of “ups and downs” says Dawkins. Challenges he has faced include losing top athletes and inheriting a team as opposed to building his own team from scratch. Insufficient funding is also a formidable obstacle. On his journey to excellence, he brought along 15 new recruits; most with no scholarships.  But to this Coach, the joy of helping students get a degree while doing something they love outweighs the difficulties along the way.
“I love interacting with the athletes, and I admire the teams’ camaraderie, abilities, and work ethics.”
Dawkins wants to be remembered for improving upon the success of his predecessor, winning more championships, turning out national teams, and inspiring wrestlers for years to come. As for now, Coach Dawkins is off to a great start.

Alumni Profile: John Bonofiglio

John Bonofiglio, Alumni "Ambassador"
Frances Harding, Editor, Publications
John Bonofiglio
John Bonofiglio
John Bonofiglio (HBA’81) has always gone that extra mile when it comes to making connections between Lakehead University and the Italian and Francophone communities.
“His gracious style and genuine warmth and enthusiasm for all things Lakehead make him an ideal Ambassador,” says Bonnie Moore, Director of Development.
Bonofiglio was born of Italian parents who emigrated from Italy to France in the 1950s. He went to private school near the city of Nancy in the Lorraine region, and then moved with his parents to Thunder Bay as a young adult.
Bonofiglio studied languages (French and Spanish) at Lakehead and became involved with the Association of Francophone Students in Northwestern Ontario (AEFNO), serving as President.   He was also one of two founders of a French student newspaper, Info-Impact, serving universities nationally and abroad, and worked as an interpreter at many national and international sporting events. 
As an imaginative and energetic undergraduate, Bonofiglio recalls transforming the Agora into a Parisian street scene complete with café tables and fresh croissants flown in daily from a French bakery in Toronto—all in the name of fostering an understanding of an appreciation for French culture.
These days, he is focusing his creativity on Lakehead University Institute of Italian Studies.
Institute of Italian Studies
The idea of a Chair of Italian Studies at Lakehead was formulated about 15 years ago by members of the Thunder Bay Italian community. To some extent, it was modeled on the same principles as the Chair in Finnish Studies. Money would be raised by the Thunder Bay community to bring in visiting scholars in an effort to foster academic linkages between Lakehead University, Thunder Bay, and Europe.
However, members of the Italian community in Thunder Bay chose to take a wider view of things. Their vision was to develop an Institute of Italian Studies – a body that would undertake a variety of initiatives to promote, preserve, and celebrate Italian language, culture, and history − in Canada and in Italy.
Initiatives undertaken to date have included book publishing, a speaker series, and fundraising for capital projects, a language course, and scholarships.
John Bonofiglio is motivated by the need to bring Lakehead University and the Italian community closer together. Last fall, during a talk he gave at the DaVinci Centre at the invitation of the Italian Cultural Committee of Thunder Bay (ICC), he spoke about Lakehead University and what opportunities the institution is providing for Italian-Canadians – particularly the children and the grandchildren of the older generation living in Thunder Bay.
(Bonofiglio’s oldest daughter Erika, 21, will be a graduate of the Lakehead Nursing program, and his younger daughter Andrea, 16, is considering enrolling in the same program when she finishes high school.)
Passion and pride are fuelling Bonofiglio’s current endeavor − to assist the many Italian cultural groups across Thunder Bay to work together toward establishing an endowed scholarship for Lakehead University.
Bonofiglio is President of the 15-member Board of Directors of the Lakehead University Institute of Italian Studies, which meets once a month in the Avila Centre. It’s a dynamic group, he says, which includes a wide cross section of the community including professionals, business managers, as well as two Lakehead University students.
Their most recent achievement was to rally around the “Arthur Mauro Challenge” of raising $150,000 from the community to match a donation of the same amount from Arthur Mauro for the ATAC capital campaign.
Arthur Mauro is a distinguished businessman and philanthropist who was raised in Thunder Bay and given an Honorary Degree from Lakehead in 1997. He was in Thunder Bay on November 2, 2006, for a naming ceremony in his honor of AT-1001 –  a 150-seat lecture hall in the Advanced Technology & Academic Centre (ATAC).
“I felt a great sense of accomplishment at the unveiling,” says Bonofiglio. “For me, the event symbolized the beginning of a new relationship. It expressed, in a very concrete way, the strong presence of the Thunder Bay Italian community at Lakehead University, and of Lakehead’s recognition of the community’s contributions.”
Book Publishing
In their Footsteps stories from the Italian community of Thunder Bay edited by John Potestio (HBA’70, MA’81) and The Italians of Thunder Bay by John Potestio.
Speaker Series
A lecture in 2004 by Dr. Bruce Strang, Associate Professor of History, entitled, “Babes in the Bretton Woods: Italy's Post-War Reconstruction,” and a panel discussion on “The Future of the Italian Community in Thunder Bay in 2006.”
Contributed funds to establish the first Italian language course at Lakehead in 2005 and supported the Arthur Mauro Challenge which raised $300,000 for ATAC between 2005-2006.

From the Archives: The Oscar Styffe Collection

The Lakehead University Library Archives has several prominent local historical collections dating back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries. This photograph was taken from the Oscar Styffe collection, the records of a local timber company. It is one of the largest and most complete set of records on a forestry business in Canada. The archives has the records from the company's inception in 1931 until its closure in 1970. Apart from a number of photographs, it also contains correspondence, the records of several of the lumber camps, as well as the company's account and payroll books. This collection is an excellent source for the history of labor, the timber industry, and the region. It is but one of the many unique and valuable resources held at the Archives available for original research by students, faculty, and the general public. To learn more about this or other collections at the archives contact the Archivist Jeremy Mohr at or visit the archives' website at
Loading operations at Oscar Styffe Ltd., circa 1948
Loading operations at Oscar Styffe Ltd., circa 1948. MG 7, G, 221.

Mission Accomplished

Volunteers working to support the Institute of Italian Studies – Lakehead University rallied around Arthur Mauro's challenge to raise $300,000 for the ATAC capital campaign
Arthur Mauro and Dr. Fred Gilbert
Arthur Mauro and Dr. Fred Gilbert
Arthur Mauro, a businessman and philanthropist raised in Thunder Bay, was on campus last November to celebrate the success of a fundraising drive that raised $300,000 in donations from the Italian community of Thunder Bay. As a result, the 150-seat lecture hall AT-1001 has been named in his honor.
"I felt a great sense of accomplishment at the unveiling," says John Bonofiglio President of the 15-member Board of Directors of the Lakehead University Institute of Italian Studies. "For me, the event symbolized the beginning of a new relationship. It expressed, in a very concrete way, the strong presence of the Thunder Bay Italian community at Lakehead University, and of Lakehead's recognition of the community's contributions."
Richard Buset, Syd Halter, John Bonofiglio, Arthur Mauro and Dr. Fred Gilbert
Photo (l-r) Richard Buset, Syd Halter, John Bonofiglio, Arthur Mauro and Dr. Fred Gilbert take part in the unveiling of AT-1001 named in honor of Arthur Mauro and the Institute of Italian Studies – Lakehead University
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Last modified March 20, 2007
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